Southend-on-Sea is a wonderful victorian seaside town that can still pull in the crowds when the weather brightens up and the mercury rises by a couple of degrees. Visiting Southend-on-Sea with kids makes a great day out and here are 7 fun, easy & cost effective things to do!
Parking in Southend-on-Sea with Kids
Parking in Southend is all paid parking seven days a week. Many of the meters will only take card and the others require you to download an app so you can do it on your phone.
Three Shells Beach
If you are visiting Southend-on-Sea with kids, they will probably enjoy Three Shells Beach and Lagoon the most.
There is a small protected bit of course sandy beach that is home to a small play area for little ones to monkey around on.
The addition of the lagoon has been included on Three Shells Beach so visitors can swim and play in the water without worrying about the tides along the estuary. The beach also has fresh water showers and public toilets very near by.
It’s worth keeping in mind that Three Shells Beach is very close to Adventure Island and the Pier, so can get very busy at peak times. There can also be a really strong smell of seaweed that you wont get on the more expansive beaches.
Jubilee Beach is on the east side of the pier and is much larger. There are cafes and food outlets on the beach and it is opposite the Southend Fountains. These are also good fun for little ones on a hot day.
You can also find another children’s play area on Jubilee Beach and lots more space for your picnic blankets and beach towels.
When visiting Southend-on-Sea with kids it’s impossible to ignore the worlds longest pier measuring 1.34 miles!
You can choose to walk the length of the pier or take the train on a single or return ticket.
Once at the end you might like to have a cuppa in the Southend Pier Tea Rooms, which is where Jamie Oliver filmed Friday Night Feast!
You can also take some time to visit the Southend Pier Museum. Learn about its history from its conception in 1889 to the devastating fire in 1959.
When in Southend-on-Sea with kids, I can guarantee you will be pulled into Adventure Island!
To go on the rides at Adventure Island you can purchase bands according to age. Depending on the age of the person riding, some bands will omit entrance to certain rides as they will have an age or height restriction.
If you don’t want to spend the majority of your time on the rides you can buy individual tickets for £1.20. However, rides may cost more than one ticket for admission.
If you are not interested in a day on the rides you can enjoy some arcade games that even the littlest amongst us can join in with!
All the games are cashless, which means you need to acquire a gamecard from the kiosks inside. The card is free and all you need to do is top it up with a minimum spend of £2 on the first go. You then swipe the card at each game you want to play. The simple games start at 30p a go, which is great for my kids who are 1 and 4 years old!
Snacks in Southend-on-Sea with Kids
There are lots and lots of places to buy the British seaside staples: Icecream, donuts, cup of tea and fish and chips!
There are lots of eat in and kiosk options so you will definitely not go hungry or be short of choices for food.
Seafront Arcades at Southend-on-Sea with Kids
One of the main reasons we love visiting Southend with the kids are the penny falls in the seafront arcades!
There are so many places to choose from along the front such as: New York New York, Electric Avenue and Sunspot Amusements. Our kids love it!
We can stand for ages posting our two pence pieces, trying to win a keyring or notebook! We change up £2 and once the money’s gone, we leave. The kids love it, it takes a good chunk of time, it’s cheap and it’s a bonus if they they win something!
The Adventure Golf can be found right next door to Adventure Island. If your kids are a little older this is the perfect option. The price is fair and the dinosaur theme is a bit of fun for everyone!
Sealife Adventure is billed as the South East’s number 1 aquarium in Essex. A trip to Sealife Adventure can make a great addition to a family day out with the kids. Admission is a little pricer than the other options on our list, so do your research before committing.
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