During February half term we were invited to spend a long weekend in Cornwall at the five star luxury Landal Gwel an Mor for a UK staycation.
We were in search of a luxury five star family staycation and the multi award winning Gwel an Mor, meaning ‘view of the sea’ in Cornish really ticked all the right boxes. We were all especially looking forward to visiting Cornwall as it’s an area of the country we haven’t been to before, despite it only being just under a four hour drive away from us in Wales.
I hadn’t heard of Landal Green Parks before our trip – they are a network of luxury holiday villages in six of the most beautiful locations in the UK. Along with their village in Cornwall, they also have locations in The Peak District, Lincolnshire, Northumberland and the Southern Highlands in Scotland.
The girls were in particular so excited to be visiting and once we reached at Landal Gwel an Mor situated on the hillside above the little beach town of Portreath on the North coast of Cornwall, we were looking forward to exploring the area.
When we arrived on Friday, after a longer than expected drive, we couldn’t wait to check out our home for the weekend, one of the latest additions to Gwel an Mor – their new 3 bedroom Residence, and it didn’t disappoint.
These single storey designer eco-lodges are gorgeous and have been built to sustainable principles, including air to water heat pumps which provide all heating and hot water.
The kids immediately spotted our sunken outdoor hot tub on the decking area of our lodge and after a quick change made a beeline for the warmth of the hot tub – they loved it.
My husband and I were as equally excited as we explored our home, finding all of the mod cons we could think of, including underfloor heating, wood burning stove, Sonos sound system, high speed WiFI, TV in the bathroom and instant hot water tap.
The lodges are beautifully decorated in a modern Scandi style and finished to a high standard with luxury kitchens and lighting – this was true five star accommodation.
Our kitchen had everything that we could possibly need, including a cooker, microwave, fridge, dishwasher and washer dryer.
The open plan design of the kitchen leading onto the living area was a fabulous family space with comfortable sofas, large TV and bi-folding doors leading out onto the spacious decking which, along with the hot tub, had patio furniture and a BBQ area.
With a large king size en-suite bedroom, plus two separate bedrooms, the lodge could comfortably sleep six – so we had more than enough space.
It’s the little welcoming touches that make the difference such as the complimentary chilled bottle of wine in our fridge, a birthday card for Holly, chocolates placed on each of our pillows, family board games and I loved the fact that the bathrooms had lots of fluffy towels and robes along with Rituals toiletries, one of our favourites.
When you check in you are given a welcome pack (kitchen roll, washing up liquid, dish brush, tea and coffee, cloths, scourers and bin bags and a toilet roll in each of the bathrooms) but it’s worth bringing essentials like anti-bacterial spray, hand soap, tin foil, dishwasher tablets and toilet roll with you.
While you can pre-order a breakfast grocery pack, we stopped off at a nearby supermarket in Cambourne to stock up our kitchen and lots of guests made it even easier by arranging a supermarket delivery online.
If you don’t fancy doing much cooking during your holiday, the resort restaurant, The Terrace, was open daily offering lunch, snacks and evening meals as well as a takeaway service if you’d rather dine in your lodge.
After a great night’s sleep we set off in search of adventure and there are plenty of on-site activities at Landal Gwel an Mor to keep all the family happy. What was great about a stay here was that there were lots of indoor activities so even the rain and wind of Storm Dennis couldn’t spoil our fun.
With this type of holiday you can be as active or as inactive as you like so you can tailor your holiday to the type of activities you enjoy. You can book nothing and just swim, walk, visit the beach, relax in your lodge or simply enjoy the nature and beautiful surroundings around you. Alternatively we pre-booked an action packed itinerary before our arrival to keep Chloe (11) and Holly (9) busy.
We began our day watching the huge waves crashing onto the beach of Portreath before heading to Base Camp, a 2000 sq ft indoor activity centre at Gwel an Mor with soft play, café and the part we were most looking forward to – the indoor climbing walls.
My husband and the girls loved their 1 hour Clip’n’Climb experience where they tested their skills. speed and agility on the 10 different climbing walls under the expert instruction of Sam our tutor.
