Britain has traditional seaside resorts and cosmopolitan cities. It has destinations that are individually historic, cultural, offbeat, fashionable, entertaining and picturesque. And then there’s Brighton. If one city could be described as more than the sum of its parts, it has to be the exhilarating and ever-surprising Brighton. A settlement on Britain’s south coast since the Middle Ages, Brighton’s popularity flourished in Victorian times thanks to the advent of the railway and the emerging notion among the moneyed middle-class that bathing in seawater was beneficial to health. Rapidly developing and expanding in response to its new status as a desireable holiday destination, Brighton has never looked back.
Part of the secret of Brighton’s undeniable and enduring year-round appeal is the city’s quirkiness and carefree ambience. Brighton gives the impression that ‘anything goes’ which makes it accessible and enjoyable for every visitor regardless of their personal tastes or circumstances. Families, couples, celebrities, city slickers and country bumpkins are all equally warmly-welcomed in Brighton and all will find plenty to amuse and entertain them here. Unashamedly multicultural and multigenerational, Brighton’s denizens are as varied and colourful as the city itself and contribute to its harmonious and vibrant atmosphere.
The greater part of Brighton’s appeal, though, is that it possesses an abundance of attractions that cater for every possible taste. The beach itself is a natural draw; a long expanse of clean shingle punctuated by the famous Brighton Pier. Topped by a wide promenade, Brighton beach is ideal for seaside strolls, sunbathing, sailing, all manner of beach and water sports or simply snoozing a summer’s afternoon away in a deckchair. The Victorian Pier provides the perfect opportunity to breathe in some fresh sea air no matter when you visit Brighton; it only closes on Christmas Day.
Behind the traditional restaurants, cosmopolitan bars and ultra-hip clubs that line Brighton’s seafront lies an eclectic and exciting city that amply rewards exploration. For first-time visitors, Brighton’s open-topped tour buses are a great way to get your bearings and locate some of the city’s major attractions such as the famous Royal Pavilion and the Sea Life Centre, but Brighton’s atmospheric and labyrinthine historic quarter with its quaint cobbled alleyways is best appreciated on foot. Here you’ll discover a world of fascinating independent shops and boutiques, offbeat bars, fashionable galleries and chilled-out coffee shops. Dedicated shopaholics can also immerse themselves amidst the big-name high street retailers in Brighton’s modern Churchill Square shopping centre, whilst bargains can be bagged at the outlet centre down at the quayside of Brighton’s Marina.
The culturally-inclined visitor will not only enjoy the Hindu-Gothic majesty of the Royal Pavilion, but also the Brighton Museum and Art Gallery which is situated in the Pavilion Gardens area. Here, Brighton’s history is recounted through contemporary and historic artworks, whilst world art, fashion design, pottery, fine art and performance are all represented in their own exhibits. Brighton’s Grade II listed Theatre Royal has been entertaining audiences for more than two hundred years and remains a prestigious venue in which to enjoy a play or concert on an evening out in the city. There are other fascinating museums and galleries dotted throughout Brighton, covering subjects as diverse as penny-arcade slot machines, natural history and Brighton’s fishing heritage.
Families with kids looking for a traditional seaside holiday with all the associated amusements would struggle to find a better resort than Brighton. All the fun of the fair is to be found on the pier, with thrill rides, roller coasters, waltzers, a haunted house, helter-skelter and more providing all of the fun you can handle. Celebrating its 140th anniversary, the Sea Life Centre is one of Brighton’s most famous and exciting attractions. Here you can get close to sharks, starfish and seahorses thanks to an underwater glass tunnel. You can watch turtles, sharks and rays at feeding time and learn all about them and you can even help with conservation by adopting your own animal. Brighton has plenty of parks too, such as Preston Park which is perfect for family picnics and features plenty of open space for kids to play football, has an adventure playground and sports courts and hosts concerts and events during the summer. For spectacular aerial views of the city and coast, Brighton’s latest seafront attraction –the Brighton Wheel- is a must for anyone who’s not afraid of heights.
After dark, Brighton’s legendary nightlife comes to the fore. Innumerable great restaurants offer the widest imaginable choice of dining experiences with cuisines to suit every taste from Tapas bars to Trattorias and from steaks to sushi. Brighton’s clubs and bars are considered the best in the south of England, so whether you’re preference is for live jazz or a DJ set by local resident Fatboy Slim you’re guaranteed nothing less than an exhilarating and entertaining night out in the city.
Few destinations truly live up to the cliché of ‘offering something for everyone’, but Brighton really does. It might sound too good to be true, but the only way to find out is to visit Brighton for yourself; once you’ve been captivated by this easy-going, fascinating and fun city by the sea, you’ll see just why Brighton is so irresistible.
You have declined cookies. This decision can be reversed.
You have allowed cookies to be placed on your computer. This decision can be reversed.