A Guide to the Blackpool Promenade, Part 1: Getting Around
In a country where true beach resorts are few and far between, Blackpool is rightfully regarded as one of the main domestic locations for a day by the sea, and is a favourite summer destination for residents of the British North West. Even during the winter, there is enough to see and do around this coastal town to justify a visit – if only to take a brisk walk around the promenade and enjoy the healthy air. Should visitors opt for a longer stay, there are any number of Blackpool promenade hotels which could serve as the perfect home base from which to explore the area and take in all it has to offer from a sightseeing and entertainment standpoint.
It is with the intent of helping visitors to the town find their way around its main tourist area that we have taken it upon ourselves to offer a two-part guide to the Blackpool promenade. While for many tourists exploring a new area is one of the main selling points of a holiday, there are just as many who prefer to know where they are going and where to find what they are looking for, and the latter will undoubtedly find this series of two articles invaluable when exploring Blackpool. This first part offers a quick overview of the different areas of the Blackpool promenade, while its follow-up article, relays information about some of the area’s main attractions. Visitors staying in one of our Blackpool promenade hotels, or simply visiting for the day, can therefore make use of these pieces to plan their tour of the area, and make the most of their time in the city!
The Three Shores of the Blackpool Promenade
The Blackpool promenade is the name given to the pedestrian area located by the beachfront, where most of the main tourist attractions and amusement areas in that coastal town are located.
The Blackpool promenade is divided into three main areas, or shores, each connected to a different pier:
- The North Shore, ranging from the North Pier to Bispham;
- The Central Shore, comprising the area between the North and South Piers;
- The South Shore, located between the South Pier and Starrgate.
Each of these areas has its own unique personality, history and attractions, which make them worth a visit by guests staying in one of our Blackpool promenade hotels. The lines below go into more detail about each of the different sections, their history, and what visitors can expect to find in each of them.
The North Shore
The North Shore is the oldest of the three areas which make up the Blackpool promenade, having originally been built in 1862. Surprisingly, while the more recent Central and South shores underwent varying amounts of renovation over the decades, the North Shore has managed to keep its appearance, layout and personality relatively intact for over 150 years, making it the most visually distinctive, quaint and historic part of the Blackpool promenade.
Even still, this part of the Blackpool promenade offers more than simply historic value. Like its sister shores, the North Shore promenade is connected to a pier – in this case, the North Pier, which offers tourist attractions and entertainment venues sure to delight patrons of all ages, such as the theatre, the Merry England bar, the sun pavilion, and the classic-style carousel. Being the closest to Blackpool’s main train station, this part of the promenade is where most visitors to the town are likely to start their journey, and in that regard, Blackpool could not have hoped for a better first impression!
The Central Shore
If the North Shore represents the more historic part of the Blackpool promenade, the Central Shore is its most entertainment-centric section. Built only a few years after its northernmost counterpart, between 1864 and 1868, the Central Shore has since then been the most amusement-driven of the three piers, with fun having been the central driving force behind the area’s construction from the very start. As such, it comes as no surprise that most of Blackpool’s most famous landmarks and rides are located in this part of the promenade, specifically in the adjacent Central Pier. Key among them are the famous Blackpool tower, the Ferris wheel and the Pirate Bay bar, a refurbished and reconverted pier bar which is an attraction in its own right.
Unlike the North Shore, which was kept relatively unchanged throughout the centuries, the Central Shore part of the promenade was also recently subjected to extensive renovation, with the main goal of improving accessibility and mobility around the area. As a result, visitors to Blackpool can now enjoy better accesses to the beach and piers, making their exploration of the area even more enjoyable than before!
The South Shore
Finally, the third section of the Blackpool promenade, and furthest in relation to the city centre, is known as the South Shore. While perhaps lesser known than its two sister areas, this part of the promenade, built in 1893, is no less attractive from an entertainment standpoint. Much to the contrary, the South Shore pier, which the promenade gives access to, makes the most of its meagre 430 feet of length, boasting a variety of funfair rides which rivals that of the Central Shore pier. In addition to these rides, this part of the promenade also hosts the World’s Biggest Mirror Ball and the wave-powered pipe organ, two examples of the type of attractions only found in a unique resort such as Blackpool! If the North Shore is the perfect welcome card to the Blackpool promenade and piers, the South Shore stands out as the perfect exclamation point on which to end an unforgettable day of fun by the seaside!
As has hopefully become apparent, then, each of the three sections of the Blackpool promenade offers its fair share of reasons for visiting, with particular emphasis on must-see tourist attractions and memorable, exciting funfair rides. As such, all three definitely warrant a place on the list of must-see locations for any visitor staying at one of our Blackpool promenade hotels!