Home ยป Pre Christmas Or Post Christmas At Center Parcs?

Pre Christmas Or Post Christmas At Center Parcs?

It’s a little greedy I know, but we only had a 3 week break between Center Parcs visits.

We always visit Whinfell Forest pre-Christmas for Winter Wonderland. And have done since Joe was born, it has become a tradition. We so look forward to it every year, its wonderful having a pre-Christmas wind down, if I am honest this weekend every year is my favourite part of the festive season.


Last January we were invited to join Friends for my beautiful god-daughter Ashlee’s 18th birthday weekend. We had a wonderful time a completely different experience to our pre-Christmas break. We loved it so much we came home and re-booked for this year, clearly the price is a huge factor; Center Parcs is a bargain in January.

You would be surprised just how busy it is post-Christmas; the beauty of Center Parcs is no matter how busy you never really notice it.

Last week stayed in an executive lodge, and it was lovely. It’s the little touches that make it a little more special than the lovely woodland lodges we usually stay in. The colours are softer in warm reds and browns. Both bedrooms had en suites and rainforest showers and the main bathroom has a spa bath. The lodge felt just that little bit cozier, which as we wanted a chill weekend was fantastic.

The setting is just stunning, what I love about Nottingham is the lake and rivers wind all around the village; we were lucky enough to have a huge expanse of water right behind our lodge.

The winding river and woodland walks at Center Parcs

As a result we had lots of visitors, who really were quite cheeky, and drooled at us through the windows as we ate, the boys found this hilarious; we spent ages watching the wildlife watch us. Jack even took a selfie with them. Fortunately we had bought some bird food, but the geese and ducks were so confident that when you opened the door to feed them they put their heads in for their food.

Wildlife at Center Parcs www.extraordinarychaos.com

Even though we chilled out, we still found time for lots of activities, we ate out with friends and enjoyed a competitive game of 10 pin bowling with them, we walked, cycled, tree trecked and played golf. There really is so much to keep the whole family happy.

Tree Trekking at Center Parcs

Bowling At Center Parcs

So what is great about pre and post-Christmas breaks.

Pre Christmas Breaks At Center Parcs

  • Usually we have finished work for the festive season, and are ready to celebrate Christmas in style.
  • It is something to look forward to this break all year as we know when it arrives its Christmas.
  • And it makes me super organised, when we unlock that lodge door, every Christmas card has been posted, Christmas dinner is ordered, the house is clean and presents have all been sent to Santa.
  • The atmosphere is amazing, Christmas music is playing everywhere, there are elves walking about the village, the forest is lit up with festive reindeer’s.
  • You can have tranquil family walks, whilst the majority of the country is running around like headless chickens.
  • We come home, chilled out and ready to enjoy Christmas, much better than making last-minute dashes round over packed shopping centres.

Winter Wonderland At Whinfell Forest

Why Book A Post Christmas Break At Center Parcs

  • It totally banishes January blues and gives you something to look forward too.
  • Even though it is still busy the atmosphere is different, it is more serene and chilled out. (Center Parcs is always chilled, but it just feels a little more so in January)
  • You can walk off all those surplus pounds you have gained over Christmas.
  • And enjoy relaxed family nights by the open fire. Yes, I know we could do this at home, but you don’t do you? You check the washer, dryer, answer the phone. You never actually chill out at home.
  • It is so much cheaper at this time of year, so you don’t feel you are being over indulgent.

The Beach Area At Center Parcs

So there it is; reasons to go before and after Christmas. We just love Center Parcs and the chilled atmosphere it offers our other wise overly manic family. It forces us to chill, spend more time together and live in a Christie bubble for a weekend, with no football, social media, x box, traffic and mobile phones. That has to be priceless.

The Grounds At Center Parks Whinfell Forest



Author of Extraordinary Chaos a family lifestyle and travel blog from a 40+ mum of teenage boys, sharing our family travels, recipes, reviews and country living. Also the co editor of Cruising With Kids Family Cruise Blog

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  1. 6th February 2015 / 10:57 pm

    I love Center Parcs, such a great place to go with a family! Great review!!

    • SarahJChristie
      7th February 2015 / 8:49 am

      Thanks Katy, yes I do too, as soon as I arrive I relax x

  2. 7th February 2015 / 9:27 am

    Fab post, that swan is amazing! I have never been to Centre Parcs, but it looks fab x

    • SarahJChristie
      8th February 2015 / 3:17 pm

      Thanks Abi, you would love it, it is fantastic xx

  3. Jenna
    7th February 2015 / 9:33 pm

    I love center parcs SO much and would love to be there for Christmas sometime. That swan is so pretty!!

    Fab post, Sarah. ๐Ÿ™‚

    Jenna at Tinyfootsteps xx

    • SarahJChristie
      8th February 2015 / 3:19 pm

      Thanks Jenna, yes me too, I love it a great family holiday x

  4. 8th February 2015 / 8:48 am

    Great post lovely photos i’ve not been to centre parcs but it looks fantastic definitely on my to do list!

    • SarahJChristie
      8th February 2015 / 3:21 pm

      You would love it Amy, great for all ages x

  5. 8th February 2015 / 8:46 pm

    What great weather you had for it. We love CP as you know too. Fabulous post, really good to point out the benefits of both. thanks. #sundaystars

    • SarahJChristie
      8th February 2015 / 10:12 pm

      Thanks Karen, yes they were both such different breaks but both amazing x

  6. 9th February 2015 / 8:50 am

    Glad you had fun!! We loved it before Christmas (our first time going during winter) and the twins had so much fun!! Good idea to go after Christmas – nice and relaxing break and more chilled! Great photos Sarah xx

    • SarahJChristie
      9th February 2015 / 10:48 pm

      Thanks Jess, yes you should try it its was so relaxing x

  7. 10th February 2015 / 10:16 am

    I would love to go away post-Christmas to get rid of those January blues, sounds perfect! I love how much there is to do there and really does look like such a fantastic location, glad you had a nice holiday! xx

    • SarahJChristie
      10th February 2015 / 10:25 pm

      Thanks Hayley, and yes its lovely to chill and sweep away those January Blues x

  8. 10th February 2015 / 9:40 pm

    I have never been to Centerparcs. Stunning views. Lovely post x

    • SarahJChristie
      10th February 2015 / 10:27 pm

      Thanks Rachel, it is lovely x

  9. 12th February 2015 / 10:09 pm

    It doesn’t sound greedy at all – if you it, you love it and why not it’s gorgeous there. Plus you get some lovely family time ๐Ÿ™‚ xxx

    thanks for linking up to `Thelist xx

    • SarahJChristie
      14th February 2015 / 6:08 pm

      Thanks Hannah, yes its so important to get family time isn’t it, just to chill and not be sidetracked by jobs x

  10. Steph
    13th February 2015 / 9:07 pm

    Oh well now I’m super jealous!!! I would LOVE to take my family to centerparcs for a christmas break. It looks so beautiful. Steph xxxx

    • SarahJChristie
      14th February 2015 / 6:13 pm

      Thanks Steph, it is just so chilled yet so much fun, go for it xx

  11. 14th February 2015 / 10:27 pm

    It looks beautiful. We haven’t been to Center Parks before, purely because of the cost. Maybe we should look into going in January! x

    • SarahJChristie
      15th February 2015 / 7:25 pm

      You should Katie it is amazing, my two love Center Parcs x

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