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Forest Holidays Forest of Dean, Gloucestershire
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Reviews (1,491)
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Reviewed 12 August 2014 via mobile

Just back from a weekend here and it wasn't quite all I'd hoped for. The cabin was spacious & comfortable but the cleanliness left something to be desired - the kitchen sink was filthy. We couldn't work the microwave properly & the instruction booklet that was supposed to be in a drawer, wasn't. The hot tub was amazing and we thoroughly enjoyed it! However, the main problem was the supposed "30 minute walk through the forest to Symonds Yat". Absolute rubbish, it took us 2 hours and we may not have jogged the whole way but we certainly didn't dawdle. The longer than expected walk meant that by the time we reached the pub we intended to have lunch at, it was dinner not lunch & we then had to get a taxi back to the lodge as it would have been too dark to walk back through the forest. I would certainly like to meet the person who could do the trip in 30 minutes; I assume it's Mo Farah! Other than that & the unfortunate weather, it was enjoyable but certainly not worth the very high prices.

Stayed: August 2014, travelled as a couple
Thank Sara S
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Amanda_Clarke_FH, Guest Relations Manager at Forest Holidays Forest of Dean, Gloucestershire, responded to this reviewResponded 1 September 2014

Thank you for your review. I am disappointed to hear that your holiday did not live up to expectations and we will certainly investigate why your cabin was not properly cleaned. Sorry to hear about your trek to Symonds Yat; it certainly shouldn’t have taken 2 hours, and I am wondering if you might have taken the wrong path? It is 2.2 miles away and, even at a slow stroll, should have taken less than an hour. Whatever happened I can appreciate that it threw your plans out and I hope the hot tub was a welcome relief at the end of that particular day.

Kind regards,
Amanda Clarke
Holiday Advisor Team Leader

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This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 11 August 2014

I was taken here as a surprise by family for a special birthday! What a beautiful place! There were 5 adults in a cabin for 6. There was one double en suite room with two twin rooms. The cabin was immaculately clean and modern but with a cosy feel to it. Having said that, there was more than enough room and no feeling of us all "being on top" of each other.

The main bathroom was large with a shower/bath. The towels and robes provided were soft and comfortable as were the beds.

The kitchen was very well stocked indeed and had a small dishwasher to help with the cleaning! Everything we needed to cook was present along with a cooker and microwave, not forgetting the barbecue outside.

Outside the patio table and chairs were sturdy and well looked after, the patio being completely enclosed by railing so it is safe for children and pets.

We had one of the cabins with a log burner and hot tub. The hot tub was clean and checked daily, we had beautiful views of the trees and wildlife whilst sat relaxing. The local birds are not shy in coming forward to the patio and helping themselves to the crumbs when they think no one is looking.

There was a very pretty little cat that clearly knows the cabin very well and made him/her self at home each day enjoying a spot of bacon for breakfast and some fuss!

Now although it was August it poured down the day we decided to pay Go Ape a visit (also great fun...) and we got a little wet to say the least - as such we thought it rude not to give the log burner a trial and warm us all up after a visit to the hot tub of course.

The logs were available at reception and there were no issues with getting it to work, very straight forward.

There was a wii console in the cabin - the remotes being available from reception also. The Olympics always seem to bring out the competitiveness :o)

The TV had plenty of channels if you want to watch TV of course but we didn't really need to - you can buy TV upgrades but we didn't feel it necessary as there is so much other stuff to be doing.

The Wi-Fi has to be paid for - again, not something we worried about. There is very limited signal in and around the whole area.

There are bike routes all around which are amazing to whizz down, peaceful, scenic and very relaxing.

We booked the archery at short notice without any issues and found it to be safe, organised and good fun to do.

There is a small shop on site that sells the basics, but it is expensive! You can order pizza/drinks/films from the tv console to be delivered - we didn't use this but is a great concept.

Great venue for anyone, couldn't find fault with anything.

  • Stayed: August 2014, travelled with family
    • Location
    • Sleep Quality
Thank MightyMouser
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Amanda_Clarke_FH, Guest Relations Manager at Forest Holidays Forest of Dean, Gloucestershire, responded to this reviewResponded 27 August 2014

I’m delighted you enjoyed your surprise stay with us at the Forest of Dean –happy birthday! Thank you for taking the time to write a review; your comments are much appreciated by us at Forest Holidays and I am sure they will also be helpful to other guests. I hope you will stay with us again.

