Friday-Ad’s Ultimate Guide To Brighton

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Inhabiting over 270,000 people across the stunning southern coastline, the quirky city of Brighton is the ideal place for a fun filled day out, romantic trip or family holiday! There are so many things to try out and see, so it comes to no surprise to us that the city grows year on year with new full time residents aiming to capture the lifestyle that only Brighton can serve up.

Whether it be your first time or you are a thoroughbred Brightonian, it can sometimes prove difficult to decide exactly what takes your fancy, especially in a city with so many options! But not to worry, we’ve put in the hard yards and hand-picked a selection of Brighton’s very best, to suit a variety of ages and preferences. Our ‘Places to Stay’ section is ideal for first time visitors along with ‘Stag’ and ‘Hen Dos’ for those looking for something a little on the wild side. However, we aim to unearth some hidden gems that residents will love in our ‘Things for Couples’, ‘Family Days Out’ and ideas that won’t cost you a penny!

So what do you say? Take a look below and learn more about this fantastic and utterly unique city.

 

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Brighton has a vast selection of incredible places to eat, suiting every taste. We’ve somehow managed to narrow it down to a top 5, in no particular order…

The Coal Shed

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Located in the heart of Brighton. The Coal Shed is an award winning gourmet and seafood restaurant. Their method is simple, expertly cook the highest quality ingredients. Not only offering a seasonal a la carte menu, The Coal Shed also provide daily specials along with a value for money express lunch menu. For special occasions a private room can be booked with your own personal waiter. It is the astounding quality of food that makes The Coal Shed special, this hasn’t gone unnoticed – they were named as one of the best restaurants in the UK by the prestigious Observer Food Monthly Awards and have been recommended by The Telegraph, The Guardian and many more.

What Diners saysWe ate at The Coal Shed on Saturday whilst visiting Brighton. Recommended by a friend and we are so pleased they did! The Tuna Carpaccio was amazing as were the salmon fishcakes to start, followed by Rib eye Steak for two. The service brilliant and very informative. Great wine list and lovely atmosphere. Will return.Kells1980 via Tripadvisor

Website: www.coalshed-restaurant.co.uk            Telephone: 01273 322 998

Food For Friends

Eating-out_food-for-friendsLabels_Eating out 3This award winning vegetarian restaurant is situated in Brighton’s historic South Laines. Food For Friends offers honest cooking, using fresh produce which is totally home made, whilst supporting local suppliers. Food For Friends is so popular because of their balance of flavour and unusual combinations that you cannot find anywhere else. They also cater for all kinds of dietary needs, whether you’re vegan or gluten intolerant, Food For Friends will have a variety of dishes for you to choose from. They recently earned a position in the Good Food Guide, along with winning runner-up as the Best Ethical Restaurant in the UK. These are just a couple of reasons for you to come and see what all the fuss is about.

What the Diner saysCarnivores often say a meat-free meal leaves them feeling unsatisfied, even hungry. They surely won’t find that here. We left with waistbands tight as drum skins. In 33 years at the vanguard of vegetarian dining, Food for Friends has honed to practised perfection its combination of startlingly inventive menus and matey, unfussy service. Sometimes being green is easier than you think’. Sussex Life

Website: www.foodforfriends.com               Telephone: 01273 202 310

Curry Leaf Cafe

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Serving up a slice of South Indian street life, just a stone’s throw away from Brighton’s iconic seafront, Curry Leaf Cafe is a real hit. Whether you’re looking for a snack or a four course meal, their attentive staff will provide you with whatever you fancy, accompanied by a range of craft beers and wines. The brick walled and muslin draped room creates a cosy meets exotic atmosphere which enhances the authentic Indian experience. Recent awards include, Best Newcomer 2014 and UK’s top 10 ‘flexitarian’ restaurants, which is probably why locals and visitors alike return again and again.

What the Diner saysThis was our first visit to the Curry Leaf Cafe but we had heard very good things about it and it certainly lived up to expectations. The service and food and drink were both excellent. I can particularly recommend the Sea Bass!’ Mrs C via Tripadvisor

Website: www.curryleafcafe.com                Telephone: 01273 207 070

Mediterraneo

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A family business, dedicated to serving you authentic Sicilian food. With traditional Italian cooking methods passed down through the generations, Mediterraneo provides customers with not only nutritious but exquisite gourmet delicacies which evoke all the senses. The friendly staff will make you feel welcome from the minute you walk through the door. You select your meal from an affordable three course menu containing pasta and meat dishes along with a few Sicilian specials. The service at Mediterrano is second to none, the staff will cater to your needs throughout, making your experience one to remember!

What the Diner saysMy friends booked Mediterraneo for 13 of us for my birthday. We had the whole place to ourselves. Fantastic food, delicious wine, excellent service, beautiful decor and intimate ambience. We had 2 toddlers with us too which were well looked after with high chairs and half portions. Strongly recommend this venue. Looking forward to going again.’ Lottie N via Tripadvisor

Website:www.mediterraneodeli.co.uk           Telephone:01273 674 350

Gars

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Gars pride themselves on not only great food and service but also on the restaurant’s impressive image. They are able to create a contemporary oriental atmosphere through the likes of polished bamboo flooring and bespoke modern silk shades. Arranged over three floors, each with a different function, Gars is a true modern day establishment. As for the food, the evolving menu represents their modern culture however, they do serve many old favourites, such as the sizzling tenderloin pork fillets in sweet and sour sauce. The friendly staff will guide you through many of the mouth watering dishes which are second nature to them, ensuring your dining experience is unforgettable.

What the Diner saysOne of the best Chinese restaurants I have ever been to. Yes, it may be slightly more money than your average Chinese restaurant or take-away, however if you want good quality non-greasy Chinese food, it is definitely worth every penny! Also they have a great downstairs room which is available to hire for occasions such as birthdays or parties, it has its own bar and also karaoke for after the meal, its great!!!’ Jess W via Tripadvisor

Website: www.gars.co.uk                 Telephone: 01273 321 321

 

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Brighton really is the social hub of the south, with a wide variety of locations to have a drink and relax or party the night away. There’s something to suit everyone…

Shooshh

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Brighton’s one and only VIP super nightclub, offering three main clubbing events on Thursdays, Fridays and Saturdays. You can make your night extra special with the booking of private rooms, booths or even the platinum lounge, these packages contain access to the VIP section, drinks and a private waitress. Shooshh has regular celebrity guest appearances with the likes of Professor Green and Zane Lowe, making it a main attraction for all kinds of party goers.

