At a time of year when most seaside resorts start to quiet down, Blackpool comes into its busiest season! Thanks to the Blackpool Illuminations, which get turned on in late August, the Lancashire resort has become legendary. Since 1879, the spectacular light displays have stretched along the Promenade and have grown to over 5 miles long!
Apparently, the illuminations require over a million light bulbs (inspiring Dads everywhere to complain that the house ‘looks like Blackpool Illuminations’ if you leave a room without turning off the light)! This year they are expected to attract 3.5 million visitors to Blackpool, not only for the Illuminations but also for the accompanying Festival of Light.
When is the best time of year to see them?
The best time of year to see the lights is at the end of summer, when the evenings start getting darker but it’s not too cold! This year the big switch on is scheduled for Friday the 30th of August at 9.15pm.
The lights will then light up the city for 66 days, all the way until the 3rd of November, so plenty of time to visit this spectacular sight! As you’d expect, as the nights draw in and get darker the lights start getting turned on earlier, so towards the end of October they are on as early as 5pm.
What else is there to do in Blackpool?
If you’re planning a visit to see the lights, you might want to check out what else you can do while you’re in Blackpool. As well as the legendary Pleasure Beach, there’s a great Zoo (with over 1,000 animals!) and a Sea Life centre. You can visit the top of Blackpool Tower for great views over the coast or get up close and personal with celebrities at Madame Tussauds.
There are hundreds of shows, plays and comedy events happening pretty much every night, so there’s no chance of being bored. And if you just want to take in the views and sea air, you can’t beat a stroll along the sandy beach.
We think a visit to see Blackpool Illuminations would be a great way to finish off the summer holidays!
The Let's Go Out Team
Who is switching them on this year?
Over the years Blackpool has invited many stars of stage and screen to have the honor of turning on their famous lights! Robbie Williams, Ken Dodd, Westlife, and even Kermit the Frog have all switched them on in previous years. Usually the privilege goes to people from the world of entertainment, but one year they were (somehow) switched on by a racehorse!
This year, Lucy Fallon, who plays Bethany Platt in the long-running soap Coronation Street, will be pushing the button. It will have even more meaning for Lucy, who was not only born in Blackpool but also made her first appearance on stage as a dancer at the historic Blackpool Grand Theatre.
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