Things to do


This city barely needs an introduction…

It has been a popular seaside resort since the 18th century and is England’s largest, in terms of population. Together with neighbouring Hove, Brighton became a city in 2001. Brighton’s reputation as a fashionable destination increased when King George IV began visiting the town and commissioned the unmistakable Brighton Pavilion in 1815. You can visit this extraordinary oriental-style building, which has become the symbol for the city, on a trip to Brighton. Much of the Regency era architecture you see on the seafront and in the grand squares of Brighton and Hove dates from this time too.

Find out more about Brighton Pavilion

Another iconic structure in the city, or on the edge of it, is Brighton Pier. This traditional amusement pier was opened in 1899 and still attracts huge numbers of visitors today. With its amusements arcades, ice cream, fish and chip and doughnut sellers, fairground rides and deck chair-lined promenade there is plenty to do. 

camping near Brighton

Opposite the entrance to the pier on the seafront you’ll also find the Sealife Centre. Towards Hove, the tallest structure now in Brighton is the i360, a great glass elevator, offering 360-degree views of the city and surroundings, which opened in 2016.

Brighton continues to be one of the UK’s best city beach break locations. On weekends and summer days you will find people strolling along the bustling Brighton promenade. You can soak up the lively atmosphere, visit beachside cafes and bars, and relax on its world-famous pebble beach. Additionally there are beach and water sports or sailing activities to experience. You’ll also find some great galleries in the Artists’ Quarter on the lower promenade to the west of Brighton Pier.

After dark the area transforms into the heart of Brighton’s nightlife. With seafront clubs and bars nestled underneath the Victorian arches offering some of the best club nights in the country. If your criteria is something more relaxed, why not drop by The Grand Brighton. The famous Brighton hotel on the seafront offers a luxury afternoon tea or cocktails on the terrace overlooking the sea.

Brighton’s Food Scene

Seafood from staff favourite – The Urchin

Just along from The Grand is one of Brighton’s many fine dining restaurants. The Salt Room, a seafood and grill restaurant opposite Brighton’s iconic, crumbling West Pier. Its sister restaurant The Coal Shed is also recommended and operates on a similar ethos but with the menu emphasis more on meat than seafood. Other recommended options are The Set which describes itself as offering “seasonal food to make you smile” in changing set menus. Critics’ favourite 64 Degrees in The Lanes which specialises in small plates and The Ginger Man, an intimate restaurant with an uncomplicated menu using fresh, seasonal, local produce.

For a traditional seafood restaurant overlooking the beach, you can try The Regency Restaurant, which has been a restaurant since the 1930s. Vegetarians are well catered for in Brighton and Food for Friends in the South Lanes and Terre à terre both well established and highly recommended. In addition to a thriving and varied restaurant scene Brighton is full of coffee shops and cafes. Competition means that standards are high and many offer good quality coffee and delicious snacks. We recommend independent Moksha, which has its own blend of coffee specially roasted near Brighton and only uses organic milk. They have a great menu for breakfast, brunch, lunches and snacks. They also insist on using only free-range meats, locally sourced wherever possible.

Independent, Eclectic, Quirky…

The city, sometimes known as the gay capital of the UK, is known for welcoming diversity and creativity. In addition to busy and lively mainstream shopping and nightlife there are many quirky venues, galleries and independent shops, restaurants, bars, cafes and coffee shops – with lots clustered in The Lanes shopping area. The Brighton North Laines shopping area is a bohemian bustle of criss-cross streets in the heart of the cultural quarter of the city and home to over 400 unique shops in less than half a square mile.  The area boasts the largest selection of independent retailers on the south coast.

A great time to visit Brighton is during the annual Brighton Festival which takes place in May. It’s one of Europe’s biggest arts festivals and includes hundreds of events from exhibitions to live music. Visit the festival website for more information on the range of events and dates.

To book camping near Brighton take a look at what Wild Boar Wood and Beech Estate Campsites can offer


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