Blackpool is one of those venerable English seaside resorts that, even in the age of relatively easy and inexpensive international travel, have never completely gone out of style. Indeed, it offers no shortage of iconic attractions today – some of which are free to enjoy.
Here are no fewer than 10 entirely free things to do in Blackpool in 2018.
- Marvel at the art at Grundy Art Gallery
Grundy Art Gallery has been bringing contemporary art to the people of Blackpool and beyond since 1911. Its eclectic programme of exhibitions this year includes All The World’s A Sunny Day by Roy Voss and Neither Land Nor Sea, the latter bringing together both historical and contemporary representations of the Lancashire town’s legendary piers.
- Enjoy some leisurely reading at the library
Another obvious way to while away an hour or two while you’re in the Edwardian Baroque building that houses Grundy Art Gallery is to visit the Central Library next door. It’s open on all days of the week except Sundays, and boasts all of the typical library amenities including books, large print books and public access PCs with Internet access.
- Visit the three piers
We touched on Blackpool’s piers above, and yes, there really are three of them – the North Pier, Central Pier and South Pier. All were built in the late 19th century and offer a mix of traditional pier attractions including amusements, live music and dancing – but bear in mind that admission charges may apply in some cases.
- Watch the world go by in the Winter Gardens
Opened in 1878, the large entertainment complex known as the Winter Gardens offers a host of venues, encompassing a theatre, ballroom and conference facilities. However, you’ve also got the option of simply marvelling at the wonderful architecture from a seat in the breathtaking Floral Hall.
- Chuckle away along the Comedy Carpet
The Comedy Carpet is one of the UK’s biggest public art installations, and serves as a horizontal tribute to the fabled British sense of humour, incorporating the jokes, songs and catchphrases of 850 of the country’s best-loved comedians and writers, according to the Visit Blackpool website. You’ll find it in the shadow of Blackpool Tower, and it’s free to visit at all times of the day and night.
- Gaze in wonder at Blackpool Tower
Unfortunately, it does cost you money to take a trip up Blackpool Tower, but there’s nothing stopping you admiring the town’s defining landmark from afar. There are also certain public areas within the tower that you can access for free, such as the coffee shop.
- Have a picnic in beautiful Stanley Park
Open from dawn until dusk every day of the year, Stanley Park is simultaneously an oasis of calm and a hive of activity, thanks to such amenities as the award-winning Blackpool Model Village and Gardens, the historic Art Deco Cafe and the amazing Cocker Tower. The latter serves as a memorial to Dr William Cocker, who was the town’s first mayor.
- Check out the arcades
How could you possibly visit a great British seaside resort like Blackpool without at least dipping your head in the ever-vibrant and energetic amusement arcades? Entry to the arcades is free, but you will obviously need a small amount of change to play any of the games. So, keep those silvers handy that you are likely to have gathered due to your other purchases along the promenade.
- Stroll down the promenade
The promenade has always been one of Blackpool’s most enticing features, and has been made even more so in recent years by the £100 million regeneration of the seafront in 2011. With its various eye-catching art installations and extra seating provided in the form of the wave walls and pebble-shaped seats, it’s a stimulating and intriguing place to enjoy a casual walk.
- Catch some rays on the beach
What’s the point of coming to a legendary seaside resort like Blackpool without getting sand between your toes? The beach here is as alluring on a sunny day as it was if you ever visited during your childhood, so we’d advise you to pack a bucket and spade for some serious sandcastle building – not to mention the swimsuits and towel for a bit of paddling in the sea and sunbathing.
With many a great deal for an affordable B&B in Blackpool available through major online hotel booking portals such as Toprooms, you won’t need to look far for the final piece of the puzzle when putting together a holiday to this popular town that will appeal to both your head and your heart.