* Prices may differ from that shown
I've just returned from a week in Guines, France staying in a 2 bedroom caravan owned by canvas, I knew which site I wanted to be on, checked the competition and Canvas came out the cheapest - £301 for 3 of us including the tunnel crossing for a week.
The booking process was easy, all done online, the only thing I didn't like is that it doesn't give you the final cost of the holiday until a day or two later if you choose a travel option other than their free option (eg I wanted to go on the tunnel not the ferry). However, I read up and it did say if you weren't happy with the additional cost you could cancel the holiday and as it turned out they only wanted £31 anyway (which is included in the above total). I booked in Dec and paid a £99 deposit and the rest was payable in April (they send a reminder), I found spreading the cost of the holiday like this very useful cashflow wise.
About 2/3 weeks before we were due to go a parcel arrived with a good sized canvas bag, a little t-shirt and hat for my son, a pack of cards, a GB sticker and a Canvas sticker, all nice touches (although last year we used Eurocamp and got a free French road map which was really useful).
Check in was smooth and the caravan very clean and nicer than any I've stayed in in England furniture/decoration wise. We had our own garden area with patio table and chairs, 2 sun loungers and 2 sun chairs which laid back and also a charcol BBQ. We walked round the site and, in my opinion, Canvas seemed to have the nicer pitches, further away from the main site roads and nicely spaced out.
We got back Saturday and I'd been emailed a feedback form to complete and today I've received a brochure for next year. They also offer 3% if I book again and if you've been more than twice you get 5% off. We will be going again next year and, if the price is right, I'll definately be using Canvas again and would recommend them from my experience to friends.
We have been going on holiday with Canvas Holidays for over 10 years now.
In the beginning, the service was incredible! The maxi tents that they used, were of really high quality, you were presented with a bottle of wine, when you arrived, and they could never do enough for you.
The campsites were always of an excellently high standard, and you always new it was a really safe bet to book your european holiday with them.
Since Canvas holidays were sold however, (to a large US Corporation.) The standards seem to have been slipping, year by year.
You no longer receive a free bottle of wine, when you arrive, and the tents don't appear to have been replaced for years! The last one we stayed in, you couldn't even close the door, so everyone else on the campsite could see right into our tent.
The poor staff seem to be working so hard, to help out, but it appears as if head office doesn't seem to care any more.
I just personally feel that the high level of service, has gone down hill.
Maybe it's just me, but I have been researching other companies to go camping with, and it will take a lot fro Canvas to get me back to them.
Having travelled with Canvas Holidays several times over the past 10 years I can honestly say that we have been delighted with every holiday we have had with them. We have spent holidays in tents, when the chilren were young, and in caravans as they got older, and the standard of every site and the accommodation has been excellent. The standard of the site representatives has varied a bit over the years and the locations but on the whole they have been very helpful. Booking has been easy and the reservation staff very helpful and friendly - helping us out one year when our flight from Edinburgh was delayed by 4 hours and we did not get to the site until 3 am! The rep on the site had been contacted by head office and had left the light on in the caravan so that we could fint it! I would certianly recommend Canvas as a company to travel with.
As soon as we had our daughter, my husband has been trying to get us to go camping (I think he thinks its something a dad has to do.) It has never appealed to me,give me a sunlounger, sandy beach and a cocktail any day. But after four years of getting my own way I thought I would let him choose our next holiday, and he choose a camping holiday with Canvas.
I looked on their website and it all looked great, the tents had flooring so no spiders would be joining you in bed.
We decided to go to one of their sites just outside Paris so we could fit in a visit to Disney whilst we were there. I phoned the booking office which is based in Scotland and was so pleased when somebody actually answered the phone not press 1,2,3 etc. They were exceptionally helpful and explained everything really well.
A few weeks before our holiday was due to begin our holiday pack arrived it was full of maps, information, pens, and activities. Our little girl was sent a backpack with a teddy bear, a hat, and lots of toys. They were really handy and helpful.
When we arrived at the site we were greeted by a canvas courier clad in their orange and blue uniform and a cheery smile, she explained where everything was like the swimming pool, playgrounds and bar, then showed us to our tent which was massive like a little bungalow. It had a kitchen area, two bedroom areas and living space.
The site was excellent and the staff exceptional they always had time to spare, were chatty and well informed.
The site ran a coach trip to Disney for about £8 each which is well worth it, and saves a lot of hassle.
If you don't fancy the idea of camping, try this even though its a tent, you still have a bed and a floor. it was brilliant. I would definitely go again and my husband has done his dad thing !
