If you’re a dog owner, your dog is probably as important to you as your kids and no holiday would be complete without them. We’ve had our German shepherd Archie for the last five years and it’s safe to say he’s a fully-fledged member of the family. We all missed him like mad when we left him cooped up in the kennels last year, not to mention the amount of money we spent on two weeks’ kennel costs.
That’s why this year we decided we weren’t having a holiday without him.
Around January-time we set our sights on going to Cornwall – it’s roughly a four hour drive from where we live in Oxfordshire, which is not too long in the car for the kids – especially when they’ve got Archie to play with in the back.
We stayed at Devon Cliffs Holiday Park a few years ago so we knew a holiday park was what we wanted – we just kept our fingers crossed that one of the parks in Cornwall would take Archie.
Riviere Sands in Cornwall was the first park we looked at and its wide range of facilities and fun activities sounded so perfect for us that we nearly booked it straight away. Then my husband spotted this section of the Haven website explaining which parks accept pets and luckily Haven campsites in Cornwall do.
As it turns out, Riviere Sands is one of the parks that doesn’t allow dogs so we had to keep looking for a park that does. Luckily Perran Sands does welcome pets and is just half an hour away from where we originally wanted to stay. It has all the same great facilities and activities – the only difference is we can bring Archie along for the ride too.
It’s now about a month and a half until we go away so we’re starting to research things to do in Cornwall where we can bring the dog along.
On holiday, I love getting the family together for a big family walk – something we rarely have time to do at home – so location is key for us. By the looks of things, Perran Sands Holiday Park is a stone’s throw away from the beach. It’s also the nearest dog-friendly beach to the park, so a few evenings walks along the beach will definitely be on the cards
We’ve also heard a lot of good things about Bodmin Moor from friends who’ve been to Cornwall so we’re looking forward to going there. It’s just a 40 minute drive from Perran Sands, which doesn’t sound too bad, and our friends have recommended us the ‘Copper Trail’ which runs around Bodmin Moor and has some of the prettiest views of the surrounding countryside.
I spend days making sure we’re all packed and ready to go but if I had a pound for every time I got halfway down the motorway and then realised I’d forgotten my toothbrush, I’d have enough to take Archie to Hawaii.
I usually leave the kids in charge of packing the dog’s things (I mean how hard can it be to pack the poop-a-scoop?) but it’s comforting to know that if they do forget something, the park has its own shop fully stocked with doggie bits and bobs.
It’s worth noting that holidays with dogs at Haven don’t include all breeds and you’re only allowed two dogs per caravan.
As for us, we can’t wait to bring Archie on holiday with us and watch him revel in all the new sights, sounds and smells. And with plenty of great places to walk him, we’re sure he’ll be just as tired as the kids at the end of the day.