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Half Term Fun for the Kids - With a Difference

Date published: 20 October 2011.

Following so quickly on the heels of the long summer holidays and with the prospect of balmy autumn temperatures, why not take the kids somewhere different this half term?  DFDS Seaways has some top destinations for family day trips and activities across the Channel.  Fares start from just £19* each way for a car and up to four passengers!

Running up to 12 crossings a day from Dover to Dunkirk, DFDS puts you in the perfect location to explore many areas of France and beyond with just a short hop across the Channel in around two hours.  A crossing on DFDS’ modern family-friendly ferries means your short break starts the moment you come aboard.


Chris Newey, Passenger Director, DFDS Seaways English Channel Chris Newey, Passenger Director, DFDS Seaways English Channel said: 

With such a fantastic range of activities and historical sites so close to the port of Dunkirk, travelling across the Channel by ferry is the perfect way to start exploring this fascinating region.

A relaxing journey on board is the perfect way to start your break and the freedom of taking your own car, means you will have the ultimate flexibility to visit some amazing places in the vicinity.

There is plenty to do on board to kick-start the trip, including great value meals, either a full English breakfast from £7.95 or a family meal deal (for 2 adults and 2 children) from £23.  Kids can be entertained during the crossing in the supervised play area or in the Games Castle situated close to the seating area so they are always in view.  Of course, there is always the lure of great savings on gifts, fragrances, wines, spirits and cigarettes.

The port of Dunkirk is a fascinating town with a quirky history filled with pirates and heroes.  Do not miss finding out about Jean Bart who saved France from famine and fought the English on the high seas.  Chocolate shops sell his ‘fingers’ in chocolate and jewellery shops sell them in gold!  Dunkirk boasts 15 miles of beautiful sandy beaches, a host of restaurants offering delicious seafood and traditional Flemish dishes and the museum, which houses the tall ship Duchesse Anne, that you can go aboard and explore.

Further afield, here are some other destinations that will appeal to families and couples alike:


France’s fourth largest metropolitan area, Lille, is a cosmopolitan city of culture, entertainment, shopping and history.  The must-see Wazemmes market is the largest north of Paris. 

Help the children out with their school projects and sign up with the Lille Tourist Board for a battlefields tour.  Many important World War 1 battles were fought in and around Ypres and Lille and the tourist board runs guided tours every Saturday.  Visit www.lilletourism.com for more information about events and activities in and around Lille.

Plopsaland De Panne

Perfect for families with younger children, Plopsaland De Panne is a vast theme park, close to the Belgian coast.  It is just a 20 minute drive from the port and has over 40 exciting rides and attractions.  Visit www.plopsa.be/en for more information.

Parc Asterix

Parc Asterix is an excellent Gallic theme park, with a hotel and various restaurants.  Inspired by the famous French comic books by Rene Goscinni and Albert Uderzo the park has 27 rides and 7 adventure areas.  Located just outside Paris, Parc Asterix is just over 3 hours drive from Dunkirk – perfect for a long weekend or short break!  Visit www.parcasterix.fr/en for more details.

As the only ferry operator to sail to Dunkirk, DFDS Seaways passengers also benefit from the convenience of arriving at a port that has little of the congestion associated with busier ports, such as Calais, despite being only 20 miles away.

For more information about DFDS Seaways, or to find out about the latest sailing times and book tickets, visit www.dfdsseaways.co.uk or telephone 0871 574 7241.

*Terms and conditions apply, please visit www.dfdsseaways.co.uk for more information.




For more information, please contact Sarah Whelband or Ryan Jones on 01732 779 087 or email sarahw@westgatecomms.com/ ryan@westgatecomms.com


About DFDS Seaways

DFDS is Northern Europe’s largest integrated shipping and logistics company.

DFDS Seaways operates a network of 30 routes with 60 freight and passenger ships, while DFDS Logistics provides freight solutions in Europe with trailers, containers, and rail.

DFDS Seaways was recently named as the only recommended ferry operator by Which? Travel (July 2011) and the Dover-France route won The Guardian, Observer and guardian.co.uk travel award for ‘Best Ferry Company’ in 2009, for the second year running. The company was also ‘Highly Recommended’ in the 2007 Telegraph Travel Awards.

In the UK, the company operates passenger services on routes from Dover to Dunkirk, Newcastle to Amsterdam, and Harwich to Esbjerg.

DFDS Seaways and Louis Dreyfus Armateurs Group have recently submitted a joint bid for certain assets of SeaFrance, which is currently under review by the relevant competition authorities, as well as other stakeholders.

DFDS Seaways Dover-Dunkirk has recently carried record car passenger numbers of 100,000 per week over the busy summer period this year, and is continuing to grow its market share of the car passenger English Channel market.

For further information, visit www.dfdsseaways.co.uk