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Center Parcs France Trois Forêts – A Natural Place for Family Togetherness

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Immersed in nature in the remote area of Moselle Lorraine, France, you will find the newest Center Parc France Trois Forêts. My family was looking for a fun vacation that would allow us to escape the dark and dreary days of a Northern European winter. To our delight we discovered this retreat to be unlike anything we had ever experienced in the U.S.—and what an experience it was! Set in a forest on over 1,000 acres of land, the Trois Forêts holiday park is a play-with-your-family kind of place; home to a children's farm plus sports and activities galore.

Center Parcs France Trois Forets - A Natural Place for Family Togetherness

The children's farm at Center Parcs France Trois Forêts

Le Centre

In Le Centre (the main building), the greenery of the outdoors comes to life inside with an oasis of exotic tropical plants creating an indoor jungle of sorts. This ‘jungle' includes several koi ponds teeming with fish, a few little waterfalls, walking paths, and pleasant alcoves in which to sit and enjoy your coffee or croissant. The lobby, market, gift shop, game room, restaurants, and cafe are all housed here in Le Centre. It's your starting point for your activities and where to go to figure out what to do and when.

Cottages

When we arrived at our vacation cottage, I opened the window blinds and was surprised to see a beautiful doe standing in our new backyard. My family and I stayed in a VIP cottage. I can assure you, with three bathrooms (including one sauna) and three bedrooms—we certainly felt like VIPs. A cozy fire at night was just the way to unwind. Clean and very well kept—the VIP cottage had everything this family of five could possibly need for a week. Cottages range in size and can sleep up to 12 people.

Center Parcs France Trois Forets pool with sand box

A sand box in the center of one of the Aqua Mundo pools

Water Play

My family adored Aqua Mundo, a water park that boasts six pools, several waterslides, two hot tubs, plenty of lifeguards for safety, and one fantastic Arbre à Eau or “Water  Tree”—a slide/tower/splash station. Best of all was the generously sized sand box IN one of the children's pools. Beach towels and sand toys are not provided, but you can purchase what you need at the gift shop if necessary. Life vests for children are available at no charge.

Activities for Kids

Activities include archery, horseback riding, rope courses, paintball and more. Fortunately for us since it rained during our visit, there is something for every weather situation. We found enough indoor activities to keep us busy from morning until bedtime. The children's farm had sheep, cows, ducks, pigs and more. It was a little wet for us to play on the outdoor play structures, but the indoor BALUBA and Pilobus play areas housed the most impressive climbing structures I have ever seen. Big and sturdy enough for parents to tag along with their kids, these giant wooden towers housed slides, rope bridges and tunnels of all types. In the middle was the Jeu des Poules (Hen House), a playful target range equipped with air cannons that shoot egg-shaped foam balls—an enticing activity for three young boys. They kept shouting, “Shoot the balls at us, Mom!”

Center Parcs France Trois Forets activities for kids

An impressive indoor play area at Trois Forêts

Spa

Family activities aside, this Travel Mama's favorite spot was the Nature & Spa, where I was able to escape for some rare time to myself. Offering a variety of facials, body treatments and massages, Trois Forêts offers a generous discount if you book your treatment in advance.

Multigenerational Vacation Destination

Trois Forêts it is a multi-generational vacation destination that has something for all ages from babies to grandparents. The resort can accommodate up to 5,000 guests. The general manager of Trois Forêts, Stéphane Hertzog, told me that everything at the park is planned with families in mind, like having a large main buffet restaurant that serves food kids love as well as traditional French cuisine for parents. Play structures are scattered throughout the property, including in or near restaurants so that children can play while parents enjoy themselves nearby.

Center Parcs France Trois Forets activities for kids

The Water Tree's 238-gallon bucket dumps water everywhere when it is full – Look out below!

