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Reasons to visit Toronto

Reasons to visit Toronto

Reasons to visit Toronto

Toronto, the provincial capital of Ontario, is an attractive, cosmopolitan city located on the northwestern shore of Lake Ontario. It is also known as the largest city in Canada with a major cultural and economical center of English-speaking Canada.

We have not visited Toronto yet but it is somewhere we would love to visit.

Our top five to-visit places are:

  1. CN Tower – The CN Tower is said to be a must-see attraction in Toronto.  The CN Tower is the place to go if you would like to take in spectacular views of over 100 miles away. These views can be enjoyed from the top of the tower, via the glass fronted and glass floor paneled elevators which will take you to the top of the tower in around 58 seconds.
  2. Ripley’s Aquarium of Canada.–  We would love to go and immerse ourselves with over 20,000 aquatic animals and enjoy an underwater experience. There are so many awesome programs to enjoy. Such as, sleeping with the sharks, discovery dive and dive shows and many more that caught our eye. Located in the heart of downtown Toronto.
  3. Toronto Islands – There is something for everybody to do of all ages, from swimming beaches, sports facilities, playgrounds, a boating marina, nature paths, picnic areas. There is even a light house to visit and a choice of restaurants. A perfect spot for anyone to enjoy!
  4. Enjoy a day trip to the Niagara falls – Niagara falls is somewhere we have wanted to visit for many years now. We would most definitely want to go on a full-day trip from Toronto to see the beauty of Niagara Falls. Niagara falls lie just south of Toronto and can easily be visited on a day-trip so we would be mad not to visit whilst in Toronto.
  5. Scarborough Bluffs – Somewhere to enjoy lovely views of Lake Ontario from 100-meter cliffs. Enjoy lovely walks in the meadows and along the trails bordering the Bluffs. I have also heard that it is a beautiful place to enjoy sunset.

With all the beauty that Toronto has to offer I can’t see us wanting to come home. It’s a shame we can’t move beautiful places closer to home isn’t it? as moving Toronto closer is one we would most likely want to do.

Where about’s would you love to visit?

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Education, Lifestyle, teenager, Travel

National Citizen Service – Bradley’s adventure

National Citizen Service - Bradley's adventure

National Citizen Service – Bradley’s adventure

Have you heard of The National Citizen Service? no me neither. Bradley came home a few weeks back now begging to go away with what he called “NCS”. Back then we hadn’t a clue what he was on about if we are honest. Since then we done some research and our first thoughts was “wow” – we was amazed at what they offer for teenaged children.

National Citizen Service - Bradley's adventure

We sat talking, and then started to think how we don’t recall anything like this being on offer when we was younger. The National Citizen Service is a government backed programme established in 2011 to help build a more cohesive, mobile and engaged society. By bringing together young people from different backgrounds for a unique shared experience, NCS helps them to become better individuals, and turn into better citizens.

National Citizen Service - Bradley's adventure

Once we had seen what an amazing experience was on offer for him how could we refuse him to go. Bradley will be doing his GCSE exams over the next few weeks and this experience will follow on from that, so he now has something to look forward to at the end of his very important exams.

Such as:

  • Outdoor team-building exercises
  • A residential for participants to learn ‘life skills’
  • A series of challenging activities to help him develop his strength of character
  • He will be helped to develop leadership skills necessary to succeed in the workplace
  • The experience enables young people to connect with their communities through a social action-packed project
  • For every £1 spent, NCS 2016 summer programme delivered between £1.15 and £2.42 of benefits back into society
  • There is also an end of programme celebration event

How amazing does all that sound? our teens today are so lucky.

National Citizen Service - Bradley's adventure

Almost 400,000 young people have taken part in this amazing experience and more than seven million hours of community action have been completed. How amazing is that? in fact this summer more than 100,000 teenagers from different backgrounds will be taking part in NCS. That means one in six of the cohort of 16 year olds will live together, develop skills together and build community projects together.

National Citizen Service - Bradley's adventure

Bradley is so looking forward to his time with NCS in July. The programme cost us just £50, that is including food, travel and also his accommodation for the few weeks with them which is just amazing value for money. Bursaries are available on a case by case basis. Support is also on offer for children with additional needs.

