Dyrham Park {National Trust}

On our way to Cardiff at the start of the year we stopped off at a National Trust property – Dyrham Park – to break our journey up. It’s only now, a month later, that I realise I didn’t write about it, maybe only mentioning it in passing but it’s such a beautiful property that I really needed to dedicate a post to it.

I knew nothing about Dyrham Park before we arrived in the incredibly muddy car park. There was a bus down to the main house but we decided, after a couple of hours in the car, that we would stretch our legs and walk.

It takes about fifteen minutes to walk to the house, all downhill – and uphill on the way back to the car. It’s a beautiful walk, either down a treelined road or across country down a pretty steep hill but for the walk down we decided to stick to the road and the children loved spotting the house from high up on the hillside.

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A Mini-Break in Bath to visit The Roman Baths

We started off half term with a trip to Bath, one of my favourite places in the UK. We haven’t really explored Bath with the children before so it was great to go on a city break and do things we wouldn’t usually do – with the main focus of our trip being to visit The Roman Baths, somewhere I hadn’t been since I was LP’s age.

We stayed at SACO Apartments on St James Parade overnight which was a great base to explore the city. They have parking, wifi and even a welcome pack to get you started – it was lovely to have milk, tea and breakfast staples ready and one less thing to worry about.

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Review: Brooklands Hotel Spa

A few days ago a friend and I were invited for a spa day at the Brooklands Hotel. It’s a hotel I have always been familiar with but have never been to, knowing that it’s right next door to the Mercedes Benz World and opposite the Mercedes test track.

Brooklands Hotel offer many spa packages with spa facilities to compliment the treatments. We were booked on a package with a 50 minute treatment each, lunch and the whole day to make use of the spa.

Review: Brooklands Hotel Spa

We arrived at the hotel and were immediately impressed with it – really grand and with a lovely welcoming feel. We had a friendly greeting and were advised to make our way to the third floor which is home to the Brooklands Hotel Spa.

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Review: The Royal Mint Experience

We finished off the Christmas holidays with a trip into Wales to visit The Royal Mint Experience just outside of Cardiff. Last year was the first time The Royal Mint had opened it’s doors to the public and so we were excited to go and see how all of our sterling coins are made.

Review: The Royal Mint Experience

The experience is easy to find and well signposted. There’s plenty of parking and there’s just a short walk from the car park to the entrance and everything is well accessible for pushchairs and wheelchairs. The experience is free for the under fives and comprises a guided tour and an interactive exhibition.

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Breakfast with Father Christmas at Pinewood Bar and Cafe, Wokingham

The children absolutely love going to visit Father Christmas over the festive season and although we have done a lot of quite big – and expensive – visits in the past there is nothing like seeing a local Father Christmas with family.

This year we went to the Pinewood Bar and Cafe in Wokingham for the children to have breakfast with Father Christmas, something they were looking forward to for weeks.

The Pinewood Bar and Cafe has such a community feel to it. It’s the perfect place to meet up with friends or family, have breakfast or tea and a cake or a drink in the evening. It has a really homely appeal and really is like a home from home – making it the perfect place to meet Father Christmas.

Breakfast with Father Christmas at Pinewood Bar and Cafe, Wokingham

Breakfast with Father Christmas starts with the children sitting down to breakfast in a nicely decorated hall. There are lights, Christmas tree and decorations everywhere. The children pre-ordered breakfast arrived really quickly and they loved pulling crackers whilst they ate.

Breakfast with Father Christmas at Pinewood Bar and Cafe, Wokingham

For breakfast the children had a choice of three items from the list of cooked options and a glass of fresh juice too. It was a good sized breakfast and they really enjoyed it. Whilst they ate Father Christmas chatted to them, read jokes from the crackers and asked them about their Christmas preparations. LP and Little Man loved it.

Breakfast with Father Christmas at Pinewood Bar and Cafe, Wokingham

Breakfast with Father Christmas at Pinewood Bar and Cafe, Wokingham

After breakfast the children were read a festive story by one of Santa’s helpers and then got a gift wrapped book and chocolate treat from Father Christmas. Whilst this was all going on the adults were treated to mulled wine and mince pies.

Breakfast with Father Christmas at Pinewood Bar and Cafe, Wokingham

Breakfast with Father Christmas at Pinewood Bar and Cafe, Wokingham

The breakfast with Father Christmas at the Pinewood Bar and Cafe is on for just a few days in the run up to Christmas and costs just £10 per child for breakfast and the whole experience. LP and Little Man had a great time and it was lovely for Hubby, their grandparents and I to watch. We also bought an awesome breakfast for the adults afterwards – rounding off the event nicely.

Breakfast with Father Christmas at Pinewood Bar and Cafe, Wokingham

Disclosure: We paid for our tickets to the above event but we enjoyed it so much we thought we’d share it with you.