20 Best Things to Do in Brighton: Exploring the Vibrant Seaside City

Things to Do in Brighton

Brighton, situated on the southern coast of England, is renowned for its vibrant culture, picturesque beaches, iconic landmarks, and lively arts scene. As a popular seaside resort, it offers a unique blend of traditional charm and modern elegance, attracting visitors from all over the world.

There’s no doubt that a trip to Brighton is an adventure filled with fun and unforgettable memories. In this article, we delve into the myriad things to do in Brighton.

1. Royal Pavilion

Royal Pavilion
Photo: Google Maps/Katie Freidhof

A trip to Brighton would be incomplete without visiting the city’s iconic Royal Pavilion. This extravagant seaside palace, with its distinct Indo-Saracenic architecture and oriental interiors, was built in the 19th century as a pleasure palace for King George IV. Today, it stands as a symbol of Brighton’s flamboyant spirit and serves as a museum showcasing Regency era grandeur.

Within its opulent halls and rooms, you can explore a fantastic collection of art, furniture, and decor that harks back to the time of King George IV. The Royal Pavilion’s gardens, restored to their original 1820s design, offer a tranquil oasis right in the city centre. In essence, a visit to the Royal Pavilion offers an intriguing glimpse into royal history and Brighton’s colourful past.

Entry Fee: GBP 10.00; Location: Check Map
Address: 4/5 Pavilion Buildings, Brighton and Hove, Brighton BN1 1EE, United Kingdom.

2. Brighton i360

Brighton i360
Photo: Google Maps/AhFai Kwong

For those seeking an unmatched view of the city and beyond, the British Airways i360 viewing tower is one of the most exciting things to do in Brighton. Located on Brighton’s seafront, this 162-meter tall tower offers visitors a unique 360-degree view of Brighton, the South Downs, and the stunning coastline.

Visitors ascend in a futuristic glass viewing pod to the tower’s pinnacle. Once at the top, you can enjoy a glass of local sparkling wine from the Nyetimber Sky Bar while taking in the breathtaking panoramic views. With its blend of innovative design and mesmerizing vistas, Brighton i360 delivers a truly unique and unforgettable experience.

Entry Fee: GBP 13.50; Location: Check Map
Address: Lower Kings Road, Brighton BN1 2LN, United Kingdom.

3. Brighton Palace Pier

Brighton Palace Pier
Photo: Google Maps/Alan Jones

No visit to this seaside city would be complete without experiencing the traditional delights of Brighton Palace Pier. Built in 1899, this Grade II listed pier is an iconic symbol of Brighton’s heritage. It offers a classic British seaside experience, complete with amusement arcades, fairground attractions, food kiosks selling traditional treats like fish and chips, and even two on-site bars.

The end of the pier provides fantastic views of Brighton’s seafront and the English Channel, making it an ideal spot for a leisurely stroll. By day or night, Brighton Palace Pier offers endless entertainment, nostalgia, and fun, making it an absolute must-see during your visit to Brighton.

Entry Fee: Free; Location: Check Map
Address: Madeira Dr, Brighton BN2 1TW, United Kingdom.

4. Brighton Museum & Art Gallery

Brighton Museum & Art Gallery
Photo: Google Maps/Claire J.

Located in the Royal Pavilion’s garden, the Brighton Museum & Art Gallery is an essential stop for art and history enthusiasts. It houses a diverse collection that spans art, history, fashion, and more, providing a comprehensive look at the city’s rich culture and beyond.

The museum’s galleries showcase everything from ancient Egyptian artefacts and fine art to 20th-century design and fashion. The museum also hosts an array of temporary exhibitions, ensuring there’s always something new to explore. The Brighton Museum & Art Gallery is a veritable treasure trove of art and culture, making it one of the top things to see in Brighton.

Entry Fee: GBP 6; Location: Check Map
Address: Royal Pavilion Gardens, Brighton and Hove, Brighton BN1 1EE, United Kingdom.

