Skegness - 10 things to do when visiting

Skegness - Top things to do

Skegness – 10 things to do when visiting

When people think of Skegness, many think it’s the home of the Butlins Resort, after all, this is where the Butlin’s story originates.  Butlins is one of the main attractions but whilst you are visiting the area, it’s worth visiting some of the other popular attractions and local beaches.


Read on to find out about our top things to do when visiting Skegness.


There are many questions people ask when planning a trip to Skegness.


Where is Skegness?


Firstly, Skegness is a traditional seaside town in the civil parish in the East Lindsey District of Lincolnshire.  Secondly, the popular seaside town is located on the Lincolnshire Coast just 43 miles east of Lincoln, and 22 miles east of Boston. Moreover, larger cities are within easy reach too with Nottingham being just 80 miles away, Sheffield 106 miles and London 138 miles.  


What is Skegness famous for?


Surprisingly, Skegness started as a port and small fishing town.  It wasn’t until the 1870s that the Earl of Scarborough who owned most of the town, invested in infrastructure and developed roads, footpaths and railways.  It was made famous and became popular with holidaymakers when the rail network grew and advertisements were made advertising the King’s Cross, London to Skegness Route.  You may know the ‘Skegness Is So Bracing Poster’ which has to be one of the most famous railway posters ever printed. This put Skegness on the map and made Skegness one of the most popular seaside destinations for family holidays in the UK.  Of course, the amusement park by the pier started the Butlins’ involvement in 1929 shortly followed by the holiday camp in 1936.  Butlins became the home of famous entertainers which increased the pull to Skegness.  


Does Skegness have a beach?


There are 32 beaches to visit at Skegness.  One of the most popular is Central Beach.  Home to the Pier.  It is a lovely clean, long sandy beach with plenty of opportunity for an ice cream or a donut. Enjoy a stroll along the prom and walk to Ingoldmells to the Butlins Resort.

Skegness Beach

Sunset at Skegness Beach

Can you swim in the sea at Skegness?


Yes, you can swim in the sea at Skegness.  The beach is lifeguarded during the summer months June to September.  It is a blue-flagged beach too with body boarding and surfing being a popular pastime.


How clean is the sea at Skegness?


Mablethorpe, Skegness and Sutton-on-Sea retained their Blue Flag status in 2023 for the second year in a row.  You can rest assured that these beaches are clean, safe and meet stringent environmental standards.


How long is the Pier?


Skegness Pier is 118m long and stretches out into the sea.  Views of the East Coast can be enjoyed and lots of fun can be had with the attractions!  Read on to find out what activities are available on Skegness Pier.


Do trains run to Skegness?


Reaching Skegness by train is easy and it is well serviced by East Midlands Railway (EWR) and CrossCountry Services. They run frequent services daily.  It is just a 15-minute walk to the beach from the station.

Once you arrive at Skegness Station there are great bus links which run from the bus station next door with Stagecoach.  The numbers 1 and 3 leave Skegness Interchange and drop off and collect at Ingoldmells, Butlins and the Marina.  In the summer, the open topper is a fun way to reach your destination.


Top things to do when visiting Skegness


1) Fairy Dell Paddling Pool and Boating Lake


Visiting the Fairy Dell is one of the best free things to do with young children during the summer months.  Located along the promenade you will find the Fairy Dell Paddling Pools and Boating Lake.  The pools are open from May until September and are open from 10 am – 6 pm.  Worth a visit on those warm days when a cool-off is required.  It is clean and safe so it is ideal for younger children to have a splash.  Furthermore, there is even a soft floor to make paddling comfortable underfoot. Small children can enjoy the knee-deep pools, sprinklers and the central fountain. Parents can watch their children play, sitting on one of the many benches in the sunshine (Hopefully;) 

The Boating Lake is an additional activity where you can hire rowing boats and pedalos.  This surrounds the paddling pools.


2) Skegness Pier


Skegness Pier is a main viewing point and a popular attraction in its own right. It can’t be missed whilst walking along the beach at Skegness. There are many activities to get involved with, some of which will need to be booked in advance.

Try your hand at climbing at the popular “Clip and Climb” a wide variety of different climbing walls to challenge the family.  The Hero Zone, a large adventure playzone dedicated to exploration and fun for younger children.  Treat yourself to a bowling game at the 10-pin bowling alley.  For the more adventurous there is a laser quest and the new Gelly Ball which shoots water orbs – perfect to keep the children and grown-ups entertained.

If you like puzzles, give the escape rooms a go. There are three themes to explore.  Escape the Seven Seas, Prison Breakout and Witchcraft and Wizardry.  Imagine being locked in a room for 60 minutes and trying to get out.  Can you crack the code?


3) Fantasy Island Theme Park


No trip is complete to Skegness without a visit to Award Winning Fantasy Island. They have won Best Large Visitor Attraction of the Year at the 2023 Destination Lincolnshire Tourism Awards.  A full day out for all the family with rides tailored to all ages, with over 30 rides to discover. Select your ride package, either select a Discovery, Adventurer or Little Explorer band. Ride the rapids or the log flume – be prepared for a splash!  The high-speed Odyssey and Millenium are not for the faint-hearted with the thrill seekers out there enjoying these roller coasters! 

