Looking for some ideas to entertain the family during the October school holidays?
Look no further. Blackpool has set its stall out to offer families an unrivalled selection of half-term holiday fun. From the famous Blackpool Illuminations lighting up the skies every night to spine-tingling Halloween horrors, the resort has an extraordinary line-up of events and attractions to celebrate the school holidays.
Here’s a selection of 10 exciting things to do in Blackpool over half-term.
1. Experience the world-famous Blackpool Illuminations
Autumn wouldn’t be the same without the world-famous Illuminations. The free display stretching along the entire length of the Promenade has an array of impressive new features for 2022, including a newly-reimagined Golden Mile section which is the largest step change in the display; Beachside Boulevard section, a colourful display of waves and sandcastles; and Odyssey, the largest installation ever seen in the Illumination which will launch during Lightpool Festival.
For the third time in history, the Blackpool Illuminations have been extended until January 2, 2023, giving you even more time to visit us. Even better, it’s also the perfect excuse to visit again when the kids break up for Christmas!
Explore the Blackpool Illuminations here and find out what's new, the switch-on times for this year’s display, plus more illuminating information.
2. Take advantage of Lightpool Festival
To complement the spectacular Blackpool Illuminations, Lightpool Festival will return for October half-term from 14 – 29 October. For 12 nights, a myriad of indoor and outdoor spaces will come alive with large-scale light installations, larger-than-life projections, music and performance. You can look forward to new artworks and world premieres, showcasing an unforgettable experience.
Why not take part in one of our famous LumiDogs workshops or bring all your family and friends to the Illuminated Tram Parade headlined by LED drummers Spark!?
It’s 16 nights of pure magic, music and illuminated magnificence – and it’s all free!
3. Brave some Halloween horrors
Now spooky season is here, it’s time to start planning your frights this Halloween.
We’ve got ghost trains, ghost walks, ghost trams, and a Haunted Hotel tableau in the Blackpool Illuminations - in fact, more ghosts than you can shake a stick of rock at.
Ghosts not your thing? Try pumpkin picking at Ridegway Farm or entertain the kids at one of the family-friendly Halloween parties in the resort.
Watch out for a stack of electrifying events at various attractions, including Blackpool Pleasure Beach which, from October 27-31, will host the return of Circus of Horrors in the Globe Theatre. Blending horror, rock music and burlesque with unbelievable acts from an almighty cast, Circus of Horrors is a spine-tingling show set to make your pulse race. The show kicks off at 8pm or you can opt for the child-friendly shows at 4pm.
From tame activities for your tiny terrors to grown-up scares to make any brave soul tremble, you can take a look at the full line-up of what’s on this Halloween here.
4. Light up your night with the World Fireworks Championship Blackpool
Don't miss the World Fireworks Championship Blackpool spectacular displays as countries battle out for the winning title.
The second event will take place on Saturday October 15, the third on Thursday 27 October and a fourth showcase event the following night, Friday 28 October.
Make the day of it in Blackpool, reserve a bite to eat for dinner and then head to the Promenade to watch the spectacular display; it's not to be missed.
5. Go for a hole in one at Blackpool’s newest attraction
The magic begins as soon as you step through the doors of Blackpool’s latest attraction, Hole in Wand.
Get ready for a wizard adventure and take on a nine-hole adventure, featuring a forest full of venomous snakes, an ancient castle with a magical fountain, a trip to a train station and a chance to visit York’s mysterious Shambles. Look out for the Halloween theming around the attraction this month and, even better, you'll be treated to a blood orange potion at the end of your round of mini golf!
At the end of your quest, find out if you have the magical powers of a Serpent, Basilisk, Unicorn or Wizard and receive a mystical potion to take away. Extend the enchanting experience and wind down in the Wizard Tavern and enjoy a Wand Dog, Unipop-corn or Cauldron cake and treat yourself to a delicious potion mix. There’s even a few venomous options for grown-up spell makers too!
Prices start £6.99 | Book tickets here
6. Take your pick from a wide range of attractions
October is the time of year when many places are bunkering down for the winter. But not here in Blackpool where we have the biggest portfolio of attractions outside of London.
Take your pick from Late Night Riding antics at Blackpool Pleasure Beach; splashes of indoor fun at Sandcastle Waterpark; discover the underwater world at SEA LIFE Blackpool; experience the illuminated and heritage trams; take a walk on the wild side at Blackpool Zoo; and try your luck at the UK’s largest indoor amusement arcade, Coral Island;
That's not all! Explore our three piers; brave the depths of The Blackpool Tower Dungeon; journey to the top of The Blackpool Tower; and enjoy the excitement of The Blackpool Tower Ballroom & Circus, and Madame Tussauds with its Marvel Super-Heroes and Strictly Come Dancing interactive exhibitions.
There’s plenty to choose from to keep you endlessly entertained!
Top tip: once you know your travel dates, we recommend booking any attractions in advance, especially leading up to the half-term holidays. Many attractions run time slot allocations, meaning they are booking up and selling out more quickly than usual.
7. Watch Dreamgirls at the Winter Gardens from 25 October - 5 November
Let your soul sing with the dazzling multi-award winning DREAMGIRLS at the Opera House Blackpool this half-term.
Join the three friends as they embark upon a musical rollercoaster ride through a world of fame, fortune and the ruthless realities of show business, testing their friendships to the very limit.
Direct from the West End with an extraordinary story and the unforgettable, spine-tingling vocals that send audiences wild, this spectacular musical production features the classic songs And I Am Telling You I’m Not Going, Listen, I Am Changing and One Night Only.
8. Experience Beautiful – The Carole King Musical at Blackpool Grand Theatre from 18 - 22 October
Long before she was Carole King, the chart-topping music legend, she was an ordinary girl with an extraordinary talent. Beautiful tells the inspiring true story of King’s remarkable rise to stardom, from being part of a hit song-writing team with her husband Gerry Goffin, to her relationship with fellow writers and best friends Cynthia Weil and Barry Mann, to becoming one of the most successful solo acts in popular music history..
Book your tickets
9. Embrace the outdoors this autumn
October is one of the most colourful months to explore the open spaces Blackpool has to offer. On milder days, the invigorating sea air is the perfect ingredient for a relaxing stroll down the six miles of promenade.
Alternatively, the lush 82-acre landscape at Stanley Park, voted England's best park in 2022, dramatically turns into an abundance of rich red and yellow hues with pathways blanketed in crunchy leaves, making way for endless photo opportunities. Sometimes it’s the simple things that matter the most on holiday, so bask in the autumnal air, recharge your batteries and discover our wide open spaces in Blackpool.
Whether you’re looking for a quick last-minute getaway, a half-term adventure or a short but action-packed break, our businesses can’t wait to welcome you for your autumn staycation.
Many of our accommodation partners are still taking bookings for October and half-term. From cosy B&Bs, holiday parks, national names to self-catering options, there’s something for everyone. Find your accommodation here.
10. Don't miss the Illuminated Tram Parade
Back by popular demand, for one night only, visitors will be able to watch headline LED drummers Spark!, a unique and
thrilling show that combines high-impact drumming, superb choreography and stunning lighting design.
The show will showcase the illuminated trams, featuring the battleship HMS Blackpool, the Fisherman’s Friend Trawler and the lottery-funded Great Western Train.
Illuminated giant puppets, Lumidogs, and performers will also be joining the parade, adding a wow factor and showcasing content never seen before by audiences in Blackpool.
Find out more