Picture the scene: you’ve just had an epic day out with the kids at Crealy Adventure Park in Devon. You rode the rollercoasters, got drenched on the Tidal Wave log flume and went for one too many spins in Nepture’s Tea Cups. Now you have to drag your damp kids back to the car for the long drive home. What a come down. But wait! There is an alternative: camping Crealy Meadows.
We booked our Stay and Play Crealy camping deal in thick of lockdown. Our number one goal was to get something fun in the diary to distract us from the January blues and home learning.
Having camped and glamped at Crealy before, we knew we were in for a great time and July couldn’t come round quickly enough.
Obviously, COVID measures were still in place at the campsite and theme park when we visited so things were a bit different to our previous stays. But we still came away having had a brilliant weekend.
Read our Crealy Meadows review to find out what to expect this summer and what’s included in the Crealy Stay and Play offer.
Got a while to stay? Here’s our BIG guide to family holidays in Devon.
COVID measures at Crealy Meadows
We visited the first weekend in July 2021, so there were COVID measures in place to keep everyone safe. These included:
- being met by staff in the reception car park to check in – there was a whole team meeting new arrivals so this didn’t take long and we didn’t need to leave our vehicle
- hand sanitiser outside the shower blocks and in the club house
- social distancing signage around all facilities
- a one way system in reception and the onsite shop
- bookings were being taken at the clubhouse for the Saturday night entertainment
- the large Adventure Zone in the theme park was also open on the Saturday night on a first come, first served basis.
Check with Crealy Meadows to find out what measures they will have in place during your stay.
Camping at Crealy
Crealy Meadows is a family-friendly Devon campsite with excellent facilities.
It’s not far from junction 30 of the M5 and is next to Crealy Theme Park near Exeter in East Devon. If you have time to explore away from Crealy there’s lots of things to do in Exmouth which is 20 minutes down the road.
Pitch types include:
- 10m x 10m standard grass pitches
- 12m x 12m grass super pitches with electric
- 12m x 12m hard standing pitches with electric
- 10m x 10m basic camping pitches that are available from July until the end of August.
All the pitches are level and most have landscaping to separate pitches into smaller groups.
Our stay at Crealy
We had a grass super pitch with our Stay and Play deal. You can pick your pitch when you book, so we went for one that was close to the toilet block and within sight of one of the play parks.
When we arrived we were given a map with our pitch circled, so it was easy to find.
Theme park entry
We arrived too late to enjoy the theme park on the Friday of our stay, but were up and ready to go when it opened at 10am the next day.
The benefit of staying at Crealy Meadows was we were able to get on a lot of the rides before they got busier at around midday. And with our Stay and Play passes we were able to leave mid-afternoon and visit nearby Exmouth knowing that we could pop back in on Sunday and revisit our favourite rides.
When you have a Stay and Play deal you get a wrist band so it’s easy to come and go at any point during your stay.
If you make a standard campsite booking you can of course pay for entry to Crealy separately.
Here’s my guide to days out at Crealy Adventure Park.
There’s a friendly feel about Crealy Meadows. It’s not somewhere families need to be concerned about their kids making a bit of noise – all the other guests had children while we were there.
This made it feel safe too. The only people breaking the five mile an hour speed limit were kids enjoying a spin around the site on the trikes you can hire. We had no worries letting the girls pop over to the play ground on their own.
The site guidelines are to keep noise to a minimum between 10.30pm and 7am, and this was adhered to. Even after the England vs Ukraine football match on the Saturday night.
Glamping at Crealy
As well as camping and touring pitches, there are safari glamping tents at Crealy. We stayed in one a few years back and they are great fun.
They can sleep up to six people and come with a basic kitchen, utensils and crockery, two hobs, two double beds and a bunk. Just add your own bedding.
There’s a toilet block close to the safari tents.
Find out more about glamping at Crealy from our previous stay.
There’s also luxury lodge accommodation towards the very back of Crealy Meadows. Some lodges come with hot tubs.
Crealy Meadows Clubhouse
The campsite has a great Clubhouse with bar, food and plenty of seating indoors and out. There’s also a pool table and table tennis.
