This time last year, I was living and working in lovely Brighton, on England’s South Coast. It’s genuinely such a cool place and I would highly recommend visiting if you ever have the chance.
A lot of people have described it as Camden by the sea, and I can understand where they got that from, but I’m not sure if I 100% agree; Brighton is incredibly ecclectic and varied, so it deserves a bit more credit.
I’ve lived all over Brighton – near Sussex University, by Preston Park, at the Marina, in Kemp Town… And along the way I’ve gained a few favourite spots. It can be difficult to keep track of places in Brighton, as they seem to be ever changing. But nonetheless, in no particular order, here are a few of my old haunts that haven’t been turned into cereal bars or fancy coffee places yet:
1) Literally the club, ‘The Haunt’
A converted cinema turned into a club / music venue. It can be a bit hipster sometimes but don’t let that put you off. They do some fun, alternative nights that make a great change from almost every other club in Brighton. Personally I was always quite partial to their 80’s nights.
2) Queen’s Park
Situated in Kemp Town, it’s a big park with tennis courts, a pond and ‘the pepper pot’ aka a big tower thing. Lovely for running round / having a sit down to contemplate and look at ducks when you’ve had enough of exercise.
Where I went to University. Need I say more? (I really do need to, but it would take way more than a few sentences)
I was famous among my friends as ‘that person’ that always wore vintage clothes (not always for good reasons!). I still do to an extent, though most of what I wear casually isn’t that practical for work so I had to draw the line. There are a bunch of really great vintage shops, but this one is my favourite. There are two, within a couple of streets of one another, and I’d say there’s something for everyone. The prices aren’t too bad, the staff are helpful and in between summer and winter they sell off everything at half price.
P.s. I only went on their website to double check they haven’t suddenly closed down and I’m already contemplating buying stuff.
Not related to the film in any way other than there are a bunch of canvasses up on the walls with pictures of Audrey Hepburn on. It’s basically a cheap all day breakfast place, with a few branches. Perfect hangover hangout.
It was always a fiver for a full English breakfast and a cup of tea, and the staff are uber friendly – you can’t ask for much more than that. But if you wanted to, I’m pretty sure they do cakes, and potentially even roast dinner sometimes too.
I could and would eat at Breeze every day if I still lived there. Great food, at genuinely affordable prices and the nicest server. It’s also really spacious inside, so you don’t feel like someone is breathing down your neck the whole time.
A warehouse style club/music venue. I’m not a massive fan of it as a club, but I went to some great gigs there, my favourite 100% being Man Like Me: it’s a big enough venue to have an atmosphere, but small enough to feel intimate. Expensive drinks though.
When I lived there it was always free to go in, so I would often just go and wander. It’s only recently I’ve realised that it isn’t actually just free for everyone, so random browsing might not be an option for you, but it is definitely worth a visit. It’s by the pavilion too, so you could go there at the same time.
Awesome, cosy pub in the Lanes. Plays good music (often live), has a great selection of alcohol and other beverages, and has some really fun interior decor.
10) The Seafront
There is no way I could write something about Brighton, and not mention the seafront. Ok, yes, it’s touristy, but it’s quite easy to escape that if you walk further down than the pier. Also, yes, sometimes there are weirdos hanging out on the beach. Nonetheless, it’s pretty big so easy to miss them.
It has a ton of uses: it’s great in winter, and summer (as long as it isn’t raining). You can grab a barbecue, or a sleeping bag, and chill out with a few beers, play volleyball, go swimming (at your own peril. It’s really cold), or my favourite, go for a run (if you saw my post the other day on running a half marathon, it was along this very sea front). The straight path down the front is great for running, and continues all the way under the cliffs if you follow it Kemp Town way (past the Marina).
This is such a small part of all the wonderful things I have to say about Brighton, so at some point I’ll follow this up.
Now excuse me while I organise my next trip down there…