Please note that threads in this topic are removed from the archive 90 days after the thread was started. If you would like your thread to be retrievable for longer than that, please choose another topic in which to post it. Our SN area is not a substitute for expert advice. While many Mumsnetters have a specialist knowledge of special needs, if they post here they are posting as members, not experts. There are, however, lots of organisations that can help - some suggestions are listed here.

Family holiday...DS1 NT 14 yr old and DS2 LF autism...where to go? Does anyone have a recommendation for a campsite

(23 Posts)
stillenacht Mon 24-Feb-14 22:37:07

Over the last few years we have had holidays with DS1 to Europe whilst luckily our parents have looked after DS2 at home, so we can have a break. This year we (well DH and I) want to bring DS2 on holiday (DS1 not so keen!) but we need a toddler friendly campsite for his needs (play area, safe water slides, kiddy pool with falling water from mushroom type thing) but also enough activity and teenagers for DS1 to have a good time too. Any recommendations? Xxx

stillenacht Mon 24-Feb-14 23:00:22

Oops DS2 is 10 but functioning around 2.5 years

Have you looked at the Siblu parks?

stillenacht Tue 25-Feb-14 08:45:45

Ooo will do, thanks!smile

StarlightMcKingsThree Tue 25-Feb-14 15:20:17

In the UK and for a short 'trial' you might want to look at Wellington Park.

The park closes to the public at 6pm but those camping then get free reign of all the adventure playgrounds and you are then allowed to ride your bikes.

youarewinning Tue 25-Feb-14 19:48:07

I looked at Wellington Park as a day out or night vamping Star. I'll defintely look seriously now you've recommended it.

I've booked to take DS (9) to longleat centre parcs in Aug for 4 nights. He's (poss) HFA/AS. I've found as there is lots to do I can keep him occupied but there is also the pools and lake and play parks as well as lots of space! I wonder if that sort of thing would be good as plenty for your teen?

StarlightMcKingsThree Tue 25-Feb-14 20:29:02

Perhaps we could have a MN camp there a couple of nights at Easter!?

youarewinning Tue 25-Feb-14 21:37:49

Oh yes star I was looking at Easter. I thought it looked the idea place for DS.

stillenacht Tue 25-Feb-14 21:57:56

Thanks everyonesmile I guess I should add we are looking really to go to France. Will check out all places suggestedsmilesmile

youarewinning Tue 25-Feb-14 23:09:16

French campsites ime are always very good at catering for children of all ages. Try looking at euro camp? You can go ready erected tent or caravan? The French ones all vary but I originally looked for ds and I euro camp France and was very impressed.

stillenacht Tue 25-Feb-14 23:29:07

Thanks youarewinningsmile we have done loads of Eurocamp/Keycamp/Canvas hols with DS1, my concern is safety for DS2, not being too close to the entertainment ie disco as he wouldn't go to sleep. Also he would need a good playground with not just one swing and a slide but poss zip wires. An enclosed playground would be good too. Also waterslides where you can go down in pairs. Sites where there is enough of a distance between caravans so our next door neighbours don't feel as if they have spent ten days living in autism central. That sort of thing really. Its all about keeping DS2 safe but allowing DS1 freedom.

StarlightMcKingsThree Wed 26-Feb-14 09:54:06

How the frig do you GET to the keycamp/Eurocamp locations?

stillenacht Wed 26-Feb-14 15:50:00

We drive (as we are not far from channel tunnel). Looking at a site near Royan. About 7 hours from home x

StarlightMcKingsThree Wed 26-Feb-14 15:59:04

Royan only takes 7 hours drive from UK?

StarlightMcKingsThree Wed 26-Feb-14 16:00:08

sorry for being thick but can you drive through the tunnel then?

stillenacht Wed 26-Feb-14 16:47:41

No you can't drive through it but get the drive on train....only just down the road for us

StarlightMcKingsThree Wed 26-Feb-14 16:52:27

So do you go to Paris and then drive down from their? Or somewhere else?

How do the kids manage the time in the car?

stillenacht Wed 26-Feb-14 17:05:57

Yes skirt past Paris...not sure of exact route but we have driven to Spain before (not with DS2 though!) as long as DS2 has charged iPad/kindle it's fine. I will sit in back with him and DS1 in front with DH as DS1 and 2 together in back doesn't work!

Flappingandflying Sat 01-Mar-14 20:55:02

Hi. Three places. La Garangeoire in the Vendee. Has the same staff year on year so lots of people go with sen kids. Pool does get very busy in high summer. Playground is rather open though. Massive sized pitches. Lots of activities, and a paintballing and high trees place nearby. The canvas pitches are the best. On site caravans very good but pm mefor more info.

Secondly. Etang de la breche in samur. Massive massive pitches. Very flat. Not as much for teens but still good.

Thirdly. Chateaux les eaux in pair sur mer in Normandy. Massive indoor pool. Good enclosed playground. May be a bit boring for a 14 year old.

Rougemont is also good. Another Castels site.

StarlightMcKingsThree Sun 02-Mar-14 14:25:33

Flapping, Do you take your own tent to those?

We prefer places we can put up our own tent as the inside is consistent wherever we go iyswim. But lots of campsites in Europe seem to want you to stay in their already erected tents.

We did eurocamp with ds1 (severely autistic, nonverbal, LD's). Our biggest problem is that he was a runner & it was quite hard to secure the caravan - esp at night. We found hiring a campervan sort of more successful (until ds3 came along when it all got a bit much).

If you ever look in the UK I'd say go to Challaborough (Devon - it's a small & surprisingly nice caravan site) - book your NT son in for surf camp where he will find other teenagers to hang around with & arrange some surf 1:1's with your younger son. Both with Discovery surf school. They are fantastic with LFA/LD's/non verbal autism - absolutely brilliant (they're good with NT kids as well).

magso Thu 06-Mar-14 22:16:40

Thanks also for these tips. After hiring a camper van we found it worked well for ds (14 ASD/LD), so we have bought an older one and hope to have it ready soon for some UK trips before tackling France. We have not braved camping (since ds arrived) because of his escaping tendency. Camervans have a lock! He loves 'sleeping' in the over cab bed as he can watch the stars etc, which are naturally rather like counting sheep after a while. With our hired camper, we toured down through France, where there are many short term stops (assuming all campers have their own bathrooms of course), often in the nicest or wildest spots, or placed next to amenities, deserted beaches or in the market square- usually with only a couple of other vans sharing the space ( we went at Easter). Wouldn't suit a NT teen perhaps, unless you stick to surf spots along the coast, which tend to be busy and crowded.

Flappingandflying Fri 07-Mar-14 13:19:31

Starlight, you can camp at all of them and la garangoire doesn't mind how many tents you put up per pitch so we will have three one for each boy and one for us. I think the one in samur is the same. I wouldn't camp at Chateaux Les Eaux because where the tents are can get a bit boggy.

Join the discussion

Join the discussion

Registering is free, easy, and means you can join in the discussion, get discounts, win prizes and lots more.

Register now