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“My shed was cleaner than the caravan”

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Dawlish Sands Holiday Park - Park Holidays UK
Reviewed July 22, 2010

When i travel anywhere i always use trip advisor,but most of the time like the majority of people you make your own mind up and hope for the best from a bad rated like this place
I travelled to Dawlish Sands with the wife and 4 year old daughter for a four day newspaper break and just got back.
We arrived at 3pm and had to wait till 4 pm as the caravan was still being made ready for us.At 16.10 i was back in the site shop buying fabreze air freshener.
Now im no snob,we take our fortnight holiday in Canada or America and stay in 4 star hotel min, but we have at least 2 newspaper breaks also during the year as they are good value,if you drop on a good site ,we always try to go to Woolacombe Bay,its quality.
This bronze caravan stunk of wet dog,carpet was filthy,cooker flithy,bedrooms filthy,curtains filthy,windows filthy, as for the fold away table that we had to eat off it was rusted to the point of collapse.All the decor was a sham both inside and out.
We tidied as best we could and made the best of it the first night.We went the club house and in there i spoke to a few people who expressed their concerns over the state of their caravan.They are extremely dated and in need of a major refurb.
Awoke the next morning to stale musty odour,It was ground in.We packed up and got out of there asap,on leaving the site i expressed my concerns but had a blank look off the muppet behind the counter
.Now i only paid £94 for 4 nights, actually i think it wasnt even worth paying half that so i feel ripped off.Good to say though we had a cracking remainder of a stay in good hotel in Torquay even if it did cost me an arm and a leg,you get what you pay for.....Give this a miss.I feel sorry for anyone who has actually said that this place was ok. Obviously these people dont holiday like i do

  • Stayed: July 2010, traveled with family
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1  Thank StokecityAder
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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924 - 930 of 941 reviews

Reviewed July 21, 2010

I have been to dawlish sands for the last three years due to go again in augustour younger children love it and they decided that we were going back after giving them a choice of going elsewhere.
The first time we booked it I ADMIT I put off by some of the reviews I read before i booked by decided to give it a try at the end of the day everyones got different taste.
we had to have a bronze caravan as it was the only one available because we booked it quite late as long as the caravans clean and tidy we dont really care how old it is.
we arrived half an hour early and recieved our keys the caravan was clean and we were pleased even though i had taken a car full of bleach and cleaning stuff it didtn need it but i still rewashed all kichen items and door handles etc which is something i would do anyway.
we were shocked at the entertainment it was fantastic and while we were there it was panto week and i must say it was the best one i have ever seen.
our caravan was a fair walk from the club house but that could be good or bad.,
our second holiday was just as good apart from 3 caravans being broken into in our row
which did make us a bit nervous
But to be honest we are really looking forward to going this year all i can say is try it for yourself and if you dont like it dont go back lovely place and surrounding area they also do good bargin breaks join there mailing list for regular offers i will rewrite a review when i come back i hope this year will be as good as the last ones

  • Stayed: August 2009, traveled with family
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Thank arewethereyet07_10
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed July 6, 2010

Travelled to Dawlish by train with my friends and family - there was no need to travel by car as the train station really is just 10 minutes walk away from the park. Get off at DAWLISH WARREN.

The caravan was pretty basic as you might expect - but we had no complaints as there was always hot running water - despite having 2 kids aged 7 and 10 who took extended showers and forgot to turn off the taps and having 2 babies (one more a toddler) who needed lots of baths to get rid of the muck and chocolate and 4 adults needing showers after running around after all the kids all day (phew).

The gripe we had with the caravan was that the LINEN HIRE was a little expensive given that we could see there was no choice in the contract but to take it and that the FIRE in the living room didn't always light on first attempt - which was annoying when the children were getting impatient in the mornings.
Luckily it was hot and sunny most days but we needed the fire on a few mornings as the babies needed a heated room after getting up or having a bath.

