A students guide to brighton

Maybe you are reading this guide because you are wondering what it would be like if you were to come to Brighton as a student. Maybe you are coming here soon as a fresher and want to have an idea what to do before you get here. Or maybe you are already here and want to make sure that the information here is right. This article aims to give you an idea of what it is like to be a student in Brighton, it doesn’t matter if you are at the University of Brighton, the University of Sussex or BSMS this guide should be useful to you.

Where exactly is Brighton?

Brighton is a city on the south coast of England. It is located in the South East almost directly south of London. Brighton with its neighbouring city Hove makes the City of Brighton and Hove. It is sandwiched between the coast and the Sussex Downs meaning there really is something for every person within a very small distance.


There has been a settlement on the Brighton site for over a thousand years. Evidence has been found of both Roman and Saxon activities in the area. However the first official record of a settlement on the Brighton site was in the doomsday book in 1086 where the village of Bristelmestune is mentioned. Brighton really started to grow in size in the 19th century where it was a popular retreat for the wealthy London aristocrats this increase continued when the railway system was linked to Brighton in the 1840’s. Since then Brighton has only gone from strength to strength. More information on the history of Brighton can be found here.

Brighton Landmarks

There are many famous Landmarks in Brighton which you can go and visit during your time here. Most people save visiting them until someone comes to visit because it can be quite expensive.

The Royal Pavilion

This is a building which used to be the royal residence. It is found right in the heard of Brighton and is a very unusual building. It is building in a style that was common in areas of India in the 19th century. It was build as a royal palace but has since been bought by the city of Brighton. You can got and have a look inside it for approximately £7 and you can walk in the gardens for free.

Brighton Pier

Brighton pier is a popular seaside attraction and somewhere you will almost defiantly visit during your first term. There are rides at the end of the pier as well as an arcade and food stalls (including one which sells amazing freshly cooked donuts). The downside of the pier is that it is very expensive and definitely not somewhere that can be regularly visited on a student budget but it is great fun for when friends come down.

Brighton Marina

The Marina is about 15 minutes away from town and can be reached easily by bus. There are some shops but mostly bars and restaurants. The restaurants tend to be slightly more expensive than the ones that you will find in town but they are of a higher quality.


In Brighton there really is something for everyone food wise when it comes to eating out. It wouldn’t be feasible to talk about all of the restaurants in Brighton but here are a select few which are very good to visit on a student budget.


The ultimate student cafe - located in the heart of the North Laine, this cafe provides delicious and cheap food - from traditional fry ups to mexican, healthy salads and a huge range of vegetarian options!

Donatellos/Fat Leos

These two restaurants are located close to each other and have a similar menu. They are very cheap Italian (pizza/pasta) meals along with cheap drink and amazing ice creams.

Fat Leos Website

Donatellos Website

Al Duomo

This is a slightly more expensive but still very cheap Italian restaurant. It serves pizzas cooked in a large open oven that you can see in front of you. As mentioned before the food is slightly more pricey than fat leos but is much better quality and the atmosphere is much nicer.

Al Duomo Website

Bombay Mix

This is a lovely little India restaurant which does really good cheap curries. It isn’t the best atmosphere so probably not somewhere you would got on a date but it is a nice for a quite lunch. You can get curry from the vegetarian buffet for under £6 and meat curry from under £9 and this is all that you can eat. You can find Bombay Mix on St James Street.

Gars Chinese Restaurant

This is probably the best place for you to find cheap high quality Chinese food in Brighton. You can get a meal for £15 including a glass of wine. The food is great especially the vegetarian options. Gars can be found on Prince Albert Street in the Lanes.

(There is a wagamamas near the laines and the pizza stall outside the shopping mall in churchill square does amazing pizza and pasta, although the prices seem to be steadily rising :()


There are so many bars to choose from in Brighton whether you want chilled out or loud music. Where ever you end up living from the first or second year there will be your local pub, there are a vast variety of pubs along Lewes road where you can go for a quiet night with your friends. Ranging from the lectern which is a cheap and brightly coloured student bar to the Franklin Tavern which is a sports bar. When you get into town there is are so many bars. If you want something slightly upmarket then there is Pitcher and Piano and Santa fe both these bars do amazing alcoholic and non-alcoholic cocktails. If you are looking for something more traditionally studenty there is Font and Firkin or Prodigal, will both serve cheap drinks which are great for going to before a night at Brighton's clubs. Another great student pub is the Royal Pavilion Tavern (or the Pav Tav for short), located right in the center of town and serving the cheapest drinks, this definitely is the place to be if you're part of the alternative scene.


Brighton is often referred to as the clubbing capital of the south coast. There are a huge number of clubs to choose from and it can be a bit overwhelming to start with. You will soon start to find which clubs are for you and which ones you don’t like. There are clubs which play a range of student friendly music such as Shooshh (which hosts a student night every Thursday) and R&B for example the beach which you can find right on the sea front. There are also clubs which play a large mix of music like Honey club which ranges from Dance music to R&B depending on the night that you go. As you move up to the marina you come to clubs sucks at volts which play Drum and Base if that is more to your taste. Probably one of the most unusual clubs that you can find in Brighton is Funky Fish which is found just back form the seafront. This plays a mix of Jazz/soul and dance music. It sounds strange but it really works.

For a more comprehensive guide to Brighton's Clubs have a look here

Other things to do

There are of course cinemas in Brighton. There is an Odeon in town and a cineworld in the Marina which show all the latest blockbusters. There is also the Duke of York cinema which shows a combination of foreign and older films.

There are also a number of comedy clubs and theatres in Brighton including Komedia which is a comedy club and the Theatre Royal which has touring play companies.

There will always be something for you to do in Brighton you just have to keep your eyes and ears open. Whether you choose to have a walk on the down or the beach, go to a bar or club or go for a ride on the pier there really is something for everyone and it is a great city to be a student in.