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Family camping: a guide to the bestest family holiday ever

Children at Merley Court Touring Park, Dorset

Think ‘family holiday’ and you might be tempted to run, screaming, for the nearest hills. But a caravan or camping trip is one of the easiest types of holiday to take the kids along to. Whether it’s a camping pod, family sized yurt, caravan for hire or tent on a family campsite, there are thousands of family camping options available - no screaming required. Here are a few of our popular family holiday parks and campsites, with tips below on keeping kids and big kids happy:

Lady's Mile Holiday Park, Devon

An award-winning park near the Blue Flag beaches of Dawlish Warren, and with pools, evening entertainment, bar, play area and wifi access. Electric pitches from £15 a night.

Newton Mill Holiday Park, Somerset

This peaceful scenic site is only a couple of miles from the World Heritage City of Bath, and has award-winning showers and loos, bar and restaurant, and a children's playground. From £10 a night. 

Caernarfon Bay Caravan Park, Gwynedd

A quieter option but still with plenty to do, as it's set beside an award-winning clean and safe beach in a Site of Special Scientific Interest. Book a two or three-bedroom caravan here from £180 for three nights, with electricity, gas and linen all included. 

Merley Court Touring Park, Dorset

Another award-winning park, with a pool, play area, games room and bar serving meals. Guests also have access to the 20+ activities at Oakdene seven miles away. Merley Court pitches start from £15.25 a night.

Pool at Callow Top Holiday Park, DerbyshireCallow Top Holiday Park, Derbyshire

Another award winner! Callow Top has a fishing lake, evening entertainment, a pool, games arcade - and its own brewery. Pitches start from £17 a night, with special offers available in spring and autumn 2013.

Southerness Holiday Village, Dumfries and Galloway

Pitch up at this scenic site for kids' clubs, indoor pool with flume, Jacuzzi, evening entertainment and more- and with a championship golf course on the doorstep for the grown-ups. Pitches for tents, tourers and motorhomes from £14 a night. Also in Dumfries and Galloway, you can hire a luxury holiday home within strolling distance of three sandy beaches at Castle Point Caravan Site, from £180 for four nights.

And onto the tips to have your best family holiday:

  • All our listed sites have details of what’s on nearby, from theme parks to beaches to walks, in the 'Local Attractions' tab, and you can narrow your search further by using our dozens of filters. If you've something specific in mind, filter your search by what's available on site, such as sites with fishing or a play area, or what leisure is nearby, like horse-riding or a leisure/theme park.
  • Stuck for inspiration? We have a batch of blogs on family camping to help. There’s our blog guide to family-friendly camping, with tips on bathing a baby in a washing up bowl, making sure everyone pitches in to help with everything and even how to get your teenager to put down the DS and come with you to that nearby stately home. 
  • Finally, mainly because it's fun trying to explain manners to children, read our blog on camping etiquette to ensure the best ways to ensure peace and love all round (man). Throw the kids in the back of the car and away you go.

By Laura Canning