Whilst you are there, a visit to Europe’s largest seven-day market is a must with over 320 stalls to peruse.  If you are not worn out by the day’s antics, then a visit to the newly refurbished Captain Jacks will entertain you with an evening of family entertainment.  Families can watch live tribute performances, watch the party characters, and get involved with the games nights and bingo. The in-house entertainment team will keep everyone occupied. A full day out located in Ingoldmells, Skegness.


Skegness - Top things to do

Fantasy Island – Family theme park with rides and attractions for a whole day and evening out


4) Gibraltar Point Nature Reserve


Gibraltar Point National Nature Reserve is a large Nature Reserve covering an area of about 4.3 km² on the coast of Lincolnshire, England.  It reaches from the edge of Skegness to the mouth of the Wash showing off its unspoilt coastline, views and diversity of wildlife.

If you are looking to get away from it all, then this is the place. It is worth visiting during all seasons to view the ever-changing flora and fauna. There is an opportunity to get involved and take part in group-arranged activities to include guided walks and talks.  Family events include bird walks, nature Tots, wildlife watches and nest-building workshops.  Beach cleans are regularly arranged too so you can play your part in keeping our wildlife safe and our environment clean and free from litter.


5) Donna Nook


About an hour away from Skegness is Donna Nook.  Thousands of visitors flock to the viewing area to see the grey seals land on the dunes to give birth to their pups. It’s a spectacle not to be missed which takes place every November and December each year.  This year they had 2205 pups born here.

You can read the weekly ‘Pupdate’ to follow the baby seals.

Bird watching is also a favourite pastime here with over 250 species of birds recorded.

Skegness - Top things to do

Watch the grey seals arrive on the beaches and have their young – thousands of seal pups every year.

6) Skegness Aquarium 


Two attractions for one, can’t be bad! When purchasing tickets for the aquarium, entry is included into Jurassic Falls also.  It is best to book tickets in advance as they have capacity limits to give you the best experience possible.

See Long John Silvers Storeroom and view the tarantulas, scorpions and millipedes face to face. See the open-top tanks in the Sunken Fold and view the clown fish, octopus and shark. The Aqua Theatre provides a great view of the sea creatures and includes Black Tip Reef Sharks, Sting Rays and the Zebra Shark.  Follow the floor markings through the sea caves and go through the tunnel where the sea life is swimming around and over you.  Get a closer look at the sharks, eels and jellyfish which will be swimming very close to you. There are lots of interactive games to get involved with. Our favorite is Doodle Cove where you can draw your picture, scan it and watch it come out on the screen.  Children will love seeing their live designs and having the ability to make their creations move.

For those who would like to learn to dive, why not get in touch with Skegness Dive and Snorkeling Centre who arrange experiences and dives at the aquarium.

When you are done with the aquarium take advantage of the free entry into Jurassic Falls.  Explore a time gone by and learn all about the Jurassic, Triassic and Cretaceous eras.  With over 20 dinosaurs to see, educational activities and quizzes, you are sure to finish the day on a high.


7) Embassy Theatre


Embassy Theatre is known for its great shows and acts.  They have a huge diary of events with tribute acts planned with Barbara Streisand, Queen, The Bee Gees, Dianna and Lionel plus Tina Turner.  If you enjoy a good laugh, there are numerous comedy acts from the Comedy Network and Frankie Boyle.  Enjoy shows from 80’s Mania, Rhythm of the Dance, Rock Show and The Greatest Hits from Motown.  There is something for everyone.


8) Orchard Farm Equestrian


Orchard Farm offers bespoke rides for all abilities.  They can tailor a session depending on your request. For experienced riders, they offer a 2-hour beach ride for example or perhaps riding lessons for children or a family ride.  All levels can be catered for.


9) Hardy Animal Farm


Hardy Animal Farm is set in 7 acres of Lincolnshire countryside. The family attraction offers both indoor and outdoor play with events and things to do whatever the weather. They provide a unique hands-on experience with activities scheduled throughout the day and an opportunity to meet the animals.

The daily activities include bunny petting, meeting the alpacas, pony grooming, baby animal petting and egg collecting.  Children can feed the animals and meet the baby animals. The tractor rides cause much excitement with your little explorers talking about their visit for a long time afterwards.  Look out for the special events throughout the year like Easter, the Parent and Toddler Mornings and the Big Tractor Weekend.


10) Nature Land and Seal Sanctuary


The Sanctuary is well known for rescuing and rehabilitating orphaned and injured seal pups who are found washed up on the local shores.  They look after them and teach them how to feed themselves before releasing them back into their natural habitat.  In June 2023, they released their 1000th seal back into the wild which was a great achievement for all concerned.  

Additionally, guests have the chance to visit the tropical butterfly exhibit and see the penguins, Popcorn and Pip, meerkats, alpacas and the reptile House.


Skegness - Top things to do

Meet the Alpacas at Nature Land

To sum up, there are lots of activities and places to visit when in Skegness with plenty to keep the whole family entertained.


If you are looking for a base for your holidays in Skegness, then have a look at our static caravans for sale in Skegness.  We also help caravan owners sell their caravans privately, to find out more,  read our frequently asked questions.  Alternatively, give us a call on 01392 271 222 or visit our website for further information.