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Center Parcs De Kempervennen
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Reviewed 5 May 2010

We chose Kempervennen because it has a ski slope, is fairly easy to reach and is so much cheaper than UK Centerparcs. We were delighted with the position of our villa which had a lake view and was close to the farm, the sports centre and the aquadome. The villa was clean, spacious and well equipped. It wasn't one of the most modern but was fine for us. The farm was an enormous hit with our two grandsons aged 5 and 2 especially as the goats roamed around the site every day. Cycling was fun and easy and there are plenty of paths to explore. On the other side of the main road there are extensive cycle and footpaths if you want to spend time off site.The lakes and beaches are lovely and I imagine that in the summer you could spend most of your time there. The weather was fantastic so we didn't use the facilities as much as we might have done. The restaurants were a little more expensive than at Longleat and not terribly exciting so we self catered most of the time. On site shopping was not cheap and fairly limited so we cycled into the local town and shopped at the big supermarket. We will definitely go again, especially if the price differential remains so great.

  • Stayed: April 2010, travelled with family
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3  Thank aelfred
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 22 April 2010

We have just returned from a 6 night stay at Kempervennen. We opted to drive and went with Eurotunnel. The drive was extremely easy. The area is lovely and flat. Book in online as this is much faster. You get your keys in the car park and then drive to your designated parking area. Otherwise you have to get out at the main car park, queue at the main reception and then come back to your car.

Our main reason for choosing Kempervennen was for the ski dome. We had skiing lessons and my husband and son spent a further day practising. The entire experience was fantastic and the instructors were excellent. We would certainly recommend going here if you are a beginner or have children that love to ski.

The cottages are very basic but they have enough space and are set in a lovely wood environment. The kitchen is really well equipped with the essentials. Even had egg cups. There is no oven but there is a hob and microwave. The linen however leaves much to be desired. Each pack they charge you for online is per person and not per room. The pillows were awful, they are brown!! You need to buy your own toilet paper. Thankfully someone had left half a roll when we arrived.

The pool facilities were great and it never felt over crowded. The kid's club wannabe for kids was fantastic and a great price of 5 euro. There are various parks well kitted for the kids. Our kids are 2.5 and 5 so we could unfortunately not do many of the sports activities. Children have to be 8. But there was a great selection.

The main super market had most of what you would need with lovely ham, cheese and fresh bakery items. We did not think that it was overly expensive. Be warned that prices are exactly the same as in the UK.

Now...the restaurants. We went to the Pizza & Pasta restaurant and thought it was awful. If you do not mind thick based frozen pizza's then you will not be too disappointed. But we thought that as it was a restaurant they could have made the effort to make their own and not heat up frozen pizzas. (well that is what it tasted like) After that first impression we did not visit any of the other restaurants as they were pricey. We did however eat at the Montanna Snow Centre. They did lovely food but also at a price. Steak, salad, chips 18 Euro.

Cycling around is great as it is very flat. Go out of the 'camp' as the towns around are great and the roads have cycling paths next to them. Some of the paths even have their own traffic lights. Westerhoven has a lovely pub next to the church with a huge kids play area at the back. The landlady was extremely friendly and helpful and even rushed to the bakery up the road to get fresh pastries to go with our coffee. Nearly all the people we came in contact with were friendly and we were made to feel very welcome!

Overall we had a terrific holiday and would consider going back to practise our skiing and explore more of the areas around the 'camp'.

  • Stayed: April 2010, travelled with family
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5  Thank Gamblefamily
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 10 April 2010

We went on the personal recommendation of 2 friends - I haven't read one bad review of this place and I can see why. We travelled to Calais by Seafrance this Easter – last ferry out of Dover and then they call a lightning strike. So what should have been an hour 30min sail time ended up with being stranded at sea and uninformed for over 5 hours – had to ring the UK to find out what was happening and then was shouted at by the most ignorant check-in attendant on the way home for simply daring to say “pardon”, Next time P&O all the way, but as previously stated definitely worth sailing to Calais and driving the extra miles than sitting on the ferry for the extra time to Ostend or the Dutch ports. If you are a bit perturbed by driving in Europe, the roads are extremely straight with loads of garages/services so apart from the atrocious rain on the way out, driving really was a doddle – about 3 hours from Calais. Thanks to Seafrance we didn’t arrive till 9pm and so lost an entire day – we were aiming to arrive at about 3pm. This meant that we were somewhat limited in the times that we could book activities as all the best slots had already gone. As you can use the facilities from 10am on the day of arrival (although you can’t get into your chalet till 3pm) I think next time we’ll follow my friend’s advice, get an afternoon ferry (rather than the crack of dawn) and stay in cheap hotel the night before so you can be there bright and early to take full advantage.
Having never been before, Centerparcs was everything I expected and really so much cheaper than the UK equivalent – I priced out 2 trips for October for comparison. For family of 5 the UK worked out at £200pp excluding bike hire, sheets and towels as opposed to £142 including all of the above AND the ferry!!! We got a last minute deal this time and stayed in the Original Comfort chalets – the basic ones. We had a patio that opened up on to a little lake with duck and swans. It was more than adequate and spacious enough. As stated in other review there was no oven (only microwave & hob), there was a bath as opposed to just a shower so perfect if you have a very young family and lots of child friendly equipment such as high chairs and baby toilets seats in the cloak room should you need them. – My only complaint about the chalet was that we just couldn’t get the heat to be consistent – think we may have finally sussed it out on the last day – but it was tolerable. Our boys 11, 14 and 15 had a ball and were pretty much too knocked to do anything after 7pm – We hired bikes, the kids had snowboarding lessons, did the water rafting, bowling and hire wire adventure. Being a less than active mum, my personal highlight was wallowing in the comfortably heated outdoor section of the pool.
The onsite supermarket and restaurants were relatively expensive but there is a Lidl in the nearby town (5 mins by car, 20 mins by bike) and lots of bars and restaurants. Next time I’d bring more stuff from the UK like taco kits or fajita spices and wraps. We booked the fondue fun-cooking to be delivered to our cottage one night - We ordered 5 of them but to tell the truth 3 would have probably sufficed for the 5 of us. I enjoyed it immensely but I wouldn’t do it again for 3 ravenous teens with no patience.
Despite the rotten Easter weather, once we had our waterproofs on, it really didn’t stop us. Next year we’re planning to go after May and take a big gang of family and friends when all of the water activities open. All in all a fabulous little find and great family holiday.

