Spending a weekend in Brighton

Brighton, a lively coastal city in East Sussex, England, is known for its lovely coastline, eclectic culture, and vibrant atmosphere. Whatever your tastes and interests, Brighton has plenty of exciting activities and attractions on offer.

Spending a weekend in Brighton, our party of four took the train from London and rented an apartment online. It worked out much cheaper than staying in a motel or even hostel in the area and was a lovely, central place to stay.

Here are some of the top things to do in Brighton for an unforgettable experience.

Visit the iconic Brighton Pier

The main attraction in Brighton is of course the famous pier and it is a must-visit. We spent hours exploring the pier, buying the famous Brighton Rock Candy, attempting to win on the sideshow stalls, watching the roller-coasters and playing arcade games.  It has a really wholesome, old-school fun feeling.

We also had a fish pedicure where little fish nibble the dead skin cells off your feet. If you have ticklish feet it can be challenging to put your feet in the water and get used to the crazy feeling of fish swimming around and nibbling! My feet were incredibly smooth afterwards though!

Brighton pier viewed from beach during a weekend in brighton

Brighton Rock Candy which reads 'Brighton' inside stick

Three young women sitting having a Fish pedicure at brighton pier

Adjacent to the pier we found a challenging mini golf course as well as the Brighton Wheel which I’m sad to hear has since been removed. It went around at least 3 times with interesting commentary on the history and sights of the area which enabled us to get our bearings.

brighton beach wheel and city viewed from pier during a weekend in brighton

Discover the Royal Pavilion

The Royal Pavilion is a unique palace built for the Prince Regent (later King George IV). We admired the architecture from the stunning gardens but you can go into the palace itself to see the opulent interiors and gain insight into the city’s royal history.

Wander through The Lanes

Brighton’s famous shopping district, The Lanes has a special bohemian character with a maze of narrow, winding streets filled with a diverse array of independent boutiques, antique shops, cafes, and art galleries.

Relax on Brighton Beach

With its pebble beach and picturesque views, Brighton Beach is the place to unwind and soak up the coastal ambiance or take a dip in the refreshing English Channel. The beachfront is also dotted with busy cafes, bars, and restaurants.

Coming from New Zealand I do not understand how Brighton is a great beach – voted in the top 10 beaches in the world. I would take any Coromandel beach which features warm water and actual sand rather than pebbles any day!

Visit the Brighton Museum and Art Gallery

A visit to the Brighton Museum and Art Gallery is a must during your weekend in Brighton for art enthusiasts and history buffs. It has an extensive art collection from both local and international artists, as well as exhibits highlighting the Brighton’s history.

Take the Volks Railway

We also went on the Volks Railway from the Pier to the Marina which was the first public electric railway in the world. Taking the Volks Railway cost around 2 pounds per person, though I didn’t think there was much to see at the end – it’s certainly about the journey not the destination!

four adults boarding Volks Railway train at Brighton Pier

Explore the Brighton Sea Life Centre

The Brighton Sea Life Centre is home to a fascinating array of marine life from sharks to sea turtles. The interactive displays and informative talks provide a unique learning experience for visitors of all ages.

Attend a show at the Brighton Dome

The Brighton Dome hosts a diverse range of events, including concerts, theatre productions, dance performances, and comedy shows. Check the schedule and buy your tickets in advance. 

A weekend in Brighton will have something for everyone! Immerse yourself in its vibrant culture, art, and entertainment scene, and you’ll understand why Brighton is a beloved destination for many.

Photos mostly Caitlin’s. And here’s one from my dad- a picture of my mum, years ago during their own weekend in Brighton.

woman sitting on beach chair with brighton pier in background in 1980's