Kind Regards
Amanda Clarke
Holiday Advisors' Team Leader

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Reviewed 8 August 2014

Just got home and already have booked to go again next year!
The cabins are of a very high standard, we didn't have hottub but didn't really have time to use one! The Forest Retreat does stock a few things but we found 2 small village shops within a few minutes drive which had everything we needed. We did pay for the WIFI package as an extra which was lovely for watching movies when we came in shattered from the days adventures. We did the woodland walk around the cabins and found a rope swing which our son absolutely loved. We didn't do any of the ranger activities as we had so much of our own stuff planned already. We did order the pizza delivery one night which turned into a disaster, over an hour late, we walked to the forest retreat for them to tell us they'd forgotten us! When it did arrive it was wrong and awful!! Night time, the site is quiet but the nature very noisey!! the boar and owls kept us awake everynight but we did find it funny! There is no childrens play area this year as they are building new cabins, there is construction work going on but we didn't see it or hear it. Very impressed, can't wait to go back

  • Stayed: August 2014, travelled with family
    • Value
    • Location
1  Thank Dria0607
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Amanda_Clarke_FH, Guest Relations Manager at Forest Holidays Forest of Dean, Gloucestershire, responded to this reviewResponded 27 August 2014

Thank you for your positive review following your recent break at the Forest of Dean. I am delighted you had such a great time. It sounds as if you had lots to do and enjoyed every minute of it. Apologies for the problem with the pizza, I hope the next time you stay that you will experience the very best of our service. We look forward to seeing you then.

Kind Regards
Amanda Clarke
Holiday Advisors' Team Leader

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This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 5 August 2014

Cabins were fantastic, clean and very modern. The hot tub was clean and due to hot weather the water was changed mid break to ensure the water quality. It was safe to let the children out to play as there were dens built by every cabin. Every patio was totally enclosed so people with small children and dogs had no worries about them wandering off. My son enjoyed the archery and the other children participated in the ranger walks. There is plenty to do around the area although there was so many beautiful walks around the site we hardly left. All round a very relaxing trip despite having three kids under 10 and a dog

Room Tip: Definitely pay the extra for the hot tub
  • Stayed: July 2014, travelled with family
    • Value
    • Sleep Quality
    • Service
1  Thank karen B
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Amanda_Clarke_FH, Guest Relations Manager at Forest Holidays Forest of Dean, Gloucestershire, responded to this reviewResponded 27 August 2014

Thank you for taking the time to write a review following your recent break at the Forest of Dean. I am pleased that you managed to enjoy a relaxing holiday – only in a forest is that possible with 3 children and a dog! I do hope you will come back and stay with us again.

Kind Regards
Amanda Clarke
Holiday Advisors' Team Leader

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This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 3 August 2014 via mobile

We've had a brilliant holiday in the Forest of Dean, helped by the really good accommodation.

The lodge was well kitted out and the hot tub an excellent addition to any holiday! Our lodge was not overlooked by any other lodge - I read other reviews where this wasn't the case, but from what I could see the ones around us were fairly private. The ones in the middle of the site look a little more cramped.

The shop houses anything you need - it is more pricey than a supermarket, but you would expect that of course! A supermarket can be found 5 mins away in Coleford.

Chris Smillie, the forest ranger, is brilliant! We went on a young ranger walk as well as a twilight walk. Both entertaining, informative and enjoyable.

Having 2 young children, a bath mat would have been useful (in fact, for anyone using the showers, not just kids!). Also, we let our 'greeter' know about a broken stair gate bracket at the bottom of the stairs. He said he would let someone know, but nothing happened/no one came. Fortunately it worked upstairs so we didn't pursue it. Just little things that could make a difference.

There are a lot of new lodges being build (almost double the amount) and I'd question the logic. In my opinion what is already there is plenty. Anymore may just spoil the feel and atmosphere the site already has. I'd also be interested to see if the lodges are marketed any differently. The new builds are not as 'in the forest' as the old ones. In fact, if I were to book a lodge expecting it in the forest and got one of the new ones which is a lot more 'open' I'd be really disappointed. My question would be will this be made clear for future bookings?

Anyway, that is for the future - we had a great time and would recommend the area to anyone. Symonds Yat in particular - stunning place!

Stayed: August 2014
Thank Matthew R
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Amanda_Clarke_FH, Guest Relations Manager at Forest Holidays Forest of Dean, Gloucestershire, responded to this reviewResponded 27 August 2014

Thank you for your review after staying with us at the Forest of Dean. It’s great to hear that you had such a good time and that you found the accommodation comfortable. We’re interested to read your comments about the new cabins; we are confident that they will not deter from the peaceful atmosphere and they will be great for those who are looking for a more open aspect. I do hope you will return and enjoy another family holiday with us in the future.

Kind Regards
Amanda Clarke
Holiday Advisors' Team Leader

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