Being fortunate to have been on our recent adventures to Orlando, our ‘pieces of eight’ are looking pretty low at the moment so it’s a ‘shore’ thing that we won’t be having any long holidays during the summer months and looking instead to ‘set sail’ on day trips and hopefully the odd night stop overs. One of the places we always love day tripping to is Blackpool, which not just because its our nearest seaside town but because there’s always something to do and this time we were invited to explore all that Coral Island Blackpool has to offer.
A quick google of Coral Island Blackpool will have you thinking its just another amusement arcade type venue, which lets be honest, Blackpool (and many other seaside resorts) is full of them, but its not just a haven for all things 2p slots, video games and bingo, its much much more!
Coral Island is Blackpool’s largest free admission family attraction centre situated near to the central pier and the iconic Blackpool Tower. Featuring a massive selection of the latest video games, claw grabbers and tipping point style 2p and 10p machines, there’s plenty for everyone to enjoy. There’s also two over 18 only sections with £500 jackpots as well as Prize Bingo (30p a card) and the classic Camel Derby game where you roll your balls (provided not your own obvs) into holes (where is this going) and your camel races against others for a prize.
As well as your classic amusement style offering, there is three fairground type rides within this indoor venue, which is really handy if the weather is against you. For the little ones like, there’s a car merry go round which D really enjoyed, then there’s the Pirate Flyer which spans the whole venue from above and allows you to travel around looking down at all the machines and spot where you next want to try your luck. Finally, what pirate themed venue wouldn’t complete without a Ghost Train. Both H and D went on and although D was a little jumpy when she got off, we all had great fun riding it nonetheless.
After a few hours of good fun, our attention turned to food and with four different food offerings, there’s something for everyone, ranging from bar food through to grill, snacks and good old fashioned fish and chips chippy which is what we decided was for us. The prices are pretty reasonable too which is pretty refreshing however the main attraction is that KIDS EAT FREE. Yes, with every adult meal you get a children’s meal free which really helps to keep costs down. A quick scan of the menu shows you can order things like cheeseburger and chips for two adults and get two children’s meals free all for under £10 which is an absolute rarity in a seaside town. This offer isn’t just at weekends, or every other second thursday, its ALL DAY EVERY DAY so it doesn’t matter when you go. Mrs F and I had fish and chips whilst H had a sausage and chips and D had the fish bites and chips which we all enjoyed and polished off before heading back into the main areas to try our luck at the amusements.
Many of the amusements give out tickets (alongside any monetary rewards) and these tickets can be saved up to exchange for prizes at the prize shop when you have enough. We managed to get a “booty” of prizes thanks to yours truly winning a jackpot of 800 tickets on the 2p tipping points. The kids exchanged them for all kinds of stuff such as Fortnite figures, glittery notebooks, several small teddies and even a unicorn toy figure set. I wanted to save them for a future trip in the hope I got enough to exchange them for an Xbox but the children won that contest.
Over on the Camel Derby was where it was at though as I managed to chalk off no less than 4 wins meaning H got to choose a large soft toy and D decided to split her’s into two smaller soft toys; she’s much more a quantity over quality kinda gal, that said H chose something great…a large poo emoji. :-/
Truth be told we spent around 5 hours in total in the venue (including our meal) and spent around £45 which I don’t think is particularly bad given the fact that included food for us all as well and the amount of prizes the children walked away with as well and the fun we all had. I think despite the fact of the huge number of amusement centres at Blackpool, we’ll definitely be back to Coral Island again both for the variety and for the food as well.
Of course we couldn’t go back to Staffordshire without a trip to the beach, even though we forgot to check tide times and ended up getting around 10 minutes before the tide was completely in, instead we decided to pop to the nearest place for some ice creams and doughnuts to round our trip off. A great family day out to kick off the Summer holidays.
Until next time