Top tips to families visiting Winter Wonderland at Center Parcs Longford Forest
As I said in my previous blog detailing my wonderful Winter Wonderland short break at Center Parcs, there is always something really special about the time you spend as a family at Center Parcs. However, this has got to be the most magical experience I have ever shared with my nearest and dearest and a definite family tradition to add to our list for next year. 

Here are my top tips if you are visiting the Winter Wonderland experience in Center Parcs, Longford Forest: 

  • Visit Santa – both children and adults will enjoy a special festive experience with memories that will be cherished for a lifetime. 

  • Go to the lightshow – it was so magical, everyone enjoyed it both young and old. It lasts about 10 minutes with a very special guest making an appearance at the end. 

  • Bring wet gear and gloves for adults and kids on bikes. If you have small kids in the trailers behind the bikes I brought a big blanket to keep them warm and also a hot water bottle. They’re only sitting so more likely to get chilly on a scenic bike trip around the forest. 

  • Bring high vis vests – I know there are no cars within the village for the most part but even just to be able to see others who are walking and cycling, everyone tends to have dark winter clothes so it can make weaving in and out on bikes tricky. 

  • If you have small kids for the winter time I would book a lodge close to the centre. We were further away last time, still not far out, but we were right by the centre this time around and it made it so much handier in the cold weather, especially after swimming when the girls hair was a little damp. It didn’t rain while we were there (I know we were incredibly lucky!) but if it had I know the location of the lodge this time around would have made it all the more convenient. 

  • Eat out and enjoy the experience - I don’t think you’ll find a restaurant in the ‘real world’ that compares with Center Parcs in terms of a relaxing experience. Everyone is in the same boat there so there is no stress about your kids running to and from the soft play or the playground. The staff are so good, the portion sizes perfect, there are babies pouches available for free from Ellas Kitchen, there are kids sized cutlery, every restaurant has a private baby feeding room and the kids food came before the adults food. 

  • Get a fire log - you can get them in the Parc Market and they are just the nicest touch when you’re relaxing after a busy day and the kids are settled and you just want to put your feet up and chill.

  • Get there early on the day you check in. Your lodge may not be ready but you can access the facilities from 10am so have your swimming bag ready and head for the subtropical swimming paradise early. Make the best of the time you have there and use every second of it. 

  • Bring a cot sheet if you have a baby destined for a cot, as the cots provided are normal sized wooden cots, one of your sheets from home will fit perfectly. 

  • Bring family or friends – we brought my parents this time around and it was such a lovely thing to do. We had a four bed lodge that had plenty of space for us all. Two double rooms and two rooms with two single beds. It is a joy for the whole family to experience Center Parcs and if like us you live at the opposite end of the country to your parents or family, it’s central location in Longford Forest is the perfect meeting place to create special memories for the whole family. I know the grandparents really enjoyed spending time with my girls in such a relaxed and family focused destination. 

  • Take some time out for you. Whether you avail of the Center Parcs Créche or Activity Den while you visit the spa or ask your Grandparents to step in for an hour or two one evening, it’s really lovely to take some time out for yourself and your partner. My parents joined us on our break in Center Parcs which allowed us to go for a much deserved evening out together where we enjoyed a drink in the Sports Café.

  • The lodges come with a sachet of washing liquid and 3 (eco!) dishwasher tablets along with sponges and wipes for cleaning. The lodges also come with toilet paper, soap and shower gel/shampoo. Center Parcs really do think of everything, but if you do forget something from home you’ll easily be able to pick up a replacement in the Parc Market or Village Square shops. If not, Guest Services are always on hand to help. 

Now all you have to do is book your Winter family short break, I promise you will have the time of your life whether you choose a trip before or during the lovely long Christmas holidays!

Brought to you by
The Hutchinson family were guests of Center Parcs from 29th November to 2nd December



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