It’s easy to see why families love to holiday in Criff

Jacuzzi. These two words are guaranteed to bring joy and excitement to my two children.

When I put those words into the conversation, and then “beach house,” they were thrilled at the prospect of a family vacation over the October break—and that we were able to take our crazy chocolate Labrador with us.

We were booked to stay at the Braidhaugh Holiday Lodge and Caravan Park in the charming Perthshire town of Crieff. I have very happy memories of spending similar family vacations at the Crieff Hydro as a child and I really wanted to share this wonderful place with my children.

What could be better for a family holiday than having your own hot tub?

I have had the good fortune to visit Perthshire many times, and in autumn it is always at its most majestic. It is difficult to convey the landscape in words, the rainbow of autumn colors is a sight to behold. Reds, yellows, greens, oranges are so bright.

When we checked in we were greeted very warmly and in a couple of minutes we were on our way to Tammel, our lodge for the week.

Braidhaugh Holiday Park enjoys a beautiful location next to the River Erne. It offers a variety of accommodation options, including wooden cabins, glamping pods, motorhomes and campsites. Many homes have the all-important hot tubs, which are a boon whether you’re traveling with kids or not.

Braidhaugh Holiday Park is located in a beautiful location.

Our cottage was spacious and well equipped with everything we needed: a flat screen TV on the wall in the living room, TVs in both bedrooms, a fully equipped kitchen, a toilet with a shower and a hot tub that we could use at our discretion.

The decor was focused on wildlife and I especially liked how the forest backdrop in the shower heightened the feeling of being surrounded by nature.

The lodges are stylish, modern and comfortable.

Criff is a great place for a variety of activities. There are numerous golf courses and distilleries in the area, as well as plenty of outdoor activities. I mentioned Crieff Hydro before and it’s one of the largest service providers in the region.

Whatever you want to take with you, Hydro probably has it. And non-residents can also book events. You can choose from archery, rifle shooting, tennis, quad biking, horseback riding and more. But we wanted to try something new, so we chose alpaca riding.

We were part of a large group and had to choose our very own alpaca from four resident animals: Ghost, Casper, Harry Potter, and the wonderfully named Chupac.

Being obsessed with a wizard boy, my nine year old daughter insisted that we ask for Harry Potter, so named because of the white flash on his black face.

Charlie and Beth are trying to handle the alpaca version of Harry Potter.

For the next hour we drove Harry around the old golf course, taking in the beautiful views, trying to keep our sometimes grumpy alpaca on the straight and narrow road.

It was a fun session and a completely different experience.

Another must-see in the area is Makrosti Park, located a couple of minutes drive from the Leisure Park.

It is a large park with large grass, a river, a bandstand and a children’s playground. The perfect place to tire out our dog and the kids who enjoyed playing on the cable car, climbing walls, swings and trampolines.

Worth a visit is Crieff’s Macrosty Park.

Another powerful energy burner is Nok, a hill overlooking Criff. You can park in the city and walk around longer or start with Crieff Hydro. It’s a fairly short path through a scenic forest, but quite steep, so it’s good ATV training.

The views going up and down are a nice reward, and there is a plinth at the top pointing out to the cities and mountains in every direction.

Great views from the top of Nok.

For a more relaxing time, we headed to the Caithness Glass visitor center just down the road from our cabin, where we watched highly skilled craftsmen create spectacular glass pieces right in front of our eyes.

My daughter chose glass (for a small fee) which she was able to color and then heat under the light. The whole process took about half an hour and she was delighted with her creation.

While she was doing this with her mom, my son and I toured the store and art gallery, which also sells antiques.

It is also home to the Crieff visitor center which has a shop and a large café.

Fun EZ Raiders can be rented and enjoyed by Crieff Hydro.

Speaking of eating out, make sure you book early if you want to eat. It took me four tries to find anything available on the Thursday night we were there. Criff is clearly a popular place.

However, we were lucky as we enjoyed fantastic food at the cozy Delivino restaurant in the city center which serves good food and friendly service.

After the meal, we walked the mile back to the lodge and treated ourselves to one last swim in the jacuzzi under a canopy of stars.

Our friendly robin joined us and we enjoyed the sound of an owl hooting in the distance as the bat soared high above us, once again feeling one with nature.

It was the perfect way to end another wonderful family trip to picturesque Perthshire.

Riverside living at Braidhaugh Leisure Park.

Braido Holiday Lodge and Caravan Park
South Bridgend, Crieff PH7 4DH
Call: 01764 652951
Crieff Hydro:

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