I spent hours choosing and editing photos for this post. Quantifying what is wonderful about our family holiday to Ikos Olivia was harder than expected.
We first visited Ikos Resorts Easter 2016 and fell in love with the beauty and luxury at Ikos Oceania. As soon as the prices were available for 2017 we re-booked. After a hectic couple of months we were all looking forward to pressing pause on life and spending a little family time.
Ikos Olivia is a 45-minute car journey from Halkidiki airport.
The resort offers a transfer service that is often offered as part of a booking offer when booking direct. As soon as you walk through arrivals the resort team are there waiting for you. Armed with bottles of cold water and ready to take your luggage.
Arrival at the main reception feels like coming home. The team greet you with open arms the moment you arrive into the stunning marble entrance. Where you are able to check in with glass of champagne in hand.
There is a huge choice of accommodation to suit all budgets, family size and taste.
Our bungalow suite was in the deluxe area overlooking the deluxe pool, with steps from our garden terrace down to the side of the pool. Perfect for lazy mornings when you can order breakfast to your room and eat of your patio overlooking the pool. The rooms are spacious and luxurious, offering a mini bar, turn down service and an extensive room service menu.
Although Ikos Olivia and Oceania have several similarities and are part of the same format, they are also different in many ways.
Oceania blends into a mountainside the views are breathtaking. There are lifts and shuttles available to get you around if you had mobility issues. However Olivia may be preferable as the resort is flat.
I honestly cannot choose a favourite I love them both for many different reasons. However the distinct benefit at Olivia that Joe was able to easily maneuver safely around the resort and we felt comfortable with this, thus giving him a little independence.
The sport centre is just behind the deluxe area. Joe spent so much of his time either hiring a bike and going for a ride with Chris or sometimes a friend. Or taking part in the endless sports that are available.
It offers many sporting options with 2 tennis courts, a basket ball, volley ball court, a football pitch and table tennis areas. The activities for older children and teens are well organised and inclusive. This made the holiday for the boys, who immersed themselves fully into the sports program and as a result met so many friends of all nationalities.
The resort also has 4 pools and a huge chess set which kept the boys entertained for some time. Deluxe guests can also order an Xbox or play station to the room. We did this but the boys were too busy to use it.
The boys took part in many activities which kept them so busy during the day. Joe more so, as Jack had revision to do. However he still made time for a couple of hours of football before a late afternoon dip in the pool. And after full on days Joe was always exhausted but happy in the evenings.
As Chris and I sat enjoying the sun, sipping the odd cocktail and dip in the pool, we felt redundant. Yes, we kept nipping to see where the boys were, what they were up to and to check they were drinking water. But they were happy, having fun and didn’t need us.
This felt odd at first, but I have to say we embraced the peace and opportunity to read a book rather quickly. All those years of reading with one eye on the pool, it takes a little time to get used to reading with two eyes. I kept feeling like I had forgotten something.
I haven’t even got to the food or beach yet. But will save that for another day.
A deal breaker for any trip is having happy and entertained children. Ours are at the age where they are too old for clubs and would rather opt for activities. Having such great facilities on site was wonderful, everybody was happy and we knew they were safe. And when they did had an activity free window, they joined us round the pool for a little quality time.
Holidays change as your family grows and staying at a resort that understands that makes all the difference.
Check out my little room vlog.
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