Newest Review: ... really nice. The sound of the waves crashing against the beach and little cafes and pubs along the way make it really enjoyable. Scarboro... more
Scarborough in General
Member Name: nikkikayj
Scarborough in General
Advantages: Lovely beaches, lovely people, plenty to do
Disadvantages: everything costs money, dont come for longer than a week
As a Scarborough born and bred girl I thought I should give a review of Scarborough from a residents point of view.
Scarborough has a busy town center with a variety of shops - The shops are no different to any other high street really featuring Debenhams, New Look, Boots, Superdrug, Argos, Dorethy Perkins, HMV, Next (we have a lovely size next which has recently moved from a smaller location to the Brunswick shopping center - They took down a whole wing of the center to create our Next store converting several shops into one very large one)
A question I often get asked by tourists is where Primark is - Quite simply - 40 miles away. Unfortunatly we do not have a Primark as yet however residents have been asking for one for many years so maybe one day.
The Brunswick shopping center is the main shopping point in Scarborough and also the main place for town center parking. Access to the 2nd floor of the center can prove to be difficult for wheelchair and pushchair users during busy times as there is only 1 elevator on the ground floor which is often also used by people wanting to access the parking on the 3rd and 4th floors. There are 2 elevators on the 2nd floor however that also go upto the 3rd and 4th floors to the parking.
Many shops have closed down over the last year much a like to most towns - Since the begining of 2009 we have lost ELC, Woolworths, Baratts, Adams and various other shops and local businesses.
The Scarborough Market Vaults and Market Hall is a large indoor Market mainly consisting of fruit, vege, meat in the Hall and 2nd Hand goods and art/ craft goods in the Vaults.
Scarborough has an OK nightlife - not really amazing but OK. The towns 2 most popular nightclubs are The Mansion and Boleyns - I will warn that Mansion is usually full of under age drinkers and more the rough type of people than nice people. Boleyns is ok but drinks are generally expensive.
There are plenty of late opening bars and pubs infact there is probably too many.
It is generally not worth going out unless it is a Friday or Saturday night as it is so quiet however Wednesday is generally goth night if that is your kind of thing.
We have a newish Casino in Scarborough called Opera House Casino, It is a huge building on St Thomas Street which can not be missed (just across the road from Boleyns nightclub). It is a lovely looking place both internally and externally however I can not comment on the games as I am not into gambling.
Within Scarborough there are a few attractions which may be of interest - Firstly the Sea Life Center - If you plan to go to the sea life center make sure to keep an eye out for discount vouchers as it is an expensive job - adult tickets at the moment are £14.50 - I believe child tickets cost around £8 however my children have annual passes so I can not be certain of this. You can often find half price vouchers in the local Newspaper and I have seen bogof vouchers in superdrug stores all over the country. If you have no luck getting a discount voucher be sure to pre book online as you do get a small discount for this.
The center has all the usual creature you would expect to find from Starfish to Sharks and penguins however I honestly do not think it is worth the asking price - we go 2 times a year at most even with free passes.
A new Hammer head shark is coming to the center within the next couple of weeks which is getting talked about quite a lot at the moment.
There is a miniture railway running from the sea life center to Scarboroughs North Bay which is a great novelty experience for young children. It used to be used by people going from the sea life center to kinderland and atlantis (a childrens large outdoor playzone and a huge water park) sadly though kinderland has been closed for a couple of years and atlantis has been demolished.
The other main attractions in Scarborough would be the Castle and the beaches.
To be honest there isnt much to see at Scarborough Castle other than bricks, grass and a gift shop but it has a great history and isnt too expensive to visit (ah yes nothing is free in Scarborough)
The beaches are lovely but do become very crowded in the summer.
The South bay is the busy one which is probably the better of the 2 for children. There are plenty of activity's and things to do here
Lifeboat - This is where the lifeboat is situated
Amusement arcades - There are dozens of amusement arcades on the seafront which will keep you entertained for hours. These have various activitys including bowling, gambling machines, arcade video games and bingo.
Food - There are plenty of food shops on the South bay (which is lacking on North bay) including fish and chips and subway - there are plenty of ice cream parlours including Jaconellis which is probably the best ice cream in scarborough.
Boat rides - There are several boats that will take you out on minitours on the South Bay these usually last up to an hour and are reasonably priced but do et more expensive during the peak season.
