About halfway through each term at Brunel (and many universities throughout the U.K.), students are given what’s referred to as a “Reading Week.” From my understanding, the administration provides this time for students to break from the classroom for a bit, dive further into their reading lists and work independently on any upcoming presentations, projects or papers. However, the general consensus among students seems to be that this is a time to dive further into their bucket lists and work independently on that New Years resolution to hit Morocco.
Unfortunately I didn’t book any wild benders to Barcelona or Paris this reading week, but before coming home to a plethora of plans digging deeper into the dissertation madness and workshops galore to fix up my CV, I did take three days to satiate my inner mermaid and hit Brighton with a flatmate and some friends.
After seeing the Brighton Pier, the Royal Pavilian, the Brighton Art Museum, here were a few noteworthy not-so-touristy spots we hit in the hipster’s seaside hot spot:
1. The Black Lion – This pub/grub/jazz club was the perfect spot to hit our first night in Brighton. Despite the fact that this place shuts down around 11pm and leaves your inner party animal stranded with few other options, it’s worth checking out. The music was great, the food was beyond satisfying (I suggest the Potato Chorizo Salad, it was the right mix of salty-meaty-vinagarettey for a salad) and the prices aren’t too outrageous.
2. The North Laine – I couldn’t believe that we almost missed these streets! Luckily for us, a local hotel concierge gave us stellar directions to a record shop located in this area, and we were SO glad he did. These lanes will find you wandering through vegan and vegetarian cafes, bakeries, music shops, coffee shops, record shops, vintage clothing shops, handmade clothing and jewellery shops GALORE.
3. Brighton Marina – Again, with the luck of a helpful local barista, we were directed to hop on the Brighton&Hove #7 bus to the Brighton Marina. After a mortifying bus trip (I swear the bus drivers in Brighton are retired Fast & Furious stunt doubles) we reached the breath-taking views of the ritzy yachts in the marina and the endless cliffs that follow the shoreline. Sunset was the best time to be there, the light adds to the magic!
4. The Mask – When you’ve had your dinner, had your drinks, hit Brighton’s apparent 10 o’clock curfew and your inner party animal is itching for a little more adventure, this is the place to go! You’ll find it packed full of the best hip’n’grunge Brighton has to offer, shouting and dancing to the best cheese 90’s pop music had to offer. Make sure you try the Tuaca- though you can find this sweet liquor virtually anywhere in the U.K., it’s a tradition Brighton bender favourite.