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Thursday, 21 April 2016

Tattershall Lakes - A review

We spent Easter at Tattershall Lakes in Lincolnshire and boy were we ready for a break! A full 7 nights to relax and refresh was just what we needed. It only takes around 3.5 hours to drive there from Newcastle and after a quick stop at Fodder Farm Shop in Harrogate, we were there in no time. Check in was speedy - we were given a map, entertainment passes, entertainment guide and keys and were on our way.

Accommodation



There is a huge selection of accommodation to choose from at Tattershall Lakes ranging from a well-kept campsite to glamping, caravans and luxury lodges with hot tubs. We stayed in an luxury lodge which although wasn't overlooking a lake like some of the other lodges, was still in a very good location just a 1 minute walk from the main entertainment and lake. You can stay in a luxury lodge from around £300 for 4 nights for up to 8 people. Bargain!


Our lodge was HUGE - much bigger than anywhere similar we have stayed in the past. We had three bathrooms! I loved the open plan aspect of the living room/kitchen/dining room and decking and it was very comfortable with central heating throughout and lots of mod cons including a washing machine and dish washer. 


We made the most of the self catering facilities and really put the kitchen through it's paces. It coped well and it was lovely eating together as a family every single night (although in this pic below, Harry and Heidi were so keen they tucked in before everyone else's had been dished up!)



We were lucky enough to have a couple of days where the weather was ok to sit outside on the decking. How lovely to take the time over breakfast and just watch the ducks play on the grass in front of me. It was honestly so chilled out! I wish every day could start like this. 




There were three bedrooms and towels and toiletries were provided. Beds were made on arrival and there was more than enough wardrobe space for us all. We even had a dressing area and an en-suite. Very swish! 




Outside there was plenty of grass for the children to play on. We took their scooters and although they ended up VERY muddy most days, they loved having the freedom to scoot around and play outside. You can hire bikes from the resort if there isn't room in your car to bring your own. 



There are so many friendly ducks and geese around Tattershall and we used to have frequent visitors which our children loved. 



We're not really ones for going out in the evening on holiday - we will a couple of times but mostly we just stay in and chill. As a blogging family it sometimes feels like we're always 'out and about' so it was so lovely to chill in front of the fire every night with a bottle of wine and a movie. The kids spent most of their evenings making new friends at the park and would only come home when it started to get dark. Just how childhood should be! Again, they adored having this freedom. This also gave me the chance to actually read a whole book - I can't remember the last time that happened and it was such a treat to just lose myself in a trashy novel with a glass of wine every night. 


Outdoor Activities


We had grand plans to join in with lots of activities during our break - there are so many to choose from including archery, laser quest and water walking or even something more adventurous such as jet skiing. You can pre-book online (activities are either FREE on £4 per person) or book with 24 hours notice in resort. We ended up enjoying the park and lake so much that to be honest we didn't feel like we needed anything more but it is nice to know there is this option and I think it is a good way to encourage older children to make friends. There were daytime crafts too but again, we preferred to make the most of the sunshine (aka non-rain) and we couldn't tear our children away from the park. 






We loved the new beach area by the lake complete with buckets and spades and sun loungers. We spotted a few families heading down in their swimsuits and I bet it's super popular in the summer time. 


The park is joined onto the main Merlin Entertainment complex so the children would play whilst we enjoyed an al fresco drink (sometimes in the sunshine) and read the daily paper which again is something I never have the chance to do at home. Tattershall is a place I could 100% relax and not worry about ensuring the kids were having fun. 





One thing to point out is that the park is right next door to an RAF base. We were treated to daily airshows and I loved watching the acrobatics in the sky. The planes are noisy though and they probably aren't for everyone - they were in the sky around 3 times per day for 20-45 minutes each time. If you want total peace and quiet and relaxation, keep this in mind. Steve ended up referring to me as a plane spotter by the end of our holiday as I was mesmerised - he wasn't too keen though and ended up frustrated when we had to shout across the table to each other in order to be heard as the jets hovered above our heads. 

Indoor Activites


Tattershall Lakes is more than prepared for the great British weather and there is plenty to keep you entertained inside too. As well as a swimming pool, spa and children's entertainment, you will also find amusement arcades and a couple of fantastic bars. Our favourite was the Spitfire bar downstairs. A round of drinks for the 5 of us (including 2 beers) was around £10 so I didn't find the prices to be bad at all.





We joined in with Midsummer Movies which is available on selected breaks (and included in the price of your holiday). Haystacks are brought in from local farms and children are encouraged to wrap up in blankets and watch a family movie together. There is supposed to be marshmallow toasting too however this didn't happen during our break for whatever reason. We watched Big Hero 6 and as you can see the kids were tranfixed. In the warmer months this will take place by the lake outside rather than in a marquee. 

Arcade area


We spent 95% of our holiday exploring the great outdoors however across the week we headed up to the Propeller Bar twice and let the kids access the free (and fairly decent) wifi to catch up on their youtube subscriptions (kids these days!) and Steve and I could catch up on social media. It's not how we pictured spending our holiday but it is nice to have to option should you want it and 30 minutes of wifi during a week's holiday didn't really impose on our time together. The Propeller Bar shows sports on the big screen and has pool tables too. Because of this, it's a bit of a haven for teenagers as you can imagine and it's nice to know they have somewhere to hang out. 

