ALL Strictly Come Dancing fans know that Blackpool Week is a huge milestone in the calendar.
Every year the remaining couples in the hit ITV one show travel north and enjoy dancing across this famous home of the ballroom, beneath the giant chandeliers.
And unlike the George Lucas stage at the Elstree TV Studios in Hertfordshire where Strictly is filmed week on week, the Blackpool Tower Ballroom is open to the public to take a whirl.
As long as children are accompanied by an adult, they too can waltz their way around the magnificently-decorated ballroom that is steeped in the history of dance.
You can dance on the celebrated floor every day, and visitors can take part themselves or simply sit and watch others during one of the daily tea dances.
My children absolutely loved dancing on the world-famous ballroom floor, but they also loved sat (with a bag of crisps and a drink from the Ballroom bar) and watching the dancers sweep the floor.
It was like stepping back in time watching the dancers waltz effortlessly. This is a great experience, but even more so if your little one is a fan of Strictly Come Dancing!
This year Strictly will be filmed live in the Blackpool Tower on Saturday, November 18.
What else is in Blackpool Tower?
Blackpool is famous for its tower, so a family holiday in the West coast resort wouldn’t be complete without a trip to the top.
Standing proudly on the seafront, Blackpool Tower, which was built in 1894 is 158m tall and welcomes over 650,000 visitors per year.
There are five great attractions inside the Tower and they’re all worth a visit.
The Blackpool Tower Eye
I don’t even like heights, but alongside my six-year-old son and four-year-old daughter we took the lift 380ft into the air and walked out onto the glass platform, where we looked down at the promenade below.
From the top you can see the North West of England spread out before you with views up to the Lake District and, on a clear day, down to Liverpool and to the Isle of Man.
The kids thought it was brilliant being so high up, but I preferred the comfort of the ballroom below.
Until our visit, I had no idea Blackpool Tower had so much to offer. I think my children’s favourite activity was the circus, which was simply amazing to see.
We saw jaw-dropping stunts and, at one point, when a gymnast was swinging on monkey bars with his feet, my four-year-old daughter had to cover her eyes.
We saw world-class acrobats, flying trapeze daredevils, aerial performers, gymnasts and stunt performers.
The venue itself is a treat. It’s unique, with its spacious seats and old- fashioned decor. It felt like an experience just going in and taking your seat, let alone seeing the show.
This is an ultimate indoor play area. Awaiting all your brave explorers, is a fun-tastic range of swinging, sliding and climbing contraptions.
The play zone, complete with cafe is set within an amazing themed Lost City.
The Blackpool Tower Dungeon
The Blackpool Tower Dungeon brings together an amazing cast of theatrical actors, special effects, stages, scenes and a ride in a truly unique and exciting walk-through experience that you see, hear, touch, smell and feel.
It’s hilarious fun and it’s sometimes a bit scary.
How much are tickets to the Blackpool Tower?
You can buy individual tickets for each attraction, but the Blackpool Big Ticket is the most affordable way to access all five attractions and also includes entry to Sea Life and Madame Tussaud’s – making seven attractions in total.
Tickets start at £32.50 for children and £45 for adults. The ticket allows entry to each attraction once, but is valid for 90 days so you don’t have to fit it all in to one day. Click here to buy tickets.
What else can we do in Blackpool?
Blackpool Pleasure Beach
The Pleasure Beach is one of Britain’s top tourist attractions and boasts more than 125 breathtaking rides and attractions, plus amazing shows.
Here you can ride Europe’s tallest and fastest rollercoaster: the Pepsi Max Big One.
There’s also Infusion, the exhilarating, quintuple-looping coaster, which is the first in the world to be suspended completely above water.
For my young children the favourite area was the UK’s only Nickelodeon Land. This is a new, six acre area loaded with 12 rides, a shop, fun game stalls, a new restaurant and is home to a whole host of famous characters.
The kids also loved the vintage wooden rollercoaster with its comfy cloth seats.
The entire Pleasure Beach has a really good holiday vibe to it, with music playing and dancing fountains.
Unlimited ride wristbands start from £18 for juniors for off-peak days and £29.50 for peak days, if booked in advance online.
For more information on the Pleasure Beach, visit the website here.
Where should I stay?
The Big Blue Hotel
The four star Big Blue Hotel provides the perfect base for a family break in Blackpool.
The hotel is right next door to Blackpool Pleasure Beach and you can get a hotel deal, which includes entry to the theme park.
My kids were particularly impressed with the bedroom, because they got their own area with bunk-beds and a TV for each bed. It came complete with a PlayStation 3 and even a giant magnetic snakes and ladders game on the wall.
The main bedroom was huge, comfortable and stylish and it made a nice change not to all be squashed into one family room.
The hotel has a really stylish Blues Bar and Brasserie and the accommodation was modern at affordable prices.
The hotel is a 30ish minute walk to Blackpool Tower. It is much more fun, however, to take a ten-minute tram ride. I had not used one before, but was surprised at how easy it was – you just jump on and pay the conductor.
To find out more about the Blue Blue Hotel, visit the website here.