This review is also on Ciao under my username JulesG
Canvas holidays come down SUBSTANTIALLY in price in July and August. When we paid for our holiday, it had halved in price just a day or so later! Canvas can also be very very inflexible. We tried to change our booking to a different location, and they wanted to charge us considerable charges on top of the price we had already paid (already the maximum) which meant we would have been located in the same accommodation, in the same resort, on the same dates, with others who had paid a third of the price we had. BE VERY CAREFUL with this company. If you must use them - wait until their prices drop. They always do, and there is always availibility in all but the most popular of sites. Also, be sure you wont want to change anything about your holiday, as they will charge you heavily...
We went to 3 sites with Canvas in June 2002. We took advantage of the lower prices and the 3rd week free offer and had 18 nights in mobile homes. We stayed in Steinach (nice small site) in the Black Forest which is in lovely countryside. The rep had maps of local walks and a fair few of them could be started on foot from the campsite. We then went to Manor Farm (well run large site) near Interlaken. A really bustling tourist trap, though the camp-site was just over half full. You can spend a fortune going on train journeys up mountains & boat trips on the lake. Final site Bella Tola Susten, Switzerland, was slightly disappointing because the caravans were crowded together and the swimming pool was overrun with local kids (which isn't mentioned in the brochure). Plus Susten itself was a dead loss. Overall an excellent holiday. Caravans were spotless and the reps very friendly.
For anyone (especially families with small children) wanting to go on a reasonably priced camping/motoring holiday in mainland Europe, Canvas holidays is a very good choice. The company was set up 36 years ago and now provide camping holidays in 75 sites around Europe. THE BASICS: There are 4 levels of accommodation you can choose. On most (but not all) of the sites you can opt for a mobile holiday home instead of the canvas tent. 1.The basic is called a 'Maxi' tent. It is a very large canvas tent with two separate sleeping sections, a separate Kitchen area (fully equipped) and living area. It sleeps 5/6 people. This package includes, Gas fired Cooker, Fridge, Table, and four chairs, electric lighting and power points. There are four single sprung beds and a double sprung bed. Blankets are provided as well as pillow but you have to bring your own sheets. Outside there are a hammock and a sunlounger. A barbecue is also provided 2. The second level is the 'Festival' Mobile; this comes in two models the '26' or the slightly more spacious 'Midi' (2' longer). These sleep 6/7 The design includes: · Lounge/dining room area with bench seating · A fully fitted kitchen with full size cooker and oven and a domestic fridge with freezer compartment. · A double bedroom-(6' x 4') bed with wardrobe space and additional storage space. · Second bedroom with two single beds (6' x 2') slightly wider in the 'Midi' · Bathroom with shower 3.The third level is the 'Jubilee' range of Mobile which comes in three models '28', '30' and '28 deluxe'. The difference in these is layout of the facilities not the overall size. The Jubilee range is the same as the 'Festival' except for the following: · A larger double bed (6 x 4'6") · Additional accessories (hair dryer,
radio alarm) · Different layout inside. 4. The top of the range is the 'Century' mobile. This is 20% bigger than the Jubilee 28 and can sleep 8. · The double bed is bigger (6'3" x 4'6") · The bathroom is en suite to the double bedroom but there is access to the living area too. · The second bedroom has larger single beds · A third bedroom is included with bunk beds · A microwave and a gas barbecue is also included in addition to all the accessories in the previous models A various stages I have stayed in all the different types of accommodation and I would say that for a family with two young kids the tent or any of the mobiles are fine. If you have more than two kids then the Mobiles are a better option. The quality of the build is great on all models. THE SITES: Canvas Holidays only have emplacements on four-star campsites so the quality of facilities is usually very good. You would expect to get shared use of at least one swimming pool (most sites also have smaller kids pools). Shops and bars and Restaurant/Take-a-ways will be also be present. All sites will also have sporting activities, tennis, table tennis volleyball etc, and many will have entertainment in high season. The site will also be in easy reach of main town and beaches (either sea, lake or river) The coverage of France is excellent. With sites available in all the French regions both on the coast or inland. The Dordogne and The Loire are especially well covered. The choice in Italy is more limited with sites available in Tuscany and the Lakes. In Spain they have sites in Catalonia. Other sites are present in Germany, Austria, Switzerland and Luxembourg. WHAT THE PRICE INCLUDES: The price ranges from an amazing £189 in low season to £1000+ in high season but even then they are good value for money and cheaper than their main competitors, Keycamp and Eurocamp. For the basic pric
