Although the seafront is home to stripy deck chairs, fish and chip shops, souvenir stalls, ice cream stands and other such traditional sights there’s a fashionable, youthful feel typical of Brighton as a whole.Brighton pier is another landmark of the area, built in the Victorian era and opened in 1899, the structure is kitted out with fair ground rides and games, an arcade and plenty of choices for places to eat and drink. Brighton wasn’t voted one of the Top 10 city beach breaks for nothing.
Simply grab an ice cream and relax on a deck chair near the shore or have something to eat and drink in one of the promenades many cafes and bars, maybe take the plunge and get involved in Brighton beach’s water sports – including kayaking or waterskiing. You could even do the whole lot.
As well as the crowd pleasing high street favourites in Churchill Square and its three storey shopping centre you can also indulge all your retail therapy needs in The Lanes’. The Lanes is a historic maze of winding backstreets and twisting walkways offering an exciting choice of curious, quaint and quirky independent shops and vintage boutiques.
North Laine was once a slum area but now it couldn’t be further from its history. North Laine is another wondrous area bursting with a treasure trove of alternative, retro and bohemian allure. You’ll find anything from kitsch home-wear and locally made jewellery to handmade clothing and contemporary art work.
Vegetarian, vegan, fruitarian, meat-lover, organic-obsessed… no matter what your preferences are Brighton can literally cater for you.Throughout the town, and in Churchill Square shopping centre you can find your well-known eateries such as McDonalds, Nandos, Spud-U-Like, GBK and much more.
If you like a pint with your lunch or dinner and the cosy pub atmosphere at meal time then it won’t be a struggle to find a place to dine in Brighton. There are pubs scattered throughout the centre of town, peppered across The Lanes and even some neighbouring the seafront. From Italian to Chinese and seafood to homemade vegan food.
Other than pubs and recognised eateries there is also an array of independent, bespoke and delicious cafes and restaurants dotted everywhere so you can find something new and challenge your perceptions as well as your taste buds.
It’s already quite clear that Brighton boasts a great selection of things to do, no matter your preferences, and its night life is no exception. For a night painting the town red there are plenty of bars and clubs to tickle your fancy; bars such as Walkabout, Beachigogo and Heist, and clubs such as Digital, Honey Club and Audio. Being dubbed the gay capital of Britain, Brighton unsurprisingly is home to popular gay clubs – Revenge and Charles Street/Envy to name a couple.
If live entertainment is your bag then comedy club Komedia, well-known live music venue Concorde2 and Brighton Ballroom – featuring cabaret and burlesque, are a few that are definitely worth a visit.
Things to see
Brighton Sea Life Centre
This family favourite have undergone renovations and will be showcasing its new features when it’s re-opened in Spring this year.
Its beautiful Victorian architecture is home to a multitude of aquatic experiences, interactive educational pieces and chances to have a close up look at the amazing creatures of the ocean.
Brighton Royal Pavilion
This spectacular Indian-style build, with Chinese as well as Indian influences throughout the interior, was purchased by Brighton from Queen Victoria. Today around 400,000 people visit the Royal Pavilion every year. The palaces is host to display of art and Regency silver-gilt and the pavilion’s Tearoom, with a balcony over looking the gardens, is stunning.
There are guides in a choice of languages and it’s open to all visitors who wish to experience its historic exotic splendor.
The Brighton Wheel
Searching for a thrill at the beach? Hop on Brighton’s most recent coastline tourist attraction. The observation wheel stretches 45 metres in diameter and taking a ride provides an opportunity to take in panoramic views of the sea and the charm of Brighton.
Six adults and two children can fit into one of the wheel’s 36 enclosed pods and during your experience, lasting just under 15 minutes, is complimented with a commentary guided tour detailing the history and heritage of Brighton & Hove.