Bluestone – A fantastic Family Friendly UK Holiday

I’ve decided to re post this post I did last year all about our amazing trip to Bluestone in Wales. On the 1st of January I asked the boys what they would like to do this year and they both said go back to Bluestone. We really did have such a lovely time there and have and would recommend it for a fantastic UK holiday. I have an image of Camp Smokey, our absolute favourite part of Bluestone, up in the house and when I see it I immediately go back to the peace and quiet, the calm and memories of an amazing family time. I wish we could go back. Have a look at the video I made of Camp Smokey so you can see what I am talking about.  

A review of Bluestone - a fantastic family friendly UK holiday

We have just got back from an amazing stay at Bluestone in Wales. Our first holiday with Ava which was a total success. I have been raving about it to everyone I have seen and spoken to online. I don’t think I’ve ever been on another holiday with so much space. I felt like I could breathe there. I loved the green, the quiet, being able to sit outside for breakfast and a morning cup of coffee. The fresh air, the freedom and safety for the children with no cars. All of the activities that we did were entertaining and added to our experience. We spent a lovely time altogether and looking back through the photo’s the one thing that hits me is how happy we all look.

We checked in online before we arrived which saved time. After a horrible very wet and windy drive to Pembrokeshire in Wales, we extremely pleased and relieved to arrive at our beautiful accommodation for the 4 nights. First impressions were how clean and spacious it was with a modern open plan feel. I will talk about the accommodation, onsite facilities, food and the activities in more detail. 

Accommodation

We stayed in a Grassholm lodge with 4 large bedrooms. Bluestone has different accommodation depending on the size of the group. 3 of these were upstairs one with a double and ensuite. We had this one and put Ava in with us in the travel cot. The bedroom still had plenty of room even with the cot up. Our bathroom had a huge shower and was spacious and clean. There were a further 2 twin rooms upstairs and a family bathroom. Each room had a hand and bath towel for each person and a wardrobe and chest of drawers as well as bedside drawers. There was plenty of room for your clothes. Downstairs was a further twin room and large wet room with another bath. My parents stayed here. The living space downstairs was open plan with 3 sofas, a tv, patio doors opening onto a patio grass area and picnic bench. The kitchen was clean with a large table and seating and a high chair. There were also stair gates at the top and bottom of the stairs. We cooked a couple of nights and the cooking equipment was fine with the dishwasher being an added bonus. When you are travelling with extended family, it’s nice to not feel cramped and the layout and space of the lodge meant that we didn’t feel on top of each other at all.

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A couple of things to be aware of. There are no toddler/baby plates or bowls or cutlery so you will need to bring your own. There are lots of sockets which is great but not one had a cover on it. We were fine as Ava isn’t crawling yet however it would have been a bit of a nightmare if she was and had a plug obsession. The heaters also got very hot.

Food
The first night we ordered take out we had pizza, sausages and chips. The food was nice, my chips weren’t greasy. The only negative was that we had asked for condiments and when the food arrived there weren’t any. The person delivering the food said they had run out. So we had chips with no salt/pepper/ketchup etc. Next time we would pack some of these things just incase.

The second day we had lunch at the WildWood Cafe. Ava loved looking at all the twinkly lights in the tree and even sat on the throne. In the evening we cooked in the lodge and bought the ingredients from the onsite shop.

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The third night we went out for a meal. We had originally booked The Oak Tree Restaurant but in speaking to them it was going to be difficult to avoid the foods I currently can’t have with Ava’s allergies so we moved to the Farmhouse Grill. If you are going out for an evening meal ask to be seated in the back room, its nice with candles on the table. Unfortunately they wouldn’t seat us there as it was later and they were getting ready to close it up so we sat on the family friendly plastic table cloth tables. Not very romantic but we had nice food and it was great to be able to spend a couple of hours together on our own. 

The last night we booked the Woody Wild Show. The boys absolutely loved it and had a great time. They were very accommodating with the allergies and we all enjoyed the food which came out on big serving plates delivered to your table. Chicken goujons, sausages, chips, coleslaw, dips, corn on the cob. The boys had ice cream and a flake for pudding and the adults a brownie and cream. As I couldn’t have the brownie they Made me a bowl of fruit.

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The bakery serves everything from flavoured lattes to smoothies, Cornish pasties to home baked cakes. Everything is very clearly labelled for allergens and there is also an allergen tick sheet clearly displayed on the wall. I even managed to buy chocolate cupcakes that were dairy free! 

Camp Smokey. We pre booked for lunch and when we arrived it was very busy. Our table hadn’t been reserved so I hovered and grabbed one outside in the sun by the waterwheel. They had by that time found us one but it should have been ready for us. They said as people can come in from either side and just sit at a table it’s difficult to reserve them. Something to be aware of if you are planning on visiting in peak times on  a sunny day! I’ve done a whole post on camp smokey as we loved it so much! The boys enjoyed their hotdogs and my chicken fajitas were very flavoursome having been cooked on the BBQ. The tin plates and mugs were a great addition to the unique experience. The best part of course was the toasted marshmallows!

