Oh Brighton, I love you. You are filled to the brim with countless memories from my four years living here as a student. You have everything I want in a city and you are a place I can honestly see myself spending the rest of my life in.
Give me an excuse to visit my favourite city and I will and this time, it was to show my boyfriend around the place I love so blooming much. I wish I could afford a lovely sunny getaway (especially with this whole ‘Spring’ thing feeling very questionable right now) to somewhere not in England or even just a little Europe break (hey Amsterdam, I’ve got my eyes on you) but really, all I wanted was a few days out of the countryside, out of my normal routine, somewhere to break up the daily life you know? Somewhere where there is inspiration around every corner. Somewhere where there is ‘life’. Brighton is always the answer to that.
So, we packed up our bags, grabbed our sunnies, our disposable camera (I can’t blooming wait to get this developed!) and headed down South for 48 hours of getting away, sun, shopping, food and fun!
We ended up having so much fun and walking about so much that I didn’t manage to take as many pictures as I had liked but honestly, that’s ok. I love the ones I did manage to capture during the perfectly sunny day so really wanted to bring you along for our little Brighton adventure. Here is where we stayed, what we ate and what we did. Enjoy!
What We Did
Walked, walked and walked. We were so incredibly lucky with the weather on our trip. We arrived in Brighton with perfect blue skies, absent clouds and a boatload of sun and honestly, the city was truly alive. I packed in the plans to wander around the shops and instead, Starbucks Frappuccino in hand and stuffed on sushi, we headed towards the sea and all the fun that comes with it. After the quite frankly disastrous weather we’ve had, it was truly wonderful to just people watch whilst sitting on the beach with the sun bouncing off of the sea. It was a sight I hadn’t seen in a while and it was just so lovely to watch people express their joy about it as well. We wandered along the seafront, taking in all of the atmospheres, pointing out all of the doggies and browsing the shops along the seafront. It was slow, calm and just what I wanted.
Then it was time to spend those pound coins and 2p’s we had been saving up. We headed to the pier and spent a good few hours just playing in the arcades, winning a pretty unimpressive amount of tickets and attempting to win a pug wearing a unicorn onesie out of those grabby machines. It was all exhausting work so we decided to celebrate our lack of winning with a drink in Horatio’s Bar, once again taking complete advantage of the outdoor seating and the sun. Honestly is there anything better than sitting outside on a beautiful day, drink in hand, listening to all the fun to be had at the seaside?! Kids screaming, rides whizzing around, birds. For me, that is truly one of life’s happiest luxuries.
The next day didn’t have the best weather so we decided to use that as an excuse to wander around the shops and Brighton really doesn’t disappoint. From all the usuals, Primark to Zara and then to the unique homeware, fashion and jewellery shops down both the Lanes and North Laines, we truly had all the choice in the world. We spent ages snooping around in Snoopers Paradise, cracking out our best poses for the photobooth and looking through all the lost treasure over the years. I kept forever pointing out bits and pieces I loved for the home I don’t own and we spent ages wandering up and down those little side roads admiring the beauty of Brighton. And honestly, it was the perfect 48 hours.
What We Ate
When people ask me for food recommendations in Brighton, I feel as if I am truly the worst as mostly, living in a very small countryside town with zero to none restaurants, I like that I can go to Brighton and pig out on all my favourite chains. There are definitely loads of beautiful independent Brighton places, but this trip, we mainly ate in places you’ll typically find in most cities. And hey, I regret nothing!
We started off at my all-time favourite place for lunch, Itsu. If you love sushi like me and want something slightly more affordable than a sit-down sushi restaurant, Itsu is the perfect location to grab some fishy goodness (doesn’t sound right, does it?!) and have a natter with your pals. I just bloody love Itsu to be honest, and nothing offends me more than the fact there aren’t enough stores dotted around, ya know?! Forever thankful that Brighton has delivered the goods there.
Dinner was GBK (there is one at the Marina which is bigger and has more space but we didn’t want to head over that way as that involves driving and we wanted everything walking distance so headed for the one in North Laine) and always has such a lovely atmosphere plus… skinny fries for the win, right?! Followed by living my past student life by getting drinks and pancakes in Weatherspoons. You can take the girl out of university and all that.
For breakfast, I just had to introduce Jack to The Breakfast Club. 80’s heaven with a side dollop of huge portions of everyone’s favourites, pancakes (complete with maple syrup, berries and vanilla cream, avocado and eggs on toast and all your traditional breakfast goodies too. It’s pricey and I don’t know anyone who can eat a full portation of the pancakes without needing to take an impromptu nap straight after but certainly somewhere to go at least once. Plus, the Brighton offering doesn’t attract even half the cues as the London stores, though do expect a little wait on the weekends!
Last time I went to Bella Italia I had a really wonderful steak and after two days of non-stop walking, we wanted to eat close to our hotel so off we headed there for the evening. Sadly, I think I have just had one too many bad experiences at Bella Italia so personally won’t be going again! The service was incredibly slow, it took us forever to order and my steak was completely overdone and I’m not entirely sure Jack was too happy with his food either. Still, it wasn’t terribly awful and we just grabbed a load of hotel snacks on the way back so you know, we were two happy, very tired bunnies so it ended up being all good snacking and watching television in the hotel!
If you do want somewhere that isn’t a chain, Pompoko on Chruch Street is great if you want something quick and delicious, The Sussex Arms is a nice little central haunt for a lovely Sunday roast and Pinocchios is just the best place for all your pizza and pasta needs!
Where We Stayed
You are never going to be stuck when it comes to places to stay in Brighton. From the typical chain hotels to the more luxury, boutique type, Brighton has something for every style and every budget. For me, I absolutely adore The Brighton Hotel, situated perfectly on the seafront, boasting impressive views of the never-ending sea and beach, the bandstand and the newly built i360. It does mean a little more of a walk to and from town but the simple and beautiful decoration, friendly service and the views certainly make up for it. I have stayed at this hotel several times now and never not had a beautiful service and will always, always return when I visit Brighton!
We were having so much fun and really didn’t want to leave just yet so we decided to stay another impromptu night in Brighton and ended up booking the Premier Inn located on the high street for a bargain price. Whilst it, of course, doesn’t have the charm or the uniqueness of The Brighton Hotel (and I would always recommend going for something unique or an Air BnB over a chain), it was perfect just for a last-minute overnight stay. This didn’t offer those same picturesque views as our hotel the night before, but location-wise, it was truly perfect and you couldn’t have asked for anything better if you wanted to be truly in the centre of the city. I was also pleasantly surprised at how quiet the hotel was at night. It is only a stone’s throw away from Wetherspoons and so many other student haunts but I honestly didn’t hear a thing at night which was just perfect when we had walked as many miles around the city as we did!
Thank you for reading!