With the countdown fully in progress until our Bognor Regis holiday the chance came to visit Butlins at Skegness for a meeting with some of the other Ambassadors. As Skegness is only down the road (in Norfolk terms) we couldn’t miss the opportunity. Here’s a quick summary of our flying visit before I tell you all about the main event.
We didn’t tell the boy but packed the car and collected him from school and set off, when we arrived at the gates he finally clicked and was bouncing around in his car seat!
So here’s the confession…myself and Daddy visited Skegness Butlins about 10 years ago on a Sun £9.50 holiday. It rained the entire time, we didn’t do anything, avoided the entertainment and had a pretty miserable time. We have done Sun holidays since then, but always to Haven, in our eyes Butlins has always been Haven without the caravans. It was seeing all the previous Ambassador reviews that prompted us to apply to be one and really see what had changed.
Skegness Silver Accommodation
For this stay we had booked Silver accommodation for 2 nights (worth checking for 2 night breaks if you have school aged kids – it meant we weren’t overpaying and were home in time for school on Monday) which cost £180 so £30 each per night which I didn’t think was bad. We were able to use the drive through checkin which was great and as it was drizzly meant we didn’t get wet, and then drove straight down to our apartment. As we approached we fell silent, we were both thinking the same thing – that the outside of the apartments didn’t look any different to how we remembered them. I felt sure we were going to be really disappointed.
However on the inside was a totally different story (thankfully). A really modern space with comfy sofas, fully equipped kitchen diner, loads of space and 2 good sized bedrooms. J was really pleased to have a choice of beds and went for the slightly higher one with a quirky ramp up to it.
I think it’s worth noting that the bedroom doors are quite heavy and completely shut, so if you are used to leaving a landing light on for little ones you might want to bring small night lights or you’ll need to wedge the door open with something quite heavy. Our apartment was on the top floor and you go downstairs to go out of the front door, if we had younger children we might have hired a baby gate for the top of the stairs just in case. Neither of these were a problem for us though.
The only slight negative for us about the accommodation was that the mattresses were very firm. It’s not what we are used to so we didn’t sleep particularly well, but I think that is just a preference thing.
We had opted not to have a dining plan as we would be arriving late on the Friday and leaving early Sunday. We packed porridge, cereal and fruit for breakfast on both days and thought we’d treat ourselves to eating out the rest of the time.
On Friday evening as it was quite late we decided to head to the on site pub The Sun & Moon, there were still plenty of people around and they were serving food until 9pm so we just crept in with our orders. The portion sizes were huge, and well needed. We enjoyed starters, a main and J had a (enormous) dessert and the bill was £40 which I thought was very reasonable. The staff in the pub were absolutely excellent, they engaged with J and really made the evening for him.
On Saturday evening we headed to Ludo’s the italian restaurant. It had a lively and entertaining feel to it and our waiter was certainly full of character! Having decided that Slimming World was definitely on hold til Monday we had a sharing platter to start and then all chose pizzas and pudding…I could barely move for the rest of the evening! The food was hot, fresh and beautifully presented we all really enjoyed our meal. I’m unsure of the total cost as Butlins treated us to this after our meeting but on the menu everything seemed reasonably priced for an Italian restaurant.
Butlins Skegness Activities
When we arrived we were pleased to spot there was a late night family swim, so we quickly grabbed our stuff and went to do that before tea. What a transformation the pool area has had! Fantastic big pools and dedicated kids areas, lifeguards everywhere and a superb choice of flumes to ride. We didn’t have long so picked a flume we could all go on together – in a big inflatable boat! It was great fun and left J desperate to swim again on Saturday to try the rest.
Saturday was all about the boys. I was in my meeting all day so they had time to themselves – something that doesn’t happen very often – J went through the planner and highlighted everything he wanted to do and they headed off. I left them watching the animal show, someone had just had a cockroach on their face so I thought that was a good time to exit!
Once I met them later they were exhausted! They had been on the go karts, played pool & air hockey, had a game of adventure golf (and won a free game each) visited the fun fair, had an amazing time at Quasar and seen some shows. They had also headed back to the pool and found the rapids – and gone round 6 times! I couldn’t believe how much they had crammed in.
After dinner we headed to the arcade for some 2p machine fun and won a collection of random plastic things! Stuffed and tired we didn’t manage to take in an evening show, our dinner reservation had clashed with Scooby Doo so we promised to watch it when we visited Bognor instead.
We had to leave early on Sunday but we managed to fit in a quick swim and one last game of adventure golf before grabbing a SOHO coffee for the journey home.
So with our opinions of Butlins completely changed we absolutely couldn’t wait for Bognor in the next half term!
We are Butlins Ambassadors and received £100 toward the cost of this short break.