25 March 2015

A Family Weekend Away With Forest Holidays

If you're picturing a getaway that's a real escape from the hustle and bustle of every day life, somewhere that is set in beautiful and peaceful surroundings with a touch of luxury thrown in too, Forest Holidays is a great choice. Their cabins are situated in picturesque woodland spread across 9 locations within the UK where you can really unwind.

We have just returned from a weekend at the Gloucestershire site and we had a wonderful experience as a family that really brought us together and enabled us to reconnect with nature. 




After signing in and collecting our key from the reception area which also doubles up as a large shop with restaurant, we drove down the road a short distance to our retreat; cabin 73. It was at the end of a row and it felt nice and secluded with a relaxed ambience, although all of the cabins are spread out well to offer a little privacy.

I could almost feel the stress and tension melt away while unpacking and then exploring the stylish and spacious accommodation of our two bedded Silver Birch in the Forest of Dean.




The ceilings are high and the light pours in through the windows allowing you to feel at one with the natural world. With leaf prints on the walls and heated wooden flooring, it brings the outside inside too.

The Mini Mes loved watching the squirrels and birds from the decking and they looked eagerly for the wild boars that roam the environment here. 




As it was early evening when we arrived, due to departing straight after school on Friday, we decided to make the most of the room service facilities and I ordered some pizzas for convenience. You can do so via the flat screen television quickly and easily and these arrived promptly; they were hot and tasty and good value. You can settle your bill when you leave so you don't need to have cash to hand. I really liked this idea.

You can arrange breakfast packages, jacket potatoes, champagne plus chocolates or an evening in treat pack to satisfy a sweet tooth, all without stepping a foot outside. We had the entertainment package which provided movies to snuggle up with on the corner suite and wifi - although I rather enjoyed being cut off from technology to make the most of the break! It's a good way to share a few sneaky pictures on social media though...

If you do want to cook the kitchen is very well equipped, it even includes a dishwasher, and there is also a table with chairs to dine at. For our second night I cooked a curry for us all and I used the microwave to heat up some sausage rolls for lunch before we left.
The fridge stored our salads well (there is a Morrisons nearby) and it was chilled ready for use.





After eating we popped into our swimwear and clambered into one of the highlights of the holiday - the private outdoor hot tub. It was heated and at the perfect temperature for us to get in so we sat quietly admiring the stars from below as the evening progressed, with the trees like a canopy above us.

The jets were really appreciated by my back and the Mini Mes enjoyed the colour changing lighting while sipping their drinks from 'posh' glasses! There were plenty of giggles shared and we ended the first night by climbing into our beds which had already been made for us.






After a quick stop at the shops for some essentials on Saturday morning we gathered at the main entrance to take part in a ranger activity; bush skills. With my love for Bear Grylls the great outdoors this was bound to be a fun challenge for us to take part in while learning a few things along the way about survival in the wild.

There was just the four of us and one other family along with Gerry (the ranger) so it felt like a personal experience and we had lots of 1-on-1 time while den building and making fire to ask questions. Gerry was very informative but he made it exciting too resulting in the Mini Mes having an amazing time. They learnt about different trees, animal tracks, sourcing water and making compasses too which they were allowed to keep.

When we return I would definitely want to go for the twilight and night vision walks too if they are equally as good as this.






We spent the remainder of the holiday taking long walks and admiring everything around us. We spent many hours chilling in the hot tub, reading, playing games and generally taking it easy with a few alcoholic beverages shared when the children were fast asleep.

There is plenty to do locally with Go Ape, canoeing, caving, climbing, abseiling, archery and segway on your doorstep plus the opportunity to hire bikes unless you wish to take your own. Having a bathroom and en suite was really useful for cleaning up after getting muddy on our adventures and the lobby by the front door was ideal for our boots which got plenty of use. It's a wise idea to have your coats, wellies and torches with you.





Forest Holidays has something to suit everyone; couples looking for a romantic trip, groups of friends after some pampering and adrenalin filled activities or families like us escaping the norm. We took Spartan along with us as dogs are welcome and he definitely enjoyed all of the walks and a change of scenery just as much as we did.




The views are breathtaking and the streams, wildlife, woods and meadow are great for photographers, hikers or those wishing to go pony trekking.

I would most definitely return and I would highly recommend Forest Holidays if you are looking to book a holiday for Easter or the summer.


Where will you be holidaying this year?

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46 comments :

  1. Great review. This looks like our kind of break. We love being outdoors surrounded by beautiful views. And little Spartan is just gorgeous! x

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  2. What a wonderful family holiday, the cabin looks amazing and so nice to be a little out of the way

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  3. I would love to take the kids on a break like this. Outdoors and surrounded by amazing woodland and stunning views. so peaceful

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  4. I would love to do a Forest Holiday, it appeals to me so much. I hear there might be a new one coming near to us soon!

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  5. Love the idea of the private hot tub and the trails with the rangers. My son would love it (and so would I).

