Sandy Balls

Lodge-with-cyclists

New Ownership at Sandy Balls

Fast-growing UK holiday operator Away Resorts has acquired the Sandy Balls Holiday Village in the New Forest.

Carl Castledine, Chief Executive Officer at Away Resorts, says:

Sandy Balls has been a family-owned business run with passion and feeling for almost 100 years, so we are very mindful of retaining the heritage and essence of what makes Sandy Balls such a well-loved holiday village. We know guests will be happy to hear that whilst we plan to invest in Sandy Balls and improve certain areas, we want to reassure that we will not be changing the overall feel of the place that so many guests love”.

“Sandy Balls complements our strategy of providing our existing customer base with a range of very different types of holidays, avoiding the chainlike feel of our major competitors. We now have parks that meet the needs of a wide variety of guests, whether they are seeking a lakeside retreat, a coastal experience, a holiday packed full of entertainment, an outdoor adventure break situated in remote areas of outstanding natural beauty, or a peaceful escape within a short drive from London.  And now with Sandy Balls we have a park that is forest-based with extensive central facilities.”

Sandy Balls has welcomed hundreds of thousands of guests to the village since opening its doors nearly 100 years ago, its name dating back to the reign of King Henry VII when ‘sandyballas’, domed sand and gravel outcrops on the site’s western boundary, first appeared on historic maps.

It brings the Away Resorts family to six parks with Sandy Balls joining Tattershall Lakes in Lincolnshire, Whitecliff Bay on the Isle of Wight, Mersea Island in Essex, Barmouth Bay in Wales and Mill Rythe on Hayling Island.

Away Resorts is passionate about providing memorable and affordable British holidays. 2016 was a record year for the business as overall bookings across its parks rose significantly against 2015’s figures. This comes as the number of people taking a holiday in the UK increased from 64% to 71%*, with domestic holidays proving more popular than a trip overseas.

*12 months up to August 2016, ABTA Holiday Habits Report 2016

FAQs

What changes will you make to Sandy Balls?
We aren’t planning any substantial changes to Sandy Balls at the minute. We know that it is a much loved holiday village and we don’t want to change the essence of what makes it special.

What improvements will you make?
We will make improvements where we think they are needed, for example refurbishing some of the older accommodation. We also plan to invest in enhancing some of the existing facilities to give a better guest experience. Some of these projects take time but there are others that we will get on with quickly so customers can enjoy the benefits in 2017. However, none of these transformations will change the personality of Sandy Balls.

Will the staff be the same?
Yes, the Sandy Balls staff are a special group of people who have worked hard to make it a great holiday village.  The previous Directors have decided to move on to new ventures but all other staff have chosen to stay with us.

Will prices be going up?
We pride ourselves on offering a fantastic, memorable holiday in the UK to our guests and their families, at an affordable price, and we will continue to be committed to do that, so we don’t have any plans to raise the prices.

What will happen to the booking I have already made for 2017?
Absolutely nothing will change – your booking will stay the same and you can be reassured that the full facilities and services that you were expecting will still be part of your holiday.

Why did the owners sell Sandy Balls?
The Westlake family have put their heart and soul into developing Sandy Balls into the successful and much-loved holiday village that it is today.  They decided that it was time for Sandy Balls to move to new ownership, and they have been very diligent in making sure that the new owners remain as committed to its success and ethos as they have been. They were selective about who the acquirers were and that it was not all about money.  They have asked us to maintain the heritage of the park, which we are committed to doing.

Why has Away Resorts bought Sandy Balls?
Away Resorts has been actively looking to grow the business by acquiring specially selected parks in the UK that we think complement and enhance our offering to the UK holiday-taking public.  Sandy Balls is a fantastic addition for us; it is a well-known five-star holiday village with award-winning facilities.  It has a great reputation, loyal customer base and a location second to none being situated in an area of outstanding natural beauty, within a national park. Our company is in a growth phase, which Sandy Balls becomes an important part of. It is a very well run business that we felt added value to our estate.