What people sayI went there on a Saturday, had a VIP Booth booked. I Was welcomed by VIP manager who was very nice, the VIP area was lovely we had our own waitress, I felt like a king! Music was great. The door staff were lovely, they looked after my drunk friend even helped us to our car. It was just a wonderful night. I have been to a lot of nightclubs but, Shooshh is definitely the best nightclub I have ever been to in Brighton!! Will go again & again’ Ezekiel20 via Tripadvisor

Website: brighton.shooshh.com                 Telephone: 01273 202 807

The Haunt

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Located opposite Brighton’s famous pier, The Haunt is an old converted cinema consisting of a sizeable main room with a raised stage, along with a bar and big screen overlooked by a mezzanine level floor with a balcony and bar upstairs. A popular venue with locals, not just for club nights but also live music, The Haunt has been able to lure top class acts such as The XX and Foster The People to perform, so it’s no surprise that it’s often rammed. ‘It is still 1985’ is the Haunts most acclaimed night, being dubbed as Brighton’s ‘most exciting night out’.

What people sayThe sound system was sparkly, especially for a venue with a balcony overhanging most of the main floor. It was upgraded in 2011, and, to judge from the clarity even at the back of the balcony, it was money well spent. As a gig venue, it’s perfectly serviceable. Being a stone’s throw from Brighton Pier and The Lanes helps in the atmospheric-location stakes.’ Via The Guardian

Website: www.thehauntbrighton.co.uk       Telephone: 01273 736 618

The Latest Music Bar

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If you’re looking for something a bit different then head up to this sought after party venue, it is a real hit with the locals. Visitors to The Latest Music Bar are treated to an engaging evening of high-quality entertainment from a wide array of live performances. There’s sure to be something that’ll catch your eye, from gigs to comedy shows, they’ll never fail to entertain you. The people who have performed here recently include, The Kooks, Ben Howard, Rizzle Kicks and Newton Faulkner.

What people sayAs well as hosting interesting live bands and jazz performances (Amy Winehouse and Herbie Flowers have performed here) this trendy party venue stages tongue-in-cheek sleaze evenings, and comedy line-ups. Housed in a beautiful listed building decorated with a great gallery of rock photographs. Makes for a fun night out.’ Via The Telegraph

Website: thelatest.co.uk/musicbar              Telephone: 01273 687117

Patterns 

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Until recently this seafront favourite was known as Audio, but has undergone a full makeover, upgrading its sound system, it is now open seven days a week. House, techno and all shades of electronic forward thinking music is what’s on offer at Patterns and since its re-launch has continued to grow. Fridays and Saturdays are two of the most popular nights, seeing the bar and club fuse into one large super venue. With a friendly crowd and great music its no real surprise to anyone that this Brighton venue is well and truly on the clubbing map.

What people sayHaving been to more than my fair share of club nights and promoting plenty over the years, it is a pleasure to have a night like this one at Patterns. Massively up for it crowd and a really interesting set made for a great night, with Psychemagik carrying on until 4.30am – lovely edition of Disco Deviant!’ Paul Budd via Skiddle

Website: patternsbrighton.com             Telephone: 01273 894777

Bohemia

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Bohemia serves up the best cocktails in town, artistic and beautiful drinks that will confuse and tantalise your taste buds. They employ professionally trained bar staff to a standard that Brighton had yet to see, creating a classy, enjoyable service that you will be sure to love. The relaxing vibe makes it the perfect place to have a drink with a few friends after a long day at the office or a day spent sightseeing in our famous city.

What people sayIf you are after a classy venue to have some drinks with friends then this is THE place to go! The cocktails are sublime and the staff are very charming, smartly dressed and attentive. The décor is also beautiful (I almost want to say Art Deco ish) and with smooth, vintage (20’s – 40’s) music playing, it really is a great place to relax after a long day shopping.’ ll_butcher via TripAdvisor

Website: www.bohemiabrighton.co.uk                 Telephone: 01273 77770

 

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One of the hardest occasions to organise, thankfully Brighton is a playground in every sense of the word! There’s so many fun activities for all the family to enjoy…

Brighton Pier

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The famous Brighton pier has a selection of all kinds of activities for all the family to enjoy. Thrilling rides, a sizeable arcade and many different food and drink stalls make up the Victorian tourist attraction. There are also regular events on show if you’re looking for that bit extra, such as the Mod Weekender and the CatFish Kings Band. A daily wristband is on offer to get you into all of the attractions, which we greatly advise as this will save you a great deal of money as the day goes on.

What people sayThe pier is fun and there is lots to do. We started off on the rides (get an all day wristband if you’re going on a few rides as each ride is VERY expensive and you are going to save money with the wristband). I’m not a rides person as I don’t enjoy heights but there are rides suitable for everyone – merry go round, helter skelter, dodgems and fast, high and upside down rides (which i avoided). The staff were happy and friendly. We spent a long time in the arcades on the pier and got some food. The food stalls stay open late and it is delicious. Thoroughly enjoyed the time I spent in Brighton!’ Vicky W via Tripadvisor

Website: brightonpier.co.uk               Telephone: 01273 609361

Royal Pavilion

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This ‘Seaside Palace’ has always been a huge hit with both locals and tourists of Brighton, known as one of the most spectacular and exotic buildings in Great Britain, displaying fine art and furniture and even original pieces lent by the Queen. The Royal Pavilion Tearoom, overlooks the beautiful pavilion gardens, which are also open to the public to sit and have picnics in. Impressively, multimedia guides are available in various languages, another reason why tourists cannot resist the palace’s lure. Locals also receive 50% off admission, which keeps them coming back time after time.

What people sayI have never seen so much opulence housed within a building of such grandeur, the splendour on show here is really to be marvelled at.As a resident of Brighton you can get a wonderful 50% discount on your entry fee, but even without the discount I would recommend a visit here. You get a free audio tour with every entry fee, and would strongly advise you to take the tour to hear the rich and intriguing history of this iconic Brighton landmark. Of all the exquisite rooms you’ll see on the tour, possibly my favourite is the grand hall. Resplendent with dragons and palm leaf chandelier, they really have to be seen to be believed.The cafe here is a nice treat, with a lovely terrace overlooking the gardens perfect for tea on a sunny afternoon.’ Tom C via Yelp

Website: brightonmuseums.org.uk/royalpavilion         Telephone: 0300 029 0900

Sea Life Centre

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A perfect day out for the family, you won’t be able to take your eyes off the vast array of different sea life creatures on display at the Sea Life centre. The sizeable complex will fascinate all the ages, whether you’re a fan of the spooky deep ocean creatures or you’re just trying to find Nemo, there’s something for everyone. To make the most of your day make sure you head down to the underground lagoon where you are able to walk through a glass tunnel looking up at all of the wonderful turtles and sharks alike.