Things to Know Before You Go

Even though the park is large, cars are discouraged within the property. In French culture, cars equal work and Trois Forêts is intended to be an escape from work. Thus, you will find bike trails and walking paths instead of parking spaces and busy roads. Be prepared to walk and wear weather-appropriate clothing. I was so glad that we brought a stroller since you cannot drive up to the activities or even to Le Centre.

There is no laundry on site. We were there for a Monday-Friday stay and it was a bit daunting to have that much laundry to tote home. There is, however, a Laundromat in the neighboring town a few minutes down the road.

While there are no land-line phones in the cottages, we had no problems using our cell phones on-site. You can also purchase Internet access for a small fee.

I advise you bring your own groceries or pick some up in town. You can buy what you need in Le Centre market but it will cost you. Cottages are equipped with kitchenettes or you can pay for reasonably priced cottage food delivery. Hertzog said, “There's just something so wonderful about having warm bread delivered to your door for breakfast.” I agree!

Many activities cost extra. The pool, farm and play structures are free for use to all guests.

The sooner you book your stay, the better your rate. This includes the weekly fee for your cottage and the sport activities which require a charge. There are currently some wonderful last- minute rates and specials for the winter months!

Center Parcs France - Trois Forets: A Natural Place for Family Togetherness

A family stroll at Center Parcs France Trois Forêts

Family Togetherness

My family and I had such a wonderful time at Trois Forêts, we plan to return this summer to take advantage of the resort's plentiful outdoor activities. It is not often that we experience a true sense of family togetherness on vacation, but this trip allowed us to really savor spending time as a family.

Center Parcs can be found throughout Europe in Germany, The Netherlands, Belgium and France.

Do you think your family would enjoy a stay at a Center Parcs in Europe? Let us know in the comments!

A Note from The Nomadic Travel Mama: I received a discount on our family accommodations while visiting Trios Forêts. All opinions are my own.

About Farrah Ritter, The Nomadic Travel Mama

Farrah Ritter is an adventure-seeking mama to a 4-year-old son and twin 2-year-old boys. Her family of five moved to the Netherlands in October of 2012. Originally from Michigan, she and her husband relocated to the South in 2006 and jumped over the pond with their boys in tow. She blogs at The Three Under when she can and is looking forward to documenting and sharing their European journey with anyone interested in travel with multiple small children. An Instagram and Twitter junkie (@Momofthreeunder), Farrah loves to see perspectives of others and experience the beauty of old towns and historic places.

Comments

  1. Sounds like a great destination for a family getaway! When my kids were younger they would have thought it was heaven to have a sandbox inside a pool!

  2. Center Parc looks lovely! What is the top age group for kids to really enjoy themselves, do you think? Is it a good destination for big, active teenagers?

  3. Farrah Ritter, The Nomadic Travel Mama says:

    Lisa- it was fantastic. Kept the kids in one area- thus we actually could sit back and relax watching them. What a concept!

    Claudia- I actually think it’s perfect for all ages. What we did was perfect for us- but there are even more options for ‘big kids’. Archery, dirt buggies, rope course, lake activities- you name it. Even things like Segway, horse riding, and paintball. Brilliant, I tell you!

  4. wandering educators says:

    oh my GOSH. I’d love to go there! It seems like a wonderful place to BE.

  5. Laurel- Capturing la Vita says:

    How fun! LOVE the sandbox in the pool! Fantastic 🙂

  6. Yes, really it is a wonderful place. We’ve already been talking about how we need to go back soon!

Trackbacks

  1. Instagram Travel: Center Parc Love - The Three Under says:

    […] and pleading- we booked a second trip to a Center Parc here in Europe. Our first experience was at Trois Forêts in Moselle, France over the winter- and it was a HUGE hit. Center Parcs are a very popular […]

  2. The Surprise Birthday Weekend: Center Parc Bostalsee, Germany - The Three Under says:

    […] at another Center Parc. If you’ve read my blog before you’ve heard me gush on and on about Center Parcs- and why I think they’re the greatest thing ever. We booked and paid for […]

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