Five reasons to holiday with another family

family holidays uk

Have you ever shared your holiday with another family? It's double the fun, double the help and double the memories!

Relaxing while the children play together, evening meals around the barbecue and babysitters on tap - it's the formula for the perfect summer break.

Our lodges come in all shapes and sizes so we can cater for groups big and small - and our Connected lodges are just right for families who want to share space but keep a bit of privacy as well.

Bluestone regular and award-winning family blogger Helen Copson has just returned from her latest trip to our Pembrokeshire resort after a break with another family - here's her take on why shared holidays are the future:

I’ve just come back from my third holiday at Bluestone and absolutely loved it again.

We’ve had three totally different experiences on each of our breaks there - the first time it snowed, the second was the start of the heatwave, and this time we went with another family.

Which, can I just say, was FANTASTIC.

In fact, I’m not sure I’m ever going to go on holiday just us, ever again…

I have three boys, including twins, who turned four and two (x2!) the week after our holiday. Our friends have a four-year-old boy and a 16-month-old girl. So it was pretty full on but loads of fun!

If you’ve never been to Bluestone with another family, here are five reasons why you totally should.

1. The children play together

Bluestone Rangers

Okay so this is pretty obvious, but is a huge bonus when it comes to entertaining them. Our kids are too young to do anything by themselves (especially our twins who like to run off in different directions ALL THE TIME) but in our lodge all five of them loved being together. They played with each other’s toys so felt like it was Christmas, they had new people to chase around, and they had extra parents to mess about with too.

The first thing the four-year-olds did when they woke up at stupid o’clock was to find each other. It was non-stop fun for all of them.

Other friends of ours with seven-year-olds also went separately and said this holiday was the first time they could sit on the pub terrace and watch the girls play together in the park. Normally, when they’re on holiday alone, they have to be in there too as their daughters are only children so being with another family made a massive difference. Can’t wait to get to that beer garden stage!

Basically for children, everything is WAY more fun and exciting when you’re doing stuff with a mate.

2. Date nights

Couple at Bluestone

If you’re all staying in the same accommodation, parents get to have date nights. We were there for four nights so both couples managed to have a night out. Alone. With no children. And had actual conversations. It was great! Plus there are loads of places to eat at Bluestone - we opted for an amazing steak at the Farmhouse Grill. Okay so the couple left behind had to look after five children, but luckily they all stayed quiet. Pretty much. And on the flip side of date night, the other two nights you actually get to have a sociable evening with your friends once the children are asleep. We ended up drinking far too much until far too late, but hey, it was our holiday too, right? Beats sitting in front of the telly or on your phone, like you’d be doing at home.

3. Adult time

Well Spa guests

If you’re with another family, it seems there’s a free pass for either the mums to have a break, or the dads. Nobody is begrudging the other, because they still have company, and no-one is having to look after the kids by themselves. This is exactly what we did.

One of the mornings we were there, the mums headed off to the spa for a few hours leaving the Dads in charge. The safety in numbers rule came into force so everyone was fine. The Well Spa Retreat is the perfect choice for a girly morning. I mean let’s face it, we could have gone tree climbing or zip wiring at Steep Ravine, but mmm, well a spa was much more appealing, funnily enough. A session in the thermal suite with its six different pods of steam rooms, saunas and ice room was the ideal way to forget the noisy kids, and get us ready for our AMAZING Celtic Combo treatments we’d both opted for. A 50-minute treatment of back, neck and shoulder massage, then a facial was insanely good. I literally didn’t want it to ever end. Then a quick dip in the outdoor hydrotherapy pool was a great way to end our morning. Five minutes and five under fours later, and obviously it felt like a distant memory but it was fabulous at the time.

Our spa morning meant we ‘owed’ the dads some time off. So they headed to the pub for a couple of drinks whilst we took all five children to Senses Toddler Time, and then we were extra generous and even let them watch the England football game in the pub one evening whilst we started on the wine straight after bedtime. See, there are definite advantages of holidaying with other people!

4. Great accommodation for groups

Ladies drinking wine

Bluestone offers a whole host of different accommodation types for different sized groups, and so many of them are big enough for two families to stay in one lodge. Depending on how many children you have, you could go for the Dinas, Grassholm or St Davids that all sleep eight, the Pembroke or Dinas Bunkhouse that sleep 12 and 14 respectively. Or go for the Caldey Connect or Tenby Connect which have two kitchens, lounges, dining areas plus bedrooms with a connecting door you can open up to make it one big lodge. This is what we did and it worked really well. We kept the door open 99% of the time, only closing it when we needed to contain the children a bit to calm things down at bedtime!

5. Double the help

Children playing

We all know that going on holiday with very young children isn’t often a relaxing experience in any way, shape or form. Since having our twins, and being parents to three children under three, we’d basically resigned ourselves to returning home from a break away more tired than when we went. BUT having said that, when you go away with another family, yes you might have more children to contend with, but there is also more help available. We pretty much had an unwritten rule that all four parents were in charge of all five children, no matter who they belonged to. And suddenly it all felt a whole lot easier (apart from when one of my twins realised he could get out the front door..)

Cooking together was easier, sitting down and ensuring the children actually ate something was easier, stopping the little ones throwing it on the floor wasn’t quite so simple, but you get my drift. Also one of the biggest issues for us is taking all three boys swimming on our own - all pools require a ratio of 1:1 for children that young and we simply don’t have enough hands. The Blue Lagoon rules are that children under four must be accompanied by an adult (one to one), and four to seven years is one adult to two children. This meant with four adults, we could take all five children, and have a great time. I felt relaxed that all three were fine and safe. Hurrah for more pairs of hands!

We’ve loved each of our Bluestone holidays for different reasons, but this one was particularly special. It was fun for all of us, everyone got a break, and we all helped each other out. We’re already looking at booking next year!

If you fancy a holiday at Bluestone with another family browse our breaks and have a look at our accommodation options



Pembroke Lodge interior
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