1. The Lanes - Vintage Window Shopping
As we were walking along The Lanes, it started to rain. Shop keepers started shifting their stalls into the shelter, under a canopy, or just covering their precious items under a sheet of canvass. To hide out from the rain, the group of us headed into what looked like a small vintage stall with a tiny turnstile entrance.
What initially seemed like a humble vintage store, had an entrance that led to a double-story shop with multiple sections. The shop was selling all sorts of items from toys, old music records, vintage jewellery, to a whole section dedicated to men and women fashion wear.
I was so tempted to buy this dainty gold watch. But in the spirit of saving money, I decided that the beautiful gold watch is not something I NEED.

Vintage Stores in Brighton

2. Visit the Open Market 
And yes, you should to. Whats not to love about them!
The good thing about the Open Market is, unlike regular markets, was not as crowded. Partially because we arrived the minute it was opened. There were stalls selling cheese, books, craft, pastries, you name it. Daryl and Clarice both got a pack of 6 cream cheese spread for 30p (if I'm not wrong. I know it was rather cheap!) There were several other smaller markets that we went to along the way, but the Open Market seemed to have the most variety. The other markets were selling things like fresh produce, fruits, and some even had furniture!
If you happen to be up in the morning whilst in Brighton, OR, If you happen to (like us) arrive early for a day trip, head on over to the Open Market for breakfast and a cup of coffee!
Brighton Open MarketThe Open Market in BrightonThe Open Market, Brighton, England

The Open Market opens at 10am.

3. Admire the Architecture of The Royal Pavilion
After looking at pictures online of people ice-skating in front of The Royal Pavilion, I told myself I was going to do it as well. I had been monitoring entrance ticket sales for a week prior to the day trip to Brighton. As there were several tickets left, I decided not to pre-book it.
Unfortunately, the whole ice-skating thing slipped my mind when I was at Brighton. I told one of my friends “we’ll come back later in the evening” when he asked if I still wanted to visit the pavilion and if I was still planning on skating. However, we spent our evening at the beach watching the sunset and having a discussion about sun rays, and completely forgot about ice-skating.
Regardless, the architecture of The Royal Pavilion is indeed something worth admiring.

And if you have the time, heck, if you just past by, do head on in, because as you can see from my story, “later” doesn’t always happen.

Well, at least we had fun watching the sunset!

4. Visit the Fishing Museum
A museum that we spontaneously headed into to avoid the rain - the rain stopped after 10 minutes (or so it seemed, because we were pre-occupied with the museum).

a) There are is no entrance fee required.
b) There is a huge boat right in the middle which seemed pretty similar to what fishermen would use in the past. It had a net (which was torn apart) and other ship gears - pretty legit.
c) It is conveniently located along the beach.

There is no reason not to pop-in. It's a small museum which talks about the history of Brighton's fishing industry. Being a coastal city, the fishing industry was huge. If you're thinking, "oh man, another museum? I don't want to have to read..." Don't worry. They have a screen showing black and white images/videos of the fishing industry. Let them pictures speak those 1000 words to you!

Fishing Museum Brighton
Alternatively, you can visit other Speciality Museums like the Toy Museum (I didn't have a chance to go to - it opened fairly late, and by the time we were heading back towards the train station, it was closing), or the Penny Slot Museum (Quite an interesting museum, but really tiny, and no pictures allowed).

5. Eat Fish and Chips
Does this even need an explanation?
England = Land of Fish and Chips
Brighton = Coastal City = Lots of Fresh Fish = MUST TRY FISH AND CHIPS.

Personally, I'm not a huge fish and chips fan, BUT, I'm all for trying different food specialities in different cities. Over the years, i've grown to become a foodie (the more places I visit, the more I enjoy the different flavours of food), and so, if you enjoy a good fish and chips, you'll have plenty to choose from in Brighton.

Along the Pier itself, there were several food places serving Fish and Chips, you are definitely not short of options!

Fish and Chips, Brighton Pier

That's all I have after a little day trip to Brighton and Hove! Oh I really do hope I have the chance to go back in the summer :)
What other Coastal Cities in England do you recommend?

5 Other Things To Do in Brighton

1 December 2014 Brighton, The City of Brighton and Hove, UK

Brighton isn't only associated with the Brighton Pier. Another thing this coastal city is known for, is its long rows of colourful huts located near the beach. And when everyone asked me "what else is there to do in Brighton?" I just went "Lets find the colourful houses!"

Brighton Colourful Hut Houses

Well...This got a little confusing for me.
See, Brighton is also a name of a city in Australia, which ALSO has cute little colourful huts. When I googled "Colourful Houses Brighton", images for Australia appeared, and I thought, "Damn. Did I get it wrong? Are there no colourful huts in Brighton (England)?" 
For the first half of the day in Brighton, I couldn't locate the colourful houses on the map that the tourist centre gave out for tourists. I was close to concluding that I was misinformed and got confused with Brighton in Australia.

Brighton Beach Brighton Pier

Then, by some awesome coincidence, whilst we were walking along the brighton beach, we found a shop selling postcards. Below one of the cards with an image of the huts, it read "HOVE". 
It was like a revelation at that point.
Turns out, Hove is a town that is probably about 30-40 minutes walk from the Brighton Pier.

