When I was a child, we made our own adventures up with whatever we found around us. Sticks became swords, a wood was an enchanted battleground filled with hiding places and adults were definitely not allowed. These day things have changed and it is up to adults to provide the fun and games, hence the rise of family adventure weekends. And with more and more families not being able to afford a full week away, many are choosing to spend a long weekend with their children instead of the tradition two weeks. So what are the best value and what do they include?
Voted No.2 in the Sunday Times Best Summer Adventure Family Holidays, Acorn Family Holidays in Wales offer safari style tents in the Brecon Beacons National Parks and have more than 18 activities including sailing, raft building and climbing. If you book with the Daily Mail you can get a special rate of £99 per adult and £79 per child for a three night stay on the weekend of May 29th. Visit acornfamilyholidays.co.uk.
In 2009, National Geographic ranked Wilderness Scotland as the No.1 Adventure Travel Company in Europe. Wilderness Scotland has an impressive range of activities including whale watching, boating, sea kayaking, walking along the beautiful mountains and lochs or ride the West Highland Railway. Prices are from around £499 per adult and £325 per child. Check out wildernessscotland.com for details.
In the Lake District are Adventurer Makers. With over 20 years’ experience of creating adventures in the English Lake District, they place the emphasis firmly on having a great day full of laughter and excitement pitched at the perfect level for you. True to their name they offer thrill seekers the chance to go mountaineering, caving, climbing, abseiling, canoeing, and ghyll scrambling (sliding and jumping into streams). An action packed weekend starts from two nights at £160. Google Adventurer Makers Lake District.
PGL is the UK’s leading provider of school trips and children’s adventure holidays – offering outdoor education and adventures of a lifetime to children since 1957. PGL Adventure are aimed at families with children aged 7 – 17 and have activities including zorbing, tree top zip wiring and abseiling and loads of other land and water based fun things to do. They also have sites all over the UK so you are sure to find one near you. Two nights cost around £139 for adults and £39 for children, by far the cheapest. Find them at pgl.co.uk.
Forest Holidays have beautiful log cabins where you can hire bikes and take night exploration tours in the woods. You can also go canoeing, caving, quarry jumping, gorge walking and abseiling. They have sites in Cornwall, England and Yorkshire and Scotland. From 2011 they are introducing a new personalised activity booking service where you and your family and friends can choose from an array of activities including the option of your own private instructor. Three night stays cost around £245 and a cabin sleeps four. To book visit forestholidays.co.uk.
Lastly Center Parcs with a huge range of things to do both indoor and outside including laser shooting, paint balling, quad biking, scuba diving and snorkelling in the out-door lakes to swimming in the sub tropical pool to all manner of sports including badminton and tennis.. With sites in Cumbria, Nottinghamshire, Suffolk and Wiltshire, prices are £359 for three nights and this is for a chalet that sleeps six. Happy holidays!