We wasn’t sure if Bradley would be able to attend NCS at first as we have a family holiday in July that had been booked up for months, but chatting with NCS and they helped us work around it to ensure that Bradley could still attend. If you have a child that may like to attend the experience but are worried due to commitments already booked, NCS are very helpful in working around booked commitments.

Do you have a child in year 11? or know someone who has that may like to join this amazing experience? you can find out more over on the >>NCS website<< Bradley is really looking forward to a summer of fun living away from home whilst making new friends, taking on new challenges, building his confidence, self beliefs and learning life skills that can’t be taught in a classroom.  He has told us he hopes come home at the end of July an even stronger, better, more confident unstoppable person. We as parents are so excited for him, this just looks and sounds amazing.

What an amazing way to end his toughest year in school.

If you would like to follow The National Citizen Service on social media to show your support, you can do so by following them on >Facebook< >Twitter< >Instagram<

 

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Top tips, Travel

Accommodating the family: A guide to cheaper holiday digs

Accommodating The Family: A Guide To Cheaper Holiday Digs

Accommodating the family: A guide to cheaper holiday digs

When the family goes on holiday, you have to find a place to stay for a couple of weeks. Accommodation may not have been an issue in your younger days, but you now have kids to look after. Unfortunately, travel digs don’t come cheap, so you may have to fork out a small fortune. And, that is before you have even begun to think about spending money. All in all, a regular hotel can make the cost of a family holiday too much.

But, are you supposed to call it a day and wait until next year in the hope of finding something more affordable? No, you are not! What you should do is search for affordable accommodation now. All you need are a few helpful hints to point you in the right direction, and as luck would have it, you can find them below.

Happy hotel hunting guys and girls!

Accommodating the family: A guide to cheaper holiday digs

Search The Internet & High street

Of course, the first place to check is the World Wide Web because it has all of the best deals. Thanks to sites like Booking.com, it has never been easier to find a bargain. Indeed, some people get to stay in four and five-star accommodation without paying the usual price. Still, the internet isn’t the only resource at your disposal. Whether you realise it or not, holiday bookers exist on the high street, and they are very helpful. In some cases, they are even cheaper than the deals online because they need to keep up with the competition. A holiday broker may not have anything that is suitable for a young family, but it is worth checking all the same. When you cover all the bases, you are bound to find the cheapest deals.

Book More Than One Night

Some people like to stay for a night to check out as many establishments as possible. In truth, this is a great way to save money if you can find cheaper digs elsewhere. However, it depends on the deals that the hotel has to offer. In most cases, hotels have discounts which only apply if the guests stay for three or four nights. In that sense, it is costlier to move because the promotion will not apply and you will have to pay the full rates. Before you book, check what promotions are on offer and the terms and conditions. Far too many holidaymakers don’t read the fine print and it bites them on the backside on arrival. Also, don’t be afraid to haggle. The deal may say one thing, but you can ask for a further discount. After all, ‘no we can’t do that’ is the worst they can say.

Stay Mid-Week

Regardless of the time of year, the weekends are always the most popular days. As such, the rates are more expensive on a Friday and a Saturday night. The logical move, then, is to avoid these days whenever possible. Although it sounds hard, it is pretty easy as long as you book the flights strategically. The trick is to fly out over the weekend so that you arrive during the week. That way, even if you spend two weeks, you should only have to pay the peak rates once. The rest of the time will be weekdays, so the prices should be lower. Anyone that goes away for one week to seven days can exploit this trick. Don’t worry about Sundays as they don’t follow the same rules due to the mix of clientele. Leisure bookers, for example, prefer Friday and Saturday, while business bookers stay from Monday to Friday.

Accommodating the family: A guide to cheaper holiday digs

Travel Off Season

The prices in the summer holidays are higher as it is the most popular time of year. But, there is no need to holiday in June, July and August. If you get organised, you can go away in the early autumn instead. All you have to do is take time off work, which isn’t difficult, and link it with the half term holidays. You will find that September is much cheaper even though you still get the weather and the atmosphere. October is also another good time to get away because of half term. Simply put, don’t book a holiday in the peak season if you want to save money on accommodation!

