Sunday, May 08, 2011


Cooper and I took a day trip to Skegness, a coastal city about 90 minutes from here (by train).   It's a big touristy place during the summer months -- great beach and a big pier with tons of arcade games and kid play areas and food stands.
It looks a little desolate now, but add in some sunshine, a carpet of beach towels, and about 300 colorful umbrellas, and I'm guessing this is a hopping place!

A portion of the pier:
Again, add in some people and loud music, and I bet it's fun.  Things seemed pretty cheap.  You could play those claw games (where you try to grab a toy) for only 10 or 20 pence (cents, essentially), and there were tons of ride-on vehicles (for kids) that you could operate for only 30 or 50 pence.

Seems like it would be a fun summer destination.

But I specifically chose a quiet Thursday, before the school kids' term break, to enjoy Skegness.  Coop and I had two things on our agenda.  First up, Natureland Seal Sanctuary.  Natureland has been open since 1965, and its primary work is to rescue and rehabilitate seals, though it also occasionally gets injured birds, whales, dolphins, etc.

Natureland has five adult seals in residence:

And four baby seals, who were rescued from a nearby beach area, given medication and food, and are now learning how to swim, socialize, and hunt before they'll be released back into the ocean.

Natureland also has five Jackass Penguins (heh -- I'm not making that up),

in addition to a wide variety (though not a large quantity) of other animals -- fish, crocodiles, parrots, snakes, turtles, lizards.  Coop and I also walked through a tropical plant enclosure and a butterfly house that, like the rest of the beach, was pretty sparsely populated during the cold-ish spring months.

The second item on our schedule: Captain Kids, an indoor play area that is ostensibly pirate-themed (which just means that the "Rules" of the place say things like "no outside grub" and "pirates must remove shoes" and "the friendly crew is here to help").

Coop wore his pirate costume and seemed to have a good time!
He told Alan that night that it was "amazing!"