5. SEA LIFE Brighton

SEA LIFE Brighton
Photo: Google Maps/Turisto Lituano

SEA LIFE Brighton, the world’s oldest operating aquarium, offers visitors a chance to explore life under the sea. Its Victorian architecture adds a unique charm to the immersive aquatic displays. The aquarium is home to a wide range of sea creatures, from sharks and rays to colourful tropical fish, housed within the beautiful arches of the original Victorian structure.

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With interactive feeding sessions, educational talks, and a captivating glass-bottom boat experience, SEA LIFE Brighton is sure to enthral visitors of all ages, making it a perfect family-friendly destination.

Entry Fee: GBP 22.50; Location: Check Map
Address: Marine Parade, Brighton and Hove, Brighton BN2 1TB, United Kingdom.

6. Brighton Toy and Model Museum

Brighton Toy and Model Museum
Photo: Google Maps/Nancy Lamp

Situated under Brighton Railway Station’s arches, the Brighton Toy and Model Museum houses one of the world’s finest collections of toys and models. The museum showcases over 10,000 items, including classic toys from the Victorian era to the present day, vintage model train sets, dolls, teddy bears, and more.

One of the museum’s main attractions is its fully operational 1930s model railway. A visit to the Brighton Toy and Model Museum is a nostalgic journey through the history of toys and is sure to charm both children and adults.

Entry Fee: GBP 8.00; Location: Check Map
Address: 52-55 Trafalgar St, Brighton and Hove, Brighton BN1 4EB, United Kingdom.

7. Preston Park

Preston Park
Photo: Google Maps/Nigel S

The largest urban park in the city, Preston Park is a great place to relax and enjoy the outdoors when in Brighton. The park features a mix of open lawns, formal gardens, a cricket field, tennis courts, and a café. One of the park’s standout features is its beautiful rose garden, which showcases an array of vibrant blooms during the summer.

The park also hosts several events throughout the year, including the Brighton Pride festival and the Brighton Marathon. Whether you fancy a picnic, a game of tennis, or simply a leisurely stroll, Preston Park offers a refreshing slice of green in the city.

Entry Fee: GBP 5.00; Location: Check Map
Address: Preston Rd, Brighton and Hove, Brighton BN1 6SD, United Kingdom.

8. Upside Down House Brighton

Upside Down House Brighton
Photo: Google Maps/Brian Drinkwater

Next on our list of things to do in Brighton is the Upside Down House, a fun and unusual attraction located on the city’s seafront. This unique experience literally turns your world upside down as you navigate a house where everything is the wrong way up.

The Upside Down House is a surreal experience, designed to challenge perceptions and create some truly memorable photo opportunities. The house’s rooms are regularly redecorated, so there’s always something new to see. This quirky attraction adds a distinct touch of whimsy to Brighton’s vibrant landscape.

Entry Fee: GBP 6.95; Location: Check Map
Address: 42-43, Kings Road Arches, Brighton BN1 2LN, United Kingdom.

9. Victoria Gardens

Victoria Gardens
Photo: Google Maps/Christian Monz

Victoria Gardens, nestled in the heart of Brighton, provides a peaceful oasis amidst the bustling city centre. These gardens form part of the Old Steine, a historic grassy area that includes monuments, fountains, and well-maintained flower beds.

The gardens are a wonderful place to sit and watch the world go by, offering a serene contrast to the city’s hustle and bustle. Frequent public events and performances take place here, adding to the gardens’ vibrant atmosphere.

Entry Fee: GBP 3.70; Location: Check Map
Address: Brighton and Hove, Brighton, United Kingdom.

10. Brighton Beach

Brighton Beach
Photo: Google Maps/Prairie Apron

No visit to Brighton would be complete without spending some time on its famous pebble beach. Offering stunning views of the sea and the iconic Brighton Palace Pier, Brighton Beach is a popular destination for locals and visitors alike.

Whether you want to enjoy traditional seaside fun, relax on a deck chair, or dine in one of the many beachfront restaurants and bars, Brighton Beach offers the quintessential British seaside experience. During the summer, the beach comes alive with various watersports activities and events, making it one of the most fun things to see in Brighton.

