Part One: Beside the Seaside

Estimated reading time: 13 minutes

Brighton.

Art and Believe Sign.

As a family, we love visiting Brighton. (which is in East Sussex, South East England). My parents would take my brother and me to Brighton all the time when we were kids. (We went to Brighton with our grandparents too). This tradition continued with me taking my son on day trips and a couple of overnight stays to Brighton over the years. I also lived in Brighton for a brief period (in my twenties).

What do we love about Brighton? It is a place of fun and diversity, and when we arrive, there is just a feeling of liberation. Also, my son finds it soothing to be by the sea. He has always loved being around water, even as a baby. When at the seaside, he spends a long time listening to the relaxing sounds of the sea.

Let us not forget the Lanes and all the independent shops, which have a quirky, edgy feel. There is also lots of street art, as you walk around Brighton too, which as creative people we love.

Attractions in Brighton.

eating fish and chips on the beach, brighton beach, brighton seaside, brighton
eating fish and chips on Brighton beach.

There is nothing better than going to the seaside and eating traditional fish and chips on the beach. (of course).

water fountain at the marina in brighton
Water fountain at the Marina.

Another part of Brighton seaside that we enjoy going to is the Marina. It is just lovely sitting by the fountain admiring the yachts. I remember, as kids, my brother and I would point out to yachts and say that’s the one I’m going to have when I’m older. 

Here is a photo of the Royal Pavilion, the Brighton Wheel, and photos by the Old Pier, better known as the West Pier.   

Continuing Family Traditions.

We have also visited Brighton with my partner (shown in the above photos), including him in our family tradition.

I visited Brighton once with my partner, and he was keen on going on the British Airways i360 (just us two).

It was something that I had not done before. (What a unique way of viewing Brighton way up high). The only problem was, I’m not overly keen on heights. Nevertheless, we proceeded to board the British Airways i360. My partner was confidently walking around, taking photos, and looking down. Although I took a few photos too, I did not, however, look down. When my partner asked if I wanted to walk around the viewing tower, I promptly declined. Most of the time, I remained stationary.

Here is a few more photos from our visits to Brighton:

Torquay.

Torquay, seaside, sea
Torquay.

What can I say, the South-West part of England and its sandy beaches are stunning! Where we live, it is a bit of a journey to travel there, hence why we had to go on three trains to get there!

Train Journey Experience.

It was only my son and me who travelled to Torquay for a short holiday. At the time, it was the furthest venture I went on alone as a mother with my son.

I’ll give you a little bit of history before I discuss more about our Torquay holiday. It was a warm summers night; however, it was a night like no other. Something felt different in the air. It was a new feeling, a feeling of change. (only joking) Long story short. My son is now ok going on trains. However, when he was younger, the experience was overwhelming for him. Sensory wise, there was too much going on for him. Around this time,  I was only comfortable driving locally. (as I was afraid of driving on the motorway). I understood how stressful getting a train was for my son, so I decided to drive on the motorway. Fast-forward to today, I drive anywhere. I’ll even go further and say that I enjoy the freedom of waking up and get into my car and drive to a new destination.

The English Riviera.

torquay wheel, torquay eye, english riviera eye
Torquay Wheel.

Back to Torquay. Torquay is a seaside town in Devon. (which is a part of the country also known as part of the English Riviera.) Once we had arrived, and my son saw the breathtaking views of Abbey sands beach, he felt relaxed and at home.

We stayed close to Torquay harbour. This trip was made possible by applying for a carer’s grant through my local carer support group. Likewise, if I recall correctly, this was when I was on the verge of a nervous breakdown (trying to juggle work and caring).

Boat Trip to Pirate Island.

marina, boats
Marina.

It was nice walking past the harbour looking at the yachts. Furthermore, my son and I went on a boat trip. I think it was to Brixham, which was a lovely excursion.

boat trip to brixham, boat trip
Boat trip to Brixham.

All I can remember is that we called it Pirate Island, as a pirate festival was on at the time. Plus, it made the experience feel more like an adventure.

Kents Cavern.

view up by kents cavern, torquay
The view up by Kents Cavern.

We decided to try something different and booked a tour around the caves at Kents Cavern. Fast forward to now, and they even have a visual story to help autistic children, teens, and adults prepare for their visit.

caves at kents cavern, kents cavern torquay
Caves at Kents Cavern.

I don’t know about you, but this rock looks like a face.

Living Coasts.

living coasts torquay
Living Coasts.

My son relished the opportunity to see the African penguins at Living Coasts, situated at Torquay Harbourside. Unfortunately, the coastal zoo is now closed.

What we loved about Living Coasts was that the penguins were free-roaming and were wandering around us. Additionally, we didn’t realise that we would be so close to penguins when we entered, so overall was a pleasant surprise.

All in all, Torquay is a place that we would love to visit again sometime in the future. Another place on our dream list to visit is St Ives, which is like another two/two-and-a-half-hour drive from Torquay. Although, the long journey to get there has made me slightly hesitant. Plus, we cannot go anywhere at the moment anyway.

Great Yarmouth.

great yarmouth beach
Great Yarmouth beach.

Why does it suddenly feel like I am giving a little Geography lesson? Anyway, my son and I visited Great Yarmouth, which is East of England. Around this time, my son was more comfortable having flexibility in his routine. Now, I do not usually do spur-of-the-moment activities when it comes to my son. (I do for myself) However, that day was slightly different. I woke up one Sunday morning, and my son said he was bored. So, I suggested to him shall we go to the seaside and he said yes. As a result, we chose to go to Great Yarmouth.

Disclaimer: No trains were involved in this journey, only a car.

We then packed some food, sandwiches, crisps, and the usual stuff for eating outdoors. We also included a beach mat and travel games. (that we could also play on the beach) and placed them in the boot of my car.

Road Trip.

Now I must admit, I enjoyed the scenic drive to Great Yarmouth. Plus, I know it sounds a bit cheesy, but there is no road trip without playing the classic road trip songs. (it is the best feeling ever) We even passed by Center Parcs along the way.

Seaside Life.

We left home early, so when we arrived, the seafront was empty. (which was perfect for us)

adventure golf
Adventure Golf.

My son feels at one (a peaceful state) by the sea, as mentioned earlier. He also loves arcades and playing adventure golf.

Sea Life Centre.

With his fascination with sharks, my son was excited when I bought tickets for us to go to the Sea Life Centre.

The coolest part for us was walking through the shark tunnel.

Aquariums are also a success with my son, so a random trip to the seaside worked out quite well.

What is your favourite seaside or beach you have visited in the past?

Coming soon:

Next on Blast from the Past Series is Part Two: The Roman Baths.

Don’t forget to stay tuned. (Part Two, uploaded tomorrow).

Disclaimer: This post is for information and entertainment purposes; and personal experience. All external links are for information purposes only. The days out mentioned in the blog are based on past experiences. (before lockdown) The attractions and places mentioned in this blog are temporarily closed due to lockdown and in line with the government’s guidance. I received no payment or any other commission for this post.

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