12:15 16 March 2010
UK holidays were one of the few winners during the financial woes of the past couple of years.
With the weak pound making European holidays expensive, many holidaymakers opted to stay on home shores sampling the best that Britain has to offer.
As a result, camp site occupancy went through the roof in 2009, and the two main touring clubs both reported huge increases in membership figures.
The Camping and Caravanning Club added 65,000 new members, taking total membership to more than a quarter of a million households.
The Caravan Club provided half a million more bed nights in 2009 than in 2008, with more than six million nights in total. Its members spent an estimated £400million in the local economies, not including the cost of the accommodation.
According to the Caravan Club, caravanning in the UK is a £3billion market, accounting for 19% of all UK holiday nights.
And the trend looks set to continue through 2010. The Boat and Caravan Show at Birmingham's NEC in February was one the UK's largest consumer shows with an attendance of over 83,000. Manufacturers Swift, Bailey, Elddis, Lunar and Coachman all reported record sales.
But where are the best placing to take you tourer? Practical Caravan magazine has asked its readers to nominate the best places and the top sites have been named.
The winner for 2010 by an overwhelming majority was Ross Park Hill Farm, in Newton Abbot, Devon.
Ross Park Farm has a total of 110 pitches costing from £13.00 per night for two adults. Facilities include a restaurant, bar, shop, heated washblocks, facilities for the disabled and lots of outdoor sports activities, including volleyball and badminton courts.
Dogs are also more than welcome and can enjoy their own fenced-off walk as well as their own special washblock with hot showers and hairdryers.
Seven out of the top 10 sites are based in the South West highlighting the ever-growing importance of this region to the UK tourist industry.
Nigel Donnelly, editor of Practical Caravan, said: "Our annual Top 100 Sites awards are voted for by caravanners who have paid to stay.
Nobody votes for a site they don't like and I am confident that the sites on the list represent really great stays. It's going to be a great season this year and I'd strongly advise caravanners to book early."
The full list of the top 100 sites is available in the April issue of Practical Caravan magazine (out now), or online here.
Aberlour Gardens Cavavan Park, Aberlour on Spey, Moray
Rushin House Caravan Park, Co Fermanagh, Northern Ireland
Kneps Farm Holiday Park, Thornton-Cleveleys, Lancs
Ord House Country Park, East Ord, Berwick-Upon-Tweed
Bron Derw Touring Park, Llanrwst, Conwy, Wales
Heart of England
Glencote Caravan Park, Cheddleton, Leek, Staffs
East of England
Fen Farm Caravan Site, East Mersea, Colchester
Fairfields Farm Caravan and Camping Park, Pevensey, East Sussex
South Lytchett Manor Caravan and Camping Park, Poole, Dorset
Somerset, Avon and Wilts Bath
Chew Valley Caravan Park, Bishop Sutton, Somerset
Ross Park Hill Farm, Ipplepen, Newton Abbot, Devon
Trevornick Holiday Park, Newquay, Cornwall
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