Santa and panto characters

Festive Fun Days
& Christmas market

Leave all the stress of Christmas at home and join us for a day of festive fun with the whole family. Pick up some unique Christmas gifts, enjoy a delicious lunch, visit Santa and book tickets for our Christmas Panto – The Magic Castle. A wonderful day for the whole family.

Christmas Market
Browse local products and find that perfect gift for Christmas. There will be a great selection of stalls with products from jewelry to fabrics and from Christmas decorations to fudge and flowers. After some shopping, the little ones can burn off some energy on our bouncy castle or try the funfair games! Children can transform into an angel or a reindeer at the hands of our face painters and send grandma a picture of her favourite grandchildren. Get festive and make a hand-crafted X-mas decoration or meet the gorgeous Sandy Balls Alpacas!

Santa’s Grotto
Visit Santa and his helper in the magical Sandy Balls grotto. Let him know you’ve been good and give him your letter ready for Christmas Day. Santa’s helper will be able to help you write one. Each child will get a small present to start the festive season! Don’t forget to get a nice picture with Santa himself!
Book now! (www.sandyballs.co.uk/onlineactivities)

Panto – The Magic Castle (3pm on the 10th and 17th Dec & 12pm on 24th December)
This 75 minute Christmas Show is set in Happy Town where the Magic Castle is the most wonderful place in the world. Everyone is always happy and worries are a thing of the past, that is until Squire Slug (the evil villain) learns that all the happiness is due to Queen Annie Gobstopper’s Magic Wand and decides to steal it. The children follow their hero Betty Banana and her friends on their quest to ensure that Happy Town remains happy.
Full of adventure, sing-a-long songs and plenty of audience participation this show is perfect for children between the ages of 3 and 12 years.
Tickets £7.50 per person including a glass of mulled wine for adults and a sweets bag for kids
Please call our Guest Services team to book on: 01425 651225 (payment required at time of booking)

Stay for supper – Kids eat FREE
Dine in the Woodside Inn or the Forest Table following the pantomime from 4.15pm – 6pm and for each main adult meal purchased from the main menu, one child eats FREE from the children’s menu.

We are looking forward to meeting you!

little bird in the New Forest

Top 10 attractions close to Sandy Balls

Sandy Balls is conveniently located just 30 minutes from Southampton and is ideally located for exploring the stunning New Forest National Park.

Here are some ideas for some great day trips you can enjoy during your next Sandy Balls holiday…

Marwell Zoo offers an incredible range of exotic and endangered species, where you can get up close and personal to the wonders of the natural world. There is plenty to do on site, from adventure playgrounds and rail trains to picnic areas and cafes.

Adventure Wonderland Dorset’s number one family theme park for young children with indoor and outdoor attractions. With over 30 rides (some suitable for small children as well), your family will surely have a great day out!

Longdown Activity Farm Get close to furry friends at this fantastic family farm. Bottle feed kid goats, cuddle with a baby rabbit or explore their farmyard buildings!

Paulton’s Park with Peppa Pig World has over 60 wonderful rides and attractions. The home of Peppa Pig, Paulton’s now also features a dinosaur theme land (new for 2016) called the Lost Kingdom, so you will find something new even if you have visited before.

Exbury Gardens Take a stroll around the world famous 200 acre Rothschild Gardens and ride the steam railway. Kids will love the adventure playground and the ice-cream from Mr Eddy’s Tea room.

Beaulieu: Spend a great day out in Beaulieu and make a day unforgettable for everyone. Dad will surely like the famous National Motor Museum, Mum will fall in love with the Victorian-style country house and the kids can enjoy the rides on the Monorail and Veteran Bus.

New Forest Towns & Villages The pretty towns of Brockenhurst, Lyndhurst and Lymington all have something different to explore.

Bournemouth’s Beaches: With its seven miles of award-winning beaches, Bournemouth is a great place to visit when the sun is out! Build a sandcastle, swim in the sea or go for a meal or shopping if you are not lucky with the weather.

