Here is the second part of our weekend away at Ribby Hall in Lancashire, for part one click here.
The next day saw an early start for me thanks to two little people, so after entertaining the children until nine am, I had to return to bed for an hour whilst daddy took over. He took them for a walk around the site, back to the play area and to feed the ducks which tend to congregate around the boating lake and where you can buy duck food to feed the rafts of them.
Once I'd recovered from my early start, we returned to The Restaurant for lunch, before hitting the bike hire, determined to have a go at cycling around the site. Myself and Mr H hired a bike each, with the Mr pulling the children along in a trailer behind him. I wasn't sure whether the children would soon get bored in the trailer, but they absolutely adored it.
The Woodland Trail is full of bumps and hills and they screamed in delight as they went down each one. As much as these activities take it out of me, I try my best to join in one every now and again as the joy I see on the children' faces more than makes up for the fatigue afterwards. It was so much fun whizzing around the off-road track, pointing out the wood carvings, bird houses and then the horses as we passed the equestrian centre.
After cycling around most of the track we stopped off at The Village Garden, a gorgeous little area that has been recently opened which houses the site's fruit, vegetable and flowers that are then used in the restaurants and displays. It's such a peaceful area and it was lovely to sit in one of the seating areas whilst the children and Mr H ran around playing in the grass and tree trunks or spotting fish in the pond.
Our last activity during our stay was balance bikes, which once again took place in the sports hall with the same instructor, which instantly put my two at ease. They were yet again the only two in this activity, so received one on one instruction and had such a great time.
First of all they rode around the track set up for them, getting used to the idea of bikes without pedals. Then they had a couple of races, which of course my super competitive daughter won, the concept of letting her little brother win not even entering her mind. No idea where she gets that from.
Finally it was a bit of a free for all where they could chose where to ride, but ended up ditching the bikes and zooming around the track, bumping into each other and then knocking down the nicely lined up cones in their wake. Sigh.
After all the fun of the weekend, we were all absolutely exhausted, so we packed up the car and returned home ready for the start of a new week. However Mr H and I both agreed at the time, and still feel on reflection, Ribby Hall is one of the best holiday villages we have visited. There is so much to do on the site, yet it feels open and peaceful, not crammed with holiday makers. There are plenty of places to eat and the accommodation is as good as, if not better, than the likes of Centerparcs and Bluestone.
We have already said we would love to return, and hopefully introduce friends to the site. Being located so close to us, it is also extremely convenient that we don't have a two to five hour commute before we can unload our bags and relax. Whilst I wouldn't say it is cheap - our long weekend in the Poppy Cottage costs £509 - it does compare to other similar places (£529 at both Centerparcs and Bluestone for a three night night weekend stay), and wouldn't put us off returning. I can definitely recommend Ribby Hall as a fantastic place to stay if you are looking for a break in the UK.
*We were provided with a stay FOC however all opinions are my own.