Monday, 5 September 2016

A wet weekend away

Living in New Zealand, we had so many animals that holidays were more hassle than they were worth. So when we moved back home and were animal-free we decided we would take the occasional weekend break.I bought a deal on Groupon which gave us three nights away in a choice of six UK resorts. 
The downside was you had to pay, then find out which ones were available. Never mind, there were lots .to choose from. So I paid and phoned up. Ilfracombe sounds nice - not available. Okay, how about Bude - not available. Looe? No, sorry. St Agnes? No. So what did we end up with.....Burnham on Sea. A weekend in Western Super Mud - great!

Well they say a holiday is what you make it, and it's not where you are but who you are with that counts. Ok, maybe, but I think a bit of sunshine helps too. Hasn't the weather been gorgeous lately? Little did we know how it would change, especially for our break away. Saturday's paper had an article entitled 'Grab the brolly...Britain faces weekend washout' 😩😩😩. It said Britain was to be hit with a freak deluge and have up to a month's worth of rain, as an early autumn storm swept in from the Atlantic. Great. Just to rub our noses in it even more, the following week (this week) was expected to bring warm tropical air and a possible 86F heatwave by the end of the week (although that hasn't appeared has it). Fantastic. 
OH and I had taken Friday off work so we could make the most of our time away. This was how we spent lunch when we arrived...

Sat in a car park with a packed lunch balanced on our laps. We couldn't even go to our chalet on the campsite, as check in wasn't until 4pm. Luckily they let us have the code so we could while away some time in the swimming pool, and a brief visit to the sauna for me. 
Dinner that night was at a restaurant just down the road. The portions were huge!...

On the way back to the campsite we popped down to the beach, just so the kids could have a quick run on the sand. The rain had cleared however it was still quite chilly so it was only a flying visit, but at least we saw the sea!

Saturday morning dawned and seeing as the weather still wasn't brilliant, we decided to pass the time by having a drive through the Cheddar Gorge. An Area of Outstanding Natural Beauty, it's Britain's biggest gorge with 450ft cliffs. 

We spotted some of the goats balanced precariously on ledges. They were introduced to encourage the biodiversity of the area, keeping down the growth of new trees and encouraging rare plants species such as the Cheddar pink to flourish. There is also a flock of feral Soay sheep. 

I don't know if they are clear enough to see, but I put this photo in to show you the bolts in the rock face, put in for climbers. There are 350 rock climbing routes on the 27 cliffs of the gorge. 

Big Girl and I jumped out of the car to have a quick look at a few mini caves, but to see the proper caves you have to pay big bucks (about £20 each). There are two caves open to the public, Gough's cave and the smaller Cox's cave. 

The weather was still rubbish after lunch, so we needed something indoors to do - a trip to the pier at Western!

There are quite a few rides there, and it is better value to get wristbands rather than paying for individual rides. I nearly fell over when I went pay - £52.50 for four wristbands!!

OH and Big Girl went on some of the more grown up rides whilst I took Little Boy to the child friendly ones, including a rather unflattering Hall of Mirrors. He also braved the Ghost Train, but got a bit scared and didn't really enjoy it. 

Sunday morning we decided that whatever the weather, we had to pay a visit to the beach to make at least one sand castle. 19mph winds don't stop little people, and they piled straight into sand construction. I couldn't even persuade Little Boy to put a coat on he was that into it, so OH and I sought refuge sat in the boot of the car and watched on. 
We weren't the only ones on the beach, it got quite busy by late morning. We had children to entertain as an excuse but several of the cars were adults only - who in their right mind wants to sit on a beach in that weather?!

So how do UK beaches compare NZ beaches? I'll leave you with a photo of our favourite local beach in New Zealand and let you decide 


  1. I certainly know which beach I'd prefer! What a shame about the weather but at least there was still fun to be had. The price of those wristbands was a bit steep wasn't it! xx

  2. Hmmm, no comparison is there, a lovely scenic beach in New Zealand to a wet and windy muddy Weston. I am so sorry you had such appalling weather for your weekend break away - I guess it is what you expect in England though. How expensive were those wristbands - you are left with little choice though when you have to keep the youngsters entertained on such a day. xx