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Entry Fee: Free; Location: Check Map
Address: 4 Madeira Dr, Brighton BN2 1ET, United Kingdom.

11. Brighton Seafront

Brighton Seafront
Photo: Google Maps/Ulrich Greger

Brighton’s seafront is more than just a picturesque coastline. It’s a hub of activity, with restaurants, bars, galleries, and shops. From the vibrant Brighton Marina to the serene Hove Lawns, the seafront has something for everyone.

Take a leisurely stroll along the iconic promenade, hire a bike and explore the dedicated cycle lanes, or simply sit back and enjoy the stunning sea views. With its mixture of entertainment, dining, and shopping, Brighton Seafront offers a memorable seaside experience that encapsulates the city’s vibrant spirit.

Entry Fee: GBP 3.00; Location: Check Map
Address: Brighton BN2 1TW, United Kingdom.

12. South Downs National Park

South Downs National Park
Photo: Google Maps/Rai Awais A Khan

Just a stone’s throw from Brighton is the South Downs National Park, the youngest national park in the UK. Spanning across a beautiful 1,600 square kilometre area, it offers a diverse landscape of rolling hills, ancient woodland, river valleys, and stunning coastline.

One of the park’s key attractions is the famous chalk cliffs of the Seven Sisters, which provide stunning views over the English Channel. Visitors can explore the park’s numerous walking and cycling trails, visit quaint villages, admire historic sites, and enjoy a diverse range of flora and fauna.

Entry Fee: GBP 10.00; Location: Check Map
Address: United Kingdom.

13. Queen’s Park, Brighton

Queen's Park, Brighton
Photo: Google Maps/John Carling 

Nestled in the heart of Brighton, Queen’s Park offers a serene escape from the city’s lively atmosphere. This beautifully maintained park features a large pond, a clock tower, a well-equipped playground, and several elegant garden areas. One of the park’s unique attractions is the Queen’s Park Villa, a 19th-century villa that adds a sense of historical charm to the area.

Queen’s Park is a fantastic place for leisurely strolls, picnics, and relaxation. With its blend of natural beauty, abundant wildlife, and peaceful environment, it’s a perfect place for those seeking tranquility amidst the bustling city.

Entry Fee: -; Location: Check Map
Address: 1 West Dr, Brighton and Hove, Brighton BN2 0QU, United Kingdom.

14. Old Steine Gardens

Old Steine Gardens
Photo: Google Maps/Brian Drinkwater

Located just off Brighton’s seafront, the Old Steine Gardens is a historic park and garden square that offers a peaceful oasis in the city centre. These well-maintained gardens provide a pleasant spot for relaxation, with its manicured lawns, flower beds, and the beautiful Victoria Fountain at its centre.

The gardens also feature several monuments and memorials, including a statue of Captain George Vancouver and the Brighton War Memorial. With its blend of history, art, and natural beauty, a visit to Old Steine Gardens is among the more tranquil things to do in Brighton.

Entry Fee: -; Location: Check Map
Address: 55 Old Steine, Brighton and Hove, Brighton BN1 1EH, United Kingdom.

15. Brighton Open Market

Brighton Open Market
Photo: Google Maps/Brian Drinkwater

If you’re a fan of local produce, unique crafts, and lively atmospheres, then a visit to Brighton Open Market should be on your list. Located on London Road, this covered market houses a diverse range of traders, offering everything from fresh fruits and vegetables to antiques and handmade crafts.

Brighton Open Market also hosts various events throughout the year, including live music performances, workshops, and food festivals, adding to its vibrant and community-oriented atmosphere. It’s a fantastic place to support local businesses, discover unique finds, and immerse yourself in Brighton’s lively market culture.

Entry Fee: Free; Location: Check Map
Address: Marshalls Row, Brighton and Hove, Brighton BN1 4JU, United Kingdom.

16. The Level, Brighton

The Level, Brighton
Photo: Google Maps/Federico P.