Oceanarium: If you are visiting Bournemouth and love sea creatures, pop in to the Oceanarium.  You can discover all there is to know about the creatures of the underwater world in this award winning aquarium

Ringwood Brewery: Take a tour of this popular local brewery including a drink in the Pin Room. Please note that they don’t accept kids under 8 years old.

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Win an alpaca plush toy!

Our new Alpaca Toys are almost as fluffy as the real ones!

The Sandy Balls alpacas first arrived at our holiday village in 2014 and they become the children’s absolute favourites since. The little ones love them so much that we often heard: “Daddy, can I take Sandy home? He is soo fluffy! Pleeeaaase!”  

We decided to take our young visitors enquiry seriously and custom made our alpaca plushies. To celebrate the arrival of our soft toys we are giving away a plushie to a lucky customer who sends a photo in with one of the four alpacas. What are you waiting for? Simply upload a photo below and you might be the lucky winner!

 

 
 

Verification

A little boy with an alpaca plush toy

Terms and Conditions:

    1. This competition is open to residents of the UK, Channel Islands, Isle of Man and Republic of Ireland aged 18 years or over, except for employees of Sandy Balls Estates Ltd, their families or anyone else associated with this competition.
    2. The winner of the competition will win a plush alpaca toy.
    3. To enter you either post your picture (taken at Sandy Balls Holiday Village) to under the facebook posts promoting the competition or submit it on this page.
    4. Opening date is 16/08/2016 and the closing date is 21/08/2016 . All entries must be received by the advertised closing time and date.
    5. The best picture will be chosen by the employees of Sandy Balls Holiday Village
    6. Winner will be announced by: 28/08/2016
    7. This promotion is not sponsored administered or endorsed by Facebook
    8. It is a condition of entry that all rules are accepted as final and that the competitor agrees to abide by these rules. The decision of the judges is final and no correspondence will be entered into. Submission of an entry will be taken to mean acceptance of these terms and conditions
    9. All images submitted must be the work of the individual submitting them and must not have been published elsewhere or have won a prize in any other photographic competition. It is the responsibility of each entrant to ensure that any images they submit have been taken with the permission of the subject and do not infringe the copyright of any third party or any laws. Entrants must warrant that the photograph they are submitting is their own work and that they own the copyright for it.
    10. These images may appear in our printed publications, in the media, on video, on our or our website or Facebook.
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Cornfield Camping, an adventure under canvas

Camping is a popular holiday choice with more and more people choosing a ‘staycation’ holiday here in the UK. It is a low-cost holiday alternative with friends and family to choose camping in the New Forest. At Sandy Balls we have the option to camp all year-round on our touring pitches, however between 2-29 August, we open our camping field with grass pitches specifically suitable for tents. Located on site, Cornfield is our basic camping option here at Sandy Balls in the beautiful New Forest.  A great atmosphere prevails as families of campers sleep under canvas.

 

Full access to all Sandy Balls’ facilities is included in the price of your generously sized pitch as are hot showers in portable shower units. Spend leisurely days swimming, cycling, exploring the outdoor adventure playgrounds or the indoor soft play area.  Then enjoy magical family evenings at our great summer entertainment.  With a great mix of discos, live music, comedy and so much more, you can enjoy the entertainment after a lovely meal in our on site pub or family restaurant.

Our campers have lots of additional benefits when visiting Sandy Balls:
Great security and 24 hour warden Heated shower blocks open 24 hours a day
Access to our children’s activity programme Onsite shop
Onsite pub and family restaurant Access to our Cycle Centre
Hire of various camping equipment FREE swimming in our indoor and outdoor (seasonal) pools
FREE indoor softplay and outdoor adventure playgroundFREE entertainment during school holidays and on weekends

What our guests said about Cornfield Camping:

“I enjoyed the whole experience, never camped as a family before. We came with friends who stayed in an adjacent tent, and we enjoyed some great quality time together. Facilities were great, would definitely recommend!”

“Great having many activities and things available for the children to keep busy with. Toilet facilities where lovely and being able to hire out bikes was amazing.”

