Weymouth Land Train

The Weymouth Land Train and Jurassic Skyline

Last week we took Sebastian to SEA LIFE Weymouth where he got to see his favourite sea creatures.The weather was amazingly clear so we decided to take the land train to the Jurassic Skyline which stands 53m above the Jurassic coast.

Sebby loves trains so you can imagine his excitement when he saw the train was decorated with all his favourite sea creatures and we took the rather bumpy ride along the seafront to our destination.

Weymouth Land Train

We got to the Jurassic Skyline in around 10 minutes and literally walked straight on as it was so quiet, sharing the gondola with just a handful of other people.

The gondola rises gently from the ground, up to the top of the tower and slowly rotates a full 360 degrees offering uninterrupted panoramic views up to 26km away including Portland, Lulworth and beyond through its floor to ceiling windows.

Jurassic Skyline

The gondola performs two full rotations at a relaxed pace, with a commentary explaining everything you can see as well as some local history.

Jurassic Skyline

We had to wait to get the land train back to the SEA LIFE Centre so watched and waved as the Jurassic Skyline took the next lot of passengers up on high and had a wander around its base to see what else we could see which included a cormorant fishing in the sea.


The Jurassic Skyline is part of the Merlin group so if you have Merlin Annual passes it is free to use. Standard tickets are just £6.50 per person, or you can buy a combined ticket which gets you into the SEA LIFE Centre too for £16.50.



Pizza Express Bournemouth #PizzaExpressFamily

I always used to enjoy a visit to Pizza Express until last year when a birthday visit, which also happened to be Fathers Day, went badly wrong at their Tower Park branch. I was so disappointed with the state of the restaurant, food and service that we haven’t been back since – until now.

On Thursday we headed to the Bournemouth Pizza Express restaurant which is set in the beautiful old Post Office building in central Bournemouth and our experience couldn’t have been more different from our last visit.

The restaurant was well set out, clean and tidy but best of all it was warm and friendly. Our waitress, Delia, was the perfect hostess, introducing us to new food to try, recommending some dishes over others and being genuinely lovely. She even complimented Isaac, Eliza and Sebastian on their behaviour which seemed to make them want to behave even better.

We ordered our drinks and the kids got going on decorating their hats with crayola colouring pens and stickers that were supplied.


When we ordered our food, unusually for us, we decided to have a starter. I love their dough balls and we got a sharing plate with bolognese, pesto and garlic butter dips for the adults although I have to say I preferred the kids balsamic vinegar dip though.


I have heard great things about the cocktails at Pizza Express but sadly hubby met us there straight from work which meant we were both driving, so I consoled myself with a refreshing glass of Cloudy Sicilian Lemonade.

I was really impressed with how quickly our food came out. Upon Delia’s recommendation Hubby went for the Calabrese with fiery, soft ‘nduja sausage and spicy Calabrese sausage D.O.P with fresh chilli, Roquito pepper, roasted red & yellow peppers, mozzarella and tomato, finished with light mozzarella, rocket, pesto and Gran Milano cheese. I went for the Pollo salad with chicken, goat’s cheese, red pepper, fresh tomato, black olives and croutons with seasonal mixed leaves and house dressing and Kian stick to his normal choice of Sloppy Guiseppe with hot spiced beef, green pepper, red onion, mozzarella and tomato. Sebby and Eliza both had pasta and Isaac had a pepperoni pizza.


Plates cleared it was time for dessert and I did wonder if I could squeeze anymore in, but I managed a light raspberry sorbet which was delicious. Hubby chose, another recommendation from Delia, the Honeycomb Cream Slice, Kian had the Chocolate Glory that we joked was almost as big as him and the kids chose Sundae’s.


We really couldn’t fault this visit to Pizza Express in Bournemouth and my faith is restored in Pizza Express so we will definitely be back soon.

Pizza Express Bournemouth #PizzaExpressFamily

How would you like to win some very yummy Pizza Express prizes so that you can enjoy some family meal time yourself?

I will be co-hosting a Twitter party on the 31st March from 2.00-3.30pm and all you need to do is join in the conversation, tell us what you love about Pizza Express, your best tips for dining out with the family and use the hashtag to show you’re on board – #PizzaExpressFamily

Follow the hashtag from now because we will also be bringing you a very exciting competition in a few days, lots of lovely reviews, more information about the Twitter party and a very real party that we’ll be covering direct from Pizza Express in Westfield’s Stratford City. For now though, consider yourself well and truly invited!

Go on, join the #PizzaExpressFamily! You know you want to like a doughball wants garlic butter!

Disclaimer: We were guests of Pizza Express as part of the #PizzaExpressFamily campaign. All thoughts and opinions are our own.


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Eco-Gites of Lenault

All the fun of the Farm at Eco-Gites of Lenault

Being a family of 6, hotel stays can be really awkward as they just don’t make family rooms that are big enough for our family so we have to pay extra to have two rooms which really adds to the cost of a holiday, so we tend to look for holiday cottages or large caravans that can comfortably sleep us all.

I am always nervous of staying in new places and have to admit that I prefer to stay somewhere where there is some sort of friendly connection, so Eco-Gites of Lenault stood out for me as I had been chatting to Rosie on twitter for quite some time.

