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North West - Blackpool

top 10 places

Top 100 places to visit in north west england

Blackpool

1. The Wild Mouse, Blackpool Pleasure Beach

The Wild Mouse opened in 1958 and is one of the oldest and scariest rides in the world that feels truly dangerous - maybe because it still runs on a wooden track. Designed before the days of health and safety, you experience the worrying sensation that the tiny cars might hurtle over the edge as they appraoch the impossibly tight corners at high speed.

2. Blackpool Tower, Circus and Ballroom

Blackpool Tower was inspired by the Eiffel Tower in Paris, and opened to the public in 1894. At 158 metres (518 feet) high, it can seen from as far as 30 miles away. If you're visiting Blackpool, it's worth a ride to the top top take in the great views that stretch as far as Cumbria and the Pennines. If the weather is bad then a visit to the fantastic Tower Circus, Aquarium and Ballroom will keep you and the kids entertained.

3. Blackpool Sea Life Centre

The Sea Life Centre on Blackpool's famous Golden Mile is a well organised and well run aquarium which pumps fresh seawater from the Irish Sea through it's tanks. There are over 50 displays of sea creatures from all over the world, including a coral reef and a giant walk through tank containing sharks and shoaling fish. British costal waters are represented with a series of evocative displays including Rays and Dogfish, which swim with their heads out of the water at feeding time!

4. North Pier

Blackpool's North Pier was first opened in 1863 as a basic promenade pier and steamer jetty. It’s an older and more nostalgic place than the central and south piers, with old fashioned sweet shops, amusements and a palmist along the way as well as a children’s fun fair located at the far end. There are traditional wood and cast iron benches to sit on and deck chairs can be hired. At only 50p to get in, it's definately value for money.

5. Blackpool Illuminations (Annual)

The world famous Blackpool Illuminations are switched on each year from early September for 2 months when the Promenade is transformed to a colourful wonderland. Blackpool Tower, buildings and even trams become festooned with bulbs and themed characters, from dancing girls to aliens. It's the best time of year to experience Blackpool's gaudy grandeur.

6. Kiss me quick ! - Walk down the Golden Mile

Blackpool's famous Golden Mile stretches from the North Pier to Blackpool Pleasure Beach and is the bustling heart of Blackpool. Amusement arcades and numerous novelty shops selling tacky souvenirs line the promenade. Many of the Blackpool's main attractions can be found here, including Louis Tussaud's Waxworks and the Exhibition of the Universe, rock, candy floss, burger stalls and fish and chip shops.

7. Children’s Donkey Rides on the Beach

If you have children, then they will enjoy having a go on one of the placid beach donkeys that plod patiently up and down the sands in the summer months. There are several operators which tend to cluster near the central pier. Prices vary but expect to pay about £2 for something every kid will remember.

8. Traditional Tram Rides

Different types of trams run along the sea front, but the best ones are the old green and cream coloured 1950's and 1960's open top models, either single of double decker. Get a lungful of bracing sea air and soak up the holiday atmosphere as you take in the sights. Look out for the tram stops along the Golden Mile and Sea Front.

9. Infusion, Blackpool Pleasure Beach

The Infusion ride at Blackpool Pleasure Beach, isn't actually named after the process of brewing a tea bag but claims to be "an exhilarating infusion of the elements." Should that be fusion? Semantics aside, this is a great white knuckle ride for thrill seekers, with cascading walls of water and a sky high roller coaster. There  are five incredible loops and rolls, a lake below, and awesome water effects.

10. Funny Girls Variety Show

Either you are the sort of person who will find watching a  transvestite  variety show enjoyable, or you aren't. Funny Girls is very Blackpool - brash, loud and in your face. People might join in and laugh wholeheartedly, or find it funny in an ironic sort of way. Whatever your point of view, there is no denying that Funny Girls has been and remains incredibly popular, making the shows' founder a multi-millionaire.
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