Brighton is a fun and quirky city on the South Coast of the UK! It’s one of our favourite places to visit on a day trip from London and a perfect beach destination in England.

In this Brighton itinerary, we’re going to show you the best things to do, where to stay and how to get around!

The city is filled with charming narrow streets, independent shops, a pebble-stoned beach and an incredible amount of restaurants!

From watching the sunset over the water to Sunday brunches and exploring Brighton’s nightlife. You’ll find all sorts to do on a Brighton itinerary.

We’ve visited Brighton many times over the years whether it’s a day trip, weekend or a week! The beachy town was the perfect escape when we lived in London and we’ve even spent 5 days in Brighton and still didn’t run out of things to do.

However much time you want to spend in the city, here are our 8 best things to do in Brighton for you to plan your trip!

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The big doughnut at Brighton Beach
Brighton Beach
Pink Vegan Doughnuts in Brighton
Vegan Doughnuts in Brighton

8 Great Things to Do in Brighton (Brighton Itinerary)

If you only have one day in Brighton, you may not be able to do everything on this list. Although you’ll be able to see the highlights in Brighton city centre. It’s best to spend a weekend in Brighton to fully explore the area.

1. Find Unique Shops in The Lanes

The Lanes are our favourite place in Brighton! They are always full of character and it’s easy to get lost between the narrow streets. The Lanes are the most popular area to shop in Brighton. The streets are mainly independent shops and cute brunch cafes. There’s always so much going on!

We visit the Lanes on every Brighton day trip as they’re not hard to miss! You can easily walk through them on the way to the beach from the train station. Throughout the many cute cafes and vintage shops, it’s an area you must visit on your Brighton itinerary.

North Laine has a bohemian vibe and is where you’ll find most of the thrift shops. Many clothing stores within the lanes have clothing rails out on the pathway, making it a lot easier to browse and also much easier to catch your eye on something!

During our first visit to the lanes, we stumbled across a cafe serving the cutest-looking vegan-friendly doughnuts and buns. We just had to try them! Down to Earth Coffee is located in the North Laine and we’ve already included a photo of the pink swirly doughnuts!

I also love Ju-Ju and found myself a cute pair of dungarees! Also don’t miss out on Lucy & Yak! The Lanes are a hip and funky place to visit and you get a real feel for the Brighton atmosphere.

The Lanes in Brighton
The Lanes in Brighton
Brunch in Brighton
Brunch in Brighton

2. Hike in the South Downs National Park

The beauty of the South Downs National Park surrounds Brighton. It stretches along the southern coast of the UK passing right by Brighton. It’s a popular park for hiking all year round if it doesn’t rain too much.

A great starting point from Brighton would be to head to Devil’s Dyke. We caught a public bus from the city centre and reached the park in less than an hour. We loved the hike so much, we included it in our best hikes in the UK guide.

How to get to South Downs National Park from Brighton – catch the Bus Service 77 to Devil’s Dyke: £3 single, £5 return

Don’t worry this is the only place on this list that will involve leaving the city, but we thought it was worth mentioning for those adventurers! It’s also a very relaxing way to spend a weekend in Brighton.

South Downs National Park
South Downs National Park
South Downs in Brighton in Brighton
South Downs in Brighton

Aswell as Devils Dyke, we’ve also hiked the Seven Sisters Trails (sadly in the rain), but we highly recommend doing both whilst you’re exploring the UK! Join a South Downs White Cliffs Tour here.

3. Spend Pennies at Brighton Palace Pier

Brighton Palace Pier is an iconic part of the city! Your Brighton itinerary should include a visit to the pier, even if it’s just for a browse.

It’s free to enter the pier, although money is needed for almost everything other than watching. There are many options to keep you occupied such as taking a risk on 2p machines, playing arcade shooting games and you can even play air hockey for £1-£2.

At the very end of the pier, it feels like you’ve stepped into a mini theme park with rollercoasters and haunted house rides.

Brighton Itinerary: Brighton Pier
Brighton Itinerary: Brighton Pier

4. Try Amazing Vegan Restaurants

Brighton is a vegan paradise! If you’ve never been to any plant-based restaurants before, now is a great opportunity. We are massive foodies and enjoy finding some of the best vegan food to eat in a city before we visit.