“Camping is something the wife has been nagging me to do for ages but I have always been reluctant, more of a hotel and en-suite man myself. She finally convinced me to go camping but it couldn’t be to an empty field with cattle roaming around me. We found Sandy Balls (great name) when googling and instantly liked the look of it, and at no time were we disappointed. We ended up camping here twice as its a large well cared for site, plenty of amenities including a well-stocked shop, amusements and restaurant with plenty for the kids to do including bike hire, swimming, playgrounds and other activities. The restaurant staff were friendly and the food we had was beautiful. We have raved about Sandy Balls to other friends who camp and we are already planning our next trip to Sandy Balls. Well done and keep up the good work”

(source: Guest Survey and TripAdvisor)

 

A happy family in a Safari tent

Camping not for you? Think again!

As a Manager at Sandy Balls, I was slightly apprehensive when I was asked to stay in one of our new Safari Tents so I could fully experience the unique experience they offer.  Don’t get me wrong, they look amazing, but as mum to a toddler, and someone who hasn’t camped for many years, I much prefer the comforts of a lodge and have happily lived without the adventure of camping for some time now.

We arrived after work on Friday with friends and quickly realised we didn’t need half of the things we had brought with us as literally everything is provided!  We had planned a BBQ on the Friday evening so the kids were soon happily running around and exploring whilst we cracked open the Prosecco and got dinner cooking.  It was so peaceful and lovely being outside and everything is nice and safe, even for toddlers.  We could relax and give our daughter the freedom that you don’t find in many places when you are travelling with a nearly 2 year old. You could hear birdsong and families laughing and playing together, both wonderful sounds.

After a relaxing evening playing cards on the veranda and catching up, the beds were a welcome comfort and we all got a great night’s sleep.  The kids even slept in until 7.30am which was an unexpected treat.  Next came the part I was most apprehensive about.  The shower blocks.  Now to most experienced campers, this is just part and parcel of camping but I didn’t relish the thought.  I of course knew we had won many awards for our touring facilities but I was still pleasantly surprised at how lovely and clean and toasty warm they were with lovely hot showers and a lovely clean bath for the little ones.  There were areas to hang up clothes whilst showering and hair dryers and shelves for placing all your possessions whilst getting ready.

By now I was relaxing into it and realising camping may be for me.

With electric lighting in every room in our tent, and a heater (that we didn’t actually need), we didn’t need to worry about the elements.  Cosy warm duvets ensured we all had a lovely night’s sleep and the kids loved the bunk beds. We even managed to fit a travel cot into the double bedroom so our daughter didn’t need to sleep in the lounge as originally planned.

Saturday was packed full of activities.  Forest Caching in the morning, swimming in the afternoon and a great Clay Play session to finish off.  We had a delicious dinner in the Forest Table before heading back to our tent for another evening of relaxation on the terrace.  I was officially enjoying camping!

The Safari Tents are just perfect for families that want the relaxed, outdoor adventure that comes with camping in the great outdoors, but don’t have the time (or inclination) to buy all the equipment, spend hours packing up the car and setting everything up.  You can simply rock up and enjoy!

We will definitely be back!

CHECK OUT OUR SAFARI TENTS»

children having fun at the outdoor entertainment at sandy balls

Free entertainment all summer long!

The summer holidays are sneaking up on us and the time has arrived to start filling those long summer weeks full of activities to keep the kids entertained and to create some magical family memories. A break at Sandy Balls Holiday Village in the beautiful New Forest National Park has to be in the mix!

This summer, once again there will be free entertainment every day of the school holidays, but things have hotted up this year.

Each week in the school holidays you can enjoy workshops or circus skills. Children will be delighted as entertainers juggle, perform fire eating, ride a unicycle and more.

Our outdoor big screen will show all the fantastic sporting events summer 2016 will bring from Euro 2016, to Wimbledon and the Olympics. When our sporting heroes are not performing, we will be showing some fantastic family quizzes to keep you all entertained whilst you enjoy lunch on the veranda at the Woodside Inn.

