I first went to Haven at Burnham on Sea at Easter 2012, and whilst it wasn't a "bad" holiday, it wasn't particularly brilliant either.
We returned at October break 2013, having booked a "Luxury Plus" holiday through Breakfree Holidays.
Now - first things first - the term "Luxury Plus" would give one the impression that they've booked a "luxury" caravan, perhaps with some additional comforts. No - it doesn't. A luxury plus caravan is just a normal run of the mill caravan but is 12 foot wide instead of 10. I had booked "luxury plus" because 2 members of our family travelling with us have lung disorders, one has COPD and the other Cystic Fibrosis therefore it was imperative we had a caravan where there was heating throughout. This is something that I daresay Haven and Breakfree Holidays should get together and discuss, that way, clients know what they're booking. Had I known I was paying for an ordinary caravan, just 2 feet wider, I wouldn't have bothered paying the extra £80 or so.
I had called Haven in advance to advise them of our family issues, they told us they were fully booked and they couldn't offer us an alternative in advance. In the end, the allocations person had read the notes, and put us in a caravan with fan heating in the bedrooms. So that was great - but it could have been a nightmare.
Got settled into the caravan nicely, called to ask for additional pillows (they allocate one per person) and we have 2 in our party with lung disorders, therefore, they need elevation (from pillows) and were advised that we had to go to the "Hire Shop" and hire additional pillows.
Pillows sorted, we had a temperamental fire in the lounge, sometimes it would light, sometimes not. Beds were as expected. DVD player was a bit like the fire, temperamental, but in the case of the DVD player, it's probably just a new set of batteries required.
Entertainment - now here's the reason that we families with children who either cannot afford to go abroad, or who perhaps cannot fly (for example, my 5 year old son has autism and CF, taking him on an aircraft would be a very risky thing to do), somewhat makes us a target audience. In the past few years, I have seen far more holiday camp entertainment than I would care to admit. I have to say that on this occasion it was woeful. I don't know on which planet the Haven authorities think we all come from but watching a pink elephant flounder around on a stage to a backing CD isn't entertainment. Nor is watching the "Sunshine Crew" do exactly the same thing. In fact, the entertainment team seemed lacking completely. A few months back we had a week at Chesil Vista in Weymouth - I would strongly suggest that you send your entertainment team there for a few days to learn how to "entertain".
Mash N Barrel - this was the worst. Went once last time we came at Easter 2012, and had breakfasts, which we returned to the kitchen because the albumen of the eggs was still raw. This time (October 2013) was no different, this time we stopped for dinner. Ordered children's portions of "Roast Chicken Dinner". Firstly, the chicken was "chargrilled" not roasted, secondly, we had to stop when we could see spots of blood in the chicken. It was a lady called Carly who offered to either replace it or change it for something else. No-one fancied the idea of chargrilled raw roast chicken, so asked for chicken tika masala instead. This was almost as awful as the raw chargrilled (not roast) chicken, the sauce was coolish in temperature, and there was a distinct "burning" smell from the dish. It didn't have chicken tika pieces in it, it had chargrilled chicken in it again. Fearing that it was the same chargrilled chicken that we'd already sent back to the kitchen, it wasn't eaten. Needless to say, we won't have another meal in the mash and barrel again.
Swimming Pool - last time (Easter 2012) we were advised to remove our shoes to walk from Reception to the pool changing area, the shoes to be to be put in the "shelving areas" at Reception. We learned last time that it wasn't a good idea to put your shoes there, as you come out and find that someone has taken a like to your shoes and don't get them back again. We didn't go swimming this time due to some of the reviews that we had read.
Bouncy Castle - I read with interest the information on the Haven pages about a new soft play area in the Show Bar. It's not soft play, it's a bouncy castle. There were big kids climbing up the walls and scaling the roof and bounding around without care compromising the safety of the smaller children. Probably one of the worst aspects of trying to improve a failing entertainment unit by adding an item that I'm actually surprised they don't charge for - they charge for almost everything else.
I think my one pet peeve about the complex o
All in all, it's dated, not what it appears. It's very expensive for what it is, and frankly there are other sites that are cleaner,
- Also Known As:
- Burnham On Sea Holiday Park Hotel Burnham-On-Sea
- Burnham On Sea Holiday Park - Haven Burnham-On-Sea, Somerset