Brighton – What to see and do
British Airways i360
Start by visiting the i360 viewing tower, opened in 2016 on the site of the old West Pier. Over 25 minutes the large glass capsule rises to a height of 450ft (138m), offering great views both along the coast and inland across the South Downs.
Standard tickets for the i360 are £16.50 or £14.85 if purchased a minimum of 24 hours in advance. Visitors need to assemble 20 minutes early to pass through a security check and have time to view an exhibition on how it was constructed. British Airways i360
The Royal Pavilion
Standard admission £15 but if you also intend to take a ride to the top of the i360 observation tower then a Brighton Explorer Pass bought in advance is a good idea as it offers considerable savings.
The Royal Pavilion is an extravagant and opulent palace, designed by the eminent architect John Nash as a seaside pleasure palace for King George IV. It is now under the ownership of Brighton and Hove Council. Each room is absolutely exquisite with sumptuous interiors and huge domed ceilings. The banqueting hall is certainly fit for a king with its dazzling 30ft high chandelier hanging from the ceiling weighing one ton. The music room is lit by nine lotus shaped chandeliers and its domed ceiling is made up of hundreds of plaster cockleshells. Royal Pavilion
Brighton Museum & Art Gallery
This museum is located very close to the Royal Pavilion. Entrance to the museum is £6 and although it does contain numerous links to Brighton it also holds a diverse collection of artefacts from further afield. Brighton Museum and Art Gallery
Brighton Toy & Model Museum
Located beneath the railway arches of Brighton station. Adult admission is £6.50 with family tickets available at £14. Inside this underground cavern are more than 10,000 items tightly packed into quite a small space. Glass cabinets contain old toys, model kits, dolls, teddy bears, Meccano construction sets, trains and cars.
Hanging from the ceiling are a collection of model aircraft and old helicopters whilst propped on the top of cabinets are old prams, dolls houses and larger vehicles. Taking pride of place in the centre of this small museum is a 1930’s model railway and visitors are able to press a button to start one of the engines moving. Brighton Toy & Model Museum
Visit the world’s oldest aquarium which has been operating since 1872. The Brighton SeaLife faces the Palace Pier with standard adult admission at the door £19 but 40% cheaper at £10.50 if bought on-line before visiting.
Admire its original Victorian architecture and view the many small tanks containing around 3,500 creatures including delicate seahorses and jellyfish with their bell shaped bodies and long tentacles. Brighton SeaLife
Brighton Palace Pier
No visit to the seaside can be complete without a walk on the pier and Brighton pier is one of the best preserved in the country, offering free entry including the use of deckchairs. The pier opened in 1899 replacing the original one that had been destroyed by a severe storm. It’s a long but fun filled walk to the end of this grand pier which extends 1722 ft (525 metres) and contains a vast array of classic seaside entertainment.
There’s a large indoor amusement arcade with slot machines and other coin operated games and at the sea end a funfair with rides for all ages. Feeling peckish then tuck into the seaside favourite of fish and chips or pop into one of the cafes along the pier for tea and cakes. Brighton Palace Pier
Volk’s Electric Railway
This narrow gauge heritage railway is the oldest operating electric railway in the world and runs along the seafront from the aquarium to its terminus close to the marina since 1883 during the summer months. Volk’s Electric Railway
The popular undercliff walk starts from the Palace Pier running east for for almost 3 miles along the sea wall with the wonderful white cliffs on one side and the shingle beach and sea on the other. It takes around 45 minutes to reach Brighton Marina where you can either end your walk or stop off for a coffee.
Coastal Walk to Southwick
The walk extends for about 5 miles along a flat section of the Monarch Way long distance trail. Starting next to the pier, head in a westerly direction towards Hove. Here you can enjoy a stroll around Hove Lagoon, one of the country’s leading water sports centres. Continue past Portslade to Southwick, where you can see the eastern end of Shoreham Harbour.
Brighton Marina is one of the largest marinas in the U.K. and enjoys a picturesque setting. It’s lined with bars and restaurants where diners can enjoy a meal watching the yachts sail by. As well as dining options, the marina boasts several specialist stores and a leisure complex with cinemas and bowling. Brighton Marina
Take a stroll through the narrow maze of streets known as The Lanes that make up the historic quarter of the city. With its varied collection of interesting small shops and boutiques it’s a shopper’s paradise located between the Royal Pavilion and the seafront.
The Churchill Square shopping centre in the centre of town is home to large brands from Apple to Zara along with lesser-known stores selling everything from homeware and gifts to clothing.
Where to eat and drink
Lost in the Lanes
A delightful café with a soothing design nestled amongst the labyrinth of narrow lanes in the historic quarter serving an interesting all day breakfast/brunch. The cafe serves wholesome food made from quality ingredients and a favourite with locals. Lost in the Lanes
The Coal Shed
Tucked away down a side street the Coal Shed is a steak restaurant in the heart of the town. The menu is simple using quality ingredients expertly cooked over coal. As well as an a la carte menu they also offer a good value express lunch option and daily specials. The Coal Shed has a sister restaurant with the same name located near The Shard, London. The Coal Shed
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