Sacrifice Location

One thing that bumps up the price is the location. People don’t want to travel far to the restaurants and bars and will pay more to stay close to the action. Because most guests are willing to fork out, the hotels shamelessly take advantage. There is nothing you can do about this if you want to be within a stone throw from the centre of town, so you have to pay extra. However, if the location isn’t a big deal, you can take up a position further a field. Then, the cost of the room for the duration of your stay will be a lot lower. And, you can use the extra money to spend on the kids, your partner, or yourself if you get the chance. Also, thanks to public transport, there is no need to miss out on any of the action. A local bus will get you into town within ten to fifteen minutes, and Uber is almost everywhere in the world.

Think Outside The Box

This post uses the word ‘hotel’ a lot because that is what springs to mind when you think of accommodation. But, there are lots of other types, and they tend to be cheaper. All you have to do is research all of your options and get creative. For example, hostels won’t appeal to you because they are for young travellers who like to party. However, there is no need to share a dorm as you can book a private room. Plus, if you pick a quiet hostel, the noise shouldn’t be too much of a big deal. Or, you can rent a houseboat and stay on the water. Houseboats are quite affordable because there are few overheads to factor in as long as you moor in a marina. Finally, there is a guesthouse for those of you who get sea-sick. These are three options, and there are plenty more at your disposal.

Go With A Group

Why? You still have to pay per room. That is true, but some establishments offer discounts for guests with multiple bookings. More importantly, there are more options when you travel with a bigger group. Take a condo or a villa as an example. For one family, these are two options which are out of most families’ price range. But, when there are two or three families together, the price is lower because you split it evenly. After all, the price of a villa stays the same regardless of how many people want to stay. Unlike hotels, they don’t charge per person, which works out in your favour if you can get more friends on board. Just make sure you like everyone you ask. Staying with people who get on your nerves may ruin your holiday!

Accommodating the family: A guide to cheaper holiday digs

Look For Free Cancellation

Once you make a booking, you have to stick to it unless there is a free cancellation option. It is worth noting that the majority of places don’t provide this option for obvious reasons. However, there are ones that are willing to take the risk, and these are the ones you need to find. That way, it won’t cost you a penny should you find a better and cheaper alternative.

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Outdoor Fun, Travel

Camping trip to Maldon

camping trip to maldon

Camping trip to Maldon

Just because it’s now September doesn’t mean the summer holidays are now over does it?………..No of course not! We went on a fun-filled family camping trip to Maldon and stayed at Waterside.

We had planned to meet our sisters there with their partners and kiddies too. The boys had great fun with their little cousins. There was lots of tree climbing, fun in the park, ball games, competitive games, bug hunts, late night ghost stories being told around the camp fire plus late night walks in the dark with torches.

 

Fun with cousins on a #campingholiday #outdoorfun

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With myself always being cold I made full use of having an electric pitch and packed a kettle and an electric blow heater…..Well why not? It made camping this time of year more bearable and much more enjoyable, why sit and freeze when you don’t have too.

It was so lovely being able to just pitch up our tent and then sit, relax and all enjoy each others company stress free and forget about the hectic busy life back at home. What was LOVED the most is having no gadgets getting in the way, we all actually sat and talked as a family. When at home the boy’s would be on consoles in their bedrooms or doing course work for school so it was lovely to see them having fun and enjoying the great outdoors and getting some fresh air.

The boys loved being outdoors as did we, they loved spending time with their younger cousins and I must say with all the fresh air and running around the boys did It sent them both out like a light come bedtime, I think they was asleep before their heads hit their pillow. One of the nights Lee went into a deep sleep and spent a good hour or so snoring which his cousins found highly amusing and had great pleasure in telling him that they had heard him even from their tent. There was lots of giggles that morning.

 

camping trip to maldon

 

We found that two nights just went by so quickly, when we go again in October….Yes October! We are going to book up for a three night stay. We all enjoyed our weekend so much we will not let the weather scare us away. We are yet to still pick where we are going to camp but this will be booked this next week.

On our last day at Maldon we packed our tent away by 10am and had loaded the car too, we all then decided that the weather was nice so we all headed off down to the beach to get some last-minute outdoor fun and make the most of our last day…….So that’s what we did!

 

Camping trip to Maldon

 

The boys love crab fishing so we was all on the look out for crabs and one thing St Lawrence bay is not short of and that is crabs, there was loads of them……One took a liking to Brads finger…..Ouch!

The kids burned off loads of energy on the beach, the boys was giving their younger cousins piggy back rides, helping them climb up the rocks and also having races on the beach. It was so relaxing and lovely to see them all enjoying themselves.

