Perfect Day Out in English Seaside Town Cleethorpes

Due to a drunken accident that subsequently led to a bad broken ankle, three-hour surgery and a week-long stay in hospital; I’m living back home in Grimsby with the ‘rents. Yep, I’ve had to give up the whole ‘uni in Sheffield’ thing and take my exams in August instead. I need help getting around and so on, so living independently is not easy. So being stuck in my parent’s house in Grimsby for a couple of weeks did call for a much-needed day out in the sun. It was so hot yesterday and my friend travelled up from Sheffield to wheel me to the English seaside town Cleethorpes.

Grimsby and Cleethorpes are conjoining towns, and the compact size of the two makes it pretty easy to get from one to the other. After a 20-minute walk (or wheel, in my case) from my house to the Cleethorpes seafront; I was so ready to become a tourist in my own hometown. Here are some really touristy things to do in Cleethorpes for the perfect day out.

English Seaside Town Cleethorpes
Cleethorpes. Flickr: Alex Liivet / CC0 1.0

English Seaside Town Cleethorpes Attractions

Fish & chips at Papa’s

Papa’s is a new fish & chips takeaway/restaurant that’s opened at English seaside town Cleethorpes Pier. The pier has stood proudly on the seafront for almost 150 years, and has been home to countless businesses over the years. Since childhood I remember the pier being a nightclub once or twice, a restaurant a couple of times, and, sadly, derelict and abandoned for many years, too. But now, the Pier has been renamed ‘Papa’s’ and hailed the world’s biggest fish & chips shop.

Of course, being the foodie I am; I just had to go there and see for myself what all the hype is about. I didn’t get chance to go inside the restaurant itself. We opted to sit outside above the sea instead, making the most of the gorgeous weather. But I could see through the window just how luxurious the restaurant’s interior is. I’d say it’s probably the nicest fish & chips restaurant I’ve ever come across! I had a small fish & chips (haddock, of course) and a Kopparberg cider in a pint glass with ice. When the sun comes out in England, so does the ice-cold Swedish cider. Lunch on the pier deck overlooking the sea was the perfect way to start the day.

English Seaside Town Cleethorpes. Papas fish and chips
Arcades, Arcades, Arcades

…Because you just can’t spend a day up t’seafront without a visit into one of the cheesy, ‘stuck-in-the-1990’s vibe’ arcades. The rigged teddy machines that only win you a teddy once in every 57 times (or something like that); the automated bingo; the vintage palm-reading fortune machines that are eerily accurate.

It’s these corny scenes that really makes a northern English seaside town so lovable. Going round the arcades with a cup full of two-pence pieces to play on roulette and the slot machines made my childhood what it was. So, it was fun to do that again just for the novelty of it. It was even cooler that I was WHEELING myself around the arcade, to be honest. I’m 22 years old and I still can’t get enough of the thrill of the 2p’s hanging off the edge, just waiting to make someone rich.

English Seaside Town Cleethorpes. Arcades

Sweet Treats Galore

After the clagginess of the fish batter has been walked/wheeled off, it’s time to really indulge yourself. A tradition when visiting an English seaside town, especially up North, is to buy a stick of rock to take back home as a souvenir.

There’s loads of pop-up stalls up the seafront with all sorts of rock flavours, even really obscure ones like fish & chips flavour. But the donuts in English seaside town Cleethorpes is really where it’s at. I’m not gonna lie, they’re deep fried in oil and covered in sugar, so they’re probably not a great idea if you’re on a diet. But oh god, are they fabulous. We were extra greedy and got a bag of delicious, greasy donuts to share, along with a Mr Whippy ice-cream each. These combined with the sea air and crashing waves is just amazing.

English Seaside Town Cleethorpes
Cleethorpes rock candies. Flickr: Philippa Willitts / CC BY-NC 2.0

About Lauren Davidson

Since 2013, Lauren has been writing for various travel and lifestyle websites. Her first piece of writing was a travel guide on the Algarve region of Portugal, where she lived for over a year. Currently residing in Sheffield, England, she is studying Journalism and has a blog at You can follow her on Twitter at @Lozikinz.

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