Our evening entertainment kicks off with our popular mini-disco.  Starting at 6.15pm, even our younger guests now get a chance to enjoy the disco and have a dance.  The evening continues with a children’s entertainer starting at 6.45pm with a wide selection of clowns, magicians and entertainers.  On to our 8.30pm family entertainment where we have amazing entertainers, singers and some fantastic tribute acts lined up.  Enjoy the eighties power of Whitney, acoustic tunes from Ed Sheeran or pop sensations from Take That or Jessie J.

To find out more about our fantastic entertainment programme, visit
sandyballs.co.uk/experiences/entertainment

falconary

Rendezvous with birds

Toby Puddle is a familiar face at Sandy Balls as he is the leader of the Falconry experience activity at our holiday village. He has been practicing the art of flying trained hawks and owls over 18 years. Toby is very passionate about educating the public on animals, especially on birds.

But what is the so called Falconry Experience? It is a one to one encounter with the most incredible birds of prey.  You get a personal, hands-on experience as you can handle, feed and actually fly some amazing birds.

As an addition to the Falconry Experience we decided to introduce our new activity the Owl and Raptor Encounter. During this show Toby will take you on a fun and educational journey where you will learn about these amazing creatures, watch out though as they swoop over your heads on Toby’s command. This is a fun, interactive & memorable event for everyone who attends.

Interested? Why not book for one of these incredible activities.

What birds can you expect to see during the shows? What do they eat and where are they from? We have collected some information on some of Toby’s hawks and owls.

Scruff – Harris Hawk
A handsome hawk of the arid Southwest, Harris’s Hawk is a standout with bold markings of dark brown, chestnut red, and white feathers, long yellow legs, and yellow markings on its face. The most social of North American raptors, these birds are often found in groups, cooperatively attending nests and hunting together as a team. When hunting, a group of hawks surround their prey and flush it for another to catch, or take turns chasing it.

Sydney – Kestrel
The European Kestrel – or the common kestrel – is a sight to behold with its beautiful plumage and trademark hover, which makes it easily identifiable in the air. Belonging to the falcon family, it is a common resident of the British countryside and can be found throughout Europe, Asia and Africa. The male tends to be slightly smaller than the female, more reddish brown in colour and features a blue-grey head and tail, as opposed to the female, which is mostly brown.

Arthur- Gyr Falcon
The largest falcon in the world, the ghostly Gyr Falcon is a fierce predator in the High Arctic, where it chases down small birds in flight or plummets from the sky at breathtaking speeds to strike prey on the ground. Nesting on remote cliffs in the far reaches of Canada and Alaska, Gyr Falcons in North America are safe from most human disturbance but face challenges from a warming climate.

Harry- Peregrine
One of the world’s fastest birds, able to power-dive from great height to strike prey, the Peregrine may possibly reach 200 miles per hour. It is regarded by falconers and biologists alike as one of the noblest and most spectacular of all birds of prey. Although it is found on six continents, the Peregrine is uncommon in most areas; it was seriously endangered in the mid-20th century because of the harmful effects of persistent pesticides.

Cyril- Barn Owl
Barn Owls are birds of prey, hunting and catching small mammals, mostly Field Voles here in the UK. They have some extraordinary special adapted characteristics to help them hunt for food at night, such as incredibly sensitive hearing and the ability to see movement with very little light.

BOO- Siberian / Turkmenian Eagle Owl
This is a common crossbreed of captive bred owl and known to be normally friendly and good to handle. Although this is a hybrid both Siberian (Bubo Bubo Sibiricus) and Turkmenian (Bubo Bubo Turcomanus) are very similar sub-species of Bubo bubo owls. Siberians come from Western Siberia and Bashkiria regions with the Turkmenian range covering Kazakhstan to West Mongolia. In the wild they populate rocky and mountainous regions as well as forests and occasionally found in semi-desert regions. Both sub species are large birds ranging from around 58cm to 75cm and weigh from approximately 1.5kg up to 4kg. Their prey includes mammals from shrew to small deer as well as birds and reptiles.

Sandy the alpaca from sandy balls

Meet the Sandy Balls Alpacas

The Sandy Balls alpacas arrived at our Holiday Village in 2014 and they’ve become the kids (as well as the adults) favourites since then. But where did they come from? What do they eat? Where can you meet them?

