14 August 2014
It's been almost a year since we had our camping trip during the Morecambe Seaside Festival, but here's a quick run through of what we did for anyone looking to do something similar this year.
We like to try and plan at least one family camping trip a year, we decided upon Morecambe as it's close to the Lake District, but also to the seaside. As a seaside town Morecambe doesn't have the big attraction since Frontierland closed down, but it still has a small funfair near the sea front and it's close enough to drive to Blackpool or to the Lake District for the day. The area is being redeveloped and there are activities throughout the summer as a Seaside Festival. The highlight for us being an air display whilst we were there.
The Venture Caravan Park includes a children's play area, a small pool and some evening entertainment which fitted in with what we were looking for. It does have one disadvantage which is that it's directly next to the Morecambe FC football ground, which can be noisy on a match day. This didn't have too much impact those, as whilst it was noisy whilst the game was on it finished at a reasonable time and the noise died down quickly afterwards. The site is walking distance from Morecambe sea front (a reasonably long walk) which meant that we didn't need to worry about finding somewhere to park when we went to see the fireworks.
One tip I have is that if you need camping gas (Calor) then try and get it onsite rather than the local garage. Unfortunately it was too late for us to swap our gas for a refill in the evening so we went to the Texaco Regent Park Filling Station which was very expensive refill at £24.99 for the small 4.5kg cylinder (typical price elsewhere is around £16 or less). I thought that they'd made a mistake when they told me how much it was, but they confirmed that was how much they charged and I even wrote to them afterwards to see if they'd charged me for the wrong size refill, but they didn't reply.
This was also the first time we used our new tent, a Woburn 400 and we took a detour on the way to get an awning extension for it. This is a big improvement over our old tent as it's better made, more waterproof and the optional awning means we can pitch it as a small tent for shorter camping trip (or when I take the kids on my own) and a larger tent with awning when we go camping as a family. It's also much easier to put up than our previous tent.
We mainly used the site as a base to explore and spent a day at Windermere in the Lake District, a day at Blackpool and then some time in Morecambe including watching the air display and fireworks at the sea front.
On our first day we visited Windermere and took a boat trip on the lake.
The following day we visited Blackpool. The pleasure beach is very expensive and had very long queues. Also we weren't staying long enough to justify the cost so we went on some rides on the pier instead.
Although Morecambe does have a sea front the tide goes a long way out leaving dangerous mud banks. We therefore drove to Thornton-Cleveleys to spend some time on the beach. Returning to Morecambe in time for the evening fireworks.
With our final day spent watching the air display.
Whilst the loss of Frontierland several years ago resulted in a decline in Morecambe as a seaside resort the Seaside Festival provides activities throughout the summer that is worth visiting. It's also a good place to explore some of the other nearby places.