What people say ‘A trip to the Sea Life Centre is a great family day out come rain or shine. You can explore everything the seven seas have to offer, without actually getting wet. If you do want to dip your toes – or at least, fingers – head straight to the interactive rockpool, where you can touch a starfish, stroke a crab and spot the smallest fish. The most striking attraction may be the spectacular 170,000-gallon lagoon, which comes with a glass-bottom boat. Sat aboard, you can enjoy a snorkeller’s-eye view of marine life, and say hello to 74-year-old green turtles Lulu and Gulliver – as well as Jersey the loggerhead turtle, who is at least 63. Sharks circle ominously below – but don’t worry, they won’t bite. There are seven different types, but even Nursie the nurse shark – all two metres of her – can’t nibble you through the thick glass.The Daily Mail

Website: www.visitsealife.com/brighton             Telephone: 01273 604234

LaserZone

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Not for the faint hearted, you’ll be transported into a dark room pitted against multiple enemies to take down. A thrilling, fun and most importantly safe activity for the entire family to enjoy. The accommodating staff are always on hand to ensure the game runs smoothly and safely. LaserZone has a great layout over two floors and offers team-orientated games, however extras are on offer make it that bit more special. Including the ability to take ‘in-game’ photographs with the built in camera in a secret location in the ‘battlezone’ and scorecards given on completion of each round containing stats such as your accuracy and kill to death ratio.

What people sayBeyond the Airlock lies a forgotten land filled with swirling smoke, strange sounds, flashing lights… and ENEMIES! Stalk your opponents with state-of-the-art laser packs and phasors. Use stealth, cunning, strategy and skill to score points and destroy the bases in our multi-level arena.Ideal for players of all ages; birthday parties, family fun, corporate entertainment, youth groups and much more. On your own or with friends, you’ll have a blast!Visit Brighton

Website: www.laserzone.co.uk/brighton       Telephone01273 227744

Jungle Rumble Adventure Golf 

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Let the adventurer out in you! Brighton’s premiere ‘crazy golf’ attraction is hugely popular and it’s no surprise why. Situated on the beach, it is easily accessible and on a beautiful summer’s day it makes for the perfect activity in between your family shenanigans. There are two courses on offer, both of which are very easy to pick up and play, so it doesn’t matter if you’re Tiger Woods or Mr Bean we’re sure you’ll be up to standard and have a spectacular time!  

What people say ‘This is a new attraction in Brighton situated by the Peter Pan playground on the seafront. There are two different courses available one at a higher level above ground than the offer. Makes a change from the more conventional golf nearer the pier but it is more expensive.’ BadTravellerSurrey Via TripAdvisor

Website: junglerumble.co.uk                 Telephone: 01273 694718

 

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Looking to spend some quality time with your other half? You’re bound to find something to fit your taste in these wonders that Brighton has to offer…

Choccywoccydoodah

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A totally unique chocolaterie with a focus on art and design. Choccywoccydoodah specialise in one off sculptured fantasies (their shop is full of them), incredible wedding cakes and absolutely anything chocolate, you’d struggle to think of something they haven’t or cannot make upon a visit. Take a seat in the lavish Bar Du Chocolat and feed each other chocolate delicacies until your heart’s content, you might even see one of Choccywoccydoodah’s famous clientele while you’re in there if you’re lucky.

What people say ‘Choccywoccydoodah is a chocolate lovers dream. Enjoy delicious handmade cakes from the master cake makers as well as a variety of hot drinks and chocolate in many forms! Take a seat in the lavishly decorated cafe and feed each other chocolatey treats until your hearts content. Choccywoccydoodah is known for its celebrity clientèle including David Hasselhoff, Whoopi Goldberg and Jackie Collins so keep your eyes peeled, you never know who you might meet!We Love Brighton

Website: www.choccywoccydoodah.com           Telephone: 01273 329462

The Brighton Wheel

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Take in the beautiful Brighton views on the city’s wheel, giving a panoramic picture of the famous city and coastline. We recommend opting for the VIP package, a perfect way to celebrate a special occasion, accompanied with a commentary about Brighton’s remarkable history from Steve Coogan. This package also includes usage of the exclusive VIP lounge, 6 rotations of the wheel and comfortable VIP capsule. On a romantic summer’s evening we cannot think of a more fitting way to round off a special day with your other half. Our favourite packages include the special champagne and wine offers, making the experience that much more special and at an affordable price too!

What people sayManaged to persuade my friend to go on this with me. Its a bit scary at first right at the top, but I got used to it and the views are lovely. Each pod has a commentary about Brighton and is fitted with a button to press if you need help or are unwell. It costs £8 per adult but I think its worth it. Photos are taken outside and inside the pod. You have an option to buy them at the end. They cost £20 and for that you get a book telling the history of Brighton along with the photos. You also get a key ring and fridge magnet with your photo on. You can also download your photos to share with friends and family using the code given. I would go on this ride again.’ Covkids68 via TripAdvisor

Website: www.brightonwheel.com            Telephone: 01273 722822

Theatre Royal

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This historic Grade II listed theatre offers a wide range of musicals, plays, opera and ballet over the course of the year. The venue is relatively small which creates a special ambience with the audience that is not found in larger venues. It is in fact one of the oldest theatres in Great Britain and showcases some wonderful architectural designs and fascinating art pieces. If you’re looking to make your experience that more special, we recommend booking a private box for two, high above the main crowd and accompanied by champagne and chocolates.

