The car was packed to the brim (including the top box we panic bought the day before) and we were off on our holidays- a Toddler Break at the Hilton Colymbridge! We set off after Baby D’s breakfast, he had his first nap for the first part of the journey which was lovely. We stopped at Bankfoot which is about the halfway point for us. Baby D and Daddy D thought it would be hilarious to sit on Mummy’s car. Boys will be boys!
After another pleasant drive with Baby D babbling and playing the rest of the journey we arrived at our destination. Aviemore, we’ve been lots before so we know what to expect. However in April we don’t usually expect snow, and lots of it. It was one of the most amazing but bizarre holidays I’ve ever been on.
We arrived with most of the day to explore but first we had to get some lunch, off to the Fun House. We had simple pizza, burger and chips and Baby D enjoyed one of his lovely Ella’s Pouches which are just so handy on the go especially on holiday when you don’t know what to expect.
Baby D then had a lovely afternoon exploring the soft play (we are now ruined because after a week of having soft play whenever he liked Baby D now thinks everything is a soft play and has decided to use his head as a rugby ball). There was lots for babies but unfortunately the toddler area was just a ball pit and some climbing between so most of the week was spent peeling Baby D off bigger kids who were playing in the Baby area (yep Baby D is wild and will launch himself at other children, I think he just likes their company!)
By the time we made it back to the room and changed for dinner we were both exhausted Daddy D could only manage soup, then miraculously recovered enough to manage dessert!
Being very British we got our money’s worth on day 2! We went into town in the morning and Mummy D got some lovely Mummy Dungarees and Baby D got a book and a wooden worm. Then we had a quick splash in the pool before lunch which was a fab time as we had the pool to ourselves because most people were having lunch. After lunch it was soft play until nap time! Safe to say Baby D slept very well when we were away. I also think because the travel cot mattress is a wee bit softer than his cotbed he slept better, when he’s eventually old enough for a pillow he is going to be one very happy baby.
The highlight of Monday was Bubbles the clown! Part of our ‘Toddler Break’ was some entertainment for under-fives and Monday night was the clown. I am a giant child and I love clowns, he even made me my own special giraffe balloons. He also made a wee boy a bike, the hubby was very jealous!
In the morning we enjoyed a lovely winter walk. The snow was magical, Baby D loved touching it and seeing it on all his beloved trees! Daddy D also thought it was hilarious when he pelted Mummy with snowballs, Daddy D had to grovel and fill Mummy with tea to make up for it.
We had a very yummy lunch at The Woodshed Bar, chicken nachos. Baby D tried the guacamole which he loved and had some of his tasty Ella’s Finger Foods! In the afternoon we were back to soft play! It’s a wonder Spider Man didn’t come home with us, although Baby D is now climbing onto the couch!
As part of our package we also had a family day out, there were a few options, we chose the Highland Wildlife Park. Baby D loves being outside and animals so this was literally his perfect day out. The park had lots to see but not much for wee ones to do.
There is a park for kids but it is mainly for older children so we kept Baby D snuggly in his buggy. He didn’t seem to mind, he enjoyed taking in all the views and animals. The highlights had to be seeing a red squirrel, watching the snow monkey feed and getting snarled at by the Highland Wildcat when I looked at his food.Oh and forgetting the wee man’s gloves so having to put Daddy D’s gloves on, he didn’t have a clue what was going on!
Day 4 was also the Party Night which entailed lots of tiny babies and toddlers jumping, crawling and running to terrible music, needless to say Baby D loved every minute!
My folks took the train 126 miles from Edinburgh to join us for the day, then took the same three-and-a-half-hour train home at night. Safe to say they love spending time with the whirlwind that is Baby D! While they were on the train we had breakfast, a swim, Baby D had a nap and we took a drive to the train station to pick them up!
Again the Hilton went all out and included a lovely art activity as part of their toddler break package! This involved Baby D painting a bit of the mask, eating the glitter and then covering us in the paint. After what felt like days trying to get Baby D to use any willing part of his body to get the paint on the lion mask we were finished. Mummy couldn’t help herself and stuck on some foam stickers and pom poms to make it more tactile for Baby D to play with.
We then drove to Loch Morlich, Baby D enjoyed snuggles with his grandparents and Daddy D tried to feed the ducks crisps to which Mummy D nearly killed Daddy D. He then resorted to trying to skim rocks!
For Tea we had a lovely meal together in The Foyer. We ordered far too much and ended up having to take some away in a doggy bag! Back to the train station after our meal to deposit a very tired Nana and Grandad!
The children’s entertainment on the final night was Cairngorm Creatures. This was right up Baby D’s street. I can’t believe how much he enjoyed it. He sat listening and looking so carefully. When the man came round with the ‘creatures’ Baby D touched them all so gently! The man was very good with the kids, when Baby D wasn’t sure he put the animals on his hands and even let Baby D’s feet touch a few things. There was a snake, bearded dragon, giant snails, cockroaches and millipedes. Not what I would normally touch but you have to when there are impressionable little people around.
On our last day we crammed as much in as possible. Check out wasn’t until noon which was fantastic. We managed a swim after breakfast, Daddy D packed the car while Baby D napped then we checked out still with plenty of time. We had a quick bite and a play in soft play before we made the journey home.
We had a fantastic trip and would definitely stay at the Hilton Colymbridge again, especially for one of the Toddler Breaks. The only downside for us was the cost of drinks both soft and alcoholic drinks were quite pricey. I must say though the staff in the hotel were fantastic with Baby D and nothing was a problem when we made any baby or non-baby related requests.
I can’t wait to see where we go next on our travels as a family! I hope you’ve enjoyed reading my tired ramblings!