You get a guide for what’s on during your stay including opening, food and entertainment times.
We only popped in for a drink this time. Last time we camped at Crealy Meadows there was small scale entertainment in the Clubhouse during the week day evenings, like quizzes, then the main Saturday evening entertainment happens over in the theme park.
There’s more laid on in the school holidays.
You can also use a takeaway app to order pizzas to be delivered to your pitch. This came in really handy for us this time as we didn’t get set up until 6.30pm on the Friday and weren’t up for driving out to find a takeaway.
There’s a good selection of pizza toppings and meal options, and they arrived within 30 minutes, piping hot.
Sport and play facilities
Crealy Meadows has two play areas, a multi-sports court and 10 hole adventure golf course. You can also hire peddle trikes or quads to ride around the site.
The quads and trikes are really popular, so either get in quick in the morning or hire them during the day when everyone else is in the theme park.
A go on the adventure golf costs £3 per person or £10 for a family, and hiring the trikes or quads ranges from £5 for 30 minutes to £12 for an hour depending on the size of the bike you choose.
There’s also a daily programme of activities in the school summer holidays.
There are two heated toilet blocks on the site. These have sinks, large shower cubicles and a vanity area in the ladies. The only thing you’ll not find are cubicles with sinks for brushing teeth and having a quick wash.
The blocks also have: a family bathroom with bath; a dish washing area; and a laundry with a large freezer should you need to store frozen food. Glass recycling and general waste bins are located near the shore blocks.
On site shop
Crealy Meadows has an onsite shop selling local meat, milk and bread. There’s also store cupboard basics, toiletries, ice creams, sweets, soft drinks and games. It’s small but they cover most bases if you’ve forgotten something essential.
Dog-friendly camping in Devon
Dogs are allowed to stay with you at Crealy Meadows if you are there with your own tent, caravan or motorhome. There’s a good sized dog walk with poo bins towards the back of the site.
Be aware that dogs aren’t allowed in Crealy Adventure Park but it is easy to pop back and check on them in a well ventilated caravan or motorhome.
I wouldn’t leave a dog in a tent but there are kennels you can hire if you do want to leave them while you go into the theme park.
Camping offers at Crealy
It’s worth signing up to the Crealy mailing list as they send out regular information about special deals like the Stay and Play weekends.
Stay and Play includes two to three nights camping, electric hook up, theme park entry for a family of four for the duration of your stay and the following extras per person:
- a free drink in the club house
- a free ice cream from the campsite shop
- a round of adventure golf
- a go on the go karts in the theme park.
We booked in January 2021 and our two day weekend at the start of July cost £143, which included an early bird discount.
Stay and Play weekends usually happen in June, July and September.
You can get deals on theme park entry with other camping, glamping and accommodation breaks when you book.
Here’s more Devon campsites and holiday parks.
Things to do near Crealy
We drive to Exmouth for a few hours on the Saturday afternoon of our stay. It’s the closest beach to Crealy and stretches for more than two miles along the Exe Estuary.
You can hire water sports equipment, hop on a boat trip or let the kids plat at the Queens Drive Space adventure playground.
Read about all the things to do in Exmouth which is just 20 minutes from Crealy.
Final thoughts on camping at Crealy Meadows
We came away from Crealy Meadows feeling all the good holiday vibes.
It felt like a much longer stay than two nights. I put that down to the amount of activities we managed to fit into our weekend thanks to the Stay and Play deal and having the theme park right on our doorstep.
Aside from the benefits of the location, we really rate the touring and camping site at Crealy Adventure Park. It’s modern, well laid out and has plenty of activities for families whether you are there for the theme park or not.
The price of the pitches and other accommodation reflect the standard of the facilities.
This is a family campsite, so is not somewhere I’d recommend going for a quiet, child-free weekend. But having said that we experienced no problems with noise late at night or rowdy behaviour despite staying on a crucial Euro 2021 weekend.
Crealy Meadows is the perfect choice if you’re looking for a family-friendly Devon campsite with entertainment and plenty of activities.
Check the Crealy Meadows website for the latest prices and offers.
Read more Devon campsite and accommodation reviews.
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