A Short Review of Haven Church Farm!
We just got back from a week away at Haven Church Farm in Pagham, West Sussex. We’ve been a number of times to the Haven at Devon Cliffs and always had a great time.
The trip to Pagham brought mixed emotions for me really. My Nana lives in Bognor Regis, literally a five minute drive from the holiday park. My intention was to double up a holiday with a visit to see her each day. She hasn’t been well though and there has been uncertainty as to her looking after herself. We’re not sure if it is the onset of dementia and have yet to have many answers from health care professionals. Unfortunately she wasn’t home during the week, instead staying with her brother, not far from Littlehampton. Luckily I got to see here a couple of times.
My Nana and I have always been super close. I feel I am most like her out of all my family! We have loads in common and most Fridays we used to speak for over an hour on the phone, nattering on about what we were reading and exchanging parenting stories. I particularly love hearing about the strife my dad gave his mum!
Fun in Sussex
Outside of visiting my Nana, we had a lovely few days on the south coast. We got down to the holiday park on Monday afternoon, taking advantage of B’s nursery day and picking him up after lunch. Always gives us a few hours to pack and get ourselves sorted out.
The drive from Weston-super-Mare isn’t direct really, meaning we go on the M5, M4, A34, M3 and M27. I feel tired just writing all that haha. The journey was fine though and we got there around 3pm.
Living it up in a prestige caravan!
Having booked a prestige caravan with decking, we were able to check in and get ourselves settled. As always, we were not disappointed with the caravan. The interior is high spec, clean and modern. The decking was lovely and location-wise, we were in a lovely quiet cul-de-sac area, not far from Pagham lagoon and harbour. We were a short walk from the main complex, maybe 5 minutes or so. I didn’t mind the walking though as I sit most weeks at my desk. One day we clocked over 12k steps. Result!
I must say, we were very VERY lucky with the weather. You can never tell with the good old British weather can you? We had dry days which were great but they were pretty nippy, especially down on the beach.
So why do we love Haven?
Pre-b it wasn’t somewhere I fancied going. And to be honest, if we were sans-b, it probably wouldn’t be my first choice as I would prefer something abroad or adult only. But if you do have kids and want a cost-effective holiday in the UK, you can’t go wrong. We’ve stayed with B in a lot of places from caravans, cottages and lodges, to all-inclusive resorts and hotels. And my favourite is still our Haven breaks. Here’s why:
1 – We know what to expect
I know a lot of people see this as a negative but for us, knowing what the score is before we go is ideal with a toddler. There are plenty of things to keep us entertained if it rains, and I know there are things to amuse the little man on an evening. Also handy is the bar at the back to amuse the mummies and daddies too! I like the predictability and I like knowing what I am going to get.
2. Rainy day stuff to do
As we know, you can’t rely on the British weather. One minute sunny, the next tipping it down. I love the mix of indoor and outdoor fun at Haven. The pool at Church Farm was ideal for B. He isn’t in to slides and sprayers yet so enjoyed the calm atmosphere. In contrast, the pool at Devon Cliffs has it all, from small slides, to big slides. Other indoor activities include the amusement arcades and soft play areas. Ideal for whiling away the time if the weather isn’t great. As the weather was good, we took advantage of the free bug hunt activity.
We also had great fun pelting round the site on the go-karts (paid for). Although Mr D and I were completely shattered after an hour of cycling, with B screaming “faster, faster”.
We loved the set up they had with the outdoor play area. It was right next to the onsite shop, so D could pick up a coffee before we headed over to play.
3. The Seaside Squad
Not my cup of tea but if you are two I can see the appeal! B loves the Seaside Squad and goes on and on about Greedy the Monkey and Rory the Tiger long after we return home. They put a show on each evening for the kids and B loves it. Although it takes him the whole week to build his confidence, deciding to have a dance on the last night. I don’t mind taking him to the shows as it means we were out until 8pm-ish each evening, and once we’d walked back to the caravan, b was shattered and ready for bed. Bedtimes were super easy and we even got a few lie-ins 🙂
4. A mix of beach and countryside fun
I can only comment for Devon Cliffs and Church Farm, but I love the location of both parks. The beach at Pagham and Bognor is a pebble beach but if you time the tides right, you can enjoy the sand. I actually find b enjoys the pebble beach more than just sand because he can poke about in the stones and look for shells. On Bognor Beach you can find some fantastic rock pools for hunting about in for crabs. Here is the walk we did along the harbour. A short walk from the site.
5. Fun things to do in the area
Since we had such lovely weather, we got out and about quite a bit. The location of Church Farm is great because you have the seaside town of Bognor Regis just a ten minute drive. You have Chichester and Arundel, and further afield, Littlehampton. There are LOADS of paid for activities and tourist attractions but we didn’t actually do any as we found plenty of free things to do. I must say as well, hats off to Arun District Council. We were very impressed with the quality of and amount of children’s play areas in the region! Ten out of Ten!
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