The Level is a popular urban park in Brighton, centrally located between the city’s residential, shopping, and academic areas. This restored park features a vast open space for picnics and casual games, an impressive skate park, two state-of-the-art playgrounds, and a beautifully planted sensory garden.

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The Level is also home to a number of events and festivals throughout the year, adding to its appeal as a hub of community activity. Whether you’re looking for a place to relax, play, or participate in community events, The Level offers something for everyone.

Entry Fee: -; Location: Check Map
Address: Union Rd, Brighton and Hove, Brighton BN1 4ZN, United Kingdom.

17. Hove Park

Hove Park
Photo: Google Maps/Ekaterina Nagy

Just a short distance west of Brighton city centre is Hove Park, a large and beautifully maintained space that covers almost 40 acres. The park is popular with locals and tourists alike, offering a mix of large areas of open grass, mature trees, and recreational facilities such as a children’s playground, a café, and tennis courts.

One of the park’s unique features is the Goldstone, a large rock with a fascinating history, and the Fingermaze, a piece of public artwork that provides intrigue and enjoyment for visitors of all ages. Whether you’re up for a game of tennis, a leisurely stroll, or simply a picnic, Hove Park is a great addition to the list of things to do in Brighton.

Entry Fee: Free; Location: Check Map
Address: Goldstone Cres, Brighton and Hove, Hove BN3 6BG, United Kingdom.

18. Withdean Park

Withdean Park
Photo: Google Maps/Brady Jieshang

Withdean Park, located in the north of Brighton, is a haven for wildlife enthusiasts. This sprawling park is known for its diverse plant life and features an impressive rose garden, a scented sensory garden, and woodlands that house various bird species.

The park is also home to the Withdean Sports Complex, making it a popular destination for fitness and sports lovers. A visit to Withdean Park offers an excellent opportunity to explore Brighton’s natural beauty and engage in outdoor activities.

Entry Fee: -; Location: Check Map
Address: 36 Peacock Ln, Brighton and Hove, Brighton BN1 8NA, United Kingdom.

19. The North Laine

The North Laine
Photo: Google Maps/Dominic Philpott

The North Laine area in Brighton is a bohemian bustle of culture and creativity. This vibrant district, with its narrow alleyways and colourful storefronts, is a shopping paradise offering a range of independent boutiques, record stores, antique shops, and markets selling everything from vintage clothing to local crafts.

But it’s not just about retail therapy. The North Laine is also the cultural heart of Brighton, with live music venues, art galleries, and the Brighton Dome and Brighton Museum & Art Gallery. Whether you’re a shopaholic, an art lover, or a foodie, the North Laine has something for everyone.

Entry Fee: -; Location: Check Map
Address: Brighton and Hove, Brighton, Great Britain.

20. Brighton Marina

Brighton Marina
Photo: Google Maps/Ghanshyam Parmar

Located east of the city centre, Brighton Marina offers a range of leisure and dining opportunities. This bustling marina is not just one of Europe’s largest yacht harbours but also a shopping and entertainment hub.

You can indulge in watersports, enjoy a leisurely boat ride, explore a variety of shops, or dine in one of the many restaurants overlooking the water. Brighton Marina also houses a cinema and a bowling alley, ensuring plenty of entertainment for everyone.

Entry Fee: Free; Location: Check Map
Address: Brighton and Hove, Brighton, Great Britain.

In conclusion, there are numerous things to do in Brighton that cater to a wide range of interests. Whether you’re exploring the opulent Royal Pavilion, taking in the panoramic views from the Brighton i360, exploring marine life at SEA LIFE Brighton, soaking up the sun on Brighton Beach, or the bustling atmosphere of Brighton Open Market, each experience offers a unique perspective on this vibrant seaside city. So why wait? Come and discover the unique charm and beauty of Brighton for yourself.

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Hannah J

Hannah specializes in travel and lifestyle content. She has an innate ability to capture the essence of a place, from bustling city streets to serene mountain landscapes.