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  6. What a great weekend away - my two would love it there! I love that you get a hot tub to relax in at the end of a long day too.

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  7. What a lovely family holiday you all had, looks so beautiful there xx

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  8. Thanks for sharing so many photos, I love these types of reviews as you get to see everything properly, not just what the brochure wants us to see. I love the idea of staying in the forest and this looks fab. We much prefer to holiday in the UK so it's great to discover new places to go. #mmwbh

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  9. Looks a fabulous destination, I could use a break off in the woods somewhere right now :)

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  10. It looks really relaxing and the fact that the whole area is really scenic is a huge draw, the addition of the hot tub is brilliant - a break to remember! xx

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  11. This looks like a great break and a perfect mix of outdoor fun and hot tub luxury!!

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  12. It certainly looks wonderful.

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  13. I love the idea of a hot tub and we have looked at Forest Holiday, but boy they are expensive!

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  14. This looks like my kind of holiday We did one similar in Sherwood forest couple of weeks back.

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  15. This place looks fab. As big fans of the competitors, I'd like to give them a go to see if they can swing our choice... :)

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  16. This looks amazing and I am so jealous of that hot tub I don't think I would ever get out of it! I definitely would love to go on a Forest Holiday just need to convince the other half ;) x

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  17. This looks fab! Forest Holidays have been on my radar for a while now and I would love to try their cabins out for a weekend. x

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  18. Looks like a great place to visit, will bear this in mind when we look for our next break away

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  19. oh this looks fantastic loooks a great family trip away x

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  20. Aw looks so fun! I love the idea of ordering via the TV and not having to pay cash! Hot tub is a big selling point too haha! xx

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  21. oh my god this place looks fantastic .. and that hot tub! .. heavenly!

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  22. Oh this looks lovely. There is one about an hour away from us that that I have often wondered about visiting for a long weekend. Love the idea of the hot tub!

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  23. I'd love to go to Forest holidays, but it's just never worked out for us. Maybe sometime soon. Does look wonderful with the hot tub.

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  24. Wow it looks amazing and beautiful what a great week, I would have loved my own hot tub.

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  25. That looks like our kind of holiday

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  26. I would love to stop some here like this

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  27. Wow this looks amazing and sounds like everyone had such a fabulous time. You had everything you needed for a great getaway always makes it easier. Gorgeous photos. Thank you so much for linking up to Share With Me. #sharewithme

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  28. I love the outdoor element here and the ranger to help you make the most of your time there. We cover den building and camp fires in our activity hour sometimes which is always popular with the older children, with a few marshmallows of course! A lovely looking break for you all. Thank you for sharing on Country Kids.

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  29. It looks so lovely we love outdoor holidays so would love this, and love the fact you can take pets to, the lodge looks lovely very modern xx

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  30. Wow! Such a lovely place! Love the high ceiling! Would want to spend holidays in there too =) #countrykids

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  31. Sounds like the perfect getaway. Will be looking into this for the summer.

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  32. oh wow you were in local area. I love the Forest - the Go Ape there is fab too. Plus all the woodland walks. I would love to stay there rather than driving the half hour journey home!!

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  33. Looks like a great little getaway. Nice that you could take pooch along for some country fun too :)

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  34. we usually go on hoseasons breaks (out of habit) but i think we will start to look at forest holidays as well.

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  35. looks like the perfect family get away and perfect for getting out in the fresh air! x

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  36. That sounds so relaxing and would be right up my street. Thank you for sharing.

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  37. This looks so lovely, we would love to go. We could take Bella too! We are BIG Centerparcs fans, but this looks great. Thank you for linking up to #MyFavouritePlace x

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  38. Wow, the hot tub looks amazing. Looks like you all had a good time #MyFavouritePlace

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  39. Well now I want to be holidaying there! It looks like great accommodation in a beautiful setting.

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  40. I love these kind of holidays. A complete change of scene is so helpful for relaxing and enjoying family time. I love the accommodation, especially the hot tub!

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  41. We never been on a forest holiday, so I've really enjoyed reading this, it sounds wonderful and well worth a visit.

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  42. WOW - well done for building a fire from scratch. Such a great skill! The lodges look like heaven, especially the hot tub! Looks like a wonderful place to relax and unwind. We are hoping to try a forest holiday in the next few years. Thanks for linking to #traveltales. I've added this post to our pinterest board :D

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  43. what a lovely place, having said that i would prefer the carpet over laminate flooring

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  44. How gorgeous does this holiday look! Love love love the hot tub and learning to build your own fire. Thanks for linking to #traveltales - I've added this post to our #traveltales pinterest board

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  45. This looks fantastic - right up my street. While I do like to stay in hotels, there's just something wonderfully relaxing about keeping life simple and I enjoy the flexibility of a 'home from home' lodge too.

    Love the look of the hot tub and those huge windows too!

    #traveltales

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