I love Holiday Snapshots because it gives such a unique insight into different types of holidays, and this week I have great pleasure in introducing Claire and her Tin Box family to you all. Now, I’ve never really fancied holidaying in a caravan, although my husband has been trying to persuade me for years! But Claire’s amazing trip to the Lake District and her stunning photos is making me have a serious rethink.
Over to you, Claire…
Top of my wish list is a quiet countryside location with plenty of outdoor activities close by. We love long walks, days at the beach, and visiting pretty towns and villages.
The holiday that comes to mind imminently is our visit to the Lake District in Cumbria last year. This was one part of a longer touring holiday which took us from Devon to Scotland.
I visited the Lakes several times as a child and again with Mr Tin Box in 2010. It’s simply stunning and has everything we look for in a holiday destination. Even if you can’t always rely on the weather.
Me, Mr TB, our then six month old daughter (Tin Box Baby) and our Labrador Retriever (Tin Box Dog).
Where did you stay?
This was a Tin Box adventure, so we chose to stay at the Borrowdale Caravan Club site on the shores of Derwentwater. Our previous holiday in Cumbria had been among the southern Lakes, so we fancied a bit of a change. The great thing about holidaying with your own caravan is that you can take all your home comforts with you. There’s also no need to worry about the bed being uncomfortable or if you’re going to find someone else’s hair in the bathroom sink.
We found our site through a search on the Caravan Club website, although Borrowdale is also open to non-members. It is located in National Trust woodland and it’s just a few minutes walk through the trees to Derwentwater. TBD loves a swim!
Our pitch came with mains electric hook-up and there was a small onsite shop selling bread, milk and other essentials. We were obviously self-catering, which we love on holiday. There’s something liberating about being able to decide your own breakfast time. Although on the downside you have to do the dishes!
Are there plenty of activities for kids?
At six months old, TBB’s favourite things to do were eating, pooing and sleeping, so we weren’t too worried about the type of kids activities on offer. However, there was lots for older families in the area, like boat trips and water sports or they could visit wildlife parks and museums.
Your most memorable moment of the trip?
Scrambling across scree slopes and wading through dense undergrowth after getting lost on one of our walks. Mr TB still denies we were ever lost. Luckily TBB was fast asleep in her baby carrier so missed all the excitement. Oh, how we laugh now!
While looking for pushchair friendly walks we found out about something called Miles Without Stiles. This project has created 42 walking routes across the National Park that are stile free and geared towards people with limited mobility. We followed one of these routes all the way from our caravan site on the south west side of Derwentwater into Keswick – about a 10 mile round tip – without having to do any awkward lifting or unloading.
Yes! Our four night stay at Borrowdale cost us £65 and that was during the school summer holidays.
Your top tip/s for the area?
• Try to conquer at least one peak during your stay in the Lakes. But save your expedition for a clear day when you can appreciate the amazing views
• Take a sturdy pair of walking shoes and wear layers, even in the summer. It gets cold at the top of those hills!
• Join the National Trust and enjoy dozens of days out visiting attractions such as Wordsworth’s childhood home and Beatrix Potter’s farmhouse. You’ll also find loads of National Trust car parks where you can stay for free as a member.
While we were on our walk to Keswick we came across this huge wooden sculpture. It was an amazing photo opportunity and, thanks to some passing foreign tourists, we managed to get a rare family photo.
Would you recommend to a friend? Would you go back again?
Most definitely. We really enjoyed our time next to Derwentwater. We’d love to go back soon.
What are the five holiday essentials you couldn’t live without?
• Make up. I’m a glamper at heart!
• My walking boots
• A super-waterproof coat
• An Ordnance Survey map
• My Kindle
Simple. Tucked up in our caravan bed, all warm and cosy, with the rain rumbling on Tin Box’s roof. Bliss!
If you would like to be featured on Holiday Snapshots, please email me at [email protected] and I look forward to including your travel stories.