Family Fun at Les Villages Nature® Paris
holidays are becoming more popular year on year but finding a venue that will
please a wide range of ages can be challenging. Recently I came across a great
option just across the Channel.
Our family consists of 60 something grandparents, 30
something daughters with partners and grandchildren currently 13 and 10 and
growing fast. We love to spend time together but have to choose wisely so that
all needs are catered for.
I was invited to check out the sparkling new Les Villages Nature® Paris and did so
with an eventual family gathering in mind.
My journey started from London St Pancras on the delightfully
relaxing Eurostar where I travelled in Standard Premier Class and enjoyed a
complimentary coffee, croissant and orange juice in air-conditioned comfort.
After a hectic, but enjoyable, day in Paris (more of which
in a later feature) I took a taxi transfer to the park, due to French rail
strikes. The park is situated just 32 kms outside the city and close to Euro
Disney. It is possible to travel to Villages Nature® Paris by road or rail, although
if I return our family would probably drive via the Eurotunnel.
As you turn off the busy motorway suddenly you find yourself
in the midst of beautiful and peaceful countryside and it is hard to believe
the bustle of the city, and the excitement of Euro Disney, are so close.
This new and innovative park opened in September 2017 and is
an amazing project based on eco-tourism and sustainability. The Villages Nature® Paris project was conceived and
designed by two leaders in the tourist industry, Euro Disney S.C.A. and Pierre
& Vacances Center Parcs. The complementary expertise contributed by both
parties has underpinned the partnership since the start of the project.
Villages Nature® Paris makes
an ideal base for multi-generational families as it offers stylish self-catering
accommodation, a selection of individual restaurants, shops and activities.
The park has been designed around a huge lake which is
overlooked by an architectural masterpiece of stone and glass which is the
famous Aqualagon. Whatever the weather
this is the place that will delight all the family. The pools, both inside and out,
are naturally heated to a comfy 30degrees. There are aqua fitness classes to
join, scary flumes and tubes to slide down (not for me!) or granny can just
float around on the ‘lazy river’. Sunbeds are dotted around on immaculate
terraces all with great views. Maybe Mum and Granny deserve some spa action,
and the Deep Nature Spa offers some signature treatments as well as steam room
Although Les Villages Nature® Paris is a car-free holiday village, those arriving by road can
park for free near to their accommodation. I can recommend picking up a bike
for the duration of your stay as the miles of cycle paths can take you around
the whole complex. There are bikes of all sizes for all ages; I particularly
enjoyed peaceful early morning bike rides around the village.
The purpose built fully functioning BelleVie farm is a draw
for younger children with the chance to help look after the animals, take a
pony ride or learn skills such as breadmaking or honey production. Complete
your day with a freshly produced lunch at The Tea Saloon which features locally
Older children will enjoy living out fantasies and
adventures on the zip lines and monkey bridges that criss cross the ‘Forest of
Legends’. Creative workshops teach the finer points of den building, always a
favourite with youngsters.
Despite all the activities there is plenty of space to get
away from it all and lap up the peace and tranquillity of the very beautiful ‘extraordinary
gardens’. Here you will find sheltered paths meandering through delightful and
thoughtful planting with water features and ‘secret’ seating areas tucked away.
The brightly decorated accommodations range in size to suit
groups up to 12 and all have fully functioning kitchens and outdoor space. The
onsite supermarket offers a wide range of supplies including healthy option
salad bar and ready meals. I found prices to be fairly average both in the supermarket
and restaurants. There is a popular Italian pizza and pasta restaurant, ‘Valpiano’,
and the innovative French cafe ‘Pure etc.’ specialising in healthy seasonal
fast food. The onsite bakery and patisserie opens early for freshly cooked
morning baguettes and croissant and is always busy. The range of eateries and
availability of fresh food gives families the chance to mix self-catering with
eating out therefore pleasing everyone.
After my quick visit I felt the park offered just the place
for all the family to spend time together, near to Euro Disney and Paris. Ease
of transport makes it ideal for a short break, or a longer holiday at any time
of year, or as a place to call into when travelling through France.
For more information, or to make a
reservation, please visit www.villagesnatureparis.co.uk or telephone 0845 351 0820.
A four-night mid-week stay in a Country Premium apartment
that sleeps up to four people is priced from €317/£280. All
accommodation features free Wi-Fi, fully-equipped kitchens with dishwashers,
furnished terraces or balconies and flat-screen TVs. Baby beds and high chairs
are available in all cottages and upon request in apartments. (Based on 2018
Travel via EurostarEurostar operates a daily direct service in each direction to Disneyland Paris/Marne-La-Vallée (daily direct services to the resort do not operate on Tuesdays and Saturdays except during school holidays)
Fares direct to Disneyland Paris/Marne-La-Vallée from the UK
(London St. Pancras, Ashford International and Ebbsfleet International) start
from £38 one-way for adults and £27 one-way for children aged between 4 and 11,
based on a return journey. Children under 4 travel for free. (2018 prices)
Tickets are available from www.eurostar.com or from Eurostar’s
contact centre on 03432 186 186
Silver Travel Advisor recommends Pierre & Vacances.