*Ad – We were gifted a stay at Bluestone National Park Resort during the Bwbach Festival in exchange for this post.
We had a fantastic stay last year at Bluestone during the Bwbach Festival, although the weather wasn’t the best, this year our stay was even better. One reason we love Bluestone is the great outdoors. The walks, the activities, the gorgeous lodges, and the icecream!
While we were at Bluestone Wales last year they were building the Serendome (love the name by the way!) As the weather was pretty dismal there was a need for another undercover place to go to besides the Adventure Centre.
We left Cornwall around 5:30 am on Monday morning to head over to the Bluestone National Park Resort. Our girls travel better really early in the morning as they sleep most of the way there. Travelling with a toddler isn’t easy. Plus we can get onto the resort at 11 am so why not make the most of another full day at Bluestone!
When we arrived we checked in at the drive-through check-in point, parked the car and walked down to the village to explore. We had booked a golf buggy a few weeks back but you can’t pick up until 2 pm on arrival day. After we had a bite to eat and a play in the village park we caught the land train up to the Serendome, which I was eager to explore. The weather throughout the week was so lovely that to be honest I didn’t ride on the golf buggy much. Preferring to walk with the pram. Getting in the exercise! But the MIL cannot walk very far so Mr B was happily driving her around in the golf buggy.
Last time we stayed in a Ramsey lodge all to itself right by the lake on Bartholomew Rise. It was the most perfect spot. This time as we were bringing the MIL we had a Gateholm lodge which is a detached lodge with three bedrooms, not just the two like the Ramsey. Our lodge was in Preseli View, so not too far from the village, but it was surrounded by other lodges.
If you stay in a Ramsey lodge you can get move in from 3 pm on your arrival day which is handy with young children. The Gateholm lodge is available from 4:30 pm. As little Dottie is a year older than last year, this didn’t bother us as we went for tea first at The Oak Tree restaurant in the village.
One thing that I love about Bluestone is that they have different themes around the year to do with the seasons. The Bluestone Seasons are: The Winter Lights, Myths and Legends, Summer Festival, Bwbach Festival and Christmasland.
Like last year, this year we stayed during the Bwbach Festival. Autumn and Halloween is my favourite time of year so I’ve loved staying during the Bwbach experience. Every season has its own themed Dinner Show, craft workshops and Parade and Festival that the guests can join in with.
The Bwbach Festival is running from September 2nd until November 3rd this year. Bwbach is translated into English as “little scare”, the Bwbach are friendly hobgoblins from Welsh folklore that according to legend, performed good turns around the house in exchange for rewards.
Around the resort are the Bwbach scarecrows, we loved going around to find them all. There is a Pumpkin Parade and Festival that takes place on the last night of every break, and at the end of the season (November 3rd) there is a celebration with the magical Burning of the Bwbach. Lit as the sun goes down, the 11ft burning Bwbach floats in the centre of the lake.
New for 2019 at Bluestone is the Serendome. Bringing outdoor adventures inside. Perfect for when the Welsh weather turns against you! The Serendome is the home of excitement and adventures.
Under the transparent dome roof, you will find Skywalk and the mini skywalk for kids, Wacky Races and relaxation spots. For families, there is the Sand Play and Water Play areas, plus the Imagination Garden which we absolutely loved.
The 400 seats Cloud Theatre was still in the building stages while we were there, but it looks to be fantastic. Imagine the sound under the dome!
If you are after a bite to eat, you can find some delicious street food in The Terraces and loads of seating. For a cup of tea, coffee or cooling ice cream, there is The Garden Box. It’s right between the water play and sand play so easily accessible while keeping an eye on the kids. We visited a few times for icecream that was thick and creamy – amazing. If you are after a drink, you can visit The Bar-O-Meter serving cocktails, beers and other refreshments.
We think the Serendome is a fantastic new investment for Bluestone and it’s a place like no other. A must-see stop at Bluestone for sure.
The Well Spa Retreat
The MIL kindly looked after the girls for a couple of hours one afternoon, so myself and Mr B had some time at The Well Spa.
Before we went to Bluestone we booked ourselves a couple of hours at the thermal suite. The thermal suite is an indulgent experience in itself offering six unique pods; each with its own therapeutic benefit focused on the rebalance of mind, body, and soul. You will find a salt inhalation room, hot brick sauna, herbal steam room, marine steam room, Ice room, and hot slate sauna. I particularly liked the herbal steam room, it cleared up my blocked nose and I felt so much clearer after spending 10 minutes in there. To cool down you can use the experience showers or the ice room.
You will also find The Sanctuary Relaxation Room a quiet place to recover your thoughts if you wish. We didn’t go into this room as being away from the girls for a couple of hours is peace and quiet for us! But we did spend the end of our time slot in the hydrotherapy pool, perfect for Mr B’s neck and back problems. We thoroughly enjoyed our time at The Well Spa Retreat. I want to head back to Bluestone just to visit this and the Serendome!
I know a lot of people use Bluestone as a base and go off-site to Tenby and other places, but we love to come to Bluestone to get away from driving and enjoy the place as it is. We love to park up the car on Monday and leave it in the car park until Friday. There are lots to discover and explore at Bluestone itself. Lunch at Camp Smokey was pretty good.
This time as the weather was good we took a long walk around the yellow nature trail for a few hours. It was another highlight of the stay for me. It was closed due to bad weather when we were there last year so it was something we never got to see.
I could go on and talk about Bluestone forever. It feels like home to us now. The staff are friendly, good food. So much to see and do and explore. The burger I had in the Farmhouse grill was out of this world I forgot to add!
Thank you, Bluestone, for a lovely family holiday, we’ve made a lot of memories to remember.
Thanks for stopping by today, I hope you’ve enjoyed this post.