What people sayWent to the theatre to see ‘East is East’. I booked last minute and got some great seats at the back of the stalls, as it’s only a small theatre the view was still very good and for the price it was brilliant value. The theatre has some good shows and lots that have come straight from the west end. Great seating in the stalls, ice creams and drinks are served in the intervals and there are a selection of  bars to get drinks. Would highly recommend a visit if you’re in Brighton.’ Paul W via TripAdvisor

Website: theatreroyalbrighton.com            Telephone: 0844 871 7627

BYOC

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This naughty little bar cannot be seen by the naked eye, hidden below ‘Juice Bar’ you’d be forgiven if you missed it. Head down the stairs and before know it it’ll feel like you’ve jumped back to a time when alcohol was illegal and drinking had to be done in a secret underground bar. BYOC is filled with vintage décor such as candlelit tables and hanging glassware creating an authentic feel. Unlike other bars, at BYOC you bring a bottle of favourite tipple and the talented mixologist will make you cocktails to your pleasing directly at your table!

What people sayJust the kind of cocktail bar that Brighton have been craving. Not that other cocktail bars in Brighton don’t promise plenty of creativity and panache because we love you and you totally do, but BYOC seems to boast nothing that the rest of them do, the customers complete and utter input. ‘Bring your own bottle of booze’ they silently heckle from their underground den of cocktail debauchery. With a silent cinema, brass laden cocktail trolleys, speakeasy secrecy and punchy bar staff to boot? We’re swooning all over the shop.’ Review via Design My Night

Webite: byoc.co.uk/brighton              Telephone: 020 3441 2424

Brighton Scenic 

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Feeling Brave? Soar through the Sussex sky in this adrenaline fuelled excursion. Along with the thrills, you will be able to see the beautiful city of Brighton from above as well as the stunning South Downs (if you manage to keep your eyes open). Your private pilot will act as a knowledgeable guide to the area, ensuring that the flight is as enjoyable and exciting as possible!

What people sayA fantastic experience I’d recommend to all. Margaret was most helpful in making the booking before the flight via e-mail, an experienced pilot who provided and smooth, comfortable flight and knowledgeable host giving interesting information on places and buildings we saw on the way. I am certain I want to spend some time in and around Brighton to explore some of the place she mentioned, next time I visit England.’ Arsenio Nunes via Facebook

Website: brightonscenic.co.uk              Telephone: 07918 902721

 

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Creating the ultimate stag do can be a tricky task at the best of times, but in Brighton there’s so many different kinds of activities to get stuck into! Take a look…

Rendezvous Casino

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This Vegas style casino is based in the Brighton Marina, Rendezvous really has something to cater for all of your needs, from a splendid restaurant, a sizeable bar, a huge playing area over two floors including multiple blackjack and roulette tables along with slot machines. Not to forget a huge poker area on the first floor which hosts regular events for more serious players. The best part about the casino though are the packages it offers for special occasions like stags dos such as the ‘Taste of Vegas’ package where an experienced dealer takes your through the tricks of the trade along with other special extras.

What people sayVery nice casino on the South coast. I’m a fan of the Rendezvous casino on Brighton’s marina complex. It’s got a really nice feel to it over 2 floors, valet parking and friendly staff. Good choice of games and a decent bar and restaurant and just all-round nice! Slots UK

Website: brighton.rendezvouscasino.com           Telephone: 0127 376 1208

Team Sport Go Karting

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Enjoy a fast and furious day at the Team Sport Go Karting indoor track. You’re bound to have an adrenalin fuelled time whizzing around the 450 metre track in their 200cc karts. Booking a stag is especially easy with their excellent group packages, you’ll have maximum fun for minimum outlay! A full brief on all the rules and health and safety regulations ensures the day runs as smoothly as possible, before spending however long you’ve booked for bombing about pretending you’re Lewis Hamilton. The day ends with a debrief where you will see who performed best and steps up to the winning podium.

What people sayWe’ve been go karting here 3 times now and cannot recommend it highly enough! The first time we went to celebrate a birthday and ended up buying the return vouchers on the day twice so that we could come back and do it all over again. The staff are very attentive and want to ensure everyone is having fun. I felt that we were all looked after and very safe. The briefing video was comprehensive and backed up by the staff. There are good facilities such as a nice bar/snack area and changing rooms and a great viewing gallery. The karts are fast and fun – great little circuit! Loved it and we will be back.’ Xwhylander via TripAdvisor

Website:www.team-sport.co.uk/brighton            Telephone:0844 998 0000

Bubble Football

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A new ‘sport’ that’s taking over our football loving country, Bubble Football is lauded as one of the most enjoyable group activities for a stag do! A simple idea really, it’s a game of football with a twist… Immerse yourself inside a human size plastic ball with just your legs popping out to make contact with the football (if you’re ever that lucky). Send your opponents or even team mates flying across the pitch in this free for all combat that’s got the nation raving.

What people sayWe arrived at the Sports Centre and were greeted by one of the organisers, who supplied us with knee pads which were compulsory and I’m glad we wore them. Note, most companies wouldn’t supply these. We played about 10-15 minutes of Football and was absolutely exhausting, but so much fun. I think the ball only moved about 3 or 4 times. We then had a 5 minute break.The organizers have water and energy drinks available to purchase for £1 each. We then played bulldog, with the stag in the middle. Followed by many other fun games. Groups of 6 – 12 would be a good number. We had 7 and had a great laugh! The 1 hour experience was so much fun, with everyone still talking about it! The company are very organized and were a pleasure to deal with!’ ShaneMarsh88 Via TripAdvisor 

Website: www.zubaball.com               Telephone: 01273 832383

Beer Tasting with the Craft Beer Company

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Release the sophisticated stag in you, or not as the case may be as the evening progresses. Not your standard stuff here, only the very best 5 star craft beers are on offer, which will be served by one of the Craft Beer Company’s knowledgeable managers, who will also lead the tasting session. Taken through the varying styles, flavours and aromas of each beer making you feel like a true connoisseur. Participation is fully encouraged which makes for an amusing experience, even if you may be feeling a little worse for wear the morning after.

What people say ‘Pre-booked and paid a beer tasting session for 5 on a Friday evening. Our guide through this adventure was the magnificent Kjarten, a man whose knowledge of beer making and history would stead him a candidate for Mastermind. Fantastic ale selection (tried 5) wonderful food (mega burger and awesome chips), I only wish this place was on my doorstep.’ Mark B via TripAdvisor

Website: thecraftbeerco.com/tastings            Telephone: 01273 723736

A Day at the Races

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A day at the races is a great lads day out, who knows if you play your cards right you could end up leaving with more money than what you came in with! However we doubt that’ll happen, especially with all of what’s on offer here. Brighton Racecourse hosts regular events for you to chose from, all of which will make for a great stag. We recommend booking a box for that special occasion which comes with special packages that’ll cater to your needs.