  • Our alpacas were bred in the New Forest but are native to Peru.
  • Sandy, Inka, Pickle and Archie are all boys, they are really good brothers.
  • Like all animals, alpacas exhibit individual personalities.
  • They prefer the companionship of their friends and their established community and will become stressed if separated from their buddies. At Sandy Balls they can be together all the time and they seem to be very good siblings.
  • Gentle and curious, alpacas respond well to children.
  • The alpacas eat mostly grass, but their diets can also include leaves wood, bark or stems.
  • Humming is the most common sound that alpacas make, which has been described as a kind of musical purring. Alpacas hum when they are curious, content, worried, bored, fearful, distressed or cautious.
  • At Sandy Balls we have two fun activities where you can meet them. The Alpaca introduction where you will have a chance to get up close to them and learn more about these beautiful creatures or the Alpaca walk where you can take them for a little walk.

 If you have great pics of your holiday here we would love to see them!*

You can send them to: photos@sandyballs.co.uk

*Please note that photos submitted may be used for marketing purposes, including on our website, official social media channels, and within other advertisements. For full Ts&Cs visit: http://www.sandyballs.co.uk/photo-consent/
May Fete

May Fete & Activities

Lots of stalls
Wander around craft stalls and find gifts or buy some tasty local products.

Jamie Jigsaw
The multiple award-winning children’s entertainer Jamie Jigsaw will be present to put on a high-quality family show.

Vintage Cars
A stunning assortment of vintage cars will be on display at our Royal Fete.

Try something new!
Why not try your hand at Archery. We now also have Mini Archery for our younger visitors! Take the family on an adventure in the forest with our new Forest Caching activity. The day will be packed with things for the whole family to do! Some activities can be pre-booked so avoid disappointment and pre-book activities here: http://www.sandyballs.co.uk/activity-booking/ .

Meet Our Alpacas
Sandy, Inka, Pickles and Archie cannot wait to meet you at Sandy Balls. Come and get up close to these beautiful animals. Feel how soft their fleece is or take the opportunity to snap a photo with them.

Royal treasure-hunt
Find hidden objects by following a trail of clues.

Craft activities
We will have a bunch of Royal-themed activities where kids can express their creativity.

Horse-riding
Why not try out horse-riding and meet a little Shetland Pony?

Bouncy Castle
Let your child play and experience the fun of a bouncy castle. Rumour says that they can even sleep better after a bouncy castle session!

Enjoy lunch
After an eventful time it is good to sit down and have a chat about the best moments of the day. Come and have a delicious lunch in The Forest Table or The Woodside Inn or why not enjoy a tasty pork or turkey roll from our take away.

Plenty of FREE Car parking available at Chamberlin field on the day.

We’re sure you will find something for everyone and we hope to see you at Sandy Balls.

Join the event on our Facebook page HERE!

The Trudigans - whole family

The Trudgians at Sandy Balls

Having 2 children with a wide age gap we always struggle to find the perfect compromise in our holidays. Perhaps that’s why we love caravanning so much; We can create our own adventure no matter where we go. So, when we visit a site that offers serviced pitches, extensive on site facilities and a comprehensive set of activities, you will see why we love Sandy Balls so much.

The pitches offer hard standing, fresh water, grey waste, electric Hook up and TV antenna connectivity as standard in the pitch fee. The pitches themselves are nicely proportioned, they have that “continental feel” about them and offer ample space for a car, caravan and awning with space to move about in too.

Our latest visit took place while the weather was pretty poor, but the Children were able to use the pool, the amusements and take part in some of the activities that Sandy Balls offers, while we were able to soak up some much needed chill time in the dog friendly Woodside Inn.

If you are looking for a caravan site that offers all this and is situated in the beautiful surroundings of the New Forest, I highly recommend it!

Dan Trudgian

A little blond girl standing with a basket of painted eggs

Easter Fete at Sandy Balls

If any holiday was made for kids it has to be Easter with it’s bunnies, egg rolling and easter egg hunt.

