The large three bedroomed Silver Birch cabin was exquisite and quite honestly the nicest accommodation I have ever stayed in at a holiday resort. A feature floor to ceiling window gives magnificent views of the idyllic surroundings and makes you feel a part of the great outdoors, while making the rooms feel light and airy. The decor was modern, clean and well conceived, bringing in elements of the forest along with a bold but tasteful colour theme that runs throughout the cabin. The place was spotless and so well equipped, with an excellent kitchen, which included microwave, oven, hob, fridge freezer and dishwasher. Little touches such as the inclusion of Jenga and Scrabble made you feel immediately at home. The optional entertainment package offers wi-fi and TV channels if you want to stay connected to the outside world. It was cosy, comfortable and a real home from home.
Having a private outdoor hot tub was the most luxurious addition to our holiday home. It was serviced daily and had a rubber duck left on top to let us know it was safe to use. It was wonderful to relax in the hot tub, and it was particularly fabulous at night with its underwater lighting. Freddy absolutely adored it, thinking it was his own private outdoor bath/swimming pool.
The forest setting is glorious. The cabins are spaced well apart so you feel quite secluded, adding to the magic and enchantment of the break. The cabin has two parking spaces outside, which is really convenient. There are lots of walks and cycle tracks around the forest and a really great 3.8 km trim trail, which we went around several times in the week. Some days we never saw another soul on our walks, it was so tranquil, peaceful and relaxing.
The exercise equipment around the trim trail caused some healthy competition as we tried to outdo each other. On the squat lift apparatus, Ian felt quite superior, being able to lift the same weight as the three kids could lift together! It was fun to challenge each other on the monkey bars, sit up bench and balance beam. All the equipment was wooden or made from green metal so it blended in nicely with the surroundings, and came with clear instructions for use. It was a great way to enjoy some exercise and following the trail provided a well signposted walk through the forest.
The Forest Retreat is at the centre of the resort, offering a cafe, coffee shop, reception and well stocked shop. You can book activities and in-cabin spa treatments and pre-order take away food such as pizzas (which can be delivered directly to your cabin) or baked goods to be picked up for breakfast. The quality of the food was excellent, especially the freshly baked pain au chocolats that we all enjoyed as a morning treat. We loved the coffee shop and were able to sit outside in the sunshine with our drinks on the decked area. They have a nice menu offering light lunches and meals, and also have a bar. There is also a cycle hire shop and a children's play area. The facilities are more than adequate, providing everything we needed, with friendly, helpful staff on hand.
Getting away together to such a lovely place, with amazing accommodation and being blessed with such gorgeous weather has made us even bigger fans of holidaying in the UK. From our location in Hampshire, we had easy access to the New Forest, the Isle of Wight and Winchester for day trips, but mostly we just really enjoyed exploring the forest and relaxing in the hot tub together. We even took part in the #getyourskillson challenge and had some fun in the great outdoors while we were there.
One of the biggest pleasures of our holiday was simply having fun in the forest: running, jumping, balancing, playing, hiding, swinging and exploring. We looked at the flora and fauna of the forest and breathed the fresh air on our outdoor adventures. It's exactly the kind of holiday that I would want my children to enjoy together. It was perfect.
Forest Holidays offers "simple luxury in stunning locations" with nine idyllic resorts to choose from. Blackwood Forest was beautiful, tranquil and the cabins are outstanding. The resort wasn't overcrowded or commercial, it's just so peaceful, unspoilt and in harmony with the nature that surrounds it. It is definitely somewhere I'd stay again, we loved it. Somewhere to escape to and reconnect as a family.
You can find out more about Forest Holidays and book your own break at www.forestholidays.co.uk.
We received a discount to use against this holiday in return for an honest review. The opinions expressed are my own...we genuinely adored it!