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Fishery Creek Caravan Park, Hayling Island

The 2014 camping season has started and the weather for the school Easter holidays was looking good so we loaded up and headed south for an adventure on Hayling Island.
We had chosen Fishery Creek Caravan Park because it was a short walk from the beach and because it runs alongside Fishery Creek with its own slipway and we wanted to use our kayak.

We arrived at approximately 3pm after a very clear run from Reading and we were parked up and pitched (overlooking the creek) shortly after. The weather was gloriously sunny but quite windy, so we decided not to use our sun canopy although we did use our new wind break.
After a bite to eat we went for a walk to and along the beach at Sandy Point and watched the start of sunset before walking back and preparing for an early night.

The next morning we woke early, had a shower in the excellent site facilities, then made breakfast, washed up and unpacked our inflatable kayak.

We were waiting for some friends to arrive (guests are allowed on site if they pay a small fee at the reception) and for the tide to come in before we could use the slipway into the creek so we relaxed with a book in the sun.

Our friends arrived and eventually the tide came in enough so we made our way into the water for a paddle and swim. The creek is very shallow (and muddy) with a reasonable tidal current and after a couple of hours we were ready to get cleaned up and dried.
After another trip to the site showers we fired up the BBQ (first of many this season!) And enjoyed a cool glass of cider as a reward for our wet suited antics.

Our friends headed off early evening so we went for another walk along the beach, returning in the dark, and settled in for our second night.

The next morning breakfast was dealt with and cleaned up and we started packing everything else up ready to leave the site, but the adventure was far from over. We were packed and ready to leave the site at midday, so after an ice cream at the highly recommended ice cream shop at Sandy Point, we headed along to the other end of the Island to an almost deserted beach where we unpacked our kayak once again and took it out onto the open sea.
Although much calmer than the previous days, kayaking on the open sea is a different proposition, with waves, tides and wind to contend with. An exhilarating hour or two later and we were once again dry and packed and having a bite to eat in the local pub before heading back to Reading.

A great trip with fab weather and a good opportunity to fully test our new kayak on open water. We will definitely return!

Porth Beach Tourist Park

With the Easter holidays fast approaching we wanted to head west into the heart of vdub camping territory, Devon and Cornwall.

Heading roughly south-west we set out along the A4 then A340 to pick up the A303 past Stone Henge.

We were stopping over with friends near Crediton, Devon so rather than going all the way to Exeter on the A303/A30 we took the A372 and A361 west to Taunton then the A38 and A361 again to Tiverton, all fantastic scenic ‘driving’ roads with plenty of places for a pitstop and leg stretch.

We stopped for a short break just west of Othery on the A361 at Burrow Mump, a remarkable man made 14th century hill with the remains of a church on top and arrived at our destination at 4pm.

The next morning we set off around 10am again heading west toward Okehampton to pick up the A30 which would take us to within 10miles of our next stop, Porth where we were meeting up with family for a 60th birthday party at the Glendorgal Hotel, arriving shorty after midday.

The following day we checked into Porth Beach Tourist Park, a short walk from the hotel (shorter at low tide) and across the road from the beach.

Porth Beach is an open plan site, well laid out with excellent facilities and very reasonably priced. We were all setup within a few hours and with bucket and spade at the ready, all set for a day on the beach.

Porth Beach has a large pub, small cafe and an even smaller take away via a ‘hole in the wall’ directly onto the beach, all very convenient and reasonably priced which is just as well since there is no shop on the campsite.

The morning of our second day was once again spent lazing on the beach however in the afternoon we took a short walk out to Trevelgue Headland across a small footbridge to what is now known as Porth Island.

Trevelgue Headland/Porth Island has a rich history stretching back to 2,000BC with bronze age barrows, an iron age settlement and Roman ramparts and was one of the most heavily fortified headlands in Cornwall.

From Trevelgue Headland there are fantastic views of Newquay bay to the left, Watergate bay to the right and Porth beach below which becomes even more impressive with crashing waves on an incoming tide.

The following morning we were packed up and hitting the road again by 10am, taking a slow meander north east along the Cornish coast via Padstow and Polzeath before heading inland to Launceston, the A30, Exeter then the A303 and eventually home to Reading.

In all another fantastic trip, and a great campsite located so close to the beach. We will definitely visit again, but will make sure we have extra supplies packed to make up for the lack of site shop.

Thorness Bay, Isle of Wight

For Tallulah’s next trip we decided to be a bit more adventurous and go ‘overseas’… to the Isle of Wight. We also wanted to try a more child focussed site as it was the start of the Easter holidays and we chose one of the four Park Resorts holiday parks on the island, Thorness Bay near Cowes.

We had been to the Isle of Wight several times previously, for day trips and to the festival (and Bestival), but never in a vdub camper so our 5yo was amazed that we could simply drive Tallulah onto a boat.

We were booked on the 11.25 ferry from Lymington so left Reading at 9am for a very scenic and leisurely cruise south along the A33 to Winchester, A3090 through Romsey and finally picking up the A337 heading into the New Forest.

We arrived in plenty of time and ate our lunch on the sun deck during the crossing.

We arrived at the site soon after and once checked in, went about finding our allocated pitch – the pitch numbering system was somewhat out of sync with the map we were given – and setting up.

Tallulah was levelled, plugged in and attached to her awning after an hour or so – Oli had made friends with a boy of a similar age and was happily cruising around on his bike – so we relaxed in the glorious weather for a while before exploring the rest of the site and the nearby beach.

The site had a great atmosphere, very friendly and not too busy – although it was the very start of season when we visited – a swimming pool, large adventure playground, various ‘kiddy club’ activities throughout the day as well as shows and other entertainment in the evenings, two bars, a shop and a restaurant.

Most of the activities and entertainment are included in the pitch price so if you’re for a site with lots of things for kids, it’s a bargain!

We stayed for two nights making the most if the facilities and headed back to the mainland on the Fishbourne to Portsmouth ferry, passing the Isle of Wight festival site on the way.

Once again we took the scenic route back to Reading on the A3 and arrived home in roughly two hours.