This was why when I was reading articles/travel recommendations online they were being titled "Brighton and Hove". Silly me thought they were 2 different cities, just within close proximity, when in fact the two towns Brighton AND Hove both make up ONE City - according to Wikipedia.

Brighton Beach
Walking towards Hove, we were able to admire the beach and the waters, run along the rocky beach, and see boats that are lined up along the coast. It was quite enjoyable running along the rocky beach. Tiring, from the added friction as oppose to walking on land, but fun.
What's great about it, is you don't have to worry about sand getting into your shoes - my greatest pet peeve with sandy beaches.

Boats along brighton beachcolourful huts hove souvenirs

After chattering amongst ourselves and walking for what seemed like 30 minutes, we saw THEM. The Colourful Huts!
So, like little kids, the group of us started happily taking photographs of the rows of colourful huts. And being #tourists, we took photos WITH it as well. The walkway where the huts were along had loads of people; tourist, kids on scooters and bikes, couples walking their dogs etc.
Daryl and I met a really cute and friendly puppy which was on its first walk by the beach. Naturally, the little puppy was extremely excited. It kept jumping and standing up against us.

colourful houses hove england brightonbrighton sunset along hove

After a while, we got tired of taking photographs, and tired of walking, so we sat on a bench facing the sea and just chilled out, ate snacks and watched the sun set. As the sun was setting we started talking about the different rays - nerd talk initated by Daryl! Hahaha.
After some discussing, googling, and learning about the different sun ray terms, we were all hoping to see some Crepuscular Rays when the sun was setting, and Anti-Crepuscular Rays when it passed the horizon. Seeing Crepuscular Rays is common, but sadly, the sky wasn't clear enough for the Anti-Crepuscular Rays.
Hopefully in the spring or summer we would go back to Brighton (or another coastal city) and we'd have more luck with them crepuscular rays.

P.S. I am very tempted to look through all my different sunset photographs and see if I can spot any anti-crepuscular rays in action!

Crepuscular rays Brighton england

Searching for Colourful Huts in Hove

27 November 2014 Hove, The City of Brighton and Hove, UK

Last weekend, a few friends and I took a little day trip to Brighton, UK.
It's a nice coastal city in the UK, with warm sunny weather (compared to other parts of the UK) and a fun atmosphere. People would typically visit Brighton in the summer. 
Visiting Brighton in autumn meant that it was a little less vibrant. On the plus side, there were fewer tourist, and no sweaty bodies.

Coming from a HOT equatorial country means, I definitely don't miss the sun and the sticky feeling after perspiring. So, having the wind blow in my face while I stand on the beach/run around on a rocky beach was a very nice enjoyable experience.

The Brighton Pier is probably the most visited place in Brighton. Food stalls, casinos, arcades, carnival rides for kids - bumper cars, haunted houses etc. It reminded me of an old theme park we use to go to back in Singapore. Yes the theme park that every  90s kid loved to go to (yes, before the USS came along) - Escape Theme Park.

As you can see the rides were more or less empty. I think parents should bring their kids to theme parks in the autumn months, just before it gets too cold. I saw 3 children playing the same carnival game again and again and again, after all its not like there was a queue. Also, I think it would be nice to have cold wind blow in your face as you speed through on a 200km/h roller coaster ride! (Is it just me? Or do you agree?)

We had a good time walking along the pier, having fish and chips, and just talking about life in general. Its been a while since the group of us classmates hung out together and just talked. What better way to catch up about school (and random school related issues).

Fortunately, it was not too rainy when we were in Brighton - it rained for about 2-3 hours max.  When it started drizzling, we would just head in to a shop or a museum and then the rain would stop in 10 mins. Towards the afternoon, the sky cleared out and it was a lot less overcast. Thats when we all started taking photos and going "THE SKY IS SO BLUE!"

After being in London with the multitude of people, traffic, and fast pace life, you start to get the feeling as though you're trapped. It was nice to be able to go to a city where life has a slower pace, where people can take hours off to play with their dogs on the beach, or just sit along the coast and watch the sunset (then again, this depends on your luck. After all, it's England with its overcast skies).

But overcast skies or not, the good thing about the Brighton Pier, is that it is just as lively (or perhaps livelier) at night as it is in the day. Night time, be it autumn or summer, pretty much looks the same, so it's not like you're missing out! When the lights of Brighton Pier and the streets come on, it's a different atmosphere altogether!

I think it would definitely be fun to go back to Brighton in the summer, if I have the time. But, if you don't enjoy bumping into tourist, and you want to be able to walk around the pier without sweating buckets, go in the autumn - or maybe right after summer. When it's still slightly warm, without the teeming number of tourists.

I think visiting in the autumn made for a really nice experience, something about the wind in your face whilst on a rocky beach really works for me. Could be due to the fact that i've only ever been to beaches and carnivals in the summer/when the temperature is at level-scorching-degree-celcius, that being able to have the same experience but without the heat becomes really enjoyable!

Brighton Pier in Autumn

25 November 2014 Brighton Pier, Madeira Drive, Brighton BN2 1TW, UK

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