I've lived here for 5 years and prior to moving here, I had the image of Stags and Hens done up in fancy dress and basically trashing the town. Since living here, my eyes have been opened to the fact that this still is, and probably always will be, a family resort.
Blackpool is a very long town. The nightlife has been pushed into one zone, kind of opposite North Pier and upwards a block. If you've got kids, you're unlikely to be there after 8 when it gets lively anyway.
|Central Pier Blackpool|
The Central Area is probably where most families gravitate to. There's the Central Pier with a fairground, arcade, family entertainment in the bar and the best chips in Blackpool. Over the road is Madam Tussauds and the Sea Life Centre, both of which have seen massive investment over the last few years. The promenade has been restructured and is full of artworks which are intriguing to children. The RNLI and tourist information office are also in this zone. Then of course, there is the Blackpool Tower. You need a full day for the tower - and the circus is a must.
South Shore is houses most of the hotels and B&B's and entertainment is in the form of The Sandcastle Waterpark (again another full day) and The Pleasure Beach.
But if money is tight and you can't afford the attractions every day, there's loads to do which costs little or nothing.
Blackpool has a lot of great parks for the kids. I would say all have been refurbished within the last two years. Stanley Park is a great day out. The park itself is huge. There's a large playground with some really challenging rope structures, trampolines, a mini train, a cafe, mini golf a boating lake complete with geese and ducks. And the newest feature is a BMX park. If you time it right there's sometimes bands on the bandstand.
|Sand Dunes at South Shore|
The beach really doesn't deserve the bad press it gets. I live 3 streets away and frequent it often. I wouldn't if it wasn't clean. It is and I have no qualms about myself, the kids or the dog going in the water or on the beach. The sand dunes at south shore can be a day out in themselves, climbing up and exploring then running down to the sea to cool down. The promenade is great if you're a roller blader or cyclist and it's your key to the rest of Blackpool as its a safe way to get from one end of town to the other. There's also a free air show in August and the free Fireworks Championships start at the end of August.
At the Bispham end, thats the north end, there's lush green grass for pic-nicing and a couple of play areas to let off steam. If you continue to Cleveleys theres a Vue Cinema (cheaper on Tuesdays), an ice rink and a small fairground for under 5's. If fancy your chances sea fishing, you can hire equipment on the prom and cast your line off the sea wall.
|Marine Hall, Fleetwood|
Fleetwood is the extreme north and can be reached by tram. The new trams are clean, buggy friendly and an adult day ticket of unlimited travel is only about £4. Fleetwood has lovely boating lakes on the front and a plethora of markets and bargain shops. There's the marine hall which has lovely, large gardens. The large ferries go from Fleetwood and there's a small drive on ferry to Knott End. There's a toy museum and an outlet village also.
I could go on all day about how great is it. I've not even touched on Lytham and St Annes!!
Oh one thing I haven't mentioned is the weather. When it's hot, it's HOT. The forecast for today was overcast and 19 degrees. It started off cloudy but by 10.30 the sun was beating down. On the school run yesterday at 8.30, it was 23 degrees. The majority of the time it has that holiday feeling, where you step out and the heat hits you. You can always tweet me for a weather update if you're considering a day trip! @Claire_Sheehan
Seriously, during the summer holidays, we do all the tourist stuff, we make the most of what we've got. And we love it.
What's your experiences of Blackpool (Clean stories only please!!)
I have not been approached or paid to write this post. I just think Blackpool is great and I am a strong believer in bringing money into my town!