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Parkdean - Sandford Holiday Park
Reviewed 25 April 2014

Obviously, my expectations for this trip were quite low and overall we came away quite happy. The cliché 'you get what you pay for' is again relevant.

The Caravan

We upgraded to a so called deluxe, it was deluxe because it had heated bedrooms and a microwave. this speaks volumes. It did its job but comfort, warmth and space - very average. Most appliances were worn, some unacceptable, some missing. The kettle suffered badly with limescale, the TV was very small and many appliances were overdue a PAT test. So be wary of this.

The park

Entertainment was the park's strong point. The troopers are great and there's quite a lot to do on site. Arcades, swimming, golf etc etc. The food is OK although they rarely have what you order. I was let down with Mexican chilli, local sausages and kebab meat - gutted. Drinks etc are aplenty. The on site shop is pricey. Staff were untrained and sometimes rude.

Location

This is very poor, Wareham is quite near but very small. Poole and the beach a fair drive. Weymouth 40 mins.

Overall, a cheap and kind of cheerful break. IMO this site has suffered by the amount of visitors it has received and a lack of care.

  • Stayed: April 2014, travelled with family
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1  Thank flavell7
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
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730 - 736 of 1,048 reviews

Reviewed 23 April 2014 via mobile

Second time back to this site with our touring caravan.
They were sold out online but after giving them a ring - they had a cancellation which we promptly took.
Usual arrival greeting from the ever helpful and genuinely friendly ladies at the Touring & Camping reception. Got to out pitch and it was full of families and children all out playing. My two children couldn't wait to get put of the car!
We promptly set up and my 11 year old went off to find friends whilst my 2 year old pottered around on his ride on.
The showers & the area were immaculate as I'm really fussy about this ... Can't bear the thought of dirty showers etc. and always take flip flops everywhere else. Never needed them here!
Lovely and warm, roomy and ideal for mummy's with children or daddy's with children
My eldest loved the pool party and the site security is second to none. Both my children enjoyed a little (controlled) freedom.
People here are friendly and genuine. Shops not over priced and the chip shop is great if you fancy a treat.
Love this site as it's always clean, tidy and welcoming. Nothing is ever too much trouble for the staff and it's full of like minded families.
Can't wait to go back
Thank you Sandford - I think my usually fussy dysfunctional family love your site!!

Stayed: April 2014
2  Thank The_Luxury_Hunters
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 22 April 2014

We stayed at the Parkdean Sandford Holiday Park for 7 nights from Friday 28th March. The park was clean and maintained to a high standard. We had booked a Ashmore+ caravan which were new on the park for 2014. Check-in was quick and simple. We were allocated caravan E41, when we opened the door, the caravan looked completely different to the pictures on the Parkdean website. All the features were there but there wasn’t an L Shape sofa or the bench around the dining area. E41 also seems to have a problem with the main door (there’s a gap when you shut it and you can feel a draft)

I went back to reception to express the comments that when we booked we were promised what we had seen online. I must say a special thanks to Jenny behind reception, she was extremely helpful and couldn’t do any more, she apologised and offered to move us to a different caravan the following day and gave us a bottle of wine to say sorry. I felt this was beyond customer service and a special thanks should go to Jenny.

The following day we moved into a new caravan which was just like the one we had booked – I’m not sure that this was an Ashmore-Plus caravan as it didn’t feel new for 2014, however everything was cleaned to a high standard.

We did have a few problems with the boiler and fridge but a quick call to reception and these issues were resolved within the hour.

Although we didn’t use the indoor swimming pool, it did look very clean and well maintained; We did make use of the Entertainment and enjoyed the BINGO every night from 8:15. The arcade is good fun for the kids (and adults) !

The park is in an ideal location and not too far to the nearest ‘Sandbanks’ beach, this can be easily reached using a car or by getting the bus from the bus stop which is located outside the caravan site.

There have been some comments on Trip Advisor regarding the noise from the neighbouring main road – it may be worth contacting Parkdean before you travel to select your caravan.

Overall we had an excellent holiday, everything was clean and maintained to a good standard, and we would definitely look to travel with Parkdean again in the future.

Room Tip: Contact Parkdean HQ At Least 1 Week Before You Travel To Book Your Pitch/Caravan.
  • Stayed: April 2014, travelled with friends
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2  Thank Jack V
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 21 April 2014

This park is in a great location for exploring Dorset or the New Forest just outside of Wareham which as it happens boasts the only gas lit cinema in the country !.
Nice park facilities and entertainment ,pretty much what you expect from the operators Parkdean.

  • Stayed: May 2013, travelled with family
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1  Thank aybn41
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 12 April 2014

After our first stay in 2012 with our two young children which was nothing but great, we decided to book again a Monday to Friday holiday on a half board basis holiday to save any messing about.
Upon arrival at 2pm their was a queue out of the front door to check-in, after waitng 20 mins we were told our caravan wouldn't be ready until 4pm, so we grabbed a coffee and took the children to the outdoor play area.
At 4pm we got the key's to our caravan only to find a "SMELLY" unclean and tired caravan, I went to speak to a member of the reception team who told me they would send someone from the house cleaning team straight away.1 hour later we were told it was all sorted it was only a wet smelly mat which was giving off the odour,which they still left in the door entrance? The smell was still there & vile so again we went to ask if it could be sorted out we was told that a member of staff would attend the caravan the next day with a machine to remove the smell.

