This year we decided to go to Haggerston Castle for our summer holiday. Haggerston Castle is a Haven holiday park which is near Berwick and Holy Island on the Northumberland Coast. We had been to Primrose Valley, another Haven park many years ago and enjoyed it. Our main reasons for deciding to go back to Haven was that we could take the dog and there are plenty of activities for the children. Haggerston Castle is only an hours drive for us so it was not too stressful for the dog being in the car. It is also very near to the Northumberland coastal route which is famed for its castles and golden beaches so there was plenty to visit if we got bored on the camp site.
As we had the dog we were staying in a standard caravan which means check in time is 4.00pm. We arrived a bit early and got our bearings. The site is massive and spread out. There is a one way system so we drove round the entire park. The first thing you see when you enter is a stone tower that is the remains of the old castle and it is an easy landmark to spot if you get lost.
Before we booked in we decided to get the activity passes for the children and book them into some activities. Activity passes can be pre-booked with your holiday and it is cheaper to do this. We hadn’t realised this and left it to late to do this. Fortunately we managed to get two passes on site and booked them into several activities. They wanted to do snorkelling, water walkers (which are like giant hamster balls on water), aqua gliders and archery. We got them booked into these and it turned out we made the right decision booking early as the activities fill up quickly. If you are interested in more grown up activities there is also a spa and a golf course on site. They enjoyed the activities and they were well supervised though out.
Our caravan was ideally placed, just walking distance from the swimming pool and entertainment complex. We could have been at the far end of the park so we were very pleased with our placement.
The caravan was quite nice inside, this is the living room and kitchen. We had two bedrooms, a double for me and my husband and a twin room for my son and his friend. The rooms were small but there was enough storage space for everything. The caravan also had a shower room. The only heating was a gas fire in the living room but the weather has been warm recently so we were not cold.
You have access to the swimming pool when it is open and the kids spent a lot of time swimming. There are two pools, a smaller one with a slide and a larger one with a deep end which is better for swimming in. You need £1 for the lockers which is refundable. To get to the swimming pool you have to walk past the amusements so I never seemed to get my £1 coins back.
If you do not want to cook in your caravan there are plenty of food outlets on site. With Burger King, Papa John’s pizza, a fish and chip shop and a bar you could eat out every night. There is also a Chinese buffet restaurant where you can eat all you want for £10 for adults and £4.50 for children. You need to book in advance as it gets full. There is also plenty of entertainment. The Live Lounge has family entertainment during the afternoons and at night. We went to the wrestling event there, which was good fun and the boys really enjoyed it.
In the evenings we went to the Mash and Barrel bar to wait for the boys to finish their activities. This is the only place on site with wi-fi and there is no 3G signal. The roof garden is a pleasant place to sit and it overlooks a kids playground. It was nice to get some time to sit together knowing the boys were safe and knew where to find us.
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In the centre of the park is a lake and you can spend some time going round the lake on either a swan or a dragon boat. The boys decided to go on a dragon and we spent some time watching them. The dog did wonder what they were doing. The lake is full of swans, ducks and geese and you often find geese wandering around the roads.
You can also book a pedal carts which seat two, four or six people and tour the park by bike for an hour or half an hour. The boys took off at great speed in one of these with the dog chasing them, dragging me behind.
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The few days we had at Haggerston Castle were really relaxing. The kids were not bored as there was plenty to occupy them and it was nice to be able to bring the dog with us. We were well based for visiting the surrounding area. It is expensive on site by the time you pay for amusements, meals out and food but we had a great time and would go back.
You can find more information about Haven Holidays on their website
Disclosure: This is a disclosure to say a disclosure is not needed for this post – we covered all the costs and no compensation of any form was received. All links included we added to help anyone who might be interested in going to Haven.