Saturday, 26 March will surely be a day to remember, because a great family event, our Easter Fete takes place at Sandy Balls Holiday Village. We have everything for a fun day-out, so make sure that you mark this event in your calendar.

Lots of stalls
Wander around craft stalls and find Easter gifts or buy some tasty local products.

Egg-citing Activities
We will have Easter treasure hunts, packed with clues leading you around the park, Easter Egg Rolling which is a traditional Easter activity at Sandy Balls and also the Easter Bonnet Parade. To avoid disappointment please pre-book the treasure hunt HERE.

Meet Our Alpacas
Sandy, Inka, Pickles and Archie cannot wait to meet you at Sandy Balls. Come and get up close to these beautiful animals. Feel how soft their fleece is or take the opportunity to snap an Alpaca Selfie!

Horse-riding with Arniss Equestrian
Why not try out horse-riding with Arniss Equestrian and meet their little Shetland Pony, Muffin?

Bouncy Castle
Let your kids jump like little bunnies in our bouncy castle this Easter.

Inflatable Football Pitch
Test your football skills on our inflatable pitch, which will surely provide an incredibly enjoyable experience!

Enjoy lunch
After an eventful time it is good to sit down and have a chat about the best moments of the day. Come and have a delicious  lunch in The Forest Table or why not enjoy a pork or turkey roll from our take away.

And much more!
We have organised a whole bunch of activities to keep you and your family entertained. We will have facepainters, Tea cup rides, Minion attraction games, live music and lots of more.

Join the event on our Facebook page HERE!

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Tips for winter hiking

Despite of the cold weather, winter hiking can be great fun! You can enjoy crowd free trails and drinking hot tea will never taste as good as on a chilly day. To ensure you have a great experience, we have collected tips and tricks for people looking for a winter hiking adventure.

  1. Dress like an onion: It is good to have at least 3 or more layers on you so you can regulate your body temperature and stay comfortable. But try to resist the temptation of dressing too warmly. You may feel chilly in the first 10-15 minutes, but once you get moving you will warm up quickly. It is really important to adjust your temperature by adding or removing layers.
  2. Start Early: Don’t forget that the sun sets earlier in the winter months, so it’s probably a bit late to start a 10 mile walk at 3 o’clock in the afternoon. Plan an early start and make sure that you will be off the trail before it gets dark to avoid getting lost.
  3. Check the weather: It might not be snowing when you set off, however it is essential to check the weather conditions before you go out hiking in winter. An unexpected shower can make you wet and cold.
  4. Pack some hot beverage: Add some comfort to your trip by taking tea, coffee, or hot chocolate with you in a thermos. A hot drink can warm you up and give you a nice winter glow.
  5. Know your limits: When planning your winter hike, be reasonable about the distance. Your goal is most probably to have fun rather than freezing outside.
  6. Short breaks: The longer you stop the colder you become. If the weather turns nasty, keep breaks short and to a minimum. If for whatever reason you do need to take a longer break, put on an extra layer or two until you begin hiking again.
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Christmas Competition – The Results

At the beginning of December we have launched a Christmas Competition for all our guests who spent their Christmas Holidays at Sandy Balls. The prizes included a weekend break, a touring break and £100 Sandy Balls voucher.

We would like to thank to all of our lovely guests who made the holidays festive with their jumpers or with their wonderfully decorated lodges and holiday homes. Choosing the winners wasn’t an easy task as we received many great entries to the best decorated accommodation and best Christmas jumper. Unfortunately there were no entries to the best decorated touring pitch, so we decided to add a creativity award to the accommodation competition. The winner will receive a £20 Sandy Balls voucher.

The winners have been chosen by our management and marketing team and we are pleased to announce…..

The winners are:

Best decorated accommodation exterior – Angela Harris

Angela Harris - decorated lodge - christmas competition

Best Christmas Jumper – Alice Eliza

Best Christmas Jumper(s)

Creativity Award – Hayley Rodwell

Creativity award

We would like to congratulate the winners as well as to everyone who participated!

Check out our gallery of the best entrants below:

Quick Book

Quick Book