Well I guess the sunshine couldn’t last forever, as you can see, it was welly boot weather when I arrived in Blackpool on a wet Friday afternoon in June. I wasn’t going to let a bit of rain dampen my spirits though, Blackpool has dozens of indoor attractions to choose from when it’s too cold for donkey rides and sandcastles. Besides, the donkeys have their day off on a Friday so here’s what I got up to instead…
I had great fun at Sea Life Blackpool, it’s a huge aquarium right on the sea front where you can see over 200 fascinating creatures from sharks to seahorses. This year in Blackpool, Sea Life have started to offer behind the scenes tours, it’s only an extra £3 to gain access to the staff areas where you can see how the fish food is prepared.
I delved even deeper in to life at the aquarium by actually getting in to the tank with the British Rays. They were very inquisitive and loved all the squid I had to feed them. Although they look quite smooth, their skin is actually covered in tiny little teeth that feel like bristles so I had to wear gloves to protect both them and me!
I didn’t want to leave the tank but my waders started to leak, trust me to get wet whilst avoiding the rain! Oh well there was plenty to more to see once I’d dried off.
My visit to the Tower Ballroom was short but sweet, I had hoped to put my dancing shoes on but due to the weather the Olympic Torch Relay was in the process of re-locating here. However, if you fancy a whirl on the world famous sprung dance floor accompanied by the iconic sound of Blackpool, the Wurlitzer, then the Ballroom is open for dancing every day. Or if you’ve got two left feet then simply watch from the beautifully decorated upper balconies where admission is free!
As I was leaving Blackpool Tower I discovered that it’s run by Merlin, the same company who opened the new Madame Tussauds where you can pose for pics with Britain’s best loved celebs. They operate Sea Life too, in fact Merlin actually have seven attractions in Blackpool and you can get entry to all of them with ‘The Big Ticket’, ideal if you’re staying for a few days or want to come back within a few months. The BIG Ticket is valid for ninety days from purchase for one visit to each attraction.
No trip to Blackpool is complete without a visit to the Pleasure Beach. I have such fond childhood memories of the Big Dipper, the Steeplechase and of course, The Big One – I even remember the buzz of excitement when that ride first opened as it was and still is the UK’s tallest and fastest roller coaster! I have always loved the white knuckle rides but no where near as much as Richard Rodriguez… he’s currently attempting a Guinness World Record for the longest time spent on a roller coaster. By mid September he will have endured a stomach churning 103 days on board! I take my hat off to the roller coaster king!
I felt like a kid again in Blackpool and was pleased to see it’s still kept all the old family traditions. As well as donkey rides and Blackpool rock, I also fondly remember the Blackpool Illuminations which will be celebrating a centenary this Autumn and I’m sure there’ll be a sparkling display to commemorate the occasion!
Do you have any special memories of Blackpool? Perhaps you’ve climbed to the top of the tower or taken tram along the prom and was anyone else scared of the Laughing Man at the Pleasure Beach or was that just me?