Everyone was very excited about our mini-trip to Jersey although life had been so busy in the run up I suddenly realised the night before I hadn’t really had time to prepare or plan.
I needn’t have worried. Packing was a breeze, not having to worry about a number of bags and weights and sizes we just chucked everything in the car! The journey to Poole was pretty smooth although roadworks delayed us meaning we were later arriving than the ‘1 hour in advance’ advised. I started to get a bit panicky, remembering stressful airport check-ins, security delays, queues etc but again I needn’t have worried. We were met by a series of charming, professional Condor staff and before we knew it were comfortably on board, drinking coffee, as the ferry glided off.
We didn’t sit still for long however, such was the excitement of being on the water! We spent the next hour+ exploring the decks, enjoying the views, waving at other boats and taking in the sea air. The kids loved it! Then there was lunch, a wee bit of mooching in the shops and then the kids settled in the fab little cushioned area to watch a film and relax after all their fun.
Before we knew it we had arrived! We embarked, swiftly and efficiently once again and in less than 10 minutes we had arrived at the hotel. No waiting for luggage, no delays, no long tiresome walks through airports without the buggy. We felt refreshed and energised after the journey which was a welcome change from the stress and weariness flying with small children can sometimes bring.
The hotel initially worried me as we piled in with 2 excited kids, various Toy Story characters and a football – it was so beautiful and tranquil – but we couldn’t have been given a warmer welcome. The Cristina is positioned in an enviable location with a 180 degree vista of the sea and breath-taking views. The staff were so kind – nothing was too much trouble and the food was amazing. My children are still talking about the breakfast! There was a great terrace – a real sun trap with amazing views – perfect for early evening drinks and the bar even had a toy box and mini library! There was a modest but perfectly adequate outdoor pool and sun bed area. The pool was cold but the weather had been so poor we were not surprised and the kids had their wet suits and so they were happy!
The room was lovely, bright and well appointed – quite ‘cosy’ for the 4 of us with a small bathroom but fine just for 2 nights. There was a private balcony area with chairs and again, stunning views. It was a short walk through the hotel gardens to the most amazing park (Coronation Park where we could have spent all day!) and the fabulous beaches abundant with shells and driftwood and so much space……..and the sun shone and shone!
We also enjoyed a fabulous visit to the aMaizin Maze and Adventure Park as part of our visit. This offers an incredibly well designed and managed family day out with activities including Petting Zoos, Go-Carts, Tractor Rides and Water Bomb Wars! Although we were there on Bank Holiday weekend, there was no over-crowding or long queues, the food was excellent and sensibly priced and the staff friendly, attentive and committed (very different to similar places we have visited elsewhere!) I would suggest that as long as you have dry weather this is a ‘must visit’ for families to Jersey. We were there for nearly 7 hours and didn’t run out of things to enjoy and the kids are still taking about it!
Jersey is a wonderful place for families. There’s so much to do but it’s small enough to feel very accessible and of course the wonderful thing about travelling by ferry is having your own car to explore with. The scenery is beautiful, quite rural and felt like a wonderful combination of France and Devon with the warmer climate making such a difference.
The Ferry back was an evening crossing where the ‘film room’ came into its own more than on our way out but that was fine. We had a very enjoyable trip once again, a nice meal and even got back ahead of schedule!
Our trip to Jersey has been one our most favourite family breaks ever – yes we were blessed with the weather but with so much to do and such a lovely ‘feel’ to the Island we will definitely be back!
By Suzanne and Dave aged 40 something, George age 7 & Ruby age 4.