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Activities
The online booking system is a bit stressful as you only have a limited time to checkout the activities in your basket. I downloaded the activities guide and looked through making a note of the ones we wanted to do. I then looked up the times and availability online made a basic plan of days and activities. I then went to the online booking and booked a day worth of activities at a time. You can also book activities when you are there if spaces are available. 

The Spa

James and I visited the Spa and had a lovely relaxing time. It was a cold day and so the outdoor hot tub was steaming and peaceful. We tried all of the rooms and even had a chance to sit, have a chat and a glass of Prosecco. Definitely worth making some time for a visit during your stay.

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Secret Village

The boys loved this activity at 7 and 4. I won’t give too much away but instead show the photo’s.

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Camp Smokey

Our favourite place in the whole of Bluestone. We loved it so much I made a video of it. If we ever went back this would be my first stop. 

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Crèche

The boys did the pirate creche and had a great time. They were happy being left as they had costumes to put on as soon as they got there so they got involved straight away. The staff were excellent taking them out to find treasure on a trail.

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Baby Sensory

Whilst the boys were at the pirate creche we took Ava to a baby sensory session which we all enjoyed. The room was set up nicely with lots of baby friendly toys and sensory equipment. 

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Tree Climbing

Kyle (7) did the tree climbing activity and I was so surprised with how well he did. You can see how high he got. (Update) he still talks about this now.

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Swimming

We visited the swimming complex a few times during our stay. There are plenty of family friendly changing rooms and large lockers which make it a lot easier. The pool is great for all ages with a baby pool, children’s pool, lazy river and of course the flumes which were a huge hit. 

Nature Trail

There are a few nature trails that you can follow around the site which are really peaceful and a great way to explore and tire the kids out at the same time. 

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Play park

In the center of the village is a fantastic kids playground complete with a rope bridge over a stream. A great place to let the kids burn off some energy whilst you sit with a drink.

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Indoor Play Area

We were mostly lucky with the weather so didn’t spend too much time here. There is lots to do for different ages, with the crazy golf being a favourite for the boys. Ava enjoyed the Circus themed room.

There was so much to do onsite that we didn’t visit any of the areas locally. We had planned on going to the beach but instead opted for returning to Camp Smokey.  

Disclaimer: We were given a stay at Bluestone in return for an honest review. All words and opinions are my own. Thanks for having us Bluestone, we absolutely loved it! 

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A review of Bluestone - a fantastic family friendly UK holiday

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18 Comments

  1. January 25, 2016 / 11:29 am

    I have heard so many good things about Bluestone and this just seems to back that up, beautiful photos xx

  2. January 25, 2016 / 1:50 pm

    Such lovely photos! Seeing so many bloggers blog about their time at Bluestone now. Looks like such a lovely place to go as a family.

  3. January 25, 2016 / 7:46 pm

    It looks just absolutely wonderful and I love that there is a real mixture of things for everyone to do x

  4. January 25, 2016 / 8:44 pm

    Looks fantastic!

  5. January 25, 2016 / 9:38 pm

    Sounds like a lovely place to visit. You’ve got some great photos there too!

  6. January 25, 2016 / 10:00 pm

    Wow it looks absolutely amazing here! The scenery is lovely and reminds me of our trip to Centre Parcs!

  7. January 25, 2016 / 10:31 pm

    I think this sounds amazing and am dreaming of going here myself with my hubby and daughter. We want to test out the spa too..Im in much need of a massage! 🙂 Angela x

  8. January 25, 2016 / 10:55 pm

    What a wonderful place that is! What totally impresses me is that there’s something for all ages to enjoy.

  9. January 25, 2016 / 10:57 pm

    We adore Bluestone Wales – and only live ten minutes away! We can’t wait to go back. Kaz x

  10. January 25, 2016 / 11:31 pm

    I am so jealous. It looks like such an amazing place to go and I’ve read loads of pretty fantastic posts too. Thanks for the posting.

  11. January 26, 2016 / 1:01 am

    This brought back lots of memories from our visit last year also. We didn’t get the chance to get down to Camp Smokey and would love to go again to do what we didn’t get a chance good there was so much to do, we had a fab time and it appears you did also.

  12. January 26, 2016 / 6:42 am

    It does look an almost magical place especially with all that greenery. I hadn’t realised there was so much there.

  13. Fi Ní Neachtáin
    January 26, 2016 / 9:07 am

    Bloggers seem to love Bluestone, I’m always reading reviews on it and it does look like such a lovely place. I love how it’s set amongst nature, seems like it’s perfect for spending valuable time together as a family in beautiful surroundings 🙂

  14. January 26, 2016 / 12:05 pm

    I have heard such great things about Bluestone but not been. It looks wonderful.

  15. January 26, 2016 / 2:54 pm

    Ah lovely post, brings back lots of lovely memories for me as we had an awesome time too! x

  16. January 26, 2016 / 8:51 pm

    We did a review on this back in May last year. This is such a wonderful place and is absolutely amazing. I would love to take the family back, however it is a VERY long way for us. x

  17. January 26, 2016 / 10:07 pm

    Great review, you’ve just taken my back to last March when my family and I were there such a lovely place I’d love to go back! x

  18. January 29, 2016 / 2:26 pm

    We went to Bluestone last year and had a wonderful time! Seeing your photos makes me want to go back! x

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