What people say ‘This Racecourse is much more than just horse racing. It has a great restaurant called Silks. It has an La a carte menu to help you enjoy the great views from the windows. There is the long bar where a jug of Pimms can be enjoyed. There are other food outlets as well. There is 18 suites to hire. A day delegate catering packages with bespoke menus. Free parking for 1,500 cars!’ George2244 via Yelp

Website: www.brighton-racecourse.co.uk              Telephone: 01273 603580

 

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So you’ve been given the responsibility of being Maid of Honour? The list of possibilities is endless, but we’ve managed to narrow it down to Brighton’s top 5…

Lucky Voice

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This famous karaoke bar is absolutely perfect for a hen do, regularly turning shy women into instant pop stars! Book your squad a private booth where you can choose what to sing and party down to from thousands of songs with their regularly updated hi-tech database. You’ll be able to order drinks from within your private booth and a waiter will bring them over for you throughout the evening. This venue is often booked well in advance as it is extremely popular for hen dos so make sure you do so as it will most definitely be a night to remember!

What people say ‘Lucky Voice Brighton is best known for its karaoke but those in the know head to the venue’s separate late night subterranean bar even when they’re not in the mood for grabbing a mic and belting out Madge classics. The bar itself is small and intimate with low lighting, no natural light and dark furnishings making it just as suited to a first date as it is to a night out with a group of friends. Lucky Voice is a breath of fresh air. And, thanks to its fun combination of karaoke and cocktails in stylish surroundings it’s hitting all the right notes.View Brighton

Website: www.luckyvoice.com/bars/brighton          Telephone: 01273 715770

Treatment Rooms

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Indulge yourself and your hens with a fabulously relaxing time in the Treatment Rooms. The Treatment Rooms is Brighton’s largest beauty salon. They provide a large range of very detailed specific treatments to choose from, whether it be a Swedish Massage or a Luxury Mattifying Skin Facial you’ll be bound to find something to suit your tastes. Winner of Good Spa Guide’s best spa for the South East (as voted for by the public) you know you’ll be getting the finest service.

What people sayI’m a regular client of the Treatment Rooms so can vouch for their services over time. Their staff are friendly, knowledgeable, courteous and when it comes to the specific treatments, very proficient although there are specialists so it helps to be clear on your specific wants/needs such as masseuse pressure, expectation and concerns as the reception staff may be able to guide you on a preferred specialist who better fits your needs. There are cheaper alternatives but my experiences have always left me feeling that you get what you pay for and that means I get real value from my sessions at the Treatment Rooms.’ markwH5399EK via TripAdvisor

Website: www.thetreatmentrooms.co.uk            Telephone: 01273 818444

Bar 76 

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The hen capital of Brighton, can you really have a hen party without going to Bar 76? It comes as no surprise it’s hugely popular, choices include cocktail making,  pole dancing and even nude life drawing classes! Bar 76 has everything you could possibly need and imagine for the ultimate partying hen do! One night here could make a story to last a lifetime, although maybe not one you’ll be sharing it with the grandchildren. Additionally, as you can imagine Bar 76 is absolutely jam packed with women so it makes for a great Stag Do alternative as well! What more could you want?

What people say I was very lucky to have my mum book this place for my Hen do this weekend. There was 12 of us in a group and we were booked into cocktail making. Our barman Charlie was brilliant, the place was amazing and all the bar staff were so welcoming to all of us. The food was great as well which you don’t usually expect in a bar, but I literally couldn’t fault this place. We danced the night away to brilliant music and I really couldn’t have asked for anything better for my Hen.’ Lehann8 via TripAdvisor

Website: 76brighton.co.uk           Telephone: 07761 166300

Metrodeco

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Another classic Brighton original, a quirky but unbelievably stylish little cafe perfect. It’s perfect for a sophisticated hen trip and is renowned for its fantastic customer service and vintage décor. Metrodeco’s beautiful layout makes you feel as if you have turned back the clock 80 years and feels completely authentic, you will not find anything like it through the city, the food isn’t too bad either with a selection of teas and gorgeous platters. Take your girls here and they will not be disappointed!

What people sayMetrodeco is a vintage styled tea salon with a nod to the 1930’s. Why not come and indulge in their popular afternoon tea or just enjoy one of their own blends of tea in decadent surroundings. The menu includes freshly made sandwiches, light lunches and platters which are served on Friday and Saturday evenings. They also have a great selection of boutique gins and a very popular range of tea infused cocktails. A little quirky, pretty stylish, very friendlyVisit Brighton

Website: www.metro-deco.com       Telephone: 01273 677243

The Party Bus

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The party never ends with the infamous party bus, expect the unexpected and a wild night. It stops off at all of Brighton’s best pubs, bars and clubs while in between keeping the party going aboard the world famous ‘Party Bus’. If you fancy yourself as a bit of a DJ you can play your own tunes to keep your hens happy throughout your time on the bus. A must do for the more wild hen parties, which we know deep down a lot of you are.

What people sayI was blown away by the amount of fun I had. This is something you must do in Brighton. The bus was full of energy. Ended up making new friends too! We were able to play our own music on the bus too which was a nice touch. the bars were good and the drinks deals helped me save money. I couldn’t imagine doing this on my own, me and my friends LOVED IT! The journey was good too as we spent enough time on the bus to party. IT WAS AMAZING!!!’ Dj M via TripAdvisor

Website: www.partybus.co.uk/brighton          Telephone: 0845 838 5400

 

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Some of the worlds most unique events take place in Brighton every year! Some of which you need to see to believe, you’re going to love these…

Pride Festival 

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Probably Brighton’s most famous event, definitely its most lavish and arguably the most entertaining. A festival to celebrate the LGBT community, although everyone is welcome to come to the event and add to the great day! Pride consists of a parade through the city along with multiple street parties and a huge festival in Preston Park, which has many acts in different tents, rides and attractions. One thing you won’t be is bored. The city comes to life at Pride, you can feast your eyes on almost anything there, plenty of people dress up, the crowd is generally very friendly and welcoming, creating a great atmosphere. Probably one of the more eye opening days out you will ever have, but one of the most enjoyable.

