I had heard mixed reports about this little seaside town [not so little, it's home to over 200,000] but I'm thrilled to say I really loved it here. For me it was a perfect cross between Sydney's Manly and Melbourne's St Kilda; I'm talking quaint little streets and alleyways, endless cafes and restaurants, an angry ocean far too cold for swimming and a seaside theme park a la Luna Park - complete with an impressive Ferris Wheel mind you!
Start off by checking out the many alleys and laneways in town. They are bursting with designer and nick-nack stores, cafes, restaurants and some incredible sweet shops! From here you can take a walk to Brighton Dome which is a very impressive building that houses the town's theatre and art productions. It backs onto a beautiful park which is well worth a wander and there are plenty of squirrels for spotting if that makes you as excited as me! For a bit of a cultural experience you can wander up St James Street; this is the central gay area in Brighton and there are some great flamboyant stores and characters for spotting! Head south from here and you'll hit the water right at the impressive Ferris Wheel and along to your right is the famous Brighton Pier. And if you feel like a spot of shopping, Churchill Shopping Centre isn't too far away which houses a good range of stores.
Reaching Brighton is an easy one hour train ride from London; departing from Victoria or Blackfriars stations. And once you arrive there's really no need for anything but your legs. Walking around town is great and there's so much to explore on foot. But if need be, you can grab one of the several local buses that go all around town.
You won't be short of choice in Brighton and I think wandering the streets to make your selection is the way to go. The little alleys and lanes host the majority of restaurants and I saw some great looking burger joints and Italian restaurants. If you want a truly beachy experience then you can always opt for fish and chips on the beach!
Whilst I will say that Brighton's beaches certainly can't rival those of Australia, I really enjoyed this little seaside town. It's history combined with an intricate city layout and the endless call of seagulls makes for a lovely experience. Definitely a place to visit when the sun is shining.
Photos by Krissie.