on March 9, 2012
Blackpool Tower is a strong part of Blackpool history. The Tower was designed by James Maxwell and Charles Tuke. The design of Blackpool Tower was influenced by the Eiffel Tower. The Tower stands at 518 feet (158m) and is visible as you arrive into Blackpool.The main building of Blackpool Tower is now free to wander around and there is a burger cafe and shop selling food and knick knacks. Lifts service all floors (5 within the main building) and are spacious in order to carry several passengers. If you plan on experiencing a few different attractions within the tower or local area, there is the option to purchase combination tickets up to £49 per person. Each attraction is individually priced.Blackpool Tower is opened daily (except Christmas Day) from 10am - 4pm. The various attractions within the tower operate different opening and closing times. We had a 2 for 1 voucher to use at the tower so couldn't take advantage of the combination ticket offer. I was a little confused by the tickets at first until the lady at the desk explained that the attractions are individually priced as opposed to being lumped together. This does work out quite expensive. We didn't get to experience all of the attractions whilst we visited the tower. This wasn't by choice but out of season, the Circus wasn't on and our son was too young to visit the Dungeons so my views are based on the experience of the attractions that we did manage to see.*Blackpool Tower Eye*Our ticket was for this attraction (£12.60 per adult, £9.60 per child and £39.60 per family). We took the lift to the 5th floor and found our way to the reception desk for the 4D cinema. We were informed that this is every 30mins and we were just in time for the showing. Provided with 4D glasses, we made our way into a stand up cinema complete with a massive screen. The room went dark and we were able to experience the short 4D film that they offer. The video shown promotes Blackpool and the tower in general. It shows the experience of a young boy who flies around the seaside resort and even experiences a ride on the Pepsi Max at the Pleasure Beach. The video is complete with fireworks, bubbles and water flying at you and is very realistic! We were impressed and at the end, we had a short walk to the lift to take us up the tower!As the lift doors opened, I was amazed by the view. I actually expected floor to ceiling glass around the full floor and I was actually thankfully that I wasn't walking right out onto it! One side of the tower features the glass flooring and walls and offers uninterupted views across the promenade, piers and Irish Sea. My son and fiance were fearless and walked right across it without a second thought. I was terrified and it took a lot of courage for me to step out of my comfort zone. I am glad I did as the views and experience were absolutely amazing - a real buzz and beautiful views as it was quite a clear day.We didn't feel rushed during our time at the top and took plenty of pictures. We headed up stairs to the outdoor part which was very safe but rather cold. If you scared of heights than this definitely isn't for you! The views are amazing regardless of where you stand at the top of the tower. The football stadium and Pleasure Beach are visible - the shops, beach and water are all visible. After 20 minutes or so we were ready to go back down. Overall I can recommend a trip to the top of the tower as it gave us a real buzz. Not something I would do often though.*The Ballroom and the Circus*Access to the main area of the Ballroom is £9.00 per adult though if you enter on the 5th floor, you can experience it for free. The Ballroom was opened in 1899.We decided to pop in to the Ballroom during our recent visit to the tower. The Ballroom is a grand affair and is absolutely massive. It features a huge seating area downstairs and dancefloor as well as a curtain covered stage. Various stalls are set across different levels but we experienced the dancing from the upper stalls on the 5th floor. The seating was comfortable and during our visit, we got to see a few couples dance whilst the Organist played - quite mesmorising but not something my son wished to watch for long!The Ballroom is quite popular and is home to many dancing events. I could imagine it being quite spectacular during an event but not something I would personally attend. Previous dancing events have included contestants from Strictly Come Dancing. I would say the Ballroom is ok to visit should you have time. It isn't always opened to it is worth checking if you plan on visiting for this attraction.The Circus is on from 31st of March until November and is very popular with school groups and families. As we visited in February, it was closed. Tickets are £12.60 per adult and £9.60 per child. The 2012 schedule features Mooky and Boooffalo Bill in a Wild Wild West type circus show. *Jungle Jim's*The entrance to Jungle Jim's is on the 5th floor. Jungle Jims is £6.00 for one hour of play and can accommodate children under 4ft 7in. Our son was excited about visiting Jungle Jim's - I used to love it as a child but it has completely changed. £6.00 is quite high given he is on 3 but he deserved it so in we went. The area is spacious and clean with plenty of seating for parents and also juice and sweetie machines. There are 2 areas. The toddler area is suitable for children under 3 or 90cm and featured lots of soft toys, balls and a small chute. We were told our son was too big to go in here and had to go in the large area. Thankfully there weren't many children in otherwise I would have been scared he was too little!The main play area of Jungle Jim's has a 'Lost City' theme and looks quite 'forresty'. A few stairs lead up to the play area and there is a platform for parents to walk around should they wish to keep an eye on their child as they wander around the multi-level play area.. Children should wear socks but no shoes and of course, the responsibility of the childs safety lies with the parents/guardians. The main area features lots of hidey holes, swinging bridges and chutes of various sizes. I was scared Ryan would hurt himself but he was perfectly safe and had so much fun. Both myself and his Dad took it in turns to go up onto the platform and keep an eye on him but there was no need.*Blackpool Dungeons*Suitable for those over the age of 10. I will just make a short comment here as the Dungeons are actually a separate attraction all together and I will reviewed it separately on my next visit. £15.00 per adult and £12 per child.The Dungeons are accessed from the back of the tower and I will be visiting them with my sister when we go back down in June. Having been to Edinburgh Dungeons, the concept is the same. The Dungeons features 10 live acts and attractions including Pendle Witches, The Torture Chamber and the Drop Ride To Doom. The 'actors' promoting the Dungeons were dressed well to reflect what you would expect to see inside the Dungeons. I can't wait to visit here and learn all about Blackpools grim history!Whilst expensive when you consider all of the attraction prices, Blackpool Tower is worth a visit. We went back on the last day just for a wander around inside (since it is free) and it was great to get out the cold for a short while. There is plenty to see and so but like most attractions, I feel is better visited 'in season'.I can recommend Blackpool Tower and I hope you like my pictures.
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