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Recommendation for taking an 18 month old

Liverpool, United...
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Recommendation for taking an 18 month old

Hi All

I'll try and be as specific as possible (you might say picky). We're looking at taking our little one away in August for a week for the first time, he'll be 18 months old by then. Looked at Madeira but the flight is potentially a bit too long so I think Minorca might be a good bet.

I know pretty much nothing about it though so any recommendations would be great please, essentially our criteria are broadly:

Prefer to stay in a hotel rather than self catering

Would consider all inclusive but not essential

Not too long on transfers

Good facilities for little ones - kids pool at least

Not too pricey as with nursery fees etc can't just spend like we used to on a holiday

Somewhere where we can leave the hotel and wander round a bit so we can get some variety

Phew, think that's it!

Any help is gratefully received!

Surrey UK
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for Menorca, Santo Tomas
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1. Re: Recommendation for taking an 18 month old

Pretty much anywhere on the island will suit the wish list you describe as it stands . The menorcans love babies and include them in everything ( it is not unusual to see local families of up to 4 generations dining out together in decent restaurants) so you will find yourself welcomed everywhere.

I would say first pick a couple of resorts from somewhere that grabs YOU ( see Top Questions over on the right for info on various resorts etc.) and then come back with your short list of places you are considering and go from there. The West coast resorts involve much longer coach etc. transfers so if this might push you towards somewhere closer to Mahon but you really should have no problem finding something that suits. You say you do not really fancy self catering but you can find some SC complexes that offer partial /full or even All Incl board and with that you would have far more space for the cot, buggy and for your son to move around indoors.

As you are mentioning having considered Madeira before rejecting it because of flight times, I am assuming you do not want a resort that is too lively or brits abroad - for starters can I suggest you look at Son Bou, Santo Tomas, Punta Prima, Son Parc, Playa des Fornells - all have nice beaches as does Cala Galdana which has a large sandy beach in a large horseshoe shaped bay. Cala N'Bosch is good for families but a long transfer time from the airport.Cala N'Porter has a nice beach and short transfer time but the main part of the resort is on the clifftop overlooking the beach so there are a lot of steps to take a buggy down. If you happen to end up considering Santo Tomas I would recommend taking All Incl at the Mestral & Llebeig apartments over a similar tariff at the Hotel Victoria Playa, and I know that both Hamilton Court and the Vistamar appts offer some sort of meal options if you want it

Liverpool, United...
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2. Re: Recommendation for taking an 18 month old

That's a great point about self catering having more space, hadn't really thought of that. I've spoken to someone at work who's recommended Cala N'Bosch and I've seen Cala Galdana too.

You're quite correct on the whole "Brits abroad" thing, the Red Lion pub is for home in my view!

With regard to transfer times I was thinking perhaps hiring a car would give us more flexibility on that sort of thing, I've driven in mainland Spain previously so have a bit of experience driving abroad (!).

Surrey UK
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for Menorca, Santo Tomas
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3. Re: Recommendation for taking an 18 month old

Cala N'Bosch is fine for families and if you trust your colleagues taste generally then you should be able to get a good idea of whether the resort would suit you from them. The only problem really is transfer time and possibly transfer costs - if you go for a package with transfers included it will just be a matter of around an hour on the coach but if not then private transfers are not cheap because of the distance from the airport ( ditto taxis but at least they get you there as fast as possible).

Driving on the island is easy - the roads are good and there are not too many cars about. It is THE best way of seeing the island properly IMO. There is a Top Question about car hire - but basically the message is try to book direct with a firm rather than via a booking agent - some experiences reported on here about last minute hidden charges and difficulties over insurance, having to go to an offsite office on an industrial estate to collect the vehicle etc, tend to be about bookings made through "cheap car hire" websites who are not actually the provider only an agent

Liverpool, United...
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4. Re: Recommendation for taking an 18 month old

Thanks for al the advise, I think (my wife hasn't looked so who knows!) I've narrowed it down to perhaps these 4 places:

Tayalot Apartments - looks great for kids

Paradise Club - possibly too expensive unfortunately

Holiday Village - in two minds about this one though

Mestral & Llebeig - looks great for kids

Surrey UK
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for Menorca, Santo Tomas
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5. Re: Recommendation for taking an 18 month old

1) Tayalot. This accomodation is not in Cala N'Bosch but in Cala N'Forcat to north of Cuitadella which is not a patch on Cala N'Bosch IMHO. You said in post 2 that you don't fancy anywhere that is a bit "brits abroad" so I would put that last on my list TBH.

2) Paradise Club. Cala N'Bosch is somewhere your friend has recommended so I assume you are interested but its all down to cost. Have you tried "tweaking" the arrival and departure dates a little on your holiday search for this accomodation because sometimes travelling one or two days either side of your prefered dates can make a huge difference in price (if a particular departure date is low on bookings. This is because the system seems to adjust pricing to the extent that sometimes you can even find 10 days is cheaper than 7 to some locations (get your head around that if you can ).

3) Holiday Village Cala N'Bosch ( formerly known as Grupotel Club Turquesa) - Again this is in located in Cala N'Bosch which you have shortlisted so why are you not sure about it? Is it because of negative reviews early last season because if so there WERE extenuating circumstances because Thomson had huge problems over the late completion of their splashworld place in Arenal Den Castell in May 2012 so they transfered lots of guests to the holiday village with very short notice and I think that the staff there were rather overwhelmed ( see hits on http://www.tripadvisor.co.uk/SearchForums?scope=2&ff=494&geo=187464&q=holiday+village&returnTo=__2F__&sub-search.x=0&sub-search.y=0 for more info)

4) Mestral & Llebeig - Santo Tomas is much quieter than Cala N'Bosch so you have to bear that in mind. The beach there is great for small children and the resort is very buggy friendly. The M&L apartments are ideal for quiet family holidays in fact they are where we always stayed ( on S/C basis) every year when my son was younger as they were quiet and spacious and in fact we only only stopped using them last year when there were only the two of us again. The M&L complex has two sets of swimming pools each with its own seperate kiddie pool as well as a splash area for the younger kids (on the Mestral side) and I am told that the apartments are all recently refurbished ( see photos and info on www.sethotels.com/en/menorca-santo-tomas.php ).

London, United...
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6. Re: Recommendation for taking an 18 month old

if you could and went second half of September and hired a car I think you'd have a fantastic holiday as the money you'd save you can really enjoy. Driving is easy.

manchester
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7. Re: Recommendation for taking an 18 month old

Hi gregj2209,

with a child of that age i would look closely at the Paradice Club Calan Bosch, its in an ideal place, only very short walk and flat to the marina and a five minute walk from a nice sandy beach. i believe they have great facillities for children but not stayed there.

there is also goody goody park for children full of activities.

the bus stop for Cuitadella is wright outside these apartments which is a must visit place.

there are also some very nice restaurants round the marina which are great value for money considering the quality, and also very child friendly, menorca is on a whole anyway.

have a great familly hoilday in menora, ime sure you will enjoy the island.

ps one last thing if you stay in calan bosch go on the boat trip from the marina, just consider this though when you get to the beach where you stop it is impossible to use a push chair.

Liverpool, United...
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8. Re: Recommendation for taking an 18 month old

Thanks all, we're pretty much deciding between Cala N'Bosch and Santo Tomas I think, leaning towards the Mestral & Llebeig apartments at Santo Tomas at the moment. The only question being what type of board to go for, weighing up relative costs and timings (not least when dinner starts relative to the little one's bed time) etc.

My wife's a teacher so we can't go in September unfortunately.

9. Re: Recommendation for taking an 18 month old

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