There was a smoke alarm and CO2 detector in the caravan and the kitchen had a gas oven, grill, gas hob, microwave and kettle. We were a little short on kitchen utensils but we got by!

The living room had a TV and you could hire the remote but we decided not to bother as it was easy enough to change the channels without it. The channels weren't programmed in the right order but we found the five basic channels plus a few more - and most importantly - we had C BEEBIES- hooray!

As for meals - we cooked most of our own in the caravan as it was a budget break for us. There isn't a large mainstream supermarket nearby (that we discovered anyway) so we shopped at ASDA online and they kindly delivered to our caravan after being directed by one of our party from the reception.

The park also had a takeaway and some of our party bought chips etc. from there on ocassion. There is also a chip shop and chinese take away a short walk from the park! You could probably phone in an order to them!

The kids went to kids club most mornings - but an adult had to accompany them and remain there until the session was finished. they seemed to enjoy it and there is free WIFI (top tip) for any bored adults who accompany their kids in the future - so take your lap top!
Loopy rabbit and the entertainment team entertained the kids for about an hour and most mornings they came home with a prize. They can also do lunch with Loopy rabbit on a Wednesday and it isn't too expensive.

There was also no overkill on trying to sell to the kids through pester power - like I have seen at certain other holiday resorts. So that was a relief!

In the evenings we went to the entertainment complex most nights. The shows were not bad for a small holiday camp - although they did repeat the eighties night whilst we were there! There is also LINK bingo where one woman won £800 when we were there and prizes for taking part in different competitions and games!

One problem I did notice was the LACK OF COLD WATER in the bar toilets - It seemed to have been switched off! Some of the hot taps didn't work either and there wasn't always soap for hand washing!

The bar prices are reasonable compared with most holiday parks I have been to and there are various slot machines and a pool table too. Sport is also shown on the TV in the bar and the soaps are on too.

We used the swimming pool several times- and shockingly a little girl found a pint glass (thankfully still in one piece) in the outdoor pool. The lifeguards didn't seem that bother but I thought they should have shut the pool until they were sure there was no more glass in it!
Changing facilities are basic and you can't wash your hair with soap or shampoo at the pool - so keep your shampoo and gels in the caravan for when you get back! You can't take any pictures of your kids at the pool either as this is strictly BANNED - which is a real shame I think as it is those moments you want to capture when your kids are small and you are on holiday! We got told off trying to take a pic of the babies in the small pool even when the rest of the pool was EMPTY.
There are sun loungers and chairs around the pool for relaxing - but no shoes allowed in the indoor area!

I would recommend the camp site to all families on a budget and those who are willing to rough it for a week / weekend. I would recommend you do an online shop before you get there and arrange for it to be delivered. There is a little shop on site and several nearby - but this would save you a lot of money and effort!

We went on day trips to Plymouth, Newton Abbot and Torquay and spent several days in the camp site so that the kids could enjoy being out in the sunshine and playing with the other kids staying there.

We had a great time!






(second time lucky for this review trip advisor)

  • Stayed: June 2010, traveled with family
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2  Thank somoslagente
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed June 15, 2010

We really enjoyed our trip. We usually stop on larger sites like Haven, but this place was just perfect. We travelled for a long week-end Friday to Monday and on arrival we noticed how clean and tidy the site was, check in was painless with no queuing and we managed to check in early as the caravan was ready, the caravan was only a bronze and we didn't have the usual dog smell, it was clean and tidy and had a microwave and a toaster which you don't always get with Haven. Also the bed was comfy but the wrong linen was left for us, we had no double linen, but a short walk back to the reception and they changed it immediately.

The on-site showbar was only small but what we saw of it it was good entertainment and there was room enough for everyone. We didn't eat on site.

We walked into the village where we enjoyed a drink in the Welcome Inn, Mount Pleasant Inn and also the Boathouse which was on the beach. We didn't like Lee's bar nor the Sunburnt Arms!! We were lucky with the weather so we just walked into Dawlish Warren, went on the beach and spent time in Dawlish, walking into it along the coastal path which was nice.

