Tuesday, 29 October 2019

Marina Di Venezia, Eurocamp: Our Holiday In Review



*We were provided with accomodation free of charge for the purpose of this review. Flights, meals and activities were paid for by ourselves, and all opinions and words are my own.

It's been almost a week since we returned home from our 7 night stay at Marina Di Venezia campsite with Eurocamp and I'm still not over how incredible our holiday there was!

I have wanted to explore Italy ever since I was a child, but other than a couple of port visits on cruise holidays - I hadn't managed to visit, until last week.

When we were given the chance to try out a Eurocamp holiday, I knew that it had to be Italy - my only difficulty was narrowing down which area to visit!

But when I spotted Marina di Venezia with it's fabulous looking Aqua park, and it's proximity to Venice - I was sold!

So what did we think of our week there? Read on to find out!

WHAT IS EUROCAMP?

Eurocamp are a tour operator who own a certain number of mobile homes/areas of campsites across Europe. When you book a holiday with Eurocamp, the site that you're staying in will be owned by another company but will have Eurocamp reps on site who will be your point of contact throughout your stay.

As well as Italy, Eurocamp also have sites across France, Spain, Switzerland and Croatia plus other countries too.

During our stay at Marina Di Venezia, we spoke with 3 different Eurocamp reps for advice on days out and minor queries about the site and found each of them to be very helpful and friendly.

ACCOMODATION





When we arrived at Marina Di Venezia, I was immediately impressed by how quick and efficient the check in was.

There were check in staff at the gates to greet guests, so no need to stand in queues - the girl who greeted us had us checked in a matter of moments, and transported us along with our luggage on a golf buggy to our mobile home (We were also able to arrange the same service to take us and our luggage back to the reception on our check out day too, which was really helpful).

We stayed in Eurocamp's newest range of mobile home - the Azure 3 bedroom, and we were really impressed.

The mobile home had a living area that, although not exactly large, was certainly roomy enough for our family as well as a double bedroom and 2 twin bedrooms, and a decent sized bathroom with a very good sized and powerful shower.

The mobile homes are equipped with everything you need for your holiday - fridge/freezer, microwave, cooker,  fan, dining table and chairs etc. There's even a large decking area outside with BBQ, sun chairs and a clothes maiden too.

Our mobile home was spotlessly clean, modern and airy. And the air con worked really well at keeping it cool on the hotter days too.

Bed linen and towels are not included as standard but can be hired at an additional cost. We were also given a welcome pack with things like crisps, wine and olive oil inside and an essentials pack which included items such as a dish towel, cleaning cloths, washing up liquid, and hand soap. These are usually available at a small extra cost, and can be added on to your booking through the Eurocamp website.

Eurocamp mobile homes are located in the "Marina 2000" area of the park, which is around a 10 minute stroll from the main area of the site but there is also a regular free bus service to transport guests around the site if little legs are struggling too.


LOCATION AND ACCESS

Marina Di Venezia is located in the town of Punta Sabbioni and is around an hours drive from Marco Polo airport.

To get to the site, we booked a private transfer which cost 80 Euro but in hindsight we needn't have spent so much as there's a regular airport transfer bus that runs from the airport and drops you directly outside the site - this only costs around 5 Euro per person, and under 4's are free. We took the bus back to the airport, and found the service really efficient and well worth the saving!

The bus stop is also where you can catch the bus to the ferry ports which are around 10 minutes drive away. From there, you can take a ferry to Venice or the surrounding islands. There are a number of options available for this, from organised tour boats to public transport aka the Vaporetta - we chose the latter option but for future visits I would probably reconsider this as I found it a little too chaotic and busy with small children in tow.

No matter which option you prefer, tickets for the buses and boats can be purchased from the Information office on site.

The town of Punta Sabbioni is home to plenty of shops and restaurants should you want to venture off site - there's a restaurant and supermarket directly opposite the entrance. However, the site has everything you could really need and so other than one visit to the supermarket - we didn't bother going off site other than for a day trip to the islands. (I'll have a post up next week about this!)



