PARKDEAN Resorts’ motto is about ‘creating amazing memories’ and we certainly made our fair share on a trip to the ‘Gold Coast’ of north Devon.

This is an area we had visited before with its vast sandy beaches and spectacular ragged headlands.

Keen to see more of the area at a family-friendly venue we opted for a new location – Croyde, and specifically Parkdean’s Ruda Holiday Park at Croyde Bay where our home for the week was a caravan.

Ruda is very much a family resort and visitors will find they settle into caravan park life very quickly.

Travelling to the area, up from Barnstaple and through Braunton before turning off on the coast road towards the Atlantic Ocean it’s clear what rules the waves here.

Repair shops, wetsuit sales, hire facilities and training schools along with food shacks, clothes shops and beach bars give you some idea. Yes dude, surf’s up and Croyde Bay which is a stone's throw away from the holiday park is regarded as one of the best surfing beaches in the UK.

In fact next to the beach at Croyde is one of the UK’s premier surf schools, Surf South West, a British Surfing Association ‘Centre of Excellence’. Apparently the qualified instructors will have you riding the waves in no time.

It’s not for us this time though as we had our very young children in tow – maybe when they’re a bit older they'll be tackling those rollers?

Body boarding and surfing seemed to be very popular among the visitors of all ages to Ruda, who could be seen each day taking the short walk to and from the beach with their kit, whatever the weather.

Fortunately, Ruda Holiday Park was a resort with plenty to occupy those of us not up for surfing.

Perhaps the main attraction and the reason why many choose this park (apart from the nearby beach) is the Cascades Tropical Adventure Pool, a vast indoor heated pool with rapids, slides and a heart-pumping 230ft flume providing endless fun.

Cascades is part of the main complex at Ruda which also includes the reception, shops (including convenience store, amusement arcade and fish and chip shop), restaurant, bar and entertainment lounge, soft play area and launderette.

Cheesy entertainment is available in the evening at the Atlantic Blue Entertainment Lounge (former X Factor contestant Chico was appearing on one night during the week we visited) which may be your thing but it certainly isn't mine. I'm assured it's a good night out for mums and dads, maybe next time?

There's a good kids club though with lots of activities and entertainment for little ones and older children. And the Movies Under the Stars was a nice touch – an outdoor cinema showing classic films (mainly for kids).

The restaurant and bar with adjoining soft play area (plus outdoor terrace) was a popular spot – traditional pub fare is the order of the day here at reasonable prices.

Outside there’s also adventure playgrounds, playing fields, and chances to go horse riding, fishing, tennis, or walk around a nature trail.

We stayed in a caravan but you could also choose to camp – or ‘glamp’ – or stay in a lodge, apartment, cottage or house.

The modern caravans at Ruda come with TVs, fitted kitchens and fresh linen, double glazing, central heating and even furnished outdoor decking areas and verandas to create a truly relaxed holiday feel. Beds are made on arrival so there's no need to bring linen.

My only gripe was that I thought the 4pm check-in to the park was quite late in the day.

Beyond the park there's much to do. The beaches at Croyde and nearby Saunton are a hotspot for swimming, surfing and sunbathing.

Croyde is a lovely village a short walk away with bars, restaurants, and gift shops, and there's some fabulous coastal walking opportunities.

There are plenty of family attractions in this area too including The Big Sheep, The Milky Way Adventure Park, and Coombe Martin Wildlife and Dinosaur Park. The seaside town of Ilfracombe is also nearby.

Time passed quickly while we were having fun at Ruda and making memories.

Fact box

Parkdean Resorts’ Ruda Holiday Park, Croyde Bay, Devon, EX33 1NP.

October half-term break: Arriving Friday, October 27 for three nights, with prices from £139 staying in a two-bedroom Saunton caravan which sleeps up to six people

Spring 2018 break: Arriving Monday, March 5 for four nights, with prices from £99 staying in a two-bedroom Saunton caravan which sleeps up to six people

To book visit or call 0330 123 4850.