Things to do on a short Autumn break in Brighton, England

Brighton – the busiest of breaks this Autumn!

Summer is officially over, Autumn is here and we’re sliding toward half term in October and thinking about whether or not we should spend Christmas with the family or escape to faraway climes.

Brighton is a great short break destination offering a wide variety of things to do and see as well as a superb coastline to explore. Whether it’s a gourmet experience with a smattering of art and nightlife or a family weekend with traditional seaside fun Brighton offers it all. Here are our suggestions!

1.  Sea Life Centre

The Sealife Centre houses a jellyfish spectacular that will bring these amazing creatures closer and showcase their beauty and mysterious lives.  The children will love this new display as well as the behind the scenes tour where they can learn more about how all the marine life displayed in the centre is cared for to ensure that you get the best views and most knowledge that they can offer.

The facilities are fantastic for everyone but no dogs allowed here!

2.  Brighton Pier

Always great before or just after supper as that’s when all the lights are on and it’s at its most exciting! Brighton Pier is a landmark and great fun as you whirl around on the fairground rides and let the candy floss melt in your mouth as you watch the sunset across the ocean. There are a lot of places to eat or just have a drink nearby and on the pier itself.

3.  North Laine

This is a shopper paradise so if you’re in Brighton with the girls don’t miss this area with its feast of boutiques, cafes, gardens and stalls. You’ll find everything your heart desires from bric a brac, antiques, high fashion and vintage clothing, shoes and handbags as well as great cafes to quench that shoppers thirst! There are quite a few men’s clothing shops in the area as well so no excuses for boyfriends. If you’re in the mood there’s also a great sex toy boutique called Lust in Gardner Street!

4.  Museum of Natural History

The Booth Museum of natural history houses over half a million insects, skeletons and birds and the infamous merman which is a fake from the Victorian era but was highly regarded back then!  There are also the 140 million year old bones of a dinosaur to be seen which generally wows the children so it’s well worth a visit.

5. Brighton Museum and Art Gallery

Looking for something more cultural or just a place to harbour on a rainy day then this museum is the place.  There are a variety of galleries under this roof exhibiting fine art, fashion, performance art, pottery and contemporary art.  There’s also a licensed cafe where you can take time out and discuss what you’ve seen over a coffee or glass of wine.

6.  Brighton Toy Museum

A wonderful place to feel young again and exclaim over those toys you used to have that are now museum pieces! (Only kidding!) This is a great museum that has the adults and the children interested with eerie puppets of wood, Tri-ang cars, train sets and doll’s houses that could feature in this year’s top ranking horror movie!

On the bright side, they also sell vintage toys, new toys and books in the gift shop and there’s a cafe!

7.  Old Police Cells Museum

This is a museum with a difference.  It tells the story of policing throughout the years in Brighton and you can see into the cells and exclaim over the room where a suspect bludgeoned the chief Constable to death with a poker!

These are the cells where the Brighton Mods and Rockers were held after the break out of violence on the local beaches too!  It reflects the more colourful side of the town!

8.  The Artists Quarter

Montpelier Place and Upper North Street have a variety of studio boutiques where you’ll find delights like Steve & Alistair bag makers, renown illustrators works, typographers, printmakers and comic book writers studios.

Rounders is an old record store where the LP still reigns and the staff really know what’s hot!  It’s perfect for vinyl junkies! Then there’s the Record Album which is the leading supplier of second-hand records and film soundtracks.

9.  Find the perfect retreat

The Pelirocco Hotel is great for that special long weekend away with rooms having names like ‘Betty’s Boudoir’ with its leopard print chaise to relax on! There are play stations in every room and cocktails at the bar and it’s said that one of the rooms even has a pole dancing area in it!

10. Thrills at the Theatre

It doesn’t matter what kind of theatre you enjoy, Brighton has it all from Quirky Komedia where you can enjoy a variety of gigs, cabaret, kids theatre and comics to The New Venture Theatre where there is any number of amateur productions in circulation and the bohemian saloon bar is a lot of fun too!

The Nightingale is a pub theatre that has Steven Berkoff as its patron and you will see some of the best international fringe theatre, comedy, dance, poetry and other performances in an intimate setting.

If you have an attraction or accommodation in Brighton or surrounds please feel free to add your information to a free listing here.