We weren’t planning on going on holiday this year. Funds are pretty limited right now and we couldn’t afford a holiday. I knew that the other half wanted to take a trip to the seaside with the boys and I started looking at the journey to our favourite place, Walton-on-the-Naze.
We went there a few years ago with Zach and it has remained firmly in our memories of being the perfect location for some seaside fun. The problem is, it’s about an hour and forty odd minutes from our house and with my travelling anxiety, along with my worry that Oscar will go mental if we get stuck in any form of traffic, I really didn’t want to do it in a day like we did last time. I started having a look at any cheap B&B’s that we could stay in overnight but with it being peak season, we just couldn’t do it.
When I was looking at the map for the B&B’s, I realised that Walton is just a 15 minute drive from Holland-on-Sea where my Aunt and Uncle live. They are always telling us that we are welcome to stay with them any time and so I had a bit of a brainwave, got in touch with them and sure enough, they were happy to have us stay. And that’s how we came to find ourselves enjoying a few days down at the seaside!
We set off on Sunday lunchtime and the journey was perfectly timed for Oscar’s nap and both of the boys ended up sleeping the whole way there. We had a straight run through, steering clear of the motorway and opting for the A and B roads instead. When we arrived, we headed into their house and got our bits out of the car and then pretty much headed straight to the beach which is literally a five minute walk from their house. We thought we would give the boys a little glimpse into some beach fun and both of them ended up splashing around in the sea and getting drenched! Because we were only popping down there, we hadn’t taken a change of clothes so Zach wandered back to the house in his pants and his thankfully quite long t-shirt!
Once we were back at the house, the boys played out in the garden, the other half popped a couple of pizzas in the oven for them and I popped out to the small Tesco to pick up a few bits for our stay. We then put the boys to bed and chilled out for the evening.
On Monday we were up early (mostly thanks to the seagulls and our children!), and we were heading straight down to Walton. We made the short journey in the car and found a darn good parking spot right on the front. We then headed down to the beach hut we had loaned from Millie’s Beach Huts, and opened it up with excitement – especially the boys!
Once we had settled into the hut, we went straight down to the beach, bagged an area with our picnic blanket, and the boys began their day of fun.
Zach was on the beach all day, other than for a brief spot of lunch in the hut. Oscar was also down there, bar his epic two hour nap on the day bed (the only time in recent times that I have purposely fed him to sleep). But otherwise, they splashed, dug, collected shells, and splashed some more. Oh and we spotted a jellyfish in the sea which totally freaked me out!
Zach did a spot of crabbing whilst Oscar was asleep, I wrote the beach hut review whilst it was fresh in my mind and then once he was awake, we went back down to the sand to have more fun.
We then went down to the next section of beach which is full of stones as it’s possible to find shark teeth there. Sadly, we didn’t find any, although we did pass a boy who had! We did find a lot more fab shells and stones though, which we popped into buckets to take home for the garden.
After some more fun on the beach, we headed up to the beach hut to get ourselves dried, de-sanded and changed, before we sadly locked it up and said goodbye. We popped up to load the car up and then headed back down to find the recommended fish and chip shop that I knew about. We ordered our food and sat at a table on the beach enjoying our freshly cooked fish, followed by an ice-cream for all. We then headed back to the car and back home with two very tired boys.
On Tuesday, we hadn’t actually made any plans but when we got up, we decided to head into Clacton so that the boys could have some fun that didn’t consist of being on the beach. We were once again pretty lucky with parking, and had just a short walk down to the pier area.
We stayed off of the pier because it’s blooming expensive, but we did let the boys have a go on some of the rides in the funland area.
Once they had used up their tokens, we decided to have a game of bowling. It was our first ever full game and it was loads of fun. Oscar was winning right up until the end when the other half scored half a strike followed by a strike. The meanie!
We had some lunch and then it was time to get Oscar to sleep. That was a bit more troublesome, and Zach was moaning that he was bored – but he eventually managed to nod off and we headed back to to the main amusement section where there is a brand new epic soft play. Stupidly, we went in. I only say it was stupidly because of course, it wasn’t long before Oscar woke up from the noise of screaming children. But, he and his bother had the most fun and Zach was in there for about two and a half hours!
Once we decided that they had had enough, we headed back to the car and home where we cooked some dinner, at which Zach point blankly refused to eat and he was in absolute meltdown mode. We very quickly bathed them and got them into bed. They were both fast asleep by 7pm!
And then came Wednesday. Our last day before we headed home. I had done a bit of research before we had gone away, and discovered that Colchester was very close by, in fact, pretty much on route home, and so we had traded in some of our many Tesco vouchers and got tickets to Colchester Zoo. On Tuesday night, with the boys being so tired, we questioned whether we should actually go, but they woke up bright and breezy and so we were ready and saying goodbye to my Aunt and Uncle, before heading to the zoo. It was about a half an hour drive, the boys both had a little nap, and we were soon there ready for some fun. We did treat them to a buggy to help them round though, the zoo is incredibly hilly!
We wandered around the zoo seeing all the animals, had a spot of lunch (and witnessed a duck steal half a sausage from Oscar’s hands!), and had a play in the big playground area.
Because Oscar had a nap on the way, it was well into the afternoon when he started getting super tired and so we decided to head off home to beat the traffic. Again, another sleep on the entire journey, and another easy journey home.
We had such a wonderful few days and I am so glad that I had the brainwave to go and stay with my Aunt and Uncle. Having a few days at the seaside was just what we needed to break the summer holidays up!