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Waterside Holiday Park & Spa
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All reviewsbowleaze covesoft playholiday parkchildren's entertainmentswimming poolgold caravanstar holidayfantasy islandkids clubsmall funfairgreat holidayevening entertainmentprivate caravanfootball pitchchanging roomsfamily holidaysteam room and sauna
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Reviewed 4 June 2012

We have just returned from a week at the Waterside, our second holiday there in two years. I really cant fault it for the money paid. Its got great facilities compared to other similar caravan parks. The location is great too. There is a small beach called Bowleaze Cove within walking distance. There is also a small funfair right outside the caravan park too. Both of the caravan we have stayed in have been fine. The one we had this time didnt have an outside balcony area ( we could have used this, and so its worth being aware to ask for a caravan with one if the weather is good)
I have read the other reviews about the caravans being cold and its true they are not very warm first thing in the morning, ours didnt have central heating but had a fire which warmed it up in the morning. Maybe take slippers and dressing gown as a tip as caravans are not great in general at holding temperature.
You make up the beds yourself and we have never had a problem with this, you get to ensure your bedding is clean and you know that it is fresh too. The brochure details this so this was never a big deal for us really.
But I did have an issue with our bed not being that comfortable as well, it didnt stop me sleeping though.
Some other general tips would be the following:
If you are going on family day trips then check with reception if they do any discounts, we went to the Sealife Centre in Weymouth and got quite a bit off ticket price through the Waterside. They do discounts for other places like Abottsbury Swannery too.
The funfair outside the Caravan Park has a happy hour from 7pm to 9pm, tickets are 50p each during this time. Normal price is nearer 80p per ticket
Bowleaze Cove is a mixture of sand and some rockpools, if you want pure sand on a shallow beach then travel into Weymouth.Watch out if its windy though as sand is so fine it ends up everywhere.
Have plenty of change if you are going into Weymouth as all car parks are pay parks and they are not terribly cheap either.
I cant fault the location, facilities offered and having stayed at other caravan parks this one is far better than other we have used recently. The Swimming pool was used twice and was never crowded and the changing rooms were always clean. All in all we had a great week there and we also had a week of sunshine too. The staff have always been really friendly and are all very knowledgable on the local area.

Room Tip: Check whether you have a balcony to the caravan as not all vans have them
  • Stayed: May 2012, travelled with family
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3  Thank Natasha S
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 2 June 2012

Just came back from Waterside Park after having fantastic family holiday. It was our first time staying in the caravan with two kids. One 2 years old and second 3 months old, so we looked for family friendly holiday parks with plenty attractions on site.To book holiday directly via Waterside Park was quite expensive, but found nice website with private rentals at the same park. http://www.directholidayhomes.co.uk/ Found the Park and contacted the private owner. Pictures of the caravan from outside and inside were very actual to what we have seen on arrival.The owner is cleaning and looking after the caravan itself so it was very nice and clean.We felt almost like at home as the caravan was very well equipped. It was a very good last minute deal and for week holiday in May we paid only £230 where for the same stay directly booked with waterside park we would have to pay more than £350.So quite a big saving. Therefore, look carefully first before final buy. The downside of hiring from the private owner is only the pool as we had to pay each time we wanted to use it but it was only £2.50per person (kids went free) which is not bad, but having fantastic sunny weather we spend more time being out and about. The Park is very big but very clean and kept at high standard. Shop is on site but quite expensive. However, there is not any near by shop so worth to do your shopping before getting on the park. It is only 5 minute drive to the Weymouth town centre or quite close to the nearest co-operative or morrisons shop so it is not so bad. There is also a bus travelling to the Weymouth town centre (as the Park is located virtually on the beach at Bowleaze Cove, around 3 miles from Weymouth town). Never use it as we always use own car, but seen the bus quite often as we were based near the main road at the park.There is plenty to do each day at the park for all members of the family. Indoor facilities - pool, sauna, gym, SPA, soft play area, Boomer`s show twice a day from 10.30 am and 6.30pm (it`s someone dressed as kangaroo entertaining kids in a funny way). Outdoor facilities- wooden play area for kids with slides and swings and also the pool. Across the road very nice and affordable funfair for young kids. After 7pm tokens for all rides were only £0.50. My wife also enjoyed the Spa very much.Even though the treatments were quite expensive it was definitely worth going. For parents there is large entertainment venue across the road from the park (passes included, even for those of us dealing privately) is a grate place to spend some nice time at evening. Played bingo for a first time and had good fun. There is also Restaurant & Take away but would not recommend kebab as it did not taste nice and the fries were not freshly made.However would definitely recommend the fish and chips shop near the beach. Very nice and fresh fish and chips.I came back there few times as could not resist the freshness and crispness of the fish.
The beach is quite rocky ,which was not that big deal, but we went to Weymouth town to the beach, which was very sandy with no rocks at all. Also we found the internet access if you want to have it in your caravan to be extremely expensive £5/day or £20/week. However, there is a free internet access in the reception area upstairs.
Overall we had a very nice stay and would recommend the park to our friends.

