Top 5 Stays with the Kids
The Isle of Wight has it all when it comes to a family holiday and we’ve picked some of our favourite places to stay.
The Seaview Hotel has a family friendly apartment within the hotel that is perfect for a luxurious family holiday. With two comfortable double rooms, a single room with bunk beds and your own lounge, you have your own home from home within this historic character hotel that is literally a stone’s throw from the beach. If you’re a seafaring family there are a fleet of pretty Mermaid sail boats owned by the hotel, and the famous Seaview Sailing Club is just around the corner. The hotel also have a fleet of electric bikes that can be hired for free for a day of cycling with the family, and attractions such as the IW Steam Railway and Robin Hill Country Park are within cycling distance, as are the bay area of sandy beaches (Sandown and Shanklin). Ryde sands are just a short walk away as is the upmarket Seagrove Bay and further on is Priory Bay, all waiting to be discovered on family seaside walks.
2. Down on the Farm
Award winning Nettlecombe Farm is an idyllic family and dog friendly farm with luxurious self-catering holiday cottages that can sleep families from 3 up to ten people. Great facilities for children include three large grassed play areas and a petting farm with inquisitive alpacas, reindeer, donkeys and more cute animals to meet. Nettlecombe is a working farm and you can join in the morning feeding tours on Monday to Friday from April until September. You’re nestled in the heart of rolling countryside with far reaching views across the south of the island and the beaches of Ventnor and the wild west coast to explore. Guests also have full use of three fishing lakes and can take part in weekly yoga and Pilates sessions.
Set in 15 acres of landscaped grounds and pathways, which are gated and child-safe, West Bay is a haven for children with toddlers able to run around freely and play games on the grass and older children can ride their bikes and scooters on the open pathways. The ‘New England’ style houses are designed with comfort and relaxation in mind with everything you need for the perfect getaway. There are 105 privately-owned, individually furnished houses that vary in size, layout and style, so you’ll always find the perfect one to rent to meet your needs. The West Bay Country Club & Spa also boasts indoor and outdoor pool, squash & tennis courts, a wide range of onsite activities and classes as well as a spa – perfect for tired mum’s who need to relax and unwind.
4. Woodland Lodges
Woodside Bay Lodge Retreat is great for kids, with woodland playground areas in amongst the trees and the beach below for seaside foraging with bucket and spade. The lodges are well appointed with televisions in every bedroom – ideal for keeping them occupied in the early mornings when you want a lie in. Every lodge has a selection of board games supplied in the lounge areas, for family bonding sessions without screens! And don’t forget the hot tubs – make sure to book a lodge that has one. The two treehouses are cute too, but only have one double bed so not so good for kids, although you could fit in a travel cot if you’re a new family.
For those who prefer luxury camping, then Tom’s Eco Lodges are the perfect answer. Set among a 400 acre dairy farm, Tapnell Park Farm is situated at the foot of Tennyson Down in West Wight and is the Island’s newest visitor destination. The site is home to The Cow Co restaurant, massive indoor playbarn, café and outdoor bouncing pillow, animal petting area, a Moo-seum on all things dairy, onsite Adventure Activities IoW such as zorbing and mountain boarding, as well as a range of fantastic accommodation options. The top spot goes to the unique eco lodges which sleep 6 and each have a wood burning stove, wooden floors, extremely comfy beds – and yes, your very own flushing toilet and private hot shower, not to mention all the other bits thrown in such as bed linen, cutlery and crockery, a BBQ and campfire. Staying here is a joy for families as kids can roam freely around the farm and picturesque woodland. Kids can get close-up with farm life from milking cows and feeding chickens, so it’s a family holiday with nature at its best, while also having loads to keep the children entertained no matter what the weather.
3 February 2019