After lunch we headed to the resorts Feadon Farm for a Wildlife Experience, which was our favourite activity during our mini-break here and one of the reasons why Landal Gwel an Mor is such a unique destination.
Holly loves animals so Feadon Farm was a dream activity for her which began with meeting Sly the barn owl. After a quick briefing we had the opportunity of the owl taking off and landing from our hand, the look on the girls’ faces was priceless.
Meeting the beautiful family of rescue foxes was the highlight for us. We had the chance to feed and learn so much about them and it really changed our perception of foxes. Hand feeding the stunning rescue fox Meadow was an experience that Holly in particular will remember forever.
We have never been so close to a fox and it was fascinating to learn that these shy animals are not the dangerous pests they are made out to be. Although they were not in the mood for kisses on our visit, our ranger told us that quite often they give visitors kisses when they are in the mood.
During our two hour experience we also got up close to a snake, mice, ferrets and toads and met the reindeer, Lowen and Nadelik. It was fascinating to learn that many of the Cornish words are very similar to Welsh.
By the end of our Feadon Farm experience the girls took away a wealth of knowledge. This was hands on learning at its very best under the expert guidance of the highly knowledgeable and charismatic ranger, Gary, who made this experience one of the most memorable activities that we have enjoyed as a family.
At the Terrace restaurant we had the obligatory Cornish cream tea which was delicious before heading back to our lodge for another session in the hot tub – even in the heavy rain, it was bliss.
On Sunday, an excited Holly woke early, excited to open her presents for her 9th birthday. We had decorated the lodge the night before and we had an action packed day. I couldn’t think of a better place for anyone to celebrate their birthday.
I managed to sneak a spa treatment at the wellbeing spa while my husband and the girls enjoyed the indoor swimming pool. I felt I could have stayed there for hours as it was so relaxing and the perfect place to escape and unwind. I felt rejuvenated after my facial and massage.
Next up was archery, another activity that we had pre-booked in advance before our visit.
This brought out each of our competitive sides to see who could pop the most balloons on the target, before the challenge was on between the two teams to see who got the highest scores.
Kelly, our instructor was good fun and very patient and by the end of the hour long session, we were all regularly hitting near the centre of the target – we even got onto the resorts high score leader board.
Also at Gwel an Mor you will find a gym, tennis court, children’s play park, fishing lake, a nine-hole all-weather golf course and other cool activities such as sea scooters for the indoor pool which unfortunately we didn’t have time for.
After lunch back in our lodge we sang “Happy Birthday” to Holly and enjoyed some birthday cake before heading to the nearby seaside town of St Ives, a short drive away from Gwel an Mor.
Like the rest of Cornwall, St Ives was so beautiful with its quaint cobbled winding streets, stunning beaches, cafes, restaurants and lots of shops – as you know we love a little retail therapy when away. For other days out with the kids, both the Eden Project and the Lost Gardens of Heligan were around a 30 minute drive away from Gwel an Mor.
We finished our break with a wonderful meal to celebrate Holly’s birthday at The Terrace, a really cosy setting with a great menu to suit even the fussiest of eaters. They have a great kids menu and our meals were delicious and the staff, like across the rest of the resort, were so friendly and welcoming.
We returned home to play board games in our comfy lodge in front of the roaring wood burning stove before one last dip in the hot tub under a star lit sky. As a family we created so many wonderful memories during our stay at Gwel an Mor.
It really opened our eyes on choosing a UK staycation rather than travelling abroad. We only wish we’d had a little bit longer here.
On Monday after we were all packed up, we said goodbye to Landal and our Cornish adventure.
We’d had such a lovely stay, the girls investigated the opportunity of buying one of the Residence lodges, with Holly adding she could use some of her birthday money. We really fell in love with Landal Gwel an Mor and Cornwall – we can’t wait to return.
For more information, pricing and special offers, visit https://www.landal.co.uk/uk/landal-gwel-an-mor-gwel
Thank you to Landal GreenParks UK for the weekend away! Our stay at Landal Gwel an Mor was complimentary for the purposes of this review.