  • Stayed: May 2012, travelled with family
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4  Thank DominikS377
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 20 May 2012

We returned to Waterside in May 2012 having had an enjoyable stay in May 2010. My husband and I were both extremely disappointed when we entered our caravan this time. It seemed very tired and worn out and not at all how we remembered it. The bin in the kitchen cupboard was dirty and broken, the sofa seat covers were stained and the carpet seemed shabby, I didn't want to take my shoes off!! To say the beds were uncomfortable would be an understatement and the bedding and pillows provided are disgraceful for a Holiday Park which is rated 5 star, also having to make up the beds yourself is not good service when you go away from home for a break, the staff know how many people are in each van so they could make up the main beds prior to arrival. The double bed is so small and uncomfortable that my husband ended up sleeping on the double sofa bed in the lounge - not exactly how you want to spend your Holiday. As a result of this, and the 9.30am checkout being completely ridiculous for a family to vacate a Holiday home, we decided to leave the night before we were due to checkout - I just couldn't bare the thought of another uncomfortable cold night. We requested a van with central heating but was told there were none available the week we needed to go, it was a big mistake accepting a van without it. My Children aged 1 and 4 were freezing cold at night and first thing in the morning, not helped by the poor bedding provided previously mentioned. The best thing about the park is the Children's entertainment and Boomers Fun House is excellent. Johnboy is great with the kids and if it wasn't for breaking my kids hearts we would not have stayed.

Room Tip: Get a new one with Central Heating.
  • Stayed: May 2012, travelled with family
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3  Thank Adele M
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 1 May 2012

We have spent many happy holidays at Waterside over the past 6-7 years, we usually stay at Easter as not our main family holiday, and come with nan and grandad. It seems a popular place to stay with extended families.
I think Waterside is far superior to the Haven parks in the area.

Always found the accomodation clean and well equiped, if you are missing anything they are always happy to supply, just ask at reception and it will be delivered to the caravan later.

Pool area is lovely, steam room and sauna by pool.
Outdoor pool closed at this time of year, but we did stay once in August and it was lovely and warm, like a bath :-)

Waterside restaurant, seems to be run by different staff almost every year, Thai food on offer this year, cooked by Thai cook, found this was very good, we had the set meal which allowed a little bit of several dishes, which mounted up to a huge meal!
The Sunday carvery as quite poor, soggy Yorkshires and very stingy with the meat.

Went to the venue a few times, Madness tribute act were quite good, the magic show we saw was quite embarassing as no one clapping and we sat at the front so felt obliged to :-D Race nights fun for the kids as well as adults!

Weymouth beach is good, nice and sandy but wasn't really beach weather this year, got sunburnt last Easter and beach was really crowded and was difficult to find a spot to put the towels down, could take your pick this year...
Bus goes from park into Weymouth, is quite expensive for the family, if the weather is nice you can park at the long stay car park near sealife and walk into Weymouth, nice and flat and a pleasant walk.
Lots of things to do nearby Lyme Regis, Bridport and Poole are all nice days out.

Looking forward to next year already, but hoping for better weather!

  • Stayed: April 2012, travelled with family
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3  Thank blondebee52
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 29 April 2012

We have stayed at Waterside many times over the years; the latest being in August 2011. The whole park is clean and top quality, located virtually on the beach at Bowleaze Cove, 2 or 3 miles round the coast from Weymouth town.
As usual, we hired a caravan from a private owner - this usually works out substantially cheaper for the same level of service - the only slight drawback being the pool, which we had to pay to use as we hadn't booked with Waterside, but it was still miles cheaper to book this way. The site is pleasant and almost completely flat, so getting about is easy enough for everyone. There's a regular bus service that picks up at several points around the site and takes you into the heart of Weymouth; the only downside is that this finishes about 7.00 p.m. even in high season, and the alternative bus service that used to run in the evenings from Bowleaze Cove to Weymouth appears to have been cancelled, so if you don't have a car, getting into and out of town in the evenings is a bit of a pain.
The indoor pool is worth a visit, consisting of a dual-level shallow pool with water slides, sauna and steam room. It can get a bit crowded, but I suppose this is only to be expected in August.
The large entertainment venue across the road from the site (passes included, even for those of us dealing privately) is a fine place to spend a couple of hours at night; the drinks are - unsurprisingly - expensive, and it does tend to get very crowded - there aren't enough seats to go round. They keep you waiting for the entertainment - "it'll be on in five minutes" - yeah right, the longest five minutes you can imagine. The entertainment itself is usually decent enough, but for me there are too many singers and not enough alternative acts (comedians, magicians etc).
The Bowleaze Cove area is scenic and pleasant; views of Portland and Weymouth town are spectacular, and the beach is sandy. There's a small and surprisingly affordable fairground for younger kids, with the obligatory arcade from which I won a cuddly monkey on the grabbers at the very end of our holiday, after a week of trying. Over the hill at Bowleaze is the Spy Glass Inn, which is worth a visit.
Waterside advertises itself as the number one site on the south coast - not sure about that, but it's certainly up with the best I've stayed at.

  • Stayed: August 2011, travelled with family
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1  Thank wulf64
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
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