Center Parcs Whinfell Review - Part Two

Here is the second review of our trip to Center Parcs Whinfell, the first can be found here. This covers the food, activities and bike hire.

Aqua Sana
We went in the spa for three hours each. My mum and sister went together and both loved it, and my husband and I went together. It was so relaxing. There were differnet steam rooms, a sauna, an outside pool, a hydro pool and water beds, for when you simply needed a lie down! My favourite steam room was Indian Blossom. My mum also had a massage when she went to the spa and she said it was incredibly relaxing and her skin felt fantastic afterwards.

Aqua Sana

I treated myself on our last day and got a pedicure with shellac nails. I was meant to have minx nails, but they didn't have much choice, so offered me shellac instead. I love them though, my nails still look fabulous two weeks later! It cost me £25 to have my nails done, which I thought was good value for a 45 minute pedicure.

Shellac nails

Cafe Rouge
We had a meal booked here for twelve of us, we had friends staying in the lodge next door, and my Grandma booked her own apartment so that she could come with us too. The service was OK, but we did have to remind staff about drinks they had forgotten to bring to the table, and they brought us wine but didn't open it! However, the food was absolutely delicious. I had duck which was tender and easy to eat. The children's meals were great, I was glad not to see the usual chicken nuggets, fish fingers or sausages on the menu. My son had salmon and my daughter chose chicken goujons. In between courses, the children played in an indoor playground area above the restaurant. It was completely empty apart from our children, so they were able to run around a lot! There was also a soft area near the entrance to the restaurant where smaller children could play.

Play area

The puddings were absolutely delicious. My grandma opted for fresh fruits and cream and I decided to be gluttonous and opt for a chocolate brownie. I was very happy with my choice!

My husband and my mum played tennis for an hour on the Tuesday morning and both really enjoyed it. Racket hire was included but they had to pay for the balls they used. They decided to just hit the ball around rather than play competitively, which was lucky because my mum is fiercely competitive!

Teddy Bear Making
This was the most expensive activity for the time it took. I didn't mind paying though because I knew they would really like the teddy bears. My son was booked in to make a teddy bear. Unfortunately he fell just outside in gravel because he was excited and running fast. It was the worst scrape he has ever had and he was really shaken up by it. As a result, he didn't enjoy making teddy bears quite as much as I would have imagined that he would. He still chose his bear and clothes though and made sure the bear was fully stuffed. You then have to pick a heart to go inside and the bear gets sealed up. You get a bag and an adoption certificate to go with the bear too. However, because he couldn't really walk anywhere, I also paid for my daughter to make a bear. She chose a tiger and  really loved making hers. They have both taken their bears to bed most nights since.

Tree Trekking
I chose this because it sounded like something I wouldn't normally do and I thought it might push the boundaries of what I was comfortable with. I went with my sister and my friend's daughter. The staff were fabulous, settling our nerves and getting us into our safety gear. It wasn't as scary as I had imagined it would be. There were a few moments when I was slightly scared but I knew I was attached and so the worst that could happen was that I would fall a few feet and then be suspended until I was rescued.

 The various obstacles were simple enough to manoeuvre and I was put to shame by my friend's nine year old daughter! With her in front of me I couldn't really be afraid as she kept me giggling all the way round!

We loved having bikes. The children loved being in the trailer and the boy even managed to fall asleep in it one day which was pretty impressive. We had one bike with a child seat on the back and one with the trailer on the back. The trailer was hard work with two children in and my legs were killing me for the first couple of days!  There are a lot of hills so we quickly worked out which were the best routes to cycle on! We didn't have any problems with the bikes and didn't actually walk anywhere.

For some reason, we didn't find the lake until the third day! I think because we were too busy having fun. The lodges on the lake looked wonderful and my grandma's lakeside apartment was very nice.

On the Thursday we walked down to the lake. It was rather rainy but we decided to hire a pedalo for half an hour, on our way to the Really Wild Treasure Hunt. The staff got both children into their life jackets and got us all safely into the pedalo. We ended up doing three laps of the lake before the rain got too heavy and we had to stop because we were soaked. It was great fun to be on the water, although my legs were not impressed with me pedalling yet again!

Really Wild Treasure Hunt
The children were booked to go on the Really Wild Treasure Hunt. We had to go on a walk around the forest hunting for animal figures. When we found them, the children had to count how many animals were on the post and then put that number on the page.

Both children really enjoyed the treasure hunt. The girl is a bit too small for counting, but she loved finding the next animal. The boy was very good and I was impressed with his counting. At the end of the treasure hunt, they had to choose a key, based on adding their numbers up and see if they could get a prize. They both chose a little owl and went away very happy!

The Pancake House
On our last day we went swimming in the morning and afterwards went to The Pancake House for our lunch before heading home. The staff were absolutely fantastic and looked after our every need. They had loads for the children to do whilst they were waiting for their pancakes to arrive.

They both had ham and cheese pancakes and I can honestly say that I have never seen food disappear so quickly in my entire life! The boy wolfed it down. It was on his plate for less than five minutes. I know what I can cook for him in the future now! I opted for the piri piri pancake which was delicious and had quite a kick to it!

The Ultimate Chocolate Pancake

For pudding I got a small ultimate chocolate pancake for the four of us to share. It very nearly defeated us!

We also came up with a lot of our own activities, such as playing Orchard Toys games and making daisy chains.

Daisy chain

There was such an amazing range of activities on offer and we had a wonderful time getting to try as many as we did.

To have a peek at all the photos from our trip, click here to view my Google+ album.

For more information, and prices on breaks at Center Parcs, click here. You can also now book breaks for autumn and winter 2014 Center Parcs new village in Woburn Forest, Bedfordshire you can find out more at

Disclosure: We were provided with some of these activities free of charge, others we paid for. We were also provided with the meal in Cafe Rouge fee of charge. This in no way had any impact on my post, which is honest and fair.