e you get a 12-night stay, for two adults and up to four children, at any campsite of your choice (you can arrange one night stop-overs at campsites on the way if you like). For the mobile homes an extra supplement is payable per day based on the model. The basic price also includes the ferry crossing from Dover/Calais or the Channel Tunnel crossing. Car breakdown assistance is extra. EXTRA FACILITIES: · In most sites the canvas couriers run kids clubs in the morning and afternoon in tow hourly session for kids 4-12. This is a blessing for parents. The clubs are well run with a variety of activities and they are free. · Accessories such as highchairs, pushchairs and cots are available to order before you go and in low season these are not changed for. · Games and toys to borrow on site. · On some sites baby sitting is available from the couriers GENERAL: All the times I have been, the campsites have been top-quality; the canvas couriers are always helpful and informative. My kids have always enjoyed the facilities and activities provided. You should chose the campsite you stay at carefully, some are smaller than others and might therefore be less lively, some are more suited for teen-agers rather than younger kids. The Canvas holiday brochure does give you very useful information in this regard. I would recommend them for a reasonably priced family holiday. Web site: www.canvasholidays.com
Ok now be honest, what is it about camping that puts you off? Is it the cold and rain, the hassle of erecting a tent before you can settle down? The uncomfortable sleeping arrangements? The basic cooking arrangements? Or the inconveniences of hauling your equipment round like a tortoise? How would it be if I were to explain to you how you could overcome all of these problems, and have a super duper holiday in the sun at an affordable price? In the early 1970,s I had a young family, mortgage, bills to pay every month etc etc. and the cost of a package holiday abroad was prohibitive even at the prices in those days. Sick and tired of the rain and wind on our annual camping holiday to Scotland, I decided to try my luck with a new up and coming company. It was called “Canvas Holidays” and specialised in camping holidays in France and Germany. The difference being that apart from camping in the sun, the tents were already erected, the ferry was booked, and any overnight stops in hotels arranged for in advance. All arrangements down to maps and advice about driving on the wrong side of the road were catered for and nothing really was left to chance. We had a wonderful holiday, in St Tropez and followed it up with further holidays over the next few years to the Dordogne, the Black Forest and to the Ardennes region. In those days there were only tents on offer, but now they have increased their range to include mobile homes, which are to a luxury specification. What this all boils down to is that you can go to almost anywhere on the continent, and the only additional cost to you is the fuel involved in getting there. They even do fly drive if the distance seems to great, but I think that travelling through the French countryside is all part of the holiday and you get a chance to practice your French/German on the unsuspecting public. You can select how many nights you wish to stay at a s
elected site, then move on, no tent to dismantle and happy in the knowledge that there will be a new tent with all mod cons waiting for you at your next destination. The tents are state of the art affairs, (17'x17') and fully furnished. As they say “everything from coffee pot to electric fridge”. The beds are great and there is mains electricity to all tents, and each tent even has a hammock! Looking at their current prices, I see it is possible to have a 12-night holiday for £184. This is for 2 adults (up to 4 children go free in any case) and assumes that you book the holiday before 31st October this year. The normal price structure is geared to a seasonal basis as is normal, with the most expensive times being in the school holidays. Canvas Holidays now operate from 83 campsites in Italy, France, Austria, Switzerland, Germany and Luxembourg. Some of these sites are up to a standard not seen in this country. For instance, the site at Dol-de-Bretagne has 4 pools, a cricket pitch, an 18-hole golf course, tennis, horse riding, fishing/boating lakes 2 bars, restaurant, games room and disco. You choose when you depart and return, any day of the week that suits you. You can select either a ferry or the Tunnel. Take a single centre holiday, or make it a tour of the Europe. Why not use Canvas Holidays to visit Disneyland and visit Paris? yes there is a site close at hand. If this all sounds too good to be true, I suggest you visit their website at www.canvasholidays.com and check it out for yourself. It is possible to order a comprehensive brochure online and this gives a list of all the sites available and all the details that you need to make an informed decision for yourself.
Canvas Holidays offers self-drive holidays to ready-erected tents and mobile homes thrhoughout Europe, including France, Spain, Italy, Austria, Germany & Lux.. They give a A choice of 69 sites in 7 European countries. You can choose a spacious maxi tent or from Europe's most modern fleet of luxury mobile homes. Its a syuperb scheme - you pay the totla for however many nights holiday you want, on top of that you will have to pay a site suplliment which differs from site to site depending on how good the site is, its usually around £3 per night extra but can up to £7 per night. This price then includes your ferry crossing, all activities on site and electic, water etc. The tents are very spacious - 3 bedrooms, dining room, kitchen, lounge. Hard wooden floor, all mod cons like fridge etc. It has an impressive 17 foot by 17 foot floor space. Most sites have at least on pool and a free kids club. Also in the tent is a bbq, games chest for those wet evenings. Some site also include free cycle hire and cnoe hire. There is always a canvas rep on site to ensure that you have a great time! You can even take one of your nights at another campsite so if you were travelling down to the south of France and wasted to make it over two days you can at no extra cost!