Alternative titles for this post included ‘Why I will never get on another ferry in my life. Ever‘.
Feeling on top of the world six days after I handed in my final project for my Masters degree we set sail on the Pont Aven from Cork to Roscoff on the west coast of France. The kids were ridiculously excited about their first time on a ferry and they bounced from the soft play area to the face painting to the magician and disco.
My husband, happy that we had actually made the ferry on time after a late start, relaxed and headed straight to the bar. After a quick bite to eat in the buffet restaurant (which was overpriced and cold) I sat and gazed out of the window over the glistening ocean and thought…..I’m going to be sick.
I popped on some sea bands (acupressure wristbands that are designed to relieve nausea) and felt a tiny bit better. The only thing that really helped was lying down so I was quite happy to go to bed at 11 pm, dragging the kids away from the dance floor. We were woken at 5 am, docked around 7 am and we were off on our two-day drive to Frejus in the Cote d’Azur.
Niall did all of the driving and it went fine, the kids had separate iPads to keep them busy, we made a couple of rest stops and arrived at the budget hotel Kyriad in Clermont Ferrand at around 5 pm. It was perfect for our overnight stay, had an indoor swimming pool and was a short walk to a variety of restaurants and bars. It also had a nice buffet breakfast the next morning. So day two in France we had a little lie in and got back on the road around mid-day. Six hours later we arrived at our campsite Holiday Green in the pretty coastal town of Frejus.
This was our second time visiting Frejus as a family but our first time at Holiday Green and I immediately liked it. We booked with Eurocamp and had a brand new modern three bed mobile home that was a five-minute walk to the pools/restaurants/entertainment but was far enough away to avoid the music/general noise at night. It was well laid out, had a wooden deck with sun loungers, dining table and an umbrella. The mobile home itself was located in a very peaceful area of the site surrounded by pine trees.
The pools and facilities
I loved the pools, the main California style pool takes centre stage and has plenty of room for everyone. Lie-lows and inflatables are only allowed in the pool from 12pm-3pm which is a good idea in my opinion.
There’s a separate baby/toddler pool and also an indoor heated pool and water slide. Most mornings they hosted aqua aerobics in the main pool, followed by a midday dance where everyone gets out of the pool to dance. Then depending on the day, there’s a range of afternoon pool activities including scuba diving, pool water skiing and water volleyball.
There were plenty of sun loungers at any time of the day and a small poolside bar to buy drinks and snacks. The playground was situated above the pool, it’s minimal but spacious and had enough to keep our two busy. There’s a miniature golf course on the main terrace, table tennis and a mini-amphitheatre with nightly entertainment which was always excellent. There was also a small nightclub which hosted junior discos for the under 12’s. The onsite shops and restaurant were very reasonably priced and there’s free WiFi everywhere on site.
What we ate
We didn’t eat in the restaurant on site but we did get takeout pizza twice which was tasty. We opted to do a big shop on our first day in the nearby Carrefour and to come up to the mobile home for lunch and dinner each evening. Some days we had an early lunch and spent the afternoon down by the pool with a pack of babybel cheese and crackers for snacks. In the mornings Niall and one of the kids would trek up to the shop to buy fresh croissants and orange juice.
There was no oven in our mobile home so everything had to be cooked on the hob or in the microwave. I didn’t cook anything too complicated, hot dogs, fajitas, spaghetti bolognese. Burgers and salad, pastas and stir-fry’s were also popular.
Honestly there’s not much I could complain about, I really loved the campsite but if there were any downsides I suppose it would be that it is quite hilly and some of the roads/footpaths around the site are in need of repair meaning I couldn’t let the kids out of my sight for a second when walking to and from the village area in fear that they would trip or fall in their flip-flops. Also if you’re visiting France in August it’s busy everywhere as it’s the month when most French holiday and the entertainment is catered to this audience. But neither of those things would put me off visiting the campsite again.
The kids had such a great time, we didn’t venture to the beach or on any day trips as they were quite happy to simply go to the pools each day. Neither of them wanted to do the kids club but they made lots of friends which really made the trip for them. I got to actually relax after a long hard summer of working and finalising projects and actually enjoyed reading a book (that wasn’t academic in nature) for the first time in a very long time.
My favourite family memories from this trip are of the simple days when we slept in, ate croissants and orange juice for breakfast on the deck and lazed about by the pool all day. No schedules or rushing or stress. Just watching the kids play and have fun and getting to sit and relax even if it was for five minutes until one of them called us.
In the evenings my favourite memories are of watching the kids play in the playground after a show, having a drink at the bar and not caring about getting them to bed early. They enjoyed the freedom of playing, meeting up with friends and eating late night crepes or chocolate covered waffles from the crèperie.
You can read about our eventful trip home here.