What people sayPride began at 11am on Saturday with an entertaining parade of various marchers and floats. Huge sound systems playing favourites from Lady Gaga and Madonna accompanied marchers in their array of costumes as they paraded through the streets of Brighton for all to see, creating a positive and highly contagious atmosphere for all involved. Once inside the party did certainly kick off. On entering, you were first struck by the Girls on Top Pop Tent, with smoke and music blasting out.  Walking around the park, there was a fantastically inclusive and celebratory atmosphere, with visitors young and old and of all backgrounds participating – some in drag, surprisingly many with their pet dogs (for a more exciting walk than usual) and even more face painted, tattooed, glittered and wearing the LGBT flag in outrageous style. Brighton Pride brought excitement and festivities to Preston Park. Pride’s lively, welcoming atmosphere continued on into the night, following a successful event with a true festival-like feel (minus the mud); and if you weren’t there, be sure to make sure you don’t miss out on the fun next year!Wessex Scene

Website: www.brighton-pride.org           Telephone: 01273 775 939

Shakedown Festival

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Brighton’s premier music festival, a one day event which attracts people from far and wide, situated just outside Brighton’s town centre. It is very easy to get to and despite the festival’s no camping policy there are plenty of places to stay close by. Shakedown boasts a wide range of genres, from indie rock to rap, this year’s highlights included Sigma and Example, but there were many more to choose from, all of which were hugely popular. If all this isn’t quite enough for you there are always numerous after parties held throughout the city made especially for the festival goers, which will keep you going long into the night!

What people sayBrighton’s biggest annual music festival began in 2011. Originally scheduled for July, the first festival was moved to September. Being one of the last festivals of the year, means it’s fraught with risk. Will people have spent all their money going to other festivals during the summer? What will the weather be like? Those are just two questions that must cause endless headaches for the organisers. Judging by the attendance, neither the timing nor the weather proved detractions. Shakedown was heaving and it certainly appeared – by some margin – to be the biggest so far. Whilst Brighton’s Rizzle Kicks were the headliners, in all probability, they weren’t the big draw. Undeniably, what attracted so many people was the atmosphere and the festival’s focus on dance acts.BN1 Magazine

Website: www.shakedown.co.uk              Telephone: 0333 321 9999

Brighton and Hove Food and Drink Festival

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A food connoisseur’s dream land, a collection of Brighton’s finest restaurants with a few exotic guests. One thing’s for sure, you’ll be leaving full to the brim. The festival has the ethos that both local and good food should be accessible for everyone and usually attracts around 160,000 consumers. So if this is your cup of tea make sure you don’t miss out, with events running every Easter, May, August and December.

What people sayHow can you possibly give an event like this anything less than 5 stars? Unless you were unfortunate enough to have some kind of allergic reaction to one of the many dishes you may have stuffed your face with over this month of indulgence. All Brighton’s finest restaurants, food stores and local produce suppliers celebrate with mini-festivals, demonstrations, events and tables of free samples to keep you coming back for more every day. There’s something magical about a whole city coming together in the name of epicureanism, don’t you think?’ Angela B Via Yelp

Website: brightonfoodfestival.com               Telephone: 01273 77 00 44

Paddle Round the Pier

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One of a kind, this unique charity festival grows year on year. The name gives away the location, situated on the beautiful promenade beaches. The perfect place to watch the events that give the festival its name, which include team and individual distance races along with the renowned paddle race between the two piers. Sundays always produce the hugely popular ‘paddle something unusual’ where you will be able to feast your eyes on all kinds of creative, imaginative ‘boats’ and ‘boards’. A fantastic family event which the sun always seems to come out for!

What people say Paddle has always appealed to surfers and water sports enthusiasts, but it seems we just can’t stop people wanting to get involved. With all the usual suspects, from surfing, stand up paddle boarding, kayaking, skating, windsurfing and free running, to all new sports like Surf Life Saving, land paddling, Kitesurfing and freestyle mountain biking‚ now everyone wants a piece of the pie.Superboarder Mag

Website: www.paddleroundthepier.com

Brighton Fringe Festival

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It may take you by surprise that Brighton Fringe is England’s largest arts festival and in fact one of the largest in the world! They aim to entertain a wide and diverse audience with a vast array of acts so you’re bound to find something to tickle your fancy! Although it’s in size, over 50% of the participants are local. The festival actively encourages the arts to flourish within the local community and there are no restrictions to participants. If you manage to find time for this fantastic event we can guarantee you will not be disappointed.

What people sayBrighton Fringe is much more than just a festival, It is an arts movement, tailor-made by the people who perform and create within it. As such it unquestionably reflects the cultural consciousness of the time. It is inspiring to witness not only the range of work on offer, but just how many more people are now coming to see it. Uncensored and uncurated – it’s like the Wild West of the arts. I can’t wait to see how it develops next year’ Julian Caddy via The Stage

Website: www.brightonfringe.org

 

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Brighton is the home of quirky one of shops that will have you transfixed but also has hundreds of high street brands for you to delve into…

Churchill Square

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Brighton’s premier shopping centre, a five minute walk away from the train station and multiple car parks makes it easily accessible. Churchill Square is home to many hight street stores such as Topshop and Foot Locker but also all kinds of shops to fit your needs, such as an Apple Store and Thorntons. Churchill Square isn’t just two floors of shops, the centre’s top floor has a large food court for you to have a quick break between the hours you invest in retail therapy. All this variety under one roof make for a great shopping day out.

What people sayChurchill Square shopping centre is Brighton’s main undercover shopping centre, most of the big names in stores and shops are represented here. it also has it’s own Food Court on the top floor, all the stores are spacious and easy to navigate. The HMV Store was big and items very easy to find. very good retail therapy throughout the centre for all the shopaholics among you!

Website: www.churchillsquare.com        Telephone: 01273 327428

Gresham Blake

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Unparalleled style and class, bespoke men’s tailoring and unique designs that will have you transfixed, Gresham Blake is a cut above the rest. Located in the heart of Brighton’s busy North Laines. If you’re looking for a sophisticated stylish outfit that you can’t take your eyes off, there’s no better place in Brighton than Gresham Blake.

What people say ‘I was in there only yesterday, actually. It was the shoes in the window that drew me in. When I asked who made them up for them, the helpful assistant said immediately informed me and guided me through everything Gresham Blake. I’d say they’re pretty individual. The suits and shirts are really very fashion forward and they’re keen on bright linings’ Via Ask Andy About Clothes

Website: www.greshamblake.com          Telephone number: 01273 609 587

Dirty Harry

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Vintage with a capital V, this shop is the essence of Brighton’s unique quirky culture that you’ll struggle to find elsewhere in the UK. Individual clothes that are of a high quality are on offer here. The staff are particularly helpful and extremely friendly to all customers which is an added bonus, completing what is a great exclusive shopping experience.