There are so many options now all over the UK and Brighton is a great example of that. When we visited, we could only try a small percentage of what Brighton has to offer, but here are our recommendations for your Brighton itinerary:

  • Green Kitchen Vegan Cafe – tasty brunch!
  • Happy Maki – sushi rolls!
  • Purezza – amazing vegan pizza!
  • The No Catch Co – vegan fish and chips.
  • What The Pitta – vegan gyros!
  • Oowee Burgers – tasty vegan burgers
Happy Maki in Brighton
Happy Maki in Brighton
Green Kitchen in Brighton
Green Kitchen in Brighton

Check out our 4 days in London itinerary for more recommendations of vegan food and things to do.

5. Cycle along the Seafront

One of the best things to do in Brighton is to walk along the promenade gazing at the ocean waves. We’ve done this almost every Brighton trip, but we stepped up our game when we rented bikes and cycled the route!

Cycling along the seafront in Brighton is the perfect way to get around the city and visit more places in Brighton and Hove.

Cycling in Brighton on a day trip
Cycling in Brighton on a day trip
Brighton Beach
Brighton Beach

How to find a Rental Bike in Brighton?

If you walk around the city, you will notice rows of sky-blue bikes locked up. They are all over Brighton, so it won’t be very hard to locate a bike.

BTN BikeShare has both e-bikes and regular pedal bikes, so it’s up to you which one you want to rent. Download the – Social Bicycles app to rent one.

You have to sign up and create an account linked to a bank card but it will only charge you for what you use and don’t forget to check if there’s a promo code on google!

It’s 8p per minute for a pedal bike or 16p per minute for an e-bike – (Plus £1 unlock fee)

There is a dedicated cycle lane for bikes, however, it’s important to watch out for pedestrians who may walk in the cycle lanes.

Things to do in Brighton - Explore the Marina
Things to do in Brighton – Explore the Marina
Brighton & Hove Beach Huts
Brighton & Hove Beach Huts

The Hove Beach Huts are iconic for Brighton and a short cycle away, once you arrive, you can lock your bike back up and then start a new trip when you’re ready to cycle again.

Brighton Marina is full of restaurants, fishing boats and small boathouses. It’s a great location to see on a weekend in Brighton and a good opportunity to stop for food.

You can also join a bike tour of the city of Brighton! It’s a great way to see the highlights and meet other travellers. Although it’s a lot cheaper to rent a bike and do a self guided tour yourself.

6. Picnic on the Royal Pavilion Gardens

The Royal Pavilion is an exotic palace in the centre of Brighton with a colourful history. It was built for King George IV and mixes Regency grandeur with the visual style of India and China. In a very English city, the palace definitely stands out so you won’t miss it!

The gardens surrounding the palace is a perfect spot for a delicious picnic. You can also admire the Royal Pavilion at the same time.

If you’re interested in looking inside the palace you can purchase tickets here.

The Royal Pavilion
The Royal Pavilion
Vegan Burger and Mac n Cheese at Oowee Vegan
Oowee Vegan Takeaway

7. Rest on the Pebbles at Brighton Beach

A weekend in Brighton isn’t complete without visiting the beach. With the coast being so close to the city centre, it’s hard to miss the massive stretch of the ocean behind the shops.

Much like the Royal Pavilion Gardens, a pebbly beach is a perfect place for a rest and a snack.

If you’re not from the UK (and even if you are) this may be one of the perfect spots to enjoy some British chips. Just be careful of the seagulls! We recommed visiting The No Catch Co. for the best vegan fish and chips in the city!

You can also head up to the top of the Brighton i360 tower for a panaramic view of Brighton! Book your tickets in advance here.

Sunsets in Brighton
Sunsets in Brighton

8. See the Hidden Street Art

Brighton has an impressive amount of graffiti, and a large amount compared to other cities in the UK. It totally makes sense for this artsy city to be so colourful and definitely fits Brighton’s vibe.

There are a few famous murals to be found throughout the streets, however, a lot of Brighton’s graffiti consists of words and random art by a collection of unknown people or artists.

One of the most famous graffiti art pieces in Brighton is Banksy’s Kissing Robbers, after a long battle with vandalism, a remake of the art is placed on the side of the Prince Albert pub.

Gloucester, North and London Road are other popular streets for funky graffiti. You never know when something new will pop up in big cities.

