Monthly Archives: September 2016

Phase 3 Disneyland Paris

This will be the 10th year of visiting Disneyland Paris and our 22nd visit with our last 8 visits being in our motorhomes – I can’t believe the time has gone so fast and our boys now 17 & 15 but the good thing is that they still have the Disney thing going or maybe they are just humouring us!

After a good, steady journey without any delays, we were here and boy were we ready for our Disney Fix!

We brought a couple of new toys with us on this trip – a couple of solar panels with usb so that the “screenagers” are kept entertained when we were not in the parks as they do not seem to appreciate the world without tech but I suppose thats the world we live in now. The kit reviews will be posted shortly, nothing too elaborate or expensive but just some cheap, little additions which have enhanced our life in a motorhome.

Well you can’t come to Disneyland without going on any rides and we spent our time between the 2 parks (Disneyland Park & Studios Park) and despite my favourite, Big Thunder Mountain still being closed due to a major refurbishment, there was still plenty to satisfy my inner child.

Space Mountain:

Phantom Manor:

Indiana jones:

Autopia & It’s a Small World:

Plus lots, lots more!!!!!

The highlight of this trip was the balloon ride during Disney Dreams – a big thank you to the operator for keeping us up in the air for so long.

https://youtu.be/tKgxVqj6CqQ

Phase 2 Brugge September 2016

Here we are at last.

I have been getting around to this post for the last 8 weeks, not sure where the time has gone but better late, than never, as they say!!!!

Brugge has become a bit of a travelling must for us over the last couple of years and theres something about this city which just keeps on bringing us back and I can’t see that changing anytime soon.

A short drive from the ferry port and we were in Brugge and despite the unsigned diversion and road closures we really put all our faith in the Sat Nav to get us where we needed to be – thank you Garmin.

We arrived at our campsite early and whilst we could check in from 11am, we were OK to check in early despite the site being rather busy, definitely the busiest we have seen it but we took up our pitch at the side of the toilet/shower block which at the time, we were not too happy about but I’ll let you know how this went a little later on in this blog.

Carrefour was next on the agenda and off we set for the 10 minute walk from Camping Memling to the supermarket for the things we didn’t bring with us from the UK such as fresh meat for the BBQ and they do a rather nice “Marma” cake ,oh yes, and the Belgian mayonnaise is much nicer than Hellman’s stuff from home so we always make sure we have a good supply to last until next time we come.

After a relaxing Day 1 we were ready to take the 35-40 Minute walk into the centre of Brugge. It is really easy to find from our campsite although I do think that the pavements leave a little to be desired and are narrow with an adverse camber but you don’t meet that many pedestrians  until you’re in the City itself but watch out for the cyclists – beware, do not walk in the cycle lanes, which there are plenty of in Brugge, in fact we decided to purchase our own cycles for our next visit – maybe!!!!!

Day 2 – Having already seen the city by boat, horse drawn carriage and bus, we saw a group of tourists exploring the City on Segway’s – I think that I’ll give that a miss – I’m clumsy enough as it is.

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Frites, from the fast food hut in the square, a walk around taking in the sites of the city, a walk around the food & drink market with some of the biggest cheeses i’ve seen finished off with the most delicious cup of hot chocolate that i’ve ever experienced –  for €3.50 we got a cup full of piping hot chocolate with a twist, a stick of chocolate through the top which slowly melted. I’m sure that there should have been a health warning on the side but who cares when it tastes that good. We will all be heading back there when we next visit.

A stroll around the Koningin Astrid Park finished off the perfect day, no wait!

A visit to Chocoholic was the prefect end to the day with purchases of our favourite Chocolates and Fudge which would go down later that evening with a nice glass of Non Alcoholic plonk and a very competitive game of scrabble.

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I can’t remember who won but the chocolate covered fudge was nice.

Day 3 and we wanted to take a look at the Motorhome Aire which was near to the railway station and after a quick look on google maps, it looked like a similar distance from our campsite, as the centre of Brugge – how wrong I was. it seemed to take forever but at least it was a very nice, picturesque walk along the canal.

When we finally arrived at the Aire, I was impressed by the facilities and the fact that there were 2 parts to it, 1 for overnight parking and the other for parking between 8am and 10pm and both with electricity, water, waste disposal and all at a reasonable rate.

After a very, very long walk, we found a little ice cream van near to the coach park and we highly recommend visiting “the waffle wagon” We didn’t have waffles but the Ice creams were to die for……….

This set us up ready for the walk back to Camping Memling and went some distance in getting me out of the doghouse for getting the distance slightly wrong – ooppps!

On the way back we came across this – any ideas?

Some sort of modern art which was supposed to move every 15 minutes and I can tell you that we didn’t hang around to watch the weird wooden bloke move but think that this was in a strange place (at the side of the canal) and would be more at home in a gallery but I’m sure there’s a perfectly good reason for this.

If I was a drinking man then we may have decided to stay here for a little tipple on our way back but having a very serious allergy to alcohol, I admired the fantastic use of recycled shipping containers that this bar was made up of – that made me think that with all the surplus containers knocking around, there should never be any homelessness in the world but that’s an idea for a whole new blog.

Our last night saw us enjoy another game of scrabble, still can’t remember who won though! Then after a good nights sleep we were off for phase 3 of our summer vacation.

PS. I did say that I would let you know how we went on with the pitch at the side of the toilet block, well, we never noticed it was there. We didn’t hear any noise or disturbed by anyone using the facilities and would happily use the same pitch in the future – just shows that you need to keep an open mind sometimes.

Phase 1 – Summer Vacation September 2016 Leaving the UK on P&O ferries

Well it’s been nearly three months since our last outing and it seemed like three years – at last the time came for us to depart for our next outing, three days in Brugges followed by our highly predictable visit to Disneyland Paris for 5 days.

With all the hassle at Calais, we have now decided that the Ferry from Dover is not an option that we would like to use at the minute and whilst this may appear an over reaction to some, travelling with an Autistic teenager can sometimes be challenging to say the least and we need to keep our trips as straight forward as possible.

I think that we could enter into a whole new blog on travelling with Autism – now there’s an idea, watch this space……..

With Dover out of the question this time, we once again decided that Hull to Zebrugge was the only way to get to Europe with minimal driving in the UK and an upgraded cabin to Club should enhance the whole experience, although this does come at a cost but surprisingly this was only about £120 more in total than the standard cabin option.

A leisurely drive to Hull (approx 70 miles) and we were there…….

After check in we went through the security check with an added extra of a body search for the wife……there’s nothing like feeling violated on the first day of your holiday but at least the rubber gloves did not come out!

Once onboard we got our cabin key and explored our little piece of the Pride of Brugges for the next 12 hours or so.

A fridge stocked with soft drinks, box of chocolates, cookies, tea & coffee, nice bathroom with toiletries, bath robes and a tv – just a little bit better than a standard cabin.

For us the extra space and the little added extras were all worth the extra – we’ll be booking these next time (December when we visit the Christmas Market)

After a very, very filling dinner in the kitchen restaurant, which I can highly recommend, we headed outside for a breath of sea air and watch as we leave the UK behind.

As we settle in for the night, we can’t wait for the morning and our arrival in Zebrugge and Brugges and watch out for further updates of our Summer(ish) Vacation.