If you’re looking for a beach holiday with a real buzz, there are plenty of good reasons to book cheap tickets to Brighton. Get your coach tickets up to three days in advance for the greatest savings or, if you’re flexible, use our Low Fare Finder for the best money-off deals.
Once you’re ready, scroll down and take a look at all the brilliant things to do in Brighton.
Famed for its spectacular seafront, electric atmosphere and incredible shops, Brighton is one of England’s must-see destinations, with plenty of things to do all-year round.
Check out our shortlist before your visit to the south coast.
With holidays by National Express, you can combine our great value coach travel with hotels and attractions in Brighton. There is so much to see and do during a beach break or short break in Brighton, here is a suggested holiday itinerary:
British Airways i360 Observation Tower - discount offer
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One of the best restaurants in Brighton for burger lovers can be found on Market Street. At Brighton Burger, meat eaters, veggies and vegans are spoiled for choice. Take advantage of the al fresco dining and watch The Lanes go by while you tuck into a succulent burger in a brioche bun.
The Brighton Shellfish & Oyster Bar
Located in a picture-perfect setting on the beach, seafood lovers should look no further than The Brighton Shellfish & Oyster Bar. In the Kings Road Arches you’ll find a dedicated stall serving delicious fresh seafood, from cockles and anchovies to prawns, anchovies and oysters. Take in the views and relax in front of the calming waves, especially if the weather’s good.
If you’re looking for cheap bites on the go, check out Befries, home of double-cooked Belgian chips in a cone with delicious dripping sauces. Simple and tasty, Befries doesn’t reinvent the wheel but it’s undoubtedly one of the best places to eat in Brighton.
Pre-theatre cocktails with an 80s twist
Before seeing a show at The Theatre Royal, head to Bar Valentino, a hidden gem where you can enjoy a range of cocktails to the tune of 80s nostalgia. An intimate, tucked away venue, it’s a great spot for a quick drink before or after the theatre, with special happy hour evenings and tapas plates if you fancy a bite to eat.
Laugh and dance the night away
For a brilliant night out in Brighton, check out Komedia on Gardner Street. For the full experience, grab a package deal from just £21 and enjoy a live comedy show with fantastic fresh food. Komedia welcomes some of the top comedy talent from the UK and overseas, so check the schedule before you arrange your night out in Brighton. Afterwards, drink and dance till the wee hours at the venue’s club night.
Have a beer on the Grand Parade
BrewDog Brighton remains a popular haunt on the Brighton nightlife scene. Industrial chic meets art deco at this much-loved bar, with a wide selection of beers and burgers and a cracking atmosphere. You can expect a warm welcome on your night out, while the venue is spacious enough to accommodate large groups, should your travel plans involve a larger gathering.
A world away from the usual shopping centres, The Lanes is home to numerous independent shops and boutiques where you can expect to find luxury and affordable items aplenty. Highlights include Baroque Bespoke Jewellery for something sparkly, or Frames in the Lanes for cool shades if the sun is shining. At Choccywoccydoodah, grab a delicious chocolately treat for the road.
Brighton Flea Market
For rare finds and collectables, Brighton Flea Market is the place to go. Located on Upper St James’s Street in Kemp Town, expect to find a treasure trove of affordable and luxury trinkets, from antique jewellery and furniture to one-of-a-kind items.
Get retro at Snooper’s Paradise, with more than 7,000 square feet of retro clothes, bargains and bric-a-brac. There is an on-site independent makers’ boutique, so a visit to Snooper’s Paradise is a must for those who value quality fashion made with care. A trip to this Brighton institution on Kensington Gardens should be high on your travel itinerary.
Brighton Palace Pier
One of the city’s top sightseeing attractions ever since opening in 1899, Brighton Palace Pier is definitely worth a visit. An iconic south coast landmark immortalised in Graham Greene’s Brighton Rock, this buzzing seafront attraction features amusement arcades galore and, of course, brilliant live theatre and entertainment.
The unmistakable Royal Pavilion is one of the key tourist attractions in Brighton. Built for King George IV with construction first starting in 1787, the building is no longer a private residence but is open to the public with around 400,000 visitors a year. Visit the museum and gallery, watch a show in the evening, or stroll through the beautiful gardens during the daytime on your visit.
A working harbour and artificial marina, there are plenty of things to do at this popular tourist attraction. At Brighton Marina you can learn to dive or snorkel, book a boat trip or enjoy a wide variety of watersports. With a string of leisure activities, including bowling and a cinema, plus a selection of well-known stores, there is something for everyone at this Brighton sightseeing attraction.
Inspire them at the Brighton Sea Life Centre
The world’s oldest operating aquarium, the Brighton Sea Life Centre is an unmissable family-friendly attraction for a day out with the kids. With a spectacular glass-bottom boat for examining turtles, a wonderful Victorian arcade built in 1872, plus special talks and feeding sessions, it’s easy to see why children love a visit to the Brighton Sea Life Centre.
Treat them to a picnic on the beach
Brighton’s famous pebble beach might not be sandcastle-friendly, but its shallow waters, cafés and colourful carousel make it a fantastic spot for a family day out. With an ice cream parlour on nearby East Street, there is plenty for children and adults to enjoy.
Spark their creative spirit with a spot of pottery
The Painting Pottery Café is a brilliant family attraction on North Laine. Children can choose from more than 200 pottery items and begin their own painted artwork. Baby facilities are available, and parents can bring their own sandwiches, with muffins and biscuits available too.
Wander through The Lanes
Before it gets busy at the height of the afternoon, explore this mazy patchwork of streets and narrow alleys. Be a tourist for the day and treat yourself to a souvenir at one of the many quality independent boutiques.
Saunter down to the seafront
Brighton’s iconic seafront is not to be missed, and is home to many top attractions. Visit Brighton Pier for a dazzling array of amusement arcades, and chill out afterwards on Brighton Beach and watch the waves.
Grab some seafood and eat fresh
On your seaside jaunt, check out the local food scene for a taste of the ocean. Fishmekan is a popular restaurant for modern seafood, while Riddle & Fins offers a unique setting for beachside dining.
Get an affordable page-turner for the coach journey home at City Books, a cosy little shop off the beaten path. It has a large collection of signed copies, so you might even find a rare collectable.
Perfect for cheap bites on the go, grab a sandwich, pastry or coffee at this popular new joint. It’s an ideal staging post during your weekend sightseeing session in Brighton.
Chattri War Memorial
If you fancy an explore on the fringes of the city, climb the beautiful South Downs and check out the stunning views from the Chattri War Memorial, which commemorates the lost Indian lives from the First World War.
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Dad blogger, John hadn't travelled on a National Express coach since the 90s. Find out how he and his two children got on with their day trip to Brighton in his blog entry.
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