ENTERTAINING the kids can feel like a struggle over the summer holidays.
But with fairgrounds, wave machines and family-friendly food, Butlins and Legoland can make it feel like a breeze.
Butlins, Bognor Regis
Assistant Editor (Celebrity) Beth Neil stayed at the seaside site with husband Brian and kids Roddy, five, and Robyn, three.
THE PAD: Family rooms at the nauti-cool Wave Hotel have two bedrooms, one with bunks for the kids. Reception has a fantastic interactive games room, coffee shop and lounge. The site also has lodges and apartments for every budget.
EXPLORE: The beautiful park is jam-packed with things to do. A brand-new £40million pool is the showpiece, featuring slides, rapids and a wave machine.
The traditional fairground doesn’t disappoint either, while there are also adventure playgrounds, arts and crafts, soft play and even a Tots’ Disco for under-fives wanting a boogie – and parents needing a break!
REFUEL: Go half-board to take the stress out of mealtimes thanks to the amazing buffets, which our kids loved choosing from. For brekkie there’s everything from a full English to made-to-order omelettes.
In the evenings there are live cooking stations and global cuisines with lots of healthy options.
DON’T MISS: The talented and indefatigable Redcoats will keep you entertained throughout your stay. Ice-cream parlour Scoop is a must, with delicious flavours starting at £2.
If you can escape the family for a bit, book a deep back massage at Ocean Spa, £43 for 45 minutes.
BOOK IT: Three nights at Wave Hotel cost from £299. Half-board is £27.75 per day for adults, £6.95 for under-fives (Butlins.com).
Legoland Castle Hotel, Windsor
Deputy Editor Ellie O’Mahoney, husband Mark, Elliott, four, and Molly, 21 months, got busy with the bricks.
THE PAD: Arriving at Legoland Castle Hotel in the middle of the park you’ll be greeted by a 35,000-brick wizard who comes to life at the press of a button.
There’s also a Lego play area in the foyer and a ball pool. Rooms are wizard or knight themed with a separate area for kids, and you’ll find Lego goodie bags stuffed with treats they can unlock by solving clues in their room.
You also get 30 minutes Early Ride Access to the park.
EXPLORE: Kids can take driving tests in mini cars and venture under the sea on the Atlantis submarine voyage, while the new Haunted House Monster Party ride makes rooms feel like they’re upside down.
REFUEL: Eat under the eye of a dragon at Tournament Tavern, where Lego characters pose for pics. Food is gastropub fare – and better than you might expect. Try the rump steak, £16, and cheesecake for pud, £6.50.
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DON’T MISS: The Legoland Hotel – a five-minute walk away – has a pool with a pirate-themed play area, plus slide, water canon and see-saw.
BOOK IT: Legoland Castle Hotel packages cost from £171 per person, based on two adults and two children sharing, including breakfast and two days’ park access.
Q-Bot tickets, which allow you to skip the queue, cost from £25 (Legolandholidays.co.uk).
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