The heat is rising here quite rapidly, so to finish off our spring break holiday we made the most of the coolish temperatures and headed to Legoland Water park. We’ve already experienced Legoland and you can catch up with that adventure here. With Dubai parks offering free parking and 30% off to all UAE residents it was a no brainer really. The cost came down from 295AED to 160AED and we saved ourselves 85AED in parking fees. Everything always feels better when you have a discount. With all of us having fair skin, we left it until after lunch and toward the end of the midday sun to go. Being Easter/spring break the park wasn’t that busy and the queues we practically non-existent. The children had a blast and especially loved the joker soaker and build a raft lazy river. We settled the kids into the joker soaker and were watching them on the slides when literally the joke was on us and the huge bucket of water tipped, emptying gallons and gallons on unsuspecting parents like ourselves. I know it was a children’s water park but I wasn’t going to be responsible for the language that left my mouth. It was freezing!!
Anyhoo it gave us all a laugh and we went off exploring, where we found the build a raft lazy river. As you go round there are big Lego brick floating in the water which you can attach to your raft. Being the competitive family we are it immediately turned in to who can sabotage each other raft the quickest.
We made a trip to wave pool, floatation jackets were available for wee Miss C and she really enjoyed it. The children found the build and race your own miniature boat area and enjoyed building with Lego in the water!!
It was time for an ice cream before we explored some more, 20AED each for ice cream wasn’t too bad, considering we’ve just come back from Disney it was a welcomed price! EPD and LPV went on few other rides that Miss C wasn’t tall enough for, so we had a mini melt down. Then she was happy as Larry in the Duplo area with side and animals she could sit on!
At this point it was starting to cool and their poor little teeth were starting to chatter. We got dressed and headed to the new Irish Village in Riverland. It was beautiful and reminded me of the town out of Beauty and the beast. We had a yummy dinner and listened to the various live music that was on offer with stages dotted around all around Riverland. The children really enjoyed The Micheal Jackson tribute singing, I knew they had good taste in music.
With everyone tired and pooped out we caught the shuttle bus back to the car park and headed home. A great day had by all and sincerely recommend a visit before we all start melting!!
One of things I wanted to see the most in Japan was the beautiful cherry blossoms. They didn’t disappoint either. Our first day we slept off the flight and then headed off to Shinjinku park. I love parks in huge cities there something so peaceful and tranquil about them in a city full of bustle and madness. Shinjinku was beautiful full of traditional Japanese gardens. Locals picnicking with wine and cheese, painters making the most of the beautiful scenery. The children loved it as it was an open space to run, find sticks and twigs and explore the woods, which sadly for 10 months of the year they don’t really get to do. The park had quaint little bridges, that were perfect for lovely family photos. Which, I never got, trying to get them all in photo and smile is damn near impossible. Until I threatened them with no pokèmon centre if they didn’t let me have at least 1 nice photo per day
After we had seen all Shinjinku had to offer we headed to the Hanazono Shrine,one of the most historical in Japan, it is said to be the home of the god of fertility and where you come to pray for success in your career. Needless to say we didn’t reach other to the fertility god!!! I enjoy bringing the children to temples and shrines, they may not appreciate their significance at the time but I feel it helps to teach about respecting others beliefs and to act appropriately when someone is praying or paying their respects. Of course with all best intentions all the wanted to do was ring the bells and thrown money in the donation box. You can only but try to introduce them to culture, all I pray for is that they grow up open-minded and with acceptance of others and with introducing them to the big wide world I hope we are doing that.
After completely falling in love with Hong Kong last year, we decided to continue conquering East Asia and we planned a trip to Tokyo Japan. We definitely were not as organised in the planning of the trip and left it dangerously last-minute to book accommodation. After looking at hotels in Tokyo it became real that we could not find anything within our budget. So we turned to Airbnb, I had massive reservations the thought of sleeping in someone’s house made my skin crawl. We’re they clean people? Do they have bed bugs? Was it in a safe neighbourhood? I do have a tendency to over think things a wee bit.
I have friends that have used it and they were all happy, so we bit the bullet and went for it. We found a lovely little place owned by the nicest of ladies. It was close to the metro, it was quiet and had a supermarket, restaurants and a McDonald’s if we needed it all a stones throw away. Now space in Tokyo comes at a premium, however nothing could prepare me for what awaited us. We lugged our cases and children up the 3 flights of stairs to the top floor, Daddy opened the door. You have to worry when the door opens outward to save on space, we both looked at each other and laughed. The whole place was the size of our kitchen trying not to sound like a complete asshole there. However it had a bathroom with hot running water AND a heated toilet seat, which would prove invaluable in 7’C temperatures, Nothing like a warm tooshy!! It had a fridge , kettle, washing machine. Which was also very handy considering we don’t have many warm clothes at all. The bed was comfy, it was clean, it was warm and really it was only a base to store our things while we were out exploring.I stocked up on the children’s favourite mini cereals, we brought teabags and a few essentials at the supermarket. To be honest having breakfast there was one less meal out we had to pay for as Tokyo wasn’t cheap and at least we could get up, eat and get dressed at our own pace, rather than running down for an over priced buffet where you pay over 20quid for the children to eat one bowl of cereal. We also had a pocket wi-fi included in the price, this was extremely handy when you’re trying to navigate your way around the unknown, you can call on google maps to help you.
The best thing about using Airbnb is that you can tailor it to your budget, the further out you stay the cheaper they are, they can vary from 37 to over 200 pounds per night. Ours cost us around 500 for 5 nights, which I think for a huge city was very reasonable.
I would definitely use them again considering my mind is doing overtime planning next years holiday!!!