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Guide to Sherwood Forest Centreparcs

Set deep in the historic Nottinghamshire countryside, Sherwood Forest is home to the original UK village and a great base to explore the legend of Robin Hood. Centrally located between Nottingham and Lincoln, Center Parcs Sherwood Forest is an accessible drive from all over the UK. 

Photo Copyright Jenny Schippers

What’s included in your break

  • Unlimited use of the Subtropical Swimming Paradise
  • Explore up to 400 acres of woodland
  • Family friendly cycle paths
  • Indoor and outdoor play areas
  • A beautiful lake and beach

There are plenty of other activities available for an additional fee from caving to bowling, pizza making, canoeing and science experiments

Is there evening entertainment at Centre Parcs Sherwood Forest?

There are many activities going on in the sports hall during the evening including a kids’ disco at 8pm. Alternatively, the climbing wall, or tennis, snooker, swimming activities can be booked. The main pool is open till 9pm and is included in the price of your holiday.

Photo Copyright Jenny Schippers

A Guide to Centreparcs 

I have visited Centreparcs Sherwood Forest three times with my children (and varying family members/friends) and we have enjoyed the experience more each time. Can I just stress however that each of these visits has avoided the school holiday periods which is when the price unfortunately rockets. On all our trips we’ve used the Friday-Monday option however there is a more cost effective Monday-Friday option (or longer week stays available).

The main ‘Woodland’ style lodges vary in design/age and have options for 2/3/4 bedrooms depending on the size of your party. The price is a sliding scale depending on the size and standard of the lodge. All grades of accommodation come with a full kitchen, fire, TV and outside seating/BBQ area. The more deluxe options feature a sauna and higher end fixtures and fittings. 

There are also Executive/Exclusive Lodges that are more similar in style to a traditional house as well as Treehouse options available. Most of these also have the added luxury of a hot tub and some feature a games room. Top tip to reduce the cost is to share a lodge with another family. The price becomes much more reasonable when split 50/50!

Whichever accommodation option you choose the most important task is to select where it is situated on the site. We like to pay the fee (approx £35-50) to select a lodge in the Central area – no more than 5 minutes walk to the pool/shops/restaurant however if you prefer a quieter option and you are happier to be further from the centre the cost to select your plot reduces. You can also not pay at all and just be allocated a plot at random.

The roads are safe for scooting Photo Copyright Jenny Schippers

Apart from the check in/check out times no cars are allowed on site. Once you have been given your keys and completed your check in procedure you can drive your car to your lodge to unload. Once this has been done you then park your car securely in the main car park for the remainder of the stay. This allows the site to be ‘car-free’ and safe for bikes/scooters/children! 

You can choose to take your own bikes or hire them to collect when you arrive. It’s advisable to pre-book these to avoid disappointment. As well as bikes you are given the opportunity to pre-book any activities, restaurants and ‘extras’ (such as logs for the fire/BBQ equipment) prior to your stay. It is definitely worth booking anything beforehand that you really want to do – the high wires and pony trekking always books up. We have also found booking a table for busy meal times such as Friday/Saturday evening and Sunday lunch is best done in advance. 

The pool entrance is included in the price and can be accessed from the morning of your stay (even before you can enter your lodge) until the end of your final day (even after you’ve checked out). It gets very busy Friday afternoon and Saturday morning/afternoon so be aware of longer waiting times for slides/changing rooms. To avoid the crowds choose evening swims or during lunch and dinner periods. You can pre-book Cabanas to allow a base to relax poolside, again this should be done in advance of your stay.

Other points to note, the lake has a beach so bring along bucket/spades, there are quite a few playgrounds dotted around the site so bear that in mind when choosing your lodge position and the on-site spa is fantastic. If you can escape for a massage it’s definitely worth it and as before, best booked in advance of your stay. Every evening there’s a children’s disco in the bar next to the bowling alley. This starts at 8pm so too late for our little ones but suitable for older kids. 

When it comes to food, we always buy in advance and bring it with us. There is a supermarket on site but the prices are high. It is useful for the basics and fresh bread/milk but I would avoid using it for a big shop! There are takeaway options available, Indian/Chinese/Pizza, but these can get very busy and wait times can be long. The Pancake House next to the Lake is really nice as a treat and the outside seating area is perfect for sunny days.

Photo Copyright Jenny Schippers

Finally, take a walk up to the Nature Centre at the far edge of the site close to the Country Club (which I recommend for Sunday Lunch). The walk there is lovely and the Nature Centre is fascinating for little ones, lots of bug hotels and dens. Throughout the site there is plenty of wildlife to spot, the main lake and adjacent ponds have plenty of resident ducks and swans. All the squirrels and rabbits are incredibly friendly and my girls loved watching them from the lodge window. Take some bird food and you’ll be very popular!

All Centreparcs are opening on July 13th 2020

The Subtropical Swimming Paradise and Aqua Sana will be closed for the first four breaks.

Current Safety Measures

  • Introduced new delivery-only menus for a number of restaurants.
  • You will be able to enjoy a meal in the restaurants, but there will have fewer seated guests to adhere to social distancing.
  • All orders and bookings will be contactless. You will be able to place your order for lodge deliveries and book restaurant reservations in advance.  You’ll also order from your table for dine in restaurants and pay online via a new online system. 

Are activities available?

We’re running many of our usual activities, although we’ve reduced the number of guests per session to make sure we can maintain social distancing and still deliver a fun experience.

A full list of these available activities will be available on our website no later than one week before your arrival date.

Are cycles available?

Yes, you can book your cycle via your Center Parcs account. We won’t be taking bookings on village, so please note you will need to pre-book before arrival.

This review is by by Jenny Schippers. To follow Jenny and her adventures, please see follow her on Instagram @travellingwithmygirls

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