We are all feeling the pinch right now. Bills, weekly groceries, childcare costs – everything goes up.
But I’m sure I’m not the only one who still wants to have fun days and treats for the family despite having less money in my purse every month?
So two weeks ago I found myself looking for a little family getaway for us, not really expecting to find and book anything – but, you know, it’s still nice to look at. My husband and I had already booked a week off in March with the intention of having a large clearance in our loft. And as excited as I was for this (I wasn’t at all), I wondered if we could find a better way to fill our week.
I knew we had some decent little holiday spots along the East Yorkshire coast, so I thought I’d take a look at what was available near me first. The prospect of driving over an hour or two with a two-year-old and a three-year-old in the back is never exciting, so finding something nearby would be an added bonus – and obviously cheaper on fuel .
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I started by looking at the Haven website where I found three caravan sites all along that same coastline. As a child I went to the Haven sites, I know they are famous and have always loved caravan holidays so I had a look at what was on offer.
After narrowing my search to Primrose Valley – the largest of the three with a fun splash pool that I knew kids would be everywhere in, I couldn’t believe the prices going up. For just £99 we could get a four night break in a caravan and access to the pool and all the entertainment facilities.
I have been sold. And oddly enough, my husband didn’t need much persuading to put off cleaning the loft to go on a family vacation at that price either.
Here’s a look at what we’ve done and how we’ve cut costs.
Food and drink
Since we couldn’t be checked into our trailer until 3pm, I did a quick Aldi store before we left and stocked with everything we would need. We had breakfast in our caravan every morning and I also took things to prepare packed lunches.
We mostly ate out in the evening – we were on vacation after all. But I made sure to pack plenty of ‘fun’ snacks and treats for the kids to save us from buying anything from the on-site shop during our stay except a refill of milk.
Things to do
I appreciate that we were extremely lucky with the weather on our trip, but even if the weather had been bad, I truly believe we would have still managed to keep ourselves busy. The site had so much for young children, from play areas dotted around the site, to the large arcade area, soft play and of course the paddling pool – which we used to go to every day!
There are plenty of extra activities you can pay to book on, but we didn’t feel the need to do anything else. The site is also directly on the beach and in the summer there is also an outdoor swimming pool.
With everything we had to do there we were all happy and I didn’t even mention the entertainment. Starting at 9:30 am daily there were free shows and activities for children in the main lounge. And in the evening there was more with a wide variety of entertainment each night.
With a cost of just £99, I’m not going to lie, I didn’t have high expectations for our accommodation. We had booked the “saver” caravan which was supposed to be two bedrooms – and seemed very basic. But as long as it was clean, I was convinced it would be fine as a base.
Well, I couldn’t have been more impressed with what we got. In fact I think we may have been upgraded from the thrifty caravan as the one we were given was actually a three bed room, with en-suite in the master bedroom and a spacious living-dining room to eat.
In terms of cleanliness, it was absolutely spotless. And we had everything we could need for our stay. One small concern I had about my stay in a caravan in North Yorkshire in March was how cold it would be at night.
So with that in mind, I packed extra blankets and enough hot water bottles for each of us. But actually it wasn’t cold at all as the caravan had central heating which kept us warm all night.
Overall we had the best time outdoors. The fact that it was so cheap probably meant that our expectations were low initially, but honestly, what amazing fun for under a hundred pounds?
I would absolutely recommend vacationing in this country – especially if you have little ones and would also recommend staying closer to home where possible and looking for last minute deals.