THE AQUAPARK






Marina Di Venezia has a stunning aqua park which absolutely took the childrens breath away when they first saw it!

It's home to 5 large pools and a number of water slides, whirlpools/jacuzzis etc too. There's a wave pool, and an olympic sized pool for lane swimming but we tended to stick to the 2 childrens pools and the central pool as these were a better depth for our little ones.

Each of the pools contained plenty to keep the children busy - from the splash areas and tiny slides in the childrens pool, to slightly bigger (but still toddler-friendly) water slides in the bigger pool and then the enormous splash pad play area  - the kids absolutely adored all of these areas and would happily spend full days there!

What I loved about the aquapark was how immaculate it was. I usually find swimming pools a bit grim if I'm honest, but I don't think I've ever seen a pool area as clean as Marina Di Venezia's - probably owing to their No Food & Drink policies around the pool.

Having looked at some reviews online I'm aware that some people aren't keen on this policy, however I think it's clear that the policy is doing its job in keeping the pool area spotless and keeping birds away too. There is a little ice cream shop in the area directly behind the Aquapark selling drinks, ice creams and french fries etc if you get peckish or need a quick drink - and there's seating there too.

The lounger policy here was also something that I thought worked really well, as rather than loungers being a free for all - instead they were to be hired at a rate of 12 Euros for a full day or 6 Euros for half a day. This price got you 2 loungers and a parasol.

This worked really well at stopping people from sticking their towels over a lounger first thing in the morning and hogging them for the day - we got loungers in the areas we wanted every single time with no fuss. I thought 6 euro per half day was pretty reasonable too.




The Aquapark does close for Siesta during the peak summer months between the hours of 1pm-3pm, which - although it may seem unusual - is actually a good thing as this is when the staff clean the pool, keeping it all in pristine condition. It also gives you chance to get out of the sun when it's at its peak.


During high season, there are also regular evenings where the Aquapark opens between the hours of 9pm-midnight too. This is called "Splash Under The Moonlight" and we were lucky enough to be there for the last one of the season - I wasn't quite brave enough for a night time dip as I feel the cold too much, but Jon & Tyne went in and absolutely loved it!











THE BEACH




As well as the gorgeous Aquapark, Marina Di Venezia also boasts a stunning private-access beach too.

The beach can be accessed via the bridge above the aqua park or from other parts of the camp too, including Marina 2000 where we were staying.

It's a beautiful white sandy beach, and has the same Lounger hire policy as the pool which makes a day there much more comfortable as it gives parents the chance to lie somewhere comfortable and soak up the sun while the children play in the sand!

There are some very pretty little cafes dotted around the beach too, serving drinks and snacks.








THE SITE






The thing about Marina Di Venezia that both impressed and surprised me most was how absolutely beautiful the grounds were.

To get an idea of what it's like here, you should imagine everything negative you've ever thought or experienced about campsites and then imagine the opposite of those things - that's Marina Di Venezia!

The main piazza is lined with an array of shops including a supermarket (where the most delicious wine on tap is sold for 2.30 Euros per litre!), pharmacy, clothing shops, souvenir shops and various other outlets as well as pizzerias, gelateries, and restaurants.

There are water features, statues and flowers everywhere - it is one of the prettiest places I have ever seen, and one of my favourite times each day was when we would take a stroll down the piazza, enjoying our gelatos and chatting about our day.




In the centre of the piazza is a little area with these spinning red seats, which - as random as they are - all of the children on site just adored! Mine were no exception and they spent ages just playing in these while Jon & I sat on the benches to the side and enjoyed a moments peace and quiet in the sunshine.

There is tons of entertainment going on each day during high season here too, with notice boards around the site informing you of what's happening each day.

