We’ve been going to Butlins since K was small. We’re off again in a few days, so I’m planning what we will need to take. It is always good to check the website before you go. But, even the website can’t beat some personal tips, so here is my list of what to bring and what not to:
Do take your booking number – that makes it easy to check in!
Bring buckets and spades. Butlins at Bognor is right on the beach, but even if you prefer to stay on site there is a fab sandy play area which my kids love. Bring your own bucket and spade, grab a coffee and you are set for a relaxing afternoon.(I like this beach set in a bag. Perfect for slinging in the back of the car, and the sand will stay in the bag.)
Don’t bring too much food, even if you are self-catering. There are lots of fab places that the family will want to eat, and you can top up on supplies at the Spar on site. There’s also a Tesco just a short drive away from the Bognor site. I take the chance to have a dining plan if I can and get a real break!
If you have toddlers, do remember the Calpol (or other non branded paracetamol solution of your choice ;)) ! I’ve been stuck on my own in a room with the children when one of them has had a temperature and earache, and it spoils not just the holiday but the whole family’s chance of getting much sleep. Calpol is on sale in the supermarket, but you need to have someone who can run down to buy it. It’s much easier to pack a bottle, or even a few sachets.
Do pack your swimming gear … and a second set if you have them. If your kids are like mine they will want to swim as much as possible, so a second set means you won’t have to put on a damp swimsuit – if you are lucky you can pop off to the spa too. Don’t forget towels. I’ve switched to using these Hammam towels (below right). They are super light, roll up small, and dry much faster than regular towels. Have your swimming bags handy and you can have a swim when you arrive as the pool is generally quieter on check in days.
Don’t feel that you need to pack too much in the way of entertainment for kids: you can borrow DVDs from the hotel or self catering reception areas and the Wave hotel has a big play area packed with interactive games … and that’s before you go out and try the fairground or watch a show. A few small favourite books for a quiet bedtime story, a ball and some toy cars are usually plenty for K and J.
I hope this list has helped you pack. What are your holiday essentials for a holiday with toddlers? Post a comment and let me know.
You can also download the Butlins pre-arrival guide to find more tips on what to pack, and what’s included in your accommodation.