We ended our family camping trip to Maldon with a lovely picnic and an ice lolly. We was all sad that our weekend had to end but we will be back to Waterside Maldon next year.

camping trip to maldon

camping trip to maldon

 

 

 

More camping fun to be had very soon…..

 

 

 

Country Kids from Coombe Mill Family Farm Holidays Cornwall

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Travel

Summertime fun

summertime fun

Summertime fun

We are soon to be off on our holiday for some summertime fun, if I am honest we can not wait…….it definitely can’t come quick enough, I guess that’s what happens when you book your summer holidays over a year in advance, the wait just feels forever.

We are soon to be setting off on a nice tranquilic holiday and will be staying in a lovely luxury log cabin for a week. Our log cabin will be one of two cabins on an island in the middle of a lake, all other cabins will be around the lake……Well we love to be different.

The holiday park has so much to offer, I chose this camp as it offers so much for entertaining teenagers, with being a family of teenage boys who bore easily, hopefully it will keep them entertained….A mother can hope!

As well as the activities on offer they also have fishing which is our new loved hobby so this will also keep the boy’s entertained…..Hopefully.

When searching for our holiday I was searching for somewhere that had lots to offer and would keep the boys active and entertained throughout the day and Warmwell offers just that.

The activities they will have to choose from are:

Swimming pool complete with flume and wave machine – hopefully this will provide hours of fun and will be perfect if we come across a wet rainy day.

Fishing lakes – hours of fishing will be had, our new-found hobby.

Roller rink – this should be fun, we will definitely be heading off to find this.

Multi sports courts – the boys will definitely be searching for this as they love their sports and always have energy to burn off.

110 meter snowflex ski slope – we have been looking forward to this since booking our holiday. The ski slope also offers a lesson for us beginners which we will be taking advantage of.

Amusements arcades – this is where the boys would spend all day given half a chance.

Crazy golf – we enjoy a game of crazy golf when on holiday.

Archery sessions – this is also something we are looking forward to trying.

Nature trails – an interesting trail we can all enjoy, explore and discover the natural surroundings and wildlife.

Adventure playgrounds – somewhere else to burn off some extra energy.

obstacle courses – somewhere we can all enjoy and have lots of fun as a family.

Freestyle teens club – somewhere the boys are looking forward to heading off too. This club offers DJ workshops, film making, competitions and talent shows. Bradley is really looking forward to attending this club as it offers a lot of his interests.

Bike hire – we will be hiring bikes whilst on holiday so we can go off and explore together.

Ten-pin bowling – something to play when we are feeling competitive.

Sauna – somewhere to head off to and relax after a busy day or whilst the boys are at teens club.

Fitness suit – on offer if we wish to use this suit.

Table sports – such as pool and table tennis.

Some of these activities come at extra cost but we are fully aware and prepared for this.

Local attractions:

There is so much on offer at Warmwell, we will be spoilt for choice. We will also be heading off to explore the local attraction too, such as Dorchester and its historical market town in the pretty Frome Valley, Dorchester is said to be a lovely country town steeped in history and only nine miles from where we will be staying in Warmwell. We will also head off to Weymouth, a classic coastal resort with a beach and lively harbour. The boy’s are excited to be going to Lulworth, home to the fascinating Lulworth cove; formed around 10,000 years ago, plus the castle and park.

We also have Monkey World close by, this is home to over 240 rescued and endangered chimps and apes from all over the world. The Tank Museum is also close by, with over 150 tanks to explore with fascinating exhibitions, there are picnic areas for a lunch break and playgrounds for the kids.

Warmwell holiday park look’s like it offers us loads of summertime fun, the tranquil woodland holiday park has loads of hidden surprises, we have also been informed there may also be the odd wandering roe deer.

The evening entertainment sounds fantastic, there is a family club room where we can go to enjoy a live cabaret, game shows and much more.

If we don’t fancy cooking there is the choice to dine at the Hardy’s cafe & restaurant before heading off out for the evening. I have already spied that there is also a costa coffee available on site.

Our holiday is going to be spent having lots of family fun and adventures, all of which we will enjoy together as a family and we are really looking forward to quality time together.

We are already looking for our holiday for next year with Parkdean, we are stuck for a location as there are so many to choose from, I’m thinking Cornwall but currently stuck for which site to choose.

 

What is your ideal family holiday?

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