The animation team put on shows throughout the week and there are guest artists performing too - during our visit there were singers, and a magician who we all really enjoyed.

There was also a nightly Baby Dance - which was basically a mini disco with party dances led by the animation team, where the children could get up on the stage and dance. It was really good fun!








There were plenty of other things to keep children entertained on site too.

The Leo Mini Golf course is located just opposite the main piazza, and - although I felt it was slightly on the expensive side at 25 Euro for our family - the course was very nice, and it gave us the chance to take photos in the photo prop Gondola which was good fun!

My kids tend to get bored of mini golf after two holes though, so I do think that perhaps the price for young children could be reconsidered.

There was also a large play park for the children which they absolutely loved, and an area at the back of this where they could paint and take home some pottery for an additional charge. We couldn't try this as we didn't have room in our cases to bring anything home sadly!

Next to the play park was an area with children's rides, a soft play area and a VR experience which my eldest loved! These rides were all at an extra cost but I think the prices of this were quite reasonable at around 1 or 2 Euros per ride.













RESTAURANTS & FOOD






The restaurants on site were one thing I was a bit concerned about before we arrived as I have some issues with OCD and often don't feel comfortable enough to eat in unfamiliar places, but to my surprise and delight - I had no issues at the on site restaurants at all.

Each of them was clean and airy, welcoming and accommodating to children, and with varied and very reasonably priced menus too.

We ate most evenings at the Piazza Marina - a restaurant opposite the main stage where the entertainment was on each evening. Although the restaurant got very busy outside in the large open air dining section, very few people seemed to request indoor tables so we ended up with the same table each night - giving the kids a clear view of the stage, and giving us peace to enjoy our meals in comfort!

We also ate a couple of times at La Terraza restaurant, and we had lunch at Passatempo sports bar too - both were also really nice, and I would absolutely eat in them again.

The menus in all of the restaurants were quite varied, with plenty of options for pizza, pasta, fish and meat dishes as well as childrens options including chicken nuggets, hot dogs, burgers and - of course - pizza and pasta too!

We found it worked best for us to order an adult pizza for the children to share along with a portion of french fries - this was more than enough food for them, and was much cheaper than ordering individual childrens meals.

Our evening meals would cost around 50 euros per night on average, including drinks which I thought was very reasonable.








The quality of the food on site was always really high - I ate pasta dishes pretty much every evening, and I never had a bad meal. The spaghetti bolognese in particular was so good that I had it 3 times!

Jon is a big fan of seafood and he really enjoyed his choices too.

For lunch we would usually get a Maxi Pizza from one of the takeaways on site to share between us - the Maxi pizzas cost between 10-15 Euros depending on which you choose, and they are HUGE!! There was always more than enough for the five of us.

Our favourite one was the Patatosa pizza which is basically a Margherita pizza with french fries baked on top - it was so good!

And of course, it wouldn't be an Italian holiday without eating our body weight in gelato would it?!

Luckily there are plenty of Gelato options on the site, with 3 seperate shops selling a huge array of tempting and delicious flavours. We would each choose different flavours to try every day (sometimes 2 or 3 times a day if I'm honest!), my favourites were the coconut and the pineapple...so delicious!

The gelato prices were very reasonable too, at around 1.50Euro per person.









WHAT WE LOVED





I honestly can't rave about our holiday at Marina Di Venezia enough! It was SO much more than I expected it would be, and was - quite honestly - the best and most relaxing family holiday we have ever had!

It's changed my entire outlook on family holidays, having always been an avid cruise fan - infact we loved it so much that we've already decided to go back again for longer next time! I could easily spend 2 weeks here.

As for our favourite things and what we think are selling points for this site:

*The cleanliness - it really was immaculately well kept and a very beautiful site to spend time on.
*The amazing Aquapark
*The huge choice of things to do for children
*The fantastic food and choice of restaurants
*The ease of access from the airport, and to the ferry ports
*The friendliness of the staff on site

WHAT COULD BE IMPROVED




It's difficult to think of any suggestions for improvement, but I always like to try to make some  where possible - as apart from anything else, I think reviews are difficult to believe if there are no negatives mentioned at all.

