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Can we have a 'places that were better than you thought' thread?

(124 Posts)
georgedawes Sun 21-Jan-18 12:08:47

Inspired by the thread about places being much worse than expectations, would love to hear where people were pleasantly surprised by.

My offering on that thread was Avebury instead of Stonehenge, much more impressive, free and you get to walk amongst the stones themselves. Another stone circle that I thought was loads better than Stonehenge (but are the opposite end of the country!) were the Callanish stones on the Isle of Lewis.

Any other offerings?

twinone Sun 21-Jan-18 12:10:53

Blackpool grin
It is what it is. My dd's school do the pleasure beach as a rewards trip, as do many of the local and not so local schools. The kids love It!

HerbsAndStewedRabbit Sun 21-Jan-18 12:13:45

Ludlow! We had a lovely day out there.

georgedawes Sun 21-Jan-18 12:13:55

Not been to blackpool in years, I used to love the pleasure beach as a kid. Do they still have that crazy old rollercoaster?!

Wingbing Sun 21-Jan-18 12:15:39

Vegas. Had a long weekend there, best holiday ever!

x2boys Sun 21-Jan-18 12:15:50

Yeah I agree about Blackpool I live in Bolton so it's about a 50 minute drive its ok for an afternoon maybe a few days if you haven't been there before its no grimmer than other seaside towns imo ; Butlins is ok plenty on for the kids if you like a holiday camp type holiday its Better then others imo.

georgedawes Sun 21-Jan-18 12:17:19

Ludlow is another place I've not been to since I was little! Remember it being nice then though.

Have to say I've never fancied Las Vegas (but can't afford it anyway so will never know if I'm wrong about it or not!!)

x2boys Sun 21-Jan-18 12:17:27

They did george but I think I read they are either pulling or have pulled it down?

ManicUnicorn Sun 21-Jan-18 12:18:16

Benidorm. Yes, parts of it are rowdy and very 'Blackpool in the sun', but you don't have to get involved in that if it's not your thing. It has a lovely, clean beach. In fact the whole place is very clean and well kept, also the old town is beautiful and has some lovely proper Spanish restaurants. It really isn't anywhere near as bad as people make out. There are lots of really nice all inclusive hotels as well.

Rankellior Sun 21-Jan-18 12:19:03

Another one for Blackpool. They’ve done up the prom really nicely now and we do an annual pilgrimage for the illuminations. Kids love it. And if you’re holidaying there take a ride to Lytham. It’s lovely

georgedawes Sun 21-Jan-18 12:21:05

That rollercoaster was amazing x2boys ! Felt like you were taking your life in your hands every time you went on it!

I've heard the same about Benidorm Unicorn although haven't been to that part of Spain myself.

WazFlimFlam Sun 21-Jan-18 12:22:09

Costa del Sol. Parts of it are stunning. Cheek by jowl with grim grubby stuff, but some parts are beautiful.

Smeaton Sun 21-Jan-18 12:23:57


I heard all the stories about it being the worst place in England, that it was shithole, full of rough northern types etc etc etc.

Went there, loved it. Its a great city and the folk there are friendly and pleasant. Fab art gallery, brilliant museums and good shopping.

I now live 10 minutes away and go often.

HesterShaw Sun 21-Jan-18 12:25:51

Whitstable. I went for the day in the dead of winter. Dusk on the estuary with the waders calling, that lovely pub on stilts, the little wooden houses and shops...lovely.

Boston - I thought it was friendly, manageable, loads to see and do, great pubs, amazing views. What's not to love? In fact the whole of Massachusetts was bewitching New Hampshire on the other hand...

North Brittany out of season. Gorgeous.

georgedawes Sun 21-Jan-18 12:26:10

I was looking to book an airbnb in Hull the other day Smeaton. Looks lovely! Is The Deep worth going to?

Agree about the Costa Del Sol too. Been to many places there and loved all of them.

ManicUnicorn Sun 21-Jan-18 12:26:29

Not been to Blackpool in years, but I used to love the Pleasure Beach. I could happily go and just spend the whole day in there going on the rides!

StargazyDrifter Sun 21-Jan-18 12:27:41

Great idea for a thread, @georgedawes!

@Rabbit, definitely second Ludlow.

Also, for me, Broadstairs and Tangier. Both not necessarily great by reputation but surprisingly interesting and attractive to spend some time in.

SadSongsAndWaltzes Sun 21-Jan-18 12:28:16

I actually loved Stonehenge and was pretty surprised. Maybe it's about expectations - I was expecting a "big pile of rocks", but found it really spiritual and lovely. We went in winter early in the day and it was empty, which may have helped.

BayLeaves Sun 21-Jan-18 12:29:34

Hastings! Any time it comes up on “I’m relocating from London” threads people always pipe up to say it’s a shithole. It’s got crappy areas but so do most towns, and the actual Old Town is gorgeous, full of history and character and quirky shops, pubs and people. There is also a lovely, huge Victorian park which is kind of a long shape that stretches all the way from the town centre out to the residential areas out of town. Lots of nice leafy residential areas in the rest of the town too and the property prices are cheap compared to the rest of the South East.

BeyondThePage Sun 21-Jan-18 12:29:54

Gloucester cathedral - loads of bits to see... and in a lovely area too with quirky shops and tearooms around it.

Whowhatwhy Sun 21-Jan-18 12:31:10

Northumbria. People told us it was lovely but actually it exceeded our expectations.

waitingfortheendtocome Sun 21-Jan-18 12:31:35

Bognor Regis has got newly improved Butlins, lovely family friendly Hotham Park with mini train ride, cafe, boats on a pond, modern play area, crazy golf. The beach is all pebbles, but lie tide there's sand. The pier is a pier. Some dog friendly beach front pubs and cafes. Crazy golf next to the pier. It's a fab weekend stay, small parade of shops including new look. Peacocks, game, wilko, Superdrug, m&co. Best of all no crowds

ClashCityRocker Sun 21-Jan-18 12:31:41


I was expecting it to be awful, but actually we had a really fun weekend there.

numbereightyone Sun 21-Jan-18 12:32:11


Smeaton Sun 21-Jan-18 12:34:30

Is The Deep worth going to?
If your the sort to take the time to actually look and read the exhibit info, its an amazing and full day out really. If your more likely to just rush through looking at things and going,
"Ooh its a fish"
then it'll take a couple hours. Take from that what you will..

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