Following on from a previous review of the Sensatori Holiday Resort in Crete, I wanted to put together a brief summary of some of the other places we have visited that I would recommend to families with young children. I personally find friends recommendations far more valuable than any review on Tripadvisor, so I hope that some of you find this interesting and it can help you on your search to finding the perfect summer holiday! Click on any of the hotel names to be taken straight to their site for further information.
1. Sani Resort, Beach Hotel, Halkidiki - We stayed here with Paul's family in May 2013, there were 4 kids in total aged 5, 3, 2 and 6 months and there was something for each of them. They were totally catered for children for all ages, with clubs, soft play and outdoor parks, they even held baby swimming lessons at the indoor pool! There was a convenient buffet available at meal times along with the choice of several other restaurants on the resort, but less than a minutes walk was a fabulous marina with cocktail bars and beautiful family-friendly restaurants to pre-book. The thing that really stood out for me at this resort was the evening entertainment. The outdoors auditorium held full scale theatre performances such as Mama Mia, it was so impressive and the kids were engrossed night after night. I've never stayed anywhere with such fantastic entertainment and it quickly became the holiday highlight!
2. Atlantis The Palm, Dubai - This is a holiday probably better suited to families with slightly older children so you can really take advantage of all of their fantastic facilities. The main attraction to the Atlantis is the water park. It's amazing. One slide actually goes through a shark infested aquarium! Whilst the girls weren't quite old enough to go on the slides they still loved going around the park in dinghis'. The real highlight of this holiday for the girls was walking around the massive underground aquarium in the hotel. If you have kids as obsessed with Finding Nemo as ours, this is the hotel for you!
We stayed here in November 2013 which was perfect as the weather wasn't too hot.
'Must Do's' in Dubai:
- Get yourself some bargain diamonds at the Gold Souks
- Check out the indoors ski slopes at the Emirates Mall
- Visit The Dubai Mall for the ultimate shopping experience (largest shopping mall in the world)
- Watch the water fountain show outside the Dubai Mall
- Go up to the top of the tallest building in the world - the Burj Khalifa
3. Sensatori Resort, Crete - This was our most recent holiday and we were massively impressed. The first thing that made us go 'wow' was the room, if you can get yourself a family suite with a private pool you won't regret it. It made holidaying with two little ones almost relaxing! The restaurants and variety of food was great, but I would recommend booking the restaurants as soon you arrive as they get booked up very quickly. The children's splash pool was an absolute godsend and again, the entertainment which is key at a family resort, was brilliant. A CBeebies style show every night kept the kids entertained before it was the parents turn to enjoy an hours musical production performing everything from Motown to Elton John. You can check out my full review including lots more photos of the Sensatori Resort, Crete HERE.
4. Moon Palace Golf and Spa Resort, Cancun Mexico - We actually spent our honeymoon here when I was 6 months pregnant with Savannah and Scarlett was just 16 months old. It was relaxing enough for a pregnant woman with enough going on for a lively toddler. Like most Mexican resorts, its massive (10,000 rooms!) with a huge selection of restaurants, bars and pools giving plenty of variety to the week. Most resorts on this coast are all inclusive, but what sets this hotel apart is the holiday credit included in the package that you can spend on any of the hotels facilities. I obviously spent my share on massages, but Paul decided to venture out for a swim with dolphins! Most evenings (in the right season) they release hundreds of baby turtles into the sea which is a really special event for the guests to get involved with.
5. Gloria Golf Resort, Turkey - This place has come very highly recommended by Paul's parents (a very reliable source for luxury hotels!) who visited this golf resort last year so we are in the process of booking it up for August. We are already assured the food, spa and hotel facilities are out of this world, but having looked through the site it seems it's the kids activities that steal the show! Kids clubs for all ages, sheltered trampolines on the beach, an indoor jungle, a mini village, a water park, a zoo! The list goes on, and as I have said before - if the kids are happy, everyone's happy. I'll let you know more after we've been!
If you have any holiday resorts that you'd recommend please let me know in the comments below so I can get researching for next year :)
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