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Llanelli Online took a flight to Elftopia last week. During our visit we saw a Father Christmas who actually comes down a full size chimney and took a journey to see the beautiful Snow Queen, watched a pantomime, had a swim at the Blue Lagoon complete with slides and wave machine and stayed in probably the most peaceful surroundings in Wales.
We took a well earned holiday at the Bluestone Resort in Pembrokeshire in mid November. It was our first visit and we had not done much research into what was on offer apart from a quick look at the website to download a very handy map. We were sent details of our schedule and we were able to pre book most things including all the activities for the children of 5, and 14-years-of-age.
We arrived on a Monday evening and went through the check in, which was not only quick but astonishingly friendly and efficient. It was reassuring to see the security gates in place as well as speed limits on site. Cars are allowed to enter on check in but have to be off the site by midnight. From then on it is car free. That is also a bonus for those looking to get away from the noise and fumes and wishing to see their children walk and play freely without fear.
Whoever thought up the design and layout of the site is a family friendly and environmentally friendly genius. What is striking is how big the resort is but how little visual impact it has on the landscape. That is due to the clever colouring of the lodges, which with age have blended in to the greens, reds and brows of the beautiful Pembrokeshire landscape. We stayed at Preseli View, a very aptly named lodge as we could see the whole of the Preseli range from our balcony window.
Electric buggies are available for hire for those who do not wish to walk. There is also a Landrover train that takes you here and there. Cycle racks are located outside of the lodges. We took our bicycles and went off exploring along some of the tracks. One takes you around a lovely lake and another takes you to Camp Smokey and the Deep Ravine. It really is worth taking a bicycle to roam around at one’s leisure in complete peace and quiet.
There are a range of eateries at Bluestone and we visited the Ty Coffi, a quirky cafe, which would not be out of place in the side streets of Kensington and Chelsea. There were shops, which sold everything one needs for self catering however it is wise to stock up on the essential items for self catering if you can.
Our first visit to the Blue Lagoon was an early morning swim while the children went off on the slides and explored the smaller pools. It was not too busy and we were able to relax and enjoy with our youngest child. Family facilities at the pool are excellent and the lifeguards were ever watchful and that was reassuring.
This was Bluestone’s Christmas time and the staff had been away for training at Cardiff Airport before opening their own airport on site with destination Elftopia as the experience for the children. We duly checked in and were handed elf costumes, then taken to duty free. What appeared to be complete chaos at first we found later had a method in the madness. We embarked on a journey through a variety of rooms, which housed very enthusiastic characters who took us through security checks, onto a plane that squirted snow over the children then into a room where they made reindeer food from sparkling stars and volcano dust. All the time we were encouraged to have fun and to participate in minor competitions with the children. The absolute highlight was the final room, which housed the Snow Queen. It was stunningly beautiful, believable and the party at the end complete with snowball fight had us all leaving in great spirits. Once outside we were able to sit down on some of the comfy leather sofas and allow the children to go off and play.
The lodge was comfortable very clean and warm. It had everything we needed as a family. There was an option to have maid service, which we declined as we were out so much we hardly made any mess. Check out was before 10 am on Friday and we were able to use the facilities up until the end of that day.
Bluestone Resort is not only a wonderful holiday destination, it is major employer in the area and boosts the local economy by a staggering amount of money. For that we give it 5 stars and say ‘We will be back’.
To find out more visit Bluestone’s website