I booked the Gite back in May last year as a surprise birthday present for Hubby who wanted to see all the historic WW2 sites and was really surprised by how reasonable the price was, even in high season. The booking process was clear and simple, with a deposit to hold the week and then payment 6 weeks before our arrival date. You also need to factor in a damages deposit of £150 which is payable on your arrival and returned after inspection when you leave.

Rosie also offers those little extra’s such as doing a small shop for essentials on your arrival and cooking your first meal on your arrival for a small extra cost. We were also welcomed with a large gift basket of goodies and some homemade cakes, much to the kids delight.

The French don’t do postcodes like us British, so the best our satnav could do was take us to the village of Lenault, but thankfully the directions to the Gite were easy to follow and we found it, in the dark at 10pm at night, with no problem at all. Rosie was waiting for us with a fire going and wine chilling in the fridge (we really needed it) and the meal we had ordered postponed until the following day, as we were late due to ferry delays.

The first night went passed in a bit of a blur but the kids all slept well and we all felt better by the morning but we decided to stay at the Gite on our first day as 15 hours of travelling had taken it out of us but it gave us the chance to take in our surroundings.

Eco-Gites Lenault

The gite has it’s own terraced garden with table and chairs, sun umbrella and BBQ, although it was the wrong time of year to use this. The kids however loved the large play area, play barn and trampoline that are a few metres away from the front door and Rosie introduced us to all the farm animals.

Eco-Gites Lenault

The kids favourite part of staying at Eco-Gites Lenault was not just the huge amount of toys that they could play with both inside and outside the gite, but they also had access to the animals. Every morning they got the chance to help Rosie on the feed run,  mixing up the pigs feed, collecting eggs and even giving the pigs their sugar beet treats and in the evening they got to put the animals to bed.

Eco-Gites Lenault

We were really lucky with the weather and it was mostly sunny whilst we were there, with the added treat of a snow day, where we stayed at the Gite and spent the day playing in the snow.

Eco-Gites Lenault

The Gite benefits from excellent insulation and although we had radiators we could switch on in the bedrooms we didn’t need them as the log burner warmed the whole Gite for us. I so wish we had one at home.


I cannot recommend Eco-Gites Lenault highly enough. The hospitality was fantastic, the Gite was cosy, comfortable and more than big enough for us all and the location was perfect for exploring Normandy and everything it has to offer.

A week wasn’t long enough to see everything we wanted to see so we hope to return next year, only this time in the spring.

Thomas Land

A Winter Visit to Thomas Land

We were first introduced to Drayton Manor when Sebby was a newborn but it was our second visit where we really fell in love with Thomas Land and all the park had to offer. There is nothing better than seeing your child gasp with awe and excitement around every corner as they spot their favourite characters around every corner.

Last weekend we were invited to Drayton Manor, home of Thomas Land for an exclusive event where we got to ride our favourite characters before members of the public were allowed which meant no queues, not that I have ever found them that long on our previous visits.

We followed Sebby’s lead and soon found ourselves flying high aboard Jeremy’s Air Academy.

Thomas Land

Flynn’s Fire and Rescue was next up, although it was too cold to shoot the water jets we enjoyed the ride all the same. Sadly Sebby was just too short to ride Captain’s Sea Adventure, so we watched and waved to Abbey, Isaac and Eliza instead before another flying lesson but this time aboard Harold the helicopter.

Thomas Land

Nothing would persuade the older kids to go on the troublesome trucks rollercoaster although they did bravely ride Bertie Bus and Diesel’s Locomotive Mayhem for the first time, before a more gentle drive in Sodor’s Classic Cars and Winston.

Thomas Land

Around Thomas Land there are a few booth’s where you can win prizes and we decided to have a go at the hook a duck. The joy on Sebby’s face when he won, with Abbey’s help, a James cuddly toy was brilliant and seconds later he met Sir Toppam Hatt too – that was certainly the highlight of his day.

Thomas Land

No trip to Thomas Land would be complete without a ride on some trains and we also boarded the Blue Mountain Engines and got to ride in Clarabel, pulled by Thomas of course.

Thomas Land

At the other end of the line is the chance to ride on Terence the Tractor and see the Thomas & Friends™ Exhibition in Farmer McColls Farm.

Thomas Land

Sadly the bigger rides at Drayton Manor were closed, but the zoo was open and we got to see some very real looking dinosaurs as well as snakes, monkey’s, meerkats, lynx and a rather hungry looking black panther who was pacing his cage.

Drayton Manor

I was really impressed with the facilities in the park too. The toilets and baby changing rooms were modern, warm and clean and the restaurants served reasonably priced food with a family meal deal costing £20 for four (season pass holders also get a 20% discount on food and in the shops).

Thomas Land

It may have been a cold and grey day, but it felt warm and sunny thanks to the excitement of all the children and we cannot wait to come back soon, do some of the bigger rides too and experience the what the rest of the park has to offer.

We were invited to Drayon Manor Theme Park as guests in exchange for this post.  This is our entry for the brand ambassador role for 2016.