Sandy Balls is a sprawling campsite over 120 acres on the edge of the New Forest.
Only a 30 minute drive away from Southampton and about 35 - 40 minutes away from the sandy beaches of Bournemouth. Despite this it is on the doorstep to one of the most beautiful areas in the country, the New Forest. Here you can see the famous ponies, horses, sheep and cattle wandering freely across the heathland and in the villages. If you are really lucky then you might even be able to spy a few deer.
There are plenty of nature trails that you can follow, or for the more energetic there are cycle trails.
The surrounding small villages are quaint and full of local culture with buildings to help relax you whilst you take a stroll around them or take a drink at a pub or café.
The facilities at Sandy Balls are very impressive for a campsite/holiday village.
There is a large reception to book you in as well as a central square with a multitude of shops and facilities for your enjoyment.
These include an outdoor and indoor swimming pool with a separate area for toddlers, a sauna and spa pool. The "Village Store" is large and very well stocked. There was even a large TV stand in the square showing Wimbledon whilst we were there.
If you just fancy some serious pampering then the beauty treatment centre, "The Retreat," can more than cover that requirement. There are a couple of restaurants that you can visit called the Woodside Inn & the other is the Forest Table, both have a great range on the menu with the Woodside Inn is being pet friendly. Play Zone is a play centre with arcade machines, games and coin drop fairground machines for youngsters and adults alike.
During the school holidays there is plenty of entertainment put on for children, families and adults to keep everybody happy. Even out of school holiday season there are weekly quiz nights and live entertainment at the weekends.
Around the park are a number of play parks where the children could go and play which our boys really loved. The only problem I could see was because these were placed at various locations around the campsite, your children need to be old enough to make their way around and you don't get that peace of mind of being able to see them all the time unless you go with them. The roads all have speed limits on them so it is quite common to see families cycling around the park.
We were staying in a tent and the pitch was a good size for our large 4 man tent with a power point and a hedge border. The actual pitch was a hard gravel based pitch which our pegs didn't penetrate. Luckily we could rent some pegs from the campsite which worked just fine. (As a result we have since gone out and got some hard ground pegs for next time which you can see here).
The campsite was so big that there were individual named fields. We went during a busy period with nearly every pitch taken up by a tent, campervan or mobile home, but it didn't seem over crowded.
The shower blocks were big and very clean and we never had any waits or problems here.
If you don't fancy camping then they also offer a wide choice of accommodation that you can stay in from basic camping pods, or safari tents, to super caravans.
This was definitely one of the more pricey campsites that we have stayed at for the cost per night of the pitch. But it does have so much more to offer than most, and is really more like a holiday park.
We really enjoyed the break and the boys were constantly off on another adventure, they really enjoyed themselves (which was one of the main reasons to be there so was worth it!) We loved the fact that there was so much to do there and in the surrounding area which was so beautiful.
You can book with Sandy Balls directly on their website here which is how we did it. Have fun!
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