  • Stayed: April 2010, travelled with family
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5  Thank Gorgeous2000
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 21 March 2010

This was the first family expierence of Centre Parcs and overall it was just what we all needed during the Feruary half term. The party occupied 2, 8 person bungalows. There was adequate space for us all. The bungalows were very well equiped and covered all of our family needs for 5 days. The swimming facilitys onsite where more than enough to keep our 2 children who would live in water if we allowed it, happy for the whole week. We thoroughly enjoyed this holiday and are looking to stay at Les Trois Forets in October of this year.

  • Stayed: February 2008, travelled with family
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Thank Travellingbunch100
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 9 November 2009

We usually visit this Center Parcs site once a year, normally during school half term. It has a ski slope attached (with real snow) and is a fraction of the cost staying at Center Parcs in the UK at the same time. Tip for UK visitors: if you book through a non-UK site e.g. German, then it’s even cheaper. Visit the centerparcs.com site and say you’re visiting from another country – it’s all legal, CP have separate companies for each country so they can charge different amounts, and as an EU citizen you can buy from any of them. You may need a .com mail address and the site won’t be in English, we saved about 100 Euros doing this.

It’s a classic center parcs resort set in an extensive wooded area with lots of small lakes, bridges and winding roads and paths. There’s the obligatory large central dome with one half being the tropical swimming pool with pools including a wave machine, slide, rapids, kiddies area and tanks of fish you can view under water using snorkels. The other half has various restaurants, well stocked shops, ten-pin bowling and bars all set in a trees with winding paths and ponds containing large fish. This does look quite effective when it’s dark. The life guards here are more relaxed than at UK sites where they constantly whistle at anyone having fun, in fact there’s a more relaxed feel around the whole park.

Bikes are everywhere as cars are only allowed on site to unload/load (apart form a few who think they don’t have to bother – letters are handed out to offenders). One good thing, as it’s Holland the entire site is flat. The villas (or cottages) are also typical Center Parcs, set back off paths and clustered so you don’t really see you neighbours. The basic villas are fairly spacious and comfortable but you need to take your own bedding. You can upgrade including having a private sauna if you want to pay extra – having said that the wife turns the heating so high the drying towels and costumes makes the whole villa a steam room. A new addition is about half a dozen villas on the lake (actually in the lake, not on the shore). I’m going to guess these will be expensive.

There’s a sports centre, high wire activities, possible water activities (always closed as it’s been too cold when we’ve visited), a farm, playgrounds, a land train and as already mentioned – a large indoor real snow ski slope. The cost at the ski centre has risen, but it’s still far cheaper than similar UK slopes, I think it was 65 Euros for a pass to ski all day every day Monday to Friday (you need to hire ski wear if you don’t have our own). There’s the main slope with a few jumps and bars for snow boarders, a nursery slope, a couple of travelators and a ski pull. Attached is a bar/cafe overlooking the slope that serves fantastic hot chocolate with cream.

Despite the strong pound it’s still cheaper to visit here from the UK even after taking into account the crossing and the distance. It’s about 2 ½ to 3 hours motorway drive from Calais, most of it fairly quiet but it can be a little sticky and scary around Antwerp with as many trucks as cars on the road all swapping lanes and jockeying for position. Being abroad gives it a little more interest, unless you step into one of the resort car parks and see every other car is British !

Outside the site you can safely ride into nearby Valkenswaard which is a lively market town or visit Eindhoven by car (or bike if you’re up for the challenge).

Overall, very happy with our visit as usual, only being spoilt by a curt and over zealous UK customs official on our return who suggested we were bringing a 14 year old girl into the country for ‘unsavoury’ reason, including possible illegal organ donation as she had a different surname on her passport (I won’t print the her other suggestion here that she said in front of my children, not really for family viewing). Honestly !

Stayed: October 2009, travelled with family
5  Thank julianp-uk
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
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