We recently escaped to Center Parcs for a weekend at Longleat with friends. As if being in the forest wasn’t exciting enough, six year old POD was thrilled to have one of her chums and his brother to play with too. Her new Berghaus jacket arrived from Blacks just before the trip which was great timing given she’s outgrown her waterproofs. What a great location for its first outing – not that we aren’t spoilt for choice in Surrey of course!
Having arrived at Center Parcs on the Friday evening, the first night was spent ‘at ours’ sharing pizza and having fun. While simultaneously attempting to keep the three animated kids under control! We were all later to bed than we intended but it did mean we got to see two deer right in front of our lodge window. What an absolute treat that was. When morning came we were able to truly appreciate our surroundings and had more visitors. This time wild rabbits, just a stones throw from our patio.
With the children’s excitement at fever pitch, we headed off to the Sports Cafe for breakfast. POD donning her Girls Carrock 3 in 1 from the Berghaus Kids range at Blacks. She really liked this jacket when she tried it on at home and I have to say it is superb, great quality too. There’s a removable fleece beneath the waterproof outer so POD finds it really comfortable. It was easy for her to zip and popper up herself and she loved how it kept her face warm. The jacket didn’t get in the way of her scooting skills either, which is important when you’re chasing boys on bikes!
We couldn’t have asked for a more glorious morning so we took full advantage and opted to have breakfast outside. The kids occupied themselves while we waited for food by playing tag, racing each other and hiding in a nearby maze. POD took the opportunity to take some photographs with her Kidizoom camera after we’d eaten too.
It was so warm when we headed off to explore more of Center Parcs, POD decided to remove the fleece part of her coat. It’s so easy to do and there’s none of the faffing you get with some 3 in 1 jackets. She literally just unzipped the fleece from the outer, popped it in her bag then put the outer back on. As well as being fully waterproof, the outer is breathable too so even with all POD’s racing around, she stayed cool. Her Berghaus jacket hangs well with or without the fleece.
There are tons of outdoor and indoor activities you can do at Center Parcs, so many in fact you could easily keep yourself occupied for an entire week. POD has always been a climber, I’ve lost count how many times she’s asked to do Go Ape, so an aerial adventure was definitely on the agenda. We signed two of them up to give it a go the following day. The forecast wasn’t looking quite as good but we’re not ones for letting the rain get in the way of our fun.
We’d planned to go swimming that afternoon as the sunshine wasn’t expected to last but we ended up exploring more of the Longleat Estate before heading back to our lodge for a quick change. We took a train to the pool, we didn’t have long to wait but the kids were easily occupied with some nearby swings. POD, all ready for swimming with goggles on her head, spent much of her time upside down. All of us ventured into the Subtropical Paradise which is heated and has loads of offer from whirlpools and water rapids outside to flumes, waves and slides inside. We must have spent two hours in the water as we resembled shrivelled prunes when we came out. We had so much fun though.
We just missed catching the a train back to our lodge afterwards so we had a little wait at the bus stop. It’s amazing how quickly twenty minutes passes though when you play piggy in the middle with a rugby ball! Despite going swimming, POD was snug as a bug in a rug with her layers. Her jacket certainly didn’t restrict her jumping or stretching abilities that’s for sure! Her Berghaus jacket has a hood which you can tuck away but we’d kept it out as rain was forecast. Somehow we’d managed to miss the showers because we were either having a drink or in the supermarket.
In true British style we had a BBQ at our friend’s lodge that evening. An absolute feast and probably enough food for twenty although the 7 of us made a good dent. The children were calmer after their busy day and all went to sleep much earlier than the night before, except POD. She’s not one to doze off if she thinks she might miss something. That said losing her first tooth and attempting to stay awake so she could see the tooth fairy probably didn’t help!
The following day we ate at the Pancake House which is fabulous. A few of us opted for savoury options and some sweet but they were all superb. As we left the temperature outside dropped dramatically, the wind picked up and the showers arrived. With coats fully zipped and hoods up, it was time for the kids’ aerial adventure. POD’s friend was raring to go but POD was uncharacteristically less enthusiastic. Such a shame given she’s been asking to climb through the trees for three years. She changed her mind when she saw her friend having fun though so with her gear on she was off down the zip wire, smiling as she went. From then on though it didn’t quite go to plan and POD ended up dangling on the zip wire in a monsoon-like downpour. She loves the rain normally but today just wasn’t her day. A rescue followed and while her bottoms were wet through, her upper body remained warm, dry and comfortable. The dirt she collected on the back of the jacket on the way down to the ground just wiped off as well.
She was back to her perky self after she’d devoured a hot chocolate though! The rest of the day was a fairly chilled affair which largely involved being outdoors when the rain stopped and eating indoors – we had all those delicious BBQ leftovers to scoff after all! It was wonderful how the weekend seemed so much longer than it actually was. It was excellent, great times with friends we and we relished popping our Center Parcs cherry.
If you want to have a nose at what the Berghaus Girls Carrock 3-in-1 is like close-up, there are a few photos below.Do check out the Berghaus Kids range, we cannot recommend them highly enough. These photos taken when POD returned from Forest Schools. It’s a superb initiative which involves a group of children from her class heading off every few weeks to spend time in the great outdoors. They do all kinds of things like build dens, leave food for the birds and make fires from which they cook marshmallows. She commented her jacket was perfect, she’d worn it with and without the outer. As you can see it’s great for aeroplane impressions too!
Disclaimer: We received a Berghaus Girls Carrock 3 in 1 from Blacks for the purpose of this review. Opinions are as always our own.