What people sayReally friendly and helpful staff, who I think go above and beyond that of other vintage shops in the area! I was trying to find a particular item and the guy behind the counter, stopped what he was doing and went through all the boots trying to help me! Great quality, affordable stuff here! Massive fan of the staff and products here at Dirty Harry!’ via Yelp

Website: www.dirtyharryltd.com      Telephone: 01273 607527

JU-JU

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Not adverse to a spot of publicity, Ju Ju were the creators of a set of rather cheeky children’s t-shirts that made their way into nationwide newspapers and were even discussed on television shows like ‘Loose Women’. However, the shop is an extremely fun and friendly place to be, with a range of top store brands at affordable prices, it is no surprise that it’s hugely popular. World famous for their appearance on the BBC’s Mary Portas’s ‘Mary Queen of Shops’ television show, Ju-Ju continues to go from strength to strength and is a firm favourite of ours.

What people sayJu-Ju’ has been going for 20 years and is run by a lovely couple, who make you feel at ease and are two of the most honest shopkeepers I’ve ever met. The clothes are typically Brighton – eccentric and edgy, but modest. They have a great vintage rack, but the majority of the store is labels – like Cheap Monday, whose jeans wash like a dream! The prices are on a Topshop level – and the clothes you get there are better quality than many of the Topshop labels. Ju-Ju’s is the sort of place that you’d go if you want something that stands out, but still fits into the quirky Brighton fashion scene.’ Pippa M via Yelp

Website: www.jujubrighton.com               Telephone: 01273 673161

Jaba Yard

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The customer service is second to none at The Jaba Yard, the staff are well known for their helpfulness and patience, along side high quality clothing. A wide selection from their own clothing range is on offer, that has proven to be a big hit! Situated in the centre of Brighton, you couldn’t ask for a better location for a bit of retail therapy. The clothes are classy but also affordable with no unnecessary flamboyance, so certainly ticks our boxes. This family run business is definitely worth a visit.

What people sayFun clothes, not overly frilly or pretentious and very friendly staff!  I found a coat I fell in love with but couldn’t justify practically speaking (I’m from Atlanta, and a stylish but heavy boiled wool coat is likely to be worn only once or twice a year).  The ladies running the shop picked up on my hesitation immediately, offered to hold the coat 24 hours with no question and advised me to sleep on it – I can’t think of another shop thoughtful enough of their customers to make that suggestion unprompted.  In the end, I decided against the coat, but I thoroughly enjoyed the shopping experience, totally laid back, unhurried, and zero sales pressure’  Kathy H via Yelp

Website: www.jabayard.com          Telephone: 01273 623244

 

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Whether you’re looking for a romantic weekend getaway or a fun filled mini break, there are so many interesting and extremely original place to stay in Brighton…

Hotel Pelirocco

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Rock out at Hotel Pelirocco, each room has a different feel and design, it’s as if you’ve stepped back in time to a retro rock venue. The hotel has an extremely friendly vibe and a relaxed atmosphere with tremendous customer service, offering fantastic food and a selection of specialised cocktails. But more importantly, this rock themed hotel’s most impressive features are its design and layout, it truly gives an authentic feel that cannot be witnessed anywhere else.  

What people sayPerfect for arty weekenders, Hotel Pelirocco offers tongue-in-cheek themed rooms with a retro-rockabilly twist. Set on Regency Square with side views onto the ruined West Pier, it’s just minutes from the city’s main attractions and shops. Quiz the friendly, laid-back staff for suggestions of what to see and where to eat, then head to the hotel’s funky bar for cocktails among Brighton’s most colourful locals.’ The Telegraph

Website: www.hotelpelirocco.co.uk             Telephone: 01273 327055

Artist Residence

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This indie hideaway is perfect for the creative holiday maker, the 23 bedroom town house boasts 2 restaurants, a cocktail bar and a ping pong room. The location is perfect, with wonderful views over Brighton’s famous coastline. But it is the unique atmosphere that makes The Artist Residence stand out, each room has a different quirky feel to it, creating a rustic and eclectic decor.

What people sayLoved the Artist Residence! Perfect location for exploring Brighton, friendly and helpful staff, great food (don’t skip breakfast, it’s delicious, best flat white coffee of the weekend), glamorous cocktails. Our room was both uber-trendy and comfortable, especially the round bed. Small touches like radio in the room playing Smile Sussex are what makes this a hotel I will definitely recommend.’ Hsberger via TripAdvisor

Website: www.artistresidence.co.uk             Telephone: 01273 324302

A Room with a View

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Enjoy a premium spot situated a stone’s throw from the beach and right next to the Palace Pier, A Room with a View does not disappoint in terms of location, on the periphery of the city centre there are so many things to do. This hotel is luxurious from head-to-toe, the rooms are equipped with top quality furniture and excellent service will be provided throughout your stay, including wonderful breakfasts and staff who will do everything they can to ensure you have a superb stay.  

What people sayWe treated ourselves to 3 days of luxury in Brighton. This hotel totally hit the spot. Our room looked out over the sea and the pier which was totally fabulous. The room itself was beautifully kept with quality furnishings. The bathroom had a free standing bath and a walk in power shower and we were provided with wonderful toiletries. No expense was spared in this hotel. Breakfasts were plentiful and with a good choice which set us up for the day. The owner wasn’t around but this didn’t matter as the hotel was left in the very capable hands of John who always had a smile and couldn’t do enough for us. This is a place we will most definitely return to.’ Nenie70 Via TripAdvisor

Website: aroomwithaviewbrighton.com          Telephone: 01273 682885

My Hotel

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Situated in North Laines, My Hotel couldn’t be more central to Brighton’s cultural, vibrant life. At My Hotel, unlike other hotels, guests are given a personal service that reflects their tastes. This covers almost anything, such as your favourite type of music or bedding preferences. Everything is tailored to what the guest desires, this alone makes My Hotel a winner. If you needed any more convincing, the hotel has a modern futuristic feel which was created by New York designer Karim Rashid providing an incredible lavish experience.

