Looking for last minute short break inspiration this half term? Then check out our selection of 15 firm family favourites worth checking out – or into – this Spring.
With last minute Easter breaks from £149, you can’t beat a cheap and cheerful half term holiday at Haven, which is always a seaside favourite. The kids will love the pool, the amusements and the day-night entertainment, which is really geared up for the whole family.
Forget everything you think you know about Butlins because this brand has been revamped and holidays here are even better than before. The new Butlins hotel gives you the choice of a more comfortable room if you don’t fancy an apartment. Term time breaks start from £40 per person and, of course, all the usual entertainment, arts, crafts and activities are a given.
3) Alton Towers
What child – or ‘big kid’ doesn’t want to go to Alton Towers? It’s Britain’s best-loved theme park with more white knuckle rides than you can shake a stick at. Comfortable accommodation is guaranteed and the Waterpark is always popular with little ones. There’s even a spa for mum.
Cheap and tacky weekends in Blackpool are what it’s all about! But, if you haven’t been since your own childhood, rest assured the only things which have really changed are that the rides are better and more modern and the Elvis and Marilyn Monroe souvenirs have been replaced by those of Lady Gaga and One Direction. Head to the Pleasure Beach for hours of fun!
5) Flamingo Land
For a great theme park and zoo all rolled into one, make for Flamingo Land and its Gold Fleet holiday homes in the heart of Yorkshire. Great night time entertainment, out-of-this-world rollercoasters and animal experiences are all par for the course.
6) Center Parcs
Spring breaks aren’t the cheapest here but you certainly get what you pay for – and that’s quality. The woodland accommodation here is second to none and it’s a great option for families who love to go outdoors and get active. There are lots of indoor sports, a subtropical swimming paradise and spa experiences and treatments to boot.
Anyone who’s ever tinkered with Lego will recognise the appeal of a holiday here. It’s a kids’ dream! With a new Star Wars Mini Land and Duplo Splash and Play, there are also even more reasons to visit than before. What’s more, there are great family-of-four deals to be had and kids can often go free.
8) Paulton’s Family Theme Park
For value for money short breaks and great last minute deals, check out Paulton’s which is also home to Peppa Pig World – fantastic for pre-schoolers. Set in the New Forest, it has acres of rides, attractions and activities to suit all ages. It’s impossible to cover it all in one or even two days, though, so make sure you book some decent time off.
Landmark Forest Adventure Park near Inverness in Scotland is another great haunt for families which love the great outdoors. Picnics, climbing, zip gliding, a Tarzan Trail and plenty of rides are all there for the taking. There are lots of great accommodation options nearby, including B&Bs, camping, bunkhouses and hostels and Highland hotels.
10) Chessington World of Adventures
A zoo, sealife centre and a series of thrilling rides are just a few of the things which make this family theme park and holiday resort well worth a visit. Not only will the kids be able to get up close to shark-infested water, but they’ll encounter all manner of wildlife, from lions and gorillas to cheeky penguins.
11) Drayton Manor
One of the UK’s best family theme parks, Drayton Manor has something for everyone – just take the zoo, Dino Trail and Thomas Land, for example. In fact, it’s an absolute MUST for little boys who love Thomas the Tank Engine. They’ll be thrilled to see their on-screen hero chuff into town and interact with them in a way they never thought possible.
12) Thorpe Park
Thorpe Park does a great offer to help combat the effects of the wet British weather. The deal is, if it’s raining when you visit, you can visit again for free! New for 2013 is The Crash Pad accommodation for the ultimate overnight stay and modifications to The Swarm ride so that you can ride it backwards.
Scotland’s official theme park – set in Strathclyde Park, near Glasgow – is home to five white knuckle rides, more than 20 other kids’ rides, a glow-in-the-dark bowling alley, 18-hole miniature golf course and Amazonia – the country’s only indoor rainforest.
14) Light Water Valley
For kids who love pirates, Light Water Valley theme park is a real treat with its swashbuckling land that is Skeleton Cove, featuring none other than the Black Pearl. There are literally hundreds of things to do and the team is great at organising seasonal events and activities – whether it’s for Easter or Halloween.
15) Gulliver’s Theme Parks
There are three brilliant Gulliver’s parks to choose from in Warrington, Milton Keynes and Matlock Bath and, whichever one you choose, you won’t be disappointed. Great rides, Splashzones, a Dinosaur & Farm Park and top notch accommodation are just a few of the highlights you can expect.
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