We decided to go out for the day so that they could do there best and upon our return the smell was just hidden, In all, the caravan has never been deep cleaned the seating area was filthy the carpets the same.
I feel that the staff are untrained young teenagers with no direction or leadership neither of the ladies who first dealt with my initial complaint cared or were even bothered that we had spent near to £500.00 for a 4 night stay.
The food was a joke and to the untrained staff filtered through to the restaurant, it seem's the only people who trained for anything was the troupers, who made the children welcome at all times.
Not only was our caravan unclean it seems that the toilets and common areas are much the same.
We booked a no pets & no smoking caravan to find out the caravan grades have been changed to a smoking & pet's caravan.stated in the catalogue in the caravan it says this is a no smoking caravan.
upon our return we opened our bags to wash our clothes and their it is the same smell in our clothes.
Sadly we will never be visiting any Parkdean holiday park in the future and also would not recommend to anyone else.
Avoid disappoint go to centre parc's

  • Stayed: April 2014, travelled with family
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1  Thank 128jasonw
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 4 April 2014

We booked a Poole lodge - this was a non peak week, and a two bedroom - comprising a double and a twin was reasonably priced.
Couldn't fault the staff - they were very helpful and pleasant.
The Poole lodge lounge / kitchen was really lovely - nice big comfy sofas, good TV, well equipped kitchen. There was even a self catering starter pack - dishcloth, washing up liquid and tea towel - very handy.
The shower room - the whole shower unit was a one piece unit - so no grouting, or edges to get dirty, and was immaculate. The bath room - lovely, and loads of hot water.
The only down side were the beds. The double mattress had seen better days, with springs palpable, albeit, not quite poking through. The twin bedroom I have to say was a joke. These beds are two feet wide. So, the three year old was all right, and the eight year old (in size ten year old clothes) was very uncomfortable, with virtually no room to turn or move, due to both lack of space and the fact that the mattress slid around quite easily on the fragile base. Real shame, and let down the rest of the lodge.
That said, we had a good week - the information available was good, facilities on the site were good. Internet shopping companies are well known to this site, which is handy.

Stayed: April 2014, travelled with family
2  Thank Emmakaragkevrekis
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 29 March 2014

Me and my fiance stayed here last year. We come here every year if not together then with family. Always was a brilliant stay! very clean staff were nice, didn't always use the entertainment but this time we did.. Entertainment was very cheesy and not really mine and my fiances thing as were a young couple. Arcade really small and packed and to be honest when you keep going here gets tired.. Was really quite bored most of the holiday! So if your young and don't drive and only really going into poole or somewhere else by bus once or twice not really for you! Shop had strange opening times and rather expensive!

Main reason for this bad review was because our gas boiler stopped working and after getting someone up who claimed he "fixed it" when it still did not work! We then rang again at 8pm as it stopped working again and as you can tell got VERY cold! i was shivering! and this was in june/july! Could not have a shower and could not use the oven! We then went to reception in the morning very unhappy! They gave us a £40 gift voucher which was pretty much just some writing on paper which made me and my fiance VERY awkward when using at the restaurant and having funny looks from the staff!

We then had a meal with it and food was awful! The ribs tasted fishy and the sauce went over all my chips and salad so was unable to eat it. After they apologized was given a free desert which was very sickly! We ended up with around £20 left over from the voucher as the food was rather expensive. I had the burger. Burger was nice no fault there! and i chose another desert and this was bit better.. Person opposite me said her jacket potato wasn't cooked and another table said her chicken wasn't cooked! So quite worried! To be honest there was pretty much no one in the restaurant which is funny cause a year before it was packed! Apparently new stock..
When me and my fiance were out at night for entertainment lighting was awful got very lost the names of the roads where the caravans were were pretty much impossible to read had to use phone flash light!

Overall staff in restaurant were the entertainment staff at night so maybe have separate staff for different things!! They were very stuck up and rude and treated me and my fiance very rudely!
Stood around chatting most of the time. Made me and my fiance feel very awkward and wanted to leave asap. Reception staff were nice though! They were understanding nothing like the entertainment/waitress/Children entertainment/everything else.... staff

Now will not come here again. Trying Haven instead after going to park dean for 4 years.
In my mind park dean needs a massive refit and needs to think about their site very carefully or will lose people in the future! Really upsets me to see it like this..so many good memories with family and now just awful really.

Room Tip: Ask for a caravan that has had its boiler checked in the past 24 hours! And caravan that is easy to...
  • Stayed: June 2013, travelled as a couple
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2  Thank Gemma R
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
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Additional Information about Parkdean - Sandford Holiday Park

Address: Holton Heath, Poole | Dorset, Holton Heath, Wareham, England
Region: United Kingdom > England > Dorset > Wareham > Holton Heath
Amenities:
Bar / Lounge Free High Speed Internet ( WiFi ) Free Parking Children Activities (Kid / Family Friendly) Kitchenette Pets Allowed ( Dog / Pet Friendly ) Restaurant Swimming Pool
Hotel Style:
Ranked #2 of 2 Speciality Lodging in Holton Heath
Hotel Class:4 star — Parkdean - Sandford Holiday Park 4*
Official Description (provided by the hotel):
The family fun never ends on this leafy country park. You'll find fabulous indoor and outdoor pools, amazing tree-house adventure play, lively kids' clubs and a brilliant climbing wall. Not to mention the pirate ship, delicious places to eat and spectacular Showtime Entertainment. In fact there's so much to see and do there's hardly a minute left to explore the glorious countryside location, dive over to Bournemouth beach, discover Durdle Door, dine out at Poole Harbour or monkey around at Monkey World! * A lively family park in a country setting * Close to Wareham Town with River walks * Fantastic indoor and outdoor pools * Stunning contemporary lodges available * Showtime Entertainment every night ... more   less 
Also Known As:
Sandford Holiday Park Hotel Holton Heath
Parkdean - Sandford Holiday Park Dorset/Holton Heath

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