What they say: Get away for family fun at the beach. Water & sports activities, Kids’ clubs, touring & camping, indoor & outdoor pool, 9 hole golf course, sports court, bowling green.What we say: Excellent beach family holiday by the British seaside. The sun was shining so it was just as good as being abroad. Loved the outdoor pool.
Building sandcastles, stone skimming, kite flying, playing in the amusements and paddling in the sea can only mean one thing – a great British seaside holiday.
We did all that and so much more during our four-night stay at Haven’s Hopton park in Norfolk. My only complaint is that we didn’t have long enough to do everything on offer.
Set in beautifully landscaped gardens, the park has the perfect location right on the golden sandy beach, just a few miles from Great Yarmouth.
As soon as we arrived and saw the ‘your holiday starts here’ sign, we felt excited and knew it was going to be a great holiday.
Our three-bedroom prestige caravan didn’t disappoint either and was immaculate. The pitch itself on waterside, overlooking sea couldn’t have been any better with stunning views and just a stone’s throw to the beach but also only a five minute walk to the park’s centre.
Our balcony overlooked the sea and inside it was extremely modern and had everything you could need. We opted for linen so our beds were made up for arrival and check in was from 2pm.
After quickly unpacking we headed straight to the outdoor pool and as we splashed about under the clear blue skies it felt like we were abroad. The pool is surrounded by sunbeds and has a real fun feel.
You need passes to get into this area but if you book with Haven, the passes are included in the price of the caravan.
Inside, the indoor pool has been newly refurbished for 2016 and has a brand new waterslide, a fabulous toddler area and a jaquzzi.
It’s located in the heart of the resort with a large restaurant next door where you can sit outside on the decking and enjoy a drink whilst looking out over the pool.
The entire park has a real holiday feel about it and the centre, where the pool is, also has amusements, a small play area and paid for activities including mini-golf and bungee trampolines.
There were so many activities on offer I had to make an itinerary for our four children to make sure we didn’t miss anything. I’d recommend buying the sports activity bundle because it works out cheaper to bulk buy the tickets for the activities. They all get booked up fairly quickly so defininltey book them online before you go. If you don’t get chance to do that then pop to the swimming pool reception as soon as you arrive to get them all booked.
My nephew, nine, seemed to get the most out of the activities and did kayacking on the outdoor pool, archery, target shooting and fencing. My 7-year-old niece enjoyed the inflatable pool party in the indoor pool and dancing with the Seaside Squad. Hopton is one of only a handful of resorts which has the Nature Rockz activities which aim to teach the whole family survival skills. Activities included shelter building, bug hunting, bird food making, stone skimming and building bird boxes.
There was also plenty for my five and three year old to do with mini versions of archery and fencing and other activities including messy play, swimming lessons, aqua glides and my son’s favourite – the water walkerz.
We were so lucky having the sun shine every day for us which was the icing on the cake, but with all the activities there’s plenty to do even if the weather isn’t great.
There’s kids clubs too, where the FunStars crew aim to get the youngsters playing with other kids of their age with activities suitable for them. Parents can leave them to it or join in.
The evening entertainment is also worth a look and features music, laughter and downright silliness for the whole family. The night starts with the FunStars squad hosting quizzes and games and entertaining in lively musical numbers. Later in the evening there’s live bands, artists and comedians.
We could have spent our entire stay on the site but we like to explore the local area when we go on holiday so we had a day on the Norfolk Broads and also an afternoon in Great Yarmouth.
A highlight for all four children was the summer spectacular show at Hippodrome circus in Great Yarmouth. I wasn’t really sure what to expect but spectacular is the only word I could use to described it. From start to finish we were wowed, entertained and at some points watching with our hearts in our mouths. The talent on show was incredible and it was all brought to us in the stunning historical theatre.
Another of our favourite days out was our boat trip on the Norfolk Broads. We hired a stunning day cruiser boat from Horning Ferry Marina.
No trip to Norfolk is complete without cruising the famous waterways and we certainly did it in style with a fabulous boat.
The kids loved having a go at driving and Mum, Dad and I enjoyed a bottle of Prosecco whilst we cruised along with the roof rolled back and the sun on our backs.
But away from the stunning boats and fancy theatres, the kids loved a day on the beach for some proper seaside fun, besides the caravan park.
Haven literally have everything covered. Their breaks are all about spending quality time with family which is exactly what we did, making memories.
If your kids demand non-stop action come rain or shine, there’s something for everyone.
Right from the off with a very smooth and efficient check-in service with toys for the children to play with to modern accommodation, a great beach location, more activities than you could ever take part in, and friendly staff, you couldn’t want for anymore from a British seaside holiday.
My top tip is to remember things like tea towels, bin liners, a bath mat, dish cloth and washing up liquid. That’s the stuff I usually forget on a self-catering holiday. However there is a Spar shop on site and an Asda just down the road so you’re not far if you need to buy anything.
We love Haven holidays so much we’ve got our own caravan at Thorpe Park at Cleethorpes. It’s not as expensive as you think and the perfect way to enjoy a seaside escape whenever you want.
Although the Haven sites are very similar, we never get bored visiting a new park with plenty to explore because we know there’s always something to do with round-the-clock family fun from dawn ‘til dusk.
NEED TO KNOW….
LOCATION: Hopton on Sea, Warren Road, Great Yarmouth. NR31 9BW
CALL: 0871 230 2679