Cinema - There is the futurist Theatre on the South bay which is primarily a cinema but also has live acts and productions as well - the chuckle brothers are a regular feature here but over the years has had some popular (at the time) acts such as Peter Andre, Steps and A1. There has been a lot of talk recently as to if the theatre will be around for much longer and has been many petition set up to save it. Time will only tell how long it will be here for.
Donkey Rides - Donkeys are nearly always on the beach ready and willing (well hey dont get much choice really) to take children on rides. They only cover a very small area and the rides are usually be over within a couple on minutes - however kids love it - at £2.50 a ride it is quite expensive though.
There is a large lift that can take you from the bay up into the town without having to walk up the tiring amount of steps. This last summer was 80p 1 way per person with no exceptions - even children and babies have to pay up. I went on it last year with my 22 month old and new born in a double buggy (phil and teds) where my newborn couldnt even be seen but I was still charged for both children which I thought was pretty bad.
The North bay has recently been fully redeveloped however there isnt really a lot going on there.
There is a Premier newsagents where you can gets snacks and newspapers and a large toilet/ shower block which you can either get a day pass for or pay as you go. On the beach there generally isnt any activities and it would be recommended that you take your own - such as a football or a bucket and spade. There is however a lifeguard that keeps watch during peak times (generally easter and summer holidays)
There is a bus service that you can use to go from the North to South Bay however I can not comment on the pricing of this as I havent used it in a good few years (it was £1.20 then for adults - undoubtedly will have gone up)
As well as the Futurist Theatre which has already been mentioned there are 2 other main entertainment venues.
The Hollywood Plaza - A small 1 screen Theatre with very uncomfortable seats. This is owned by the same people that own the Futurist and generally only has 1-2 different films per week (if nothing major is coming out these same films can run for weeks on end)
The Stephen Joseph Theatre
This is a lovely theatre which is the home of Alan Ayckbourne and his productions. There is nearly always a show on of some variety whether it be an Alan Ayckbourne original or a production from a travelling play. It is very popular with both Locals and Tourists.
There is a Restaurant withing the theatre that not only makes good tasting but also good looking food.
The theatre also shows films when they are having a break from shows but these are generally a little outdated and have already been shown at the main cinemas in the town.
There are Dozens of places to eat out in Scarborough - As there are so many I will tell you about a couple of my favorites.
For Italian food my favorite place to go is Gianni's on Victoria Road - It has a lovely family feel when you walk in with a great atmosphere - The food is complete luxury with huge portions. The recipes are just far superior to the others around the town including the chain restaurants. The food is fairly priced for the portion sizes and comes highly recommended. The staff are also very polite and work to please the customer not just to pass time.
Indian - My favorite Indian eat in is Scarborough Tandoori on St Thomas Street (next door to the previously mentioned casino)
The dining area is quite small and if it is busy you do feel a little cramped in however the food is lovely. Presented very well and cooked to perfection. My one annoyance for here however is that the drinks really do bump up the price and do seem very expensive.
Places Local To Scarborough
If you arnt affraid to travel a little there are some lovely places to visit outside of Scarborough nearby.
Filey - A quiet little fishing town - rubbish for shopping so dont go there for that but the beach is lovely. I have often found lots of shells and fossils and spotted crabs on filey beach as well which just doesnt happen in Scarborough. Visit the rock pools at the base of the brigg (just keep walking along the beach) and you are almost certain to see some sort of sea life.
I have on one occasion seen a seal just off the brigg and it is a lovely place to go fishing. Make sure you keep a close eye on he tides to avoid getting caught out.
Whitby - Another lovely town - Whitby is probably best known for the goth weekends which are great fun - even if you are not a goth - Whitby is a lovely town and you do almost feel like you have stepped back in time when visiting.
York - Im sure you will have an idea of what York has to offer - There is the lovely Cathedral to visit for starters - The railway museum and this is also where the large majority of Scarborough locals go to do there Christmas shopping every year.
I am going to end my review here as I am getting very tired but please feel free to leave a comment to ask me to add anything if you can think of anything you would like to know that i haven't mentioned yet.
All in all Scarborough is a lovely place to visit but beware that pretty much everything costs money and dont come for longer than a week as you will run out of things to do - especially if you dont plan on visiting nearby towns - Its a great place to visit but quite a boring place to live
Thank you for reading
I may have put the headline as Sunny Scarborough - but the sun is well and truly hidden recently
Summary: Scarborough is a great place for tourists to visit as there is plenty to do for about a week
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