When you think of the great British seaside, what do you think of? Murky waters? Sandcastles on the beach? Fish and Chips? Hostile seagulls as big as small dogs? Well yeah, if I’m being honest, all of the above but top of the list is definitely the ARCADES! Camel/Donkey Derby, Dance Machine, 2p machines, bingo! Good, old fashion fun so we were really excited to be VIP’s at Coral Island, the largest arcade in Blackpool for our anniversary weekend!
Coral Island is Blackpool’s largest indoor free admission family attraction and it really is HUGE! Ric and I got lost several times as well as losing each other as one of us was always running after Sienna who doesn’t like to hold hands much! The lights and music are a sensory overload which instantly made my minis seriously excited!
Whether you’re looking for old favourites such as the 2pm pushers and soft toy grabbers or newer games like the driving games and brand new Virtual Reality there is something for every age.
Ric and Lucas loved the VR, stating it was the best they had been on. Lucas also enjoyed the 2p pushes and was so triumphant when little prizes dropped out! Sienna loved the Dolphin Star game with the light up Horse or Dolphin. She didn’t know what she was doing but enjoyed the movement and visuals on screen. As for me, well I liked the bingo machines and I’m a fan of the Dance Machine, which takes me back to my teens. I didn’t find one in Coral Island unfortunately and found a new obsession with the Nerf game where I won 500 tickets! Whoop!
My other firm favourite is the Camel Derby, which I tend to get a little competitive on. With two children to keep an eye on I wasn’t able to give it my full focus but between us we managed to win the kids a couple of teddies!
I tend to avoid the grabbers because I know how hard it is to win on them but there is something about them that draws you to them isn’t there? Like it’s a right of passage to try and win something on them! I really wanted a Pug in a sequinned hoodie and Ric won me one! Husband points!
One of the features of Coral Island that makes it unique is that it has two rides – the Pirate Flyer and the Ghost Train.
The Pirate Flyer is a monorail high above the arcade. There are guns to pretend to shoot the scallywags below and a dark tunnel to add a spooky factor. Sienna freaked a bit at first when it went a little dark but she settled and really enjoyed it. She’s such a daredevil but we decided not to risk her on the Ghost Train so just Lucas and I went. Lucas was scared, fear of the unknown maybe. There are noises, flashing lights and things jumping out or appearing but no live actors or anything so it’s pretty tame for an adult. Lucas got off it and wanted to go straight back on once he’s tested it out once.
Kids Eat Free
There are six family friendly restaurants to eat in at Coral Island, Blackpool. I told you it was a big place, and the best bit? Kids eat free in all of them! Amazing! We chose to go traditional and enjoyed some delicious Fish and Chips. The adult portions were generous and I didn’t fully finish mine. Lucas and Sienna’s portions were perfect and they ate them so fast I almost didn’t have time for a picture! Inhaled would be a better word!
Tickets and Prizes
Tickets = prizes so it’s lucky that Coral Island has the most ticket arcade games in Blackpool! Even some of the 2p machines give tickets! I scored big on the Nerf gun game and managed to bag an amazing 500 tickets! I was stood for ages while they all filtered out of the game!
In some arcades the choice of prizes is a bit rubbish for the amount of tickets you get but I think the Coral Island have done it well. You can swap your tickets for as little as a tub of slime up to a tablet or console! We gained 1,080 tickets and with that Lucas chose a big pirate inspired lego set and an Avengers bag. He was really happy with it!
I think, in the end, we spent about four hours in Coral Island! When it’s busy it’s pretty overwhelming with the lights, sounds and a lot of people and kids…especially when you have a toddler that likes to run off like we did! I got a bit anxious I’d lose her! Overall though, we had a brilliant time and it was nice to do something that I did as a child. It felt traditional! We met Captain Jack Sparrow (see above) who gave us some chocolate coins and Lucas would have spent several more hours there if we had let him. He’s already asking to go back “to the BIG arcade in Blackpool!” so we better think about booking another trip in! If you’re looking for some traditional fun with a few modern twists, Coral Island arcade in Blackpool is definitely worth a visit!