Striking that balance between keeping the kids amused and enjoying that all important r'n'r is a preoccupation most cool campers are acutely aware of. But what if we could tell you that we know a place with the utmost in luxury camping accommodation, next-door to one of the country's leading family-friendly attractions, AND within easy reach of some of the most spectacular spots these islands have to offer?...
Opened in 2012, Crealy Meadows Caravan and Camping Park adjoins the Devon branch of the award-winning Crealy Great Adventure Park. More than just an afterthought to the big draw next-door, this much garlanded site is a veritable camping extravaganza, with a modest scattering of African themed safari tents, medieval paviliions, and an ample selection of fully-serviced tent, caravan and motorhome placements for the pitchup purists.
The spacious safaris have more than enough room to swing a cat (or should that be chimpanzee) and the interior fittings (think proper timber-framed beds, memory foam matresses, aga, and spacious veranda) put most hotels to shame.
Naturally, the amusement park is the star of the show and guests of Crealy Meadows enjoy discounted admittance to the fun and games next door. It's a testament to the park's popularity that it neccessitates it's very own camping village. Guests can enjoy evening family entertainment including karaoke, a kid’s pop disco, a chance to meet Crealy’s mascots Buddy and Blossom and much more, with the Adventure Zone, bar and restaurant open after hours for guests.
And while it's not quite the Serengeti – though the immobile model lion might lead you to the contrary on a bleary eyed morning ramble to the immaculately clean, modern facilities – there's fluffy alpacas to pet and your little Livingstone's can even 'own a pony' for the duration of their stay. And if you haven't had your fill of wild(ish) beasts, seek some more of the South West's spectacular wilderness on nearby Exmoor, Dartmoor National Park or at the innumerable lovely coastal spots all within easy driving distance.
FacilitiesModern showers and washroom with underfloor heating. Family and disabled private bathrooms with baby changing. Electric hook-up on all pitches which also includes water, grey waste and electric. Secure barrier controlled site with 24 hour warden Convenience store. Laundrette with irons and ironing boards. Dishwashing facilities. Free Wi-Fi. Recycling bins. Dog walk area and daytime kennel facilities. Chemical disposal points. Two large children's play areas and a grass football pitch. Lots of onsite entertainment incuding karaoke, mini and late night discos, variety and game shows, bingo, theme nights, live cabaret, race nights.
Suitable ForTents, caravans, motorhomes, groups (Scouts, Brownies, Guides, etc) – yes. Well-behaved dogs also welcome provided they are kept on leads. Stag or hen parties – no.
Your stay grants you discounted access to the adjoining Devon branch of the award-winning Crealy Great Adventure Park. The park boasts over 60 family-friendly theme park rides and attractions, Animal Kingdom, and over 75,000 sq ft of all-weather play and outdoor adventure areas. There's plenty of interesting places to visit within Exeter's historic walls, not least its spectacular Norman cathedral (01392 285983) and ghostly medieval underground passages (01392 665887). The South Hams coast boasts innumerable lovely seaside spots, and there are plenty of quaint little seaside villages nearby Seaton Bay, Topsham, and Branscombe – the latter's thatched cottages, blacksmith's forge and old mill will transport you back to the Devon of yesteryear. The Jurassic Coast is a UNESCO World Heritage Site. To really lose yourself in the wilderness of the South West, Haldon Forest Park and Dartmoor National Park are easily accessible.
Food & DrinkA well-stocked onsite convenience store sells all the essentials you're likely to need. During peak season, Crealy Meadows run a pizza delivery service, straight to your porch. If you're really looking to push the boat out, head into Exeter for some first-class cuisine courtesy of the city's most famous culinary son, Michelin-starred celebrity chef Michael Caines. His ABode restaurant and Café, Bar & Grill (01392 319955) are the more casual sisters to his palatial flagship Gidleigh Park (01647 432367).
Opening Times27th March – 1st November.
The Owner Says
By Bus: If you plan on travelling by bus use either the 52A or 52B
By Train: the nearest station is either Exeter Central Railway Station or Exeter St. Davids.
By Taxi: The Green Taxi Company (01395 568111) can provide a guilt free ride.
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