Everyone deserves a holiday. Thankfully, many UK charities are dedicated to making this happen. Today,…
When it comes to planning a memorable holiday, choosing the right destination is crucial. With 20 holiday parks and lodge parks across the UK operated by Away Resorts, you have a wealth of options to consider.
In this guide, we’ll explore the top Away Resorts holiday parks, their locations, and the factors to consider when making your choice. With such a diverse range of parks, you’re sure to find the perfect setting for your dream getaway.
Whether you’re seeking coastal tranquillity, lakeside serenity, or countryside adventures, Away Resorts offers a variety of idyllic destinations to match your holiday aspirations.
Away Resorts: A Growing Portfolio of UK Holiday Parks
Away Resorts has rapidly expanded its portfolio of holiday parks, making it a prominent player in the UK holiday industry. Originally comprising around 10 parks, the company took a significant leap in 2022 by merging with Aria Resorts and acquiring all of its resorts. This strategic move expanded Away Resorts’ offerings and introduced new locations to its already diverse portfolio.
Here’s an overview of the Away Resorts parks in the UK:
- Barmouth Bay and Golden Sands in Snowdonia, North Wales.
- Mersea Island in Essex.
- Whitecliff Bay, The Lakes Rookley, The Bay Colwell, and St Helens on the picturesque Isle of Wight.
- Appletree (formerly Boston West), Cleethorpes Pearl (formerly Beachcomber), and Tattershall Lakes in Lincolnshire.
- Sandy Balls and Mill Rythe in Hampshire, within the New Forest.
- St Ives Bay, Bude Holiday Resort, Newperran, Newquay Bay, and Retallack Resort & Spa in Cornwall.
- The Bay Filey in Yorkshire.
- Moffat Manor in Scotland.
- Swanage Bay View in Dorset.
Now, let’s explore the factors to consider when determining the best Away Resorts holiday park for your next getaway.
Away Resorts Onsite Facilities:
The range of onsite facilities can greatly influence your holiday experience. Some travellers prefer parks with a wide array of amenities, while others seek a more serene setting. Let’s take a closer look at the facilities available at various Away Resorts parks:
Larger Away Resorts Holiday Parks:
Sandy Balls in Hampshire: This large resort boasts indoor and outdoor swimming pools, saunas, spa facilities, two main restaurants, kids’ activities, and sports such as archery, laser tag, playgrounds, soft play, and alpaca walks.
Barmouth Bay in Snowdonia: Although not as extensive as some other parks, it offers an indoor swimming pool, outdoor cinema, playgrounds, and a sports court, with the nearby beach compensating for a slightly smaller range of facilities.
Whitecliff Bay on the Isle of Wight: A large resort with indoor and outdoor swimming pools, a restaurant, kids’ activities, an outdoor cinema, soft play, playgrounds, a sports court, crazy golf, and activities like archery and zorbing (those giant hamster balls).
Newquay Bay in Cornwall: While quite large, the facilities are not as extensive as some other Away Resorts sites. It offers an indoor swimming pool, an outdoor swimming pool, a surf school, a restaurant, and a playground.
Retallack Resort and Spa in Cornwall: This large and well-equipped resort boasts luxurious accommodation and an onsite watersports facility with an inflatable aqua park, a wake park, and a ‘flow rider,’ a surf simulator.
Golden Sands in Rhyl: A large resort right next to the beach, it offers various activities, including a simple swimming pool, a games arcade, dining options, soft play, a playground, and a sports court.
The Bay Filey in Yorkshire: Another former Aria Resorts site on the larger side, it offers a variety of accommodations, including pricier options overlooking the lakes. It features an indoor swimming pool, a gym, tennis courts, boules, a playground, and a restaurant.
Tattershall Lakes in Lincolnshire: Specialising in watersports such as waterskiing and an aquapark, this large resort also features an indoor swimming pool, a large outdoor swimming pool (a ‘lido’), a high ropes course, fishing lakes, a restaurant, minigolf, and a sports court.
Mid-sized and Smaller Away Resorts Holiday Parks:
Mill Rythe: Undergoing investment, this mid-sized park offers an indoor swimming pool, a sports court, and a restaurant. Formerly an adults-only park, it now welcomes families.
Mersea Island: A fairly small park with modest facilities, including an indoor swimming pool, a playground, a clubhouse, and an outdoor cinema.
Appletree Country Park (formerly Boston West): Originally a hotel with golf facilities, it’s now adding more than 100 caravans to the site, some with hot tubs.
Cleethorpes Pearl (formerly Beachcomber): A mid-sized park with basic amenities like an outdoor swimming pool, a playground, an entertainment room, and a sports court.
St Ives Bay: Located near a beautiful sandy beach, this mid-sized site offers an indoor swimming pool, a tennis court, crazy golf, and a restaurant. Some accommodations have sea views.