We could have visited so many places near to, such as Teignmouth, Torquay, Paignton, Brixham, Exmouth etc., but we intend to do that next time we go as there will be a next time. A bus also runs regularly from outside the park which we would catch so as not to bother taking the car into town and parking up, but as I say the weather was so nice we didn't really need to explore any further out.

We had chips from Pengalions (sp?) but they weren't up to much, we enjoyed the food from the chinese take-away next door and also ate at the Mount Pleasant which was nice, though a little expensive.

All in all a fabulous week-end away and fun was had by all.

  • Stayed: June 2010, traveled with family
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Thank skinny1307
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed June 7, 2010

After reading some of the poor reviews I was a little reluctant to book, but the wife told me not to believe everything you read.......and as usual she was right!
We stayed in a Silver caravan (No 85) and it was perfect. On arrival everything was clean and tidy. The caravan its self was of a good size with plenty of room for 2 adults and a toddler. Maybe the bronze are of worse standard, it does say on the website you can keep dogs in the bronze which made us go for silver.
We visited the pool twice, can't praise the life guard enough (Chris). On getting out of the pool to collect our towels my little boy had run back to the steps and had started climbing back in to the pool, as I relaised and turned around Chris was already stood by the steps watching my little boy. To me this is far more important than them letting kids throw balls around the pool.
On the second day a lightbulb blew in our caravan, I reported it and it was replaced within 20 minutes, very impressive.
On the last night we sampled the entertainment. For the kids it was perfect (though maybe starting a bit late in the evening). The loopy bunny was perfect, our 3 year old had a great time. The rest of the evening entertainment was so so, with the usual cheesy singing etc.
The nearby Paignton Zoo is great for a day out (but a little expensive).

  • Stayed: June 2010, traveled with family
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Thank J_from_Cardiff
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed June 6, 2010

This is our 3rd visit to the site in as many years, we booked last year a gold caravan, which was to a high standard and very clean. My children enjoyed the site, especially the entertainment, although we were very dissapointed with the play park, the slide seemed to have gone missing from the climbing frame so the children climbed up ran though the tunnels and bridges only to be greated by a boarded up hole and then have to climb down some stairs, not very safe at all. There was the usual problem of the bins only being emptied once a week, causing a smell and mess. Ladys Mile up the road manage to have their bins emptied every other day, why not Dawlish Sands? We will be returning in October this year for our free holiday we won in the talent competition, I hope the slide comes back, we will see.

  • Stayed: May 2010, traveled with family
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1  Thank Holidaymaker9009
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed June 4, 2010

Me, my husband and 2 kids have just had a week stay at Dawlish sands and we had a great time.I am very fussy about cleanliness in caravans,but ours was very clean and very comfortable.The kids had a great time in the pool and the club house and they really liked the entertainers.All in all we had a good time and if my kids are happy then im happy.....definately value for money,i think!!!

  • Stayed: May 2010, traveled with family
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Thank mrsgSwindon
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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Additional Information about Dawlish Sands Holiday Park - Park Holidays UK

Address: Warren Road | Dawlish Warren, Dawlish EX7 0PG, England
Location: United Kingdom > England > Devon > Dawlish
Amenities:
Beach Free Parking Pets Allowed ( Dog / Pet Friendly ) Restaurant Swimming Pool
Hotel Style:
Ranked #6 of 13 Specialty Lodging in Dawlish
Number of rooms: 45
Official Description (provided by the hotel):
The gently sloping golden sands of Dawlish Warren stretch out for more than 2 miles, providing an idyllic and safe haven for splashing about. Dawlish Sands is all about enjoying your holiday the way you want to. The entertainment is fantastic and you won’t need to drive anywhere in the evenings when wining and dining with your family. It’s all here in the perfect holiday hotspot! ... more   less 
Also Known As:
Dawlish Sands Holiday Park Hotel Dawlish
Dawlish Sands Holiday Park - Park Holidays UK Devon

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