"It's so close to Whanganui but still far enough away to have a holiday" - that's why John and Lesley McFarlane have been returning to Lakelands Holiday Park at Lake Wiritoa for 13 years.
Parked up on a deck chair outside their caravan, enjoying some breakfast at 9.30am, is how they spent their morning when the Chronicle visited yesterday .
"It's a break from being retired at home," Lesley laughed.
And the couple are not alone in enjoying the warmer months at the park.
Jackie Dowman, who has owned the holiday park with her husband Darryl for a year, said this summer was busy, with the facilities completely booked out.
"We're full until the fourth of January and then things settle for the week, and then we've got another lot coming in so we're busy right through February and have a wedding here in March."
She said they have had holidaymakers from Feilding, Palmerston North, Turakina, Tauranga and a lot of locals from Whanganui.
"We get international people here all the time, we get a few that were going to go freedom camping but they said it's just chaotic."
She said on Christmas Day a family came over from Australia, who have been using their big A-frame building.
The couple have recently opened a new driveway to the park and subdivided the front end of the facility near the entrance. The land has been sold and three families are intending to build there.
Happy memories of Whanganui summers at local pool
"The weather's been near-perfect apart from a bit of wind and the lake's all good at the moment to swim in," Dowman said.
Kit Garretts and his girlfriend from Belgium had made their way down the Surf Highway to stay a night at the park.
"Campermate recommended this place because it's so idyllic and it's a great place to stock up and just relax here. It's quite funny - people from Whanganui, which is five to 10 minutes away, come here to relax. But no, it's great and I totally understand why you wouldn't go much further."
Guy Grinter and his family have been coming to the park for about the last five years and usually stay over New Year.
He said they bring their family boat and go wakeboarding, skiing, kneeboarding and biscuiting out on the lake.
"The kids love it. My eldest here, she's just getting into biscuiting and wants to give kneeboarding a go."
Their relatives from Australia had not been camping with them before and decided to join the family for a day's camping at Wiritoa.
"The owners are awesome as well, they're doing a really good job with the place."
Felix Dunkel and his girlfriend Leone Schabram from Germany decided to stay a night at the park.
They wanted to stop to explore the city of Whanganui before they head off to their next destination.
Then there are loyal locals who return every year like Trish Taylor-Pope, her husband, her two children and their dog Rosie.
The Gonville family have been staying at the park since the Friday before Christmas and will stay on into the New Year.
They decided to permanently move their caravan from Kai Iwi Beach on to their Wiritoa site around 18 months ago.
She said a lot of their friends came to stay at the park and they had a couple of kayaks that the kids go out on.