What people sayWhat a superb place, slap bang in the midst of lively Brighton. Wonderful service from Federico upon arrival and the penthouse Carousel suite is to die for. Double ended bath tub in the corner with sheepskin rug and ceiling height mirrors. Walk in rain shower and steam too. We were really impressed.’ MissNorthern Via TripAdvisor

Website: myhotels.com/brighton          Telephone: 01273 900 300

Drakes

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An experience like no other, the oriental interior mixed with Indochine French colonialism is a winning combination that has visitors of Drakes coming back for more. But that is just one ingredient that makes up the successful formula they employ. Top class service is a priority, visitors are always extremely well looked after in a laid back, relaxed style that makes you feel at ease as soon as you check in. The 20 bespoke designed rooms have beautiful sea views and everything you could possibly need inside them, a true touch of class.

What people sayWe stayed two nights at Drakes as part of a week long visit to South Coast towns and cities. The receptionist who booked us in was extremely friendly and helpful, and, after booking in, we didn’t have to interact with reception staff again until we left. Parking was easy: we parked in a bay reserved for us in an adjacent hotel and that was fine. Our room seemed very modern, with many space saving devices including a bath alongside the main windows of the bedroom. And we had two comfortable nights’ sleep. Breakfast was excellent with a wide range of orderable dishes – I tried three, including eggs Florentine for the first time – and one could pick up a bowl of mixed fruit to add to one’s cereal too, which was a bonus. On leaving, a different receptionist sorted out our bill efficiently, and he also has time to answer my questions on the history of the hotel.’ Stewart G Via TripAdvisor

Website: www.drakesofbrighton.com             Telephone: 01273 696934

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There’s tonnes of great things you can do that won’t cost you a penny, so no excuses…

Brighton Beach

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Brighton’s most famous landmark, You’ll struggle to find a summer’s day where the beach isn’t covered in people soaking up the sun. You’d be a fool to miss out on this one and probably blind if you don’t see it!

What people say – ‘Yesterday I went to the Beach to have a pleasant walk. The weather was very sunny and a lot of people were enjoying the beach and the seafront. I just sat down to read my book and to watch the life. You can relax very easily here. The people are happy and very friendly. You have many options to do, e. g. going to the Brighton Pier and having fun, playing beach volleyball, doing running… I can recommend to have a visit to Brighton and of course the glorious beach’ Claudi1510 via VirtualTourist

Brighton Fishing Museum

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Learn about Brighton’s fascinating history and roots in the Brighton Fishing Museum. There are many art pieces on view which make for an enthralling day out! You can even grab some fresh fish on the way out as well, everyone’s a winner!

What people sayThe fishing museum is part museum, part art gallery and part fish shop. I get my mackerel from here and it’s gorgeously fresh and cheap. The gallery here hosts a range of local artists and once a year they have the Mackerel festival which involves an exhibition of fish related art and a priest who comes down to say a few words. Lovely event.’ Sam R via Yelp

Website: www.brightonfishingmuseum.org.uk         Telephone: 01273 723064.

The North Laines

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The historic North Laines, showcasing over 400 independent shops, cafes and entertainment venues, once you go there, you won’t want to leave. There’s something for everyone and it’s no surprise to us that it’s a huge hit with the locals. Hidden away from the mainstream shops and Churchill Square, the North Laines appears to be a wonderful find, but more like Brighton’s worst kept secret. Always packed full of people and its famous markets are to die for.

What people sayLocated between church street and Trafalgar street is this great area of the city, full of bars, pubs, interesting shops, cafes and restaurants. There is always something happening here day and night and although it gets busy you should be able to find somewhere to eat or drink here. It has everything from burger joints to old fashioned traditional pubs to the more upscale establishments like Browns. Give it a try!’ sge31 via TripAdvisor

Website: northlaine.co.uk

The Artist Quarter

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Located on the seafront, the Artist Quarter allows local artists show-piece and sell their pieces from their studios. The studios were previously fishermen’s arches so create a unique feel you won’t find anywhere else. The Artist Quarter is one of Brighton’s many hubs for cultural attractions and will always have a huge draw on both locals and tourists alike.


What people sayThe Artists Quarter of Brighton beach is pleasant stretch of the lower esplanade about 200metres long. The small artists workshops have various ‘Art’ standing and hanging outside. Most of it is produced by the artists in the workshops, some of the sculptures such as the ducks and dogs are clearly imported in making it more affordable. Most of the artists are friendly and seem happy to talk about their work. Some of the lerger studios encourage you in and it can be a pleasant way to spend a few hours.’ Sevencakes via TripAdvisor

Website: www.theartistquarter.co.uk                Telephone: 01273 739694

Devil’s Dyke

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The historic Devil’s Dyke provides picturesque views of the famous South Downs. Easily accessible for all Brightonians, just five miles north of the centre, it is perfect for all nature lovers providing stunning panoramas of England’s most colourful habitat, also a dog walker’s paradise with land stretching all across the beautiful landscape. It is believe that at this historic landmark the  ‘Devil’ dug up the valley to drown the parishioners of the Weald, although you won’t have to worry about that any more, we hope!

What people sayThe Dyke is a great place to visit while in Brighton. During the Summer there are open top buses that take you there from the town centre (No. 77 I think) On most days you can see people flying kites or model air planes and quite often there are hang-gliders and Parasailers to watch which is great fun. There is a Hotel/Pub/Restaurant at the top with ample parking. A lot of people go just for Sunday lunch or an evening beer to watch the Sunset. If you like walking or cycling or if you have a dog you must go.’ Kimsky5 via TripAdvisor


We hope you enjoyed our Ultimate Guide to Brighton and find it useful in gallivanting through our magnificent city! But, don’t forget, there’s always more to be discovered, if you find anything you think we’ve missed or should be added on why not share it with us on our Facebook or Twitter pages?

If you’re new to the Brighton area or just visiting, check out our Community and Events page! It’s the perfect way to see what’s going on in the local area and don’t forget, you can list your event for FREE.

If you’re ever looking to buy or sell anything quickly and efficiently for FREE be sure to check out the Friday-Ad bringing local buyers and sellers together.

Showing 3 comments

  1. Great article, I love Brighton! Can’t wait to come back and try out some of these out myself

  2. Went to Brighton last summer, for pride festival, such a vibrant/fun city! Can’t wait to go again, helpful read!

  3. Planning my friends hen do and will definitely be booking the Lucky Voice!

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