Bude Holiday Resort: One of the four Cornish resorts acquired from Aria Resorts, this mid-sized park is a 15-minute walk from the beach and offers limited facilities, including an outdoor swimming pool and a playground.
Newperran Holiday Resort: Another mid-sized Cornwall resort formerly under Aria Resorts, it features a simple indoor swimming pool, a playground, a skate park, and a restaurant.
The Bay Colwell: Acquired from Aria Resorts in 2022, it’s a small park with a small indoor swimming pool, a coffee shop, and hot tubs in some accommodations. Expensive units have sea views, while cheaper ones resemble modernized chalet bungalows.
The Lakes Rookley: Another Isle of Wight park acquired from Aria Resorts, it’s mid-sized with indoor and outdoor swimming pools, a fairly small restaurant, and watersports on the lake. It’s located centrally on the island, about 15 minutes from the beach.
St Helens Holiday Resort: A small park on the Isle of Wight, it offers modern accommodations, including lodges and caravans with hot tubs. While it’s not directly by the beach, the nearest shoreline is a 15-minute walk away. Onsite, there’s a small playground and an outdoor swimming pool.
Moffat Manor: A small resort formerly run by Aria Resorts in Scotland, it has a shop, an onsite pub, and a playground. It serves as a convenient base for exploring Scotland.
Swanage Bay View: This mid-sized park features an indoor swimming pool, a gym, and a bar/cafe. Situated on a hillside, many accommodations offer sea views, even though the beach is a 20-minute drive away.
Best for a Beach Trip
When it comes to planning a beach holiday, Away Resorts offers a selection of idyllic destinations that place you in close proximity to some of the most breathtaking coastlines in the UK. Here’s a closer look at the parks that are perfect for those seeking sun, sea, and sandy shores:
Whitecliff Bay, Isle of Wight: Nestled on the picturesque Isle of Wight, Whitecliff Bay holiday park boasts immediate access to a pristine sandy beach. What sets this beach apart is its exclusivity – it’s shared by only a couple of holiday parks, ensuring a more secluded and tranquil experience. As you step onto the soft sands, you’ll be greeted by the gentle lapping of waves and the inviting aroma of saltwater. The park even features a cosy beachside cafe where you can savour a cup of coffee while basking in the illusion of a warm, t-shirt-worthy climate. Access to the beach is granted via a slightly steep but manageable slope, adding a touch of adventure to your seaside escape.
Barmouth Bay, Snowdonia: If you crave the allure of long, sandy beaches surrounded by the majestic beauty of Snowdonia, then Barmouth Bay is your ideal destination. This holiday park is situated near one of Snowdonia’s most captivating sandy stretches. Here, you can relish leisurely strolls along the shoreline, take in awe-inspiring views of the rugged landscape, and immerse yourself in the serene ambience of the Welsh coast.
St Ives Bay, Cornwall: Cornwall is renowned for its stunning beaches, and St Ives Bay Holiday Park places you right next to one of its finest. With a long, sandy beach just steps away, you can indulge in lazy days of sunbathing, sandcastle building, and beachcombing. The waves here are perfect for a refreshing swim or even a spot of surfing. It’s a beach lover’s paradise where the sunsets paint the sky with hues of orange and pink, creating an enchanting backdrop for romantic evening walks.
Mersea Island and Golden Sands, Rhyl: For those who appreciate the unique charm of shingly/sandy beaches, Mersea Island and Golden Sands in Rhyl are exceptional choices. These beaches offer a delightful blend of textures underfoot and are perfect for a leisurely seaside stroll. Whether you’re collecting seashells, building pebble towers, or simply enjoying the sound of waves, these coastal escapes provide a serene and distinctive beach experience.
Accessible Beaches: Away Resorts also caters to those who prefer to be within easy walking distance of the beach. Cleethorpes Pearl in Lincolnshire (formerly Beachcomber), St Helens Holiday Resort on the Isle of Wight, The Bay Filey in Yorkshire, and Bude Holiday Resort in Cornwall are all conveniently located just a short 15-minute walk from the beach. This proximity ensures that you can make spontaneous trips to the shoreline whenever the mood strikes.
The Bay Colwell, Isle of Wight: If a quick beach jaunt is a priority, The Bay Colwell on the Isle of Wight is a mere five-minute walk from the beach. This allows you to maximize your time by the sea, whether you’re building sandcastles with the kids or enjoying a peaceful sunset walk along the water’s edge.
Alternative Coastal Experiences: While not all Away Resorts parks offer the traditional sandy beach experience, they still provide captivating coastal settings. Mill Rythe, for instance, is coastal but offers a different type of shoreline experience. Sandy Balls is approximately a half-hour drive from some of Dorset’s most stunning beaches, perfect for day trips to explore the region’s coastal beauty. Both Tattershall Lakes and Appletree Country Park (formerly Boston West) are about a 45-minute drive from the beach at Skegness, making them convenient bases for seaside adventures.