Street Art in Brighton
Street Art in Brighton
Cornish Pasty Shop in Brighton
Cornish Pasty Shop

If you like street art, Bristol is home to Banksy’s Street Art and we have a one day Bristol itinerary along with all the best free things to do in Bristol.

9. Watch a gig at Brighton Dome

Although London has lots of music venues, we booked tickets to see my favourite band, Alexisonfire at Brighton Dome! We grabbed a train after work and made our way down to Brighton for the night.

The Brighton Dome Studio Theatre is used for music events and plays. Whether you’re into theatre or music gigs, check out what’s playing to have a unique experience during your weekend in Brighton.

There are also plenty of cinemas around Brighton and the rest of the UK, it can be a great way to spend a rainy day!

Alexisonfire in Brighton Dome
Alexisonfire in Brighton Dome

Planning a Brighton Itinerary

Once we moved to London, Brighton became our beachy getaway and it was super easy to visit Brighton on a day trip! After showing you the best 9 things to do in Brighton, we can now plan your Brighton itinerary.

Day 1 in Brighton

Start your day with a vegan brunch at Green Kitchen before spending the morning exploring the Lanes! Admire the Royal Pavilion Gardens before finding the unique street art in Brighton.

Head to the beach and get a vegan fish and chips on Brightons beach and relax! After fueling up, spend the late afternoon cycling to Hove to see the Brighton beach huts and check out the marina on the other side of Brighton.

End your day with a sunset on the beach or a music gig at Brighton Dome.

Day 2 in Brighton

Spend most of the day visiting the South Downs National Park whether you walk across the Seven Sisters or hike Devils Dyke!

When you get back to Brighton city centre, explore anything you might have missed on the first day and get lost in the Lanes!

Where to stay in Brighton

If you’re spending the weekend in Brighton, you’ll want to stay close to the beach or city centre. Brighton isn’t a cheap city to stay in, but the UK is quite expensive overall. Here’s a few reccommendations on where to stay in Brighton:

What to do at night in Brighton

When the sun goes down in Brighton, there are still many ways you can spend your night. Brighton’s nightlife is said to be great, whether you’re interested in late-night clubs or cosy pubs, you will not spend your evening bored.

  • Head to the cinema
  • Grab a beer at one of Brighton’s many pubs
  • Go for a walk along the promenade
  • See a concert

Did you know? Brighton hosts the UK’s largest Pride event every August and Europe’s first Trans Pride was held here.

How to get to Brighton

There are multiple ways to get to Brighton depending on where you are in the country. If you’re visiting Brighton from outside of the UK, you’ll need a flight to London.

By Train – Taking the train to Brighton is the best way to reach the city without a car. Brighton Train Station is in the centre, walkable to most locations and points of interest. Book your tickets in advance on Trainline for the best prices (you’ll save more money with a Railcard)

By Bus / Coach – If you’re on a budget, another way to get to Brighton is by coach. National Express and Megabus can cost around £5 for a 3-4 hour journey. We use them all the time!

By Car – Using your own vehicle or hiring a car is a great way to travel around the UK. When travelling into cities such as Brighton you may have a problem trying to find free parking. Use Google Maps to find a car park.

Spending the weekend in Brighton
Dan in a doughnut statue eating a doughnut
Eating the best vegan food in Brighton

Is Brighton worth visiting?

Brighton always has a cool vibe in the air and you can visit all year round. The vegan food scene is truly amazing and some of the restaurants alone would make us want to visit again.

Brighton is a great weekend away for everyone and definitely worth a visit. As it’s so close to London, it also makes a perfect day trip for anyone in the capital city.

We hope you have the best Brighton itinerary and enjoy your time there! Find us on instagram @thesunrisedreamers and check out our other travel guides!

We have guides on how to explore the Scottish highlands, spend 3 days in Edinburgh, take a day trip to Cambridge and spend the day York!


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  1. Love Brighton, can’t wait to go back. How cute are those beach huts 💕

  2. I am a big fan of beach boxes and markets. I would love to wander through markets for an entire afternoon.

  3. I don’t think I’ve been to Brighton since I was a kid, it looks like such a fun place. The street art is really cool, and I had no idea there were so many vegan places in Brighton. Definitely a reason to try it soon

    1. Yes, same! Amy has been there camping with her family as a child! It feels totally different as an adult now 🙂 And the vegan food scene is great!

  4. Thank you for your kind words. We enjoy sharing tips and information about the world!

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