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‘Some of these caravans look better than flats you’ve looked at in London,’ quipped my sister as we drive through Dorset’s Rockley Park to our accommodation for the weekend.

You wouldn’t expect a caravan park to better in size and style, but these expectations would be to overestimate the London housing market, and to far underestimate Haven holiday parks. Some of these caravans do look remarkably well kept, with all the hallmarks of a home - hot pants, lovingly chosen and painted names, and even a kite. People like Rockley Park so much that they choose to make it home, at least for a few weeks of the year, by buying one. My friends and I can see why.

This Haven park is one of those few places that appeals to all people. The large park is divided into many small sections, each sweetly named, soothing and comforting. We were on the shore edge, and sitting on the deck of our caravan as waves lapped a few metres ahead of us, it was easy to switch off. Four of us laughed, played, slept, dined and relaxed in our mid range Prestige caravan, which was, as my witty sister said, far nicer than many flats. Stone and cream sleek décor, comfortable beds, a fully equipped kitchen and power shower meant that we were never at need for anything. Spacious and relaxing enough to evoke that holiday feeling of utter freedom, but close enough to all the entertainment and offerings on site.

And there is a lot on offer. Fully heated pools and flumes are hugely popular, and ’any time’ activities such as football, tennis, and the holiday staple of crazy golf are always in demand. There are lessons and sessions are on offer throughout the day, including climbing, archery, kayaking and fencing, with adults and children all getting involved. We chose to get our Robin Hood on and fire some arrows. Children outdo us, hitting the bulls eye more times than we manage to successfully pull the bow string, the projectile veering all over the place, but it was fun.

Learning something new with friends is one of those simple things that makes a holiday so rewarding, evoking a hint of a smile no matter how many times your loved ones beat you. The on site nature reserve was a pleasing activity even on a rainy day, with nothing beating the scent of rain sodden grass as the English spring turns to summer, especially when mixed with salty air.

Rockley Park is located just a couple of miles from Poole, the cosmopolitan seaside town on the southern shores of Dorset. Chic and compact yet brimming with character, the olde worlde tumbledown buildings of the old harbour stand alongside bustling boats and ships. A promenade around the peninsula to see the yachts and have a picnic on the shingle beach takes us past fisherman and families gathering on the banks, and is a reminder of how much fun British seaside holidays can be. Those with more time may also want to investigate Sandbanks, a beach stretching all the way to Bournemouth, as well as Weymouth Sealife Centre, the historic Corfe Castle and some iconic parts of the World Heritage Jurassic Coast, including Old Harry Rocks and Lulworth Cove.

Here in Poole, a visit to see the famous pottery is a must. We paint some souvenirs, marvel at the throwers, and wish we could compete in artistic talent. Nonetheless, proud of our attempts, it’s time to treat ourselves to that seaside staple - a scoop (or two) of ice cream. With a flake, obviously.

Indulgence is what holidays are for, and Rockley Park comes up trumps here as well. What counts as indulgence varies from person to person, day to day, mood to mood, and so we cover all bases. One night it’s DVDs and Dominos delivered to our door, and the next we dine at the Harbourside fish restaurant, where thick fish is coated in light batter and accompanied by delicious chips, salads and vegetables. Just next door there’s dancing, bingo, entertainment for children and cabaret, and a busy timetable of acts keeps people entertained. A top choice all round is the adults-only spa, a haven (excuse the pun) away from the world where we treat ourselves to massages and facials.

After all this escapism, it’s time to get back to the real world. But now we know the magic of that little park and the lure of a little home tucked away, the temptation to return certainly exists. 

You can save up to £50 on your Haven holiday with this exclusive offer for TNT readers. With breaks starting from only £89, this is a great opportunity to visit one of their 35 parks across the UK and discover somewhere new. Just use the referral code 'z_tnt' when you make your booking. Click here to find out more.

Terms & Conditions:
Make the most of spring and autumn with breaks from just £89 for the whole family, or if you’re bringing your own tourer or tent, you can enjoy nights under the stars from just £7 per pitch per night. If you’re looking for a break within the school holidays then we’ve got some great offers for you: May Half Term from just £199 and Summer school holidays from just £249, plus you can save more with this exclusive promotion.

We’ve got 35 fantastic parks for you to choose from, all offering activities, facilities and entertainment for the whole family, so take advantage of these great offers saving you up to a further £50 off Havens best public prices.

For details of the extra savings you can make see terms and conditions for details, but book early to avoid disappointment. Your extra discount will be applied at stage 6 when you book on line. Terms and conditions apply see www.haven.com/tnt for details of the offer.


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