Inland Retreats: For those who prefer the serenity of inland surroundings, Retallack Resort and Spa in Cornwall and The Lakes Rookley provide a 15-minute drive to inland waters, offering a tranquil alternative to traditional seaside locales. Swanage Bay View in Dorset offers breathtaking sea views and is just a 20-minute drive from Swanage seafront, combining the best of both coastal and inland experiences.
Best Locations: Finding Your Ideal Getaway
The location of a holiday park can significantly impact your travel experience, especially if you prefer a park close to home. Long car journeys, particularly with children, can be challenging. Here are estimated travel times from major cities to different Away Resorts holiday parks:
- Approximately 2 hours to Mersea Island, Mill Rythe, and Sandy Balls.
- A 2-hour drive to the ferry port for Whitecliff Bay, The Bay Colwell, The Lakes Rookley, or St Helens Holiday Resort. Allow an extra hour for the ferry to the Isle of Wight.
- A 3-4-hour drive to the three Lincolnshire parks: Appletree (formerly Boston West), Tattershall Lakes, and Cleethorpes Pearl (formerly Beachcomber).
- About 3 hours to the Dorset resorts, East Fleet Farm, and Swanage Bay View.
- Approximately 2-3 hours to Appletree (formerly Boston West), Tattershall Lakes, Cleethorpes Pearl (formerly Beachcomber), The Bay Filey, Mersea Island, Sandy Balls, and St Helens Holiday Resort.
- About 2 hours and 40 minutes to Whitecliff Bay, The Bay Colwell, The Lakes Rookley, and St Helens Holiday Resort with the ferry journey.
- About 1 hour and 40 minutes to Golden Sands Resorts in Rhyl.
- Approximately 2 hours and 40 minutes to Appletree (formerly Boston West), Tattershall Lakes, Cleethorpes Pearl (formerly Beachcomber), The Bay Filey, Moffat Manor in Scotland, and Barmouth Bay Holiday Park.
- A 4-4.5-hour drive to most other Away Resorts holiday parks.
Choosing the Best Away Resorts Holiday Park for You
When it comes to selecting the ideal Away Resorts holiday park for your getaway, several key considerations should guide your decision. Your choice will hinge on personal preferences, the composition of your travel party, your preferred location, and the specific amenities and facilities that align with your holiday aspirations. To help your decision-making process, you may want to consider:
Group Size: Start by considering the dynamics of your travel group. Are you embarking on this adventure as a couple seeking a romantic retreat, a family with young children in search of kid-friendly activities, or a larger group of friends or extended family members looking for group entertainment? Different Away Resorts parks cater to diverse demographics, ensuring that your holiday experience is finely tuned to your group’s needs and desires.
Activities and Amenities: Your dream holiday is shaped by the activities and amenities that resonate with your interests. Do you have a love of water sports that include kayaking, paddleboarding, or windsurfing? Are you in need of pampering and relaxation, making spa treatments a priority? Perhaps you’re focused on keeping the entire family entertained with a plethora of options for recreation. Away Resorts recognizes these varying desires and offers a spectrum of activities and amenities across its parks, allowing you to tailor your experience to your liking.
Location: The location of your chosen holiday park plays a major role in your overall experience. Consider the convenience of travel from your home and your preference for a coastal, countryside, or lakeside setting. Whether you yearn for the soothing sounds of waves lapping on the shore, the tranquillity of a countryside escape, or the serenity of a lakeside retreat, Away Resorts provides a range of picturesque settings to match your vision of the perfect holiday backdrop.
Budget: Staying within your budget is a practical concern when planning your holiday. Take the time to compare the prices of accommodations and the array of facilities offered at different Away Resorts parks. This careful assessment will empower you to make an informed decision that aligns with your financial considerations, ensuring that your holiday remains enjoyable without unnecessary financial strain.
Choosing the best Away Resorts holiday park is a highly personalised, guided by your unique preferences and requirements. With a variety of parks designed to cater to diverse tastes, group dynamics, and budget constraints, Away Resorts invites you to craft a holiday experience that’s perfectly tailored to your needs. By carefully weighing these factors, you’ll embark on a journey that promises lasting memories and a fulfilling holiday adventure.
Determining the best Away Resorts holiday park is not a one-size-fits-all approach. Each of these parks possesses its own distinct charm and array of offerings, tailored to cater to a wide spectrum of tastes and preferences. Whether your ideal holiday revolves around unwinding in tranquil serenity, embarking on thrilling adventures, or delighting in family-friendly fun, Away Resorts proudly presents an eclectic selection of parks. This ensures that regardless of your individual wants and needs, you’re bound to discover the perfect destination for crafting cherished memories and enjoying an unforgettable holiday experience.