I am honestly struggling in this instance though!

Perhaps the frequency of the site buses could be increased - they stopped operating at 7.30 pm each day, and often we would have really liked the option of using it a little later in the evening.

I also felt that the price of mini golf was a bit too high for young children who are likely to get bored quickly - maybe under 5s could be free or at a reduced rate.

Another suggestion, which is more of a personal preference, would be to perhaps make one of the restaurants a dog-free zone or at least allocate a dog-free area of the restaurants.
Marina Di Venezia is a dog friendly site which is great for most families, but I personally am not a fan of eating around animals so perhaps having just one dog-free dining section would be a nice option.


MY TOP TIPS FOR VISITING MARINA DI VENEZIA



* The Eurocamp van has all sorts of items that are free to borrow and use for the duration of your holiday - including buckets & spades, floats for use in the sea etc. This is really handy as it saves you buying things you can't take on the flight home! They also have a selection of board games and a free library too - ideal for keeping you entertained in your mobile home on rainy days!

*The Essentials pack (which you can add to your booking on the Eurocamp website) was really handy if you're arriving in the evening after the stores have closed - it contains a tea towel, cleaning cloths/sponge, washing up liquid, bin bag, hand soap and matches.

*If you're visiting during the high season, the pool will close for Siesta between the hours of 1pm-3pm. The best time to visit in my opinion is immediately after the re-opening at 3pm - the loungers can fill up fast on sunny days but arriving at 3pm allowed us to grab our first choice of lounger spot every day. The pool also empties out a lot at around 5.30 pm, which is lovely too.

*There's a free "bus" (it's a large golf cart really, but still!) that takes you around the site - it also stops for siesta from 12:30 -3pm.

*A maxi pizza (available from the takeaways on site) is HUGE and makes a great value lunch. The Maxi Margherita from La Terraza fed all 5 of us for lunch and only cost 10 Euro

*Don't buy cans of soda from the takeaways - they cost 2.50 Euro here, but are only 65 cents in the on site supermarket!






All in all, we had an absolutely magical holiday at Marina Di Venezia - we will absolutely return there again, and we are completely sold on Eurocamp holidays - I hope to try out lots more of their sites in future!

You can find out more at: https://www.eurocamp.co.uk/campsites/adriatic/ia022-marina-di-venezia/ataglance.html

I'll have a post up next week all about our experience of visiting the nearby islands of Venice and Burano - in the meantime, why not check out our YouTube video of our holiday below?





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9 comments

  1. It sounds like you all had a wonderful holiday, I have always wanted to visit Italy and I am so tempted to book for our family moon as we haven't had a honeymoon yet. I always hear such great things about Eurocamp holiday's and they look ideal for families of five xx

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  2. Oh wow this looks amazing. I would love to take my children to see Venice as it's where we went on honeymoon. The Eurocamp looks perfect for families, we would all love the water park for sure!

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  3. Oh wow what an impressive site and such an in depth review! My daughters would love the baby disco and I'm really impressed with the facilities available there too :)

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  4. We really fancy going to Italy and camping looks like a good way to do it. This looks like a great park and our kids would love something like this. Definitely one to consider!

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  5. We really like the idea of visiting Italy, such a beautiful place. It looks like you all had such a fab time. I love your video :)
    x

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  6. Eurocamps are just the best for family holidays and I just love that there are so many across Europe. We love Italy so this would definitely be ideal

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  7. Eurocamp have some of the best water parks don’t they!

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  8. I've never stayed at a Eurocamp or anything similar before. Sounds like a great place for a holiday - the Aquapark look amazing!

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  9. I loved watching your stories. Italy is my favourite holiday destination and Eurocamp is go great for kids. I am glad you had such a great time x

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