The gorgeous view from the Propeller Bar


There was regular evening entertainment including kids shows, bingo, live music and magicians. Everyone seemed to thoroughly enjoy this however as stated before, we prefer the quiet life and would usually sit in the beer garden with a book (or have a conversation - haha) whilst the kids played in the park until dark. 


Food



The bars serve food throughout the day. We enjoyed a tapas style supper one night which was yummy and only £12 ish for three dishes and ordered lunch by the lake on another. Our lunch was £42 including drinks (alcoholic for Steve and I) which is en-par with a family chain pub. The quality was the same as a chain pub too - nothing amazing to write home about but we enjoyed the food and had no complaints. 





There is an on-site shop but we found this to be VERY expensive. It was £1.90 for a loaf of Hovis bread and bags of popcorn that were priced at 99p on the packet were being sold for £1.99. We had bought most of our food from Fodder Food Hall on our journey to Tattershall and popped to the local supermarket during our stay. It was still nice to have the shop as an option though and Harry would pop down every morning for bread/milk/the papers. 

Out and about


I was shocked when I realised that I've actually stayed in Lincolnshire three times in the past but haven't explored any of the local area! Our previous stays have always been at Butlin's where you are very much encouraged to stay on resort. Tattershall however is different (and refreshing) and you are given a guide of local attractions to visit on arrival and the whole chilled out and outdoorsy environment makes you want to get out and explore. 


Tattershall Castle is next door to Tattershall Lakes and well worth a visit. We found the staff to be lovely and it's nice to see the lakes in perspective and try to spot your lodge from the Castle roof. We would also recommend a trip to Tattershall Farm Park which is located a few miles away and the lovely village of Woodhall Spa is a nice place to wander around. I'll be writing a full post about what there is to do in the area soon. 


In conclusion, we found Tattershall Lakes to provide superb value for money and there really was something for everyone. You can fill your day with activities and your nights with entertainment if that's your thing or just take the opportunity to simply enjoy a slower pace of life by the lake for a while. The team are ever so friendly and chatty and you really feel as though you are 'on holiday'. We are hoping to return with our tent and try out their camping facilities either later in the year or next summer.


There is a lot of building work on site at the moment as there is a of refurbishment going on. There is a new outdoor splash zone opening next month for example. This didn't impact on our stay at all but is something you might want to be aware of. There are a few things that didn't go quite so smoothly - we reported our dishwasher as broken on the first day and were told it would be fixed and it wasn't. We also REALLY could have done with a vacuum cleaner/carpet sweeper - a week self catering with three messy eaters without this isn't the best and I think it should be included to help keep the accommodation in good condition. Also some of the roads were in fairly bad conditions and are not the best for walking on during bad weather in your best shoes, they are working on this though and understandably these things take time to fix.

Even when we take this into consideration, we would still hand on heart recommend Tattershall Lakes and will definitely re-visit ourself too. Tattershall Lakes is a fairly new addition to the Away Resorts portfolio and I think teething problems are to be expected. The real highlights of our stay were the truly stunning scenery, the fantastic park for the kids and the modern and well-equipped lodge. All in all, a lovely Easter break.


Thank you to Away Resorts who invited us to stay and provide an honest review.



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11 comments

  1. Wow what an amazing holiday! Love that the kids got so much fresh air and freedom, reading this really reminded me of family holidays we used to have in the 80s - making friends and running about until dark!

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  2. It sounds like you had a great holiday. That lodge looks so spacious and perfect for a family break. I think I will look into somewhere like this oneday for a little break with my children xx

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  3. The lodge looked lovely Sam,Lincolnshire is such a lovely area, Joe would love all the planes he would have been in his element, I am like you and prefer a peaceful area to sit or nice cocktail bar but its great that the kids all made friends and had lots of fun if they have a great holiday then we do xx

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  4. Wow it looks lovely, and sounds like you had an amazing time! I would love to be sat eating a nice meal outdoors and just generally chilling out with a cocktail! H x

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  5. I love the look of the lodge and it looks a great place to visit. It would be nice for a weekend break x

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  6. This looks such a lovely place - the lodge is gorgeous. It seems to have something for everyone and looks like you had a great time. Kaz x

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  7. Oh wow at where you stayed. We stay in holiday homes alot but nothing like that! Wow

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  8. As a girl originally from Lincolnshire it has been absolute years since ive been to Tattershall Lakes x

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  9. It was a really nice vacation! I love the accomodation, seems so cozy. And the activities seemes so much funny and interesting!

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  10. It looks like you had a fantastic trip away as a family. The accommodation looked fresh, clean and tidy. It looks like you all had lots of fun.

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  11. Looks like an absolutely beautiful place! Sounds like you guys had a wonderful time too!!

    Oliver • http://suedeandsymphony.com

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I always love reading your thoughts and comments - Sam x

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