Your ultimate guide to a stag weekend in the UK’s most liberal city
Brighton has, without a doubt, the best social scene on the South Coast, making it a fantastic location for stag weekends. There are an abundance of excellent bars and clubs most within walking distance of each other. With a heady hedonistic atmosphere you are ensured to have a top night out.
Brighton at a glance:
- An incredibly quirky bohemian beach town with a welcoming attitude, buzzing music scene and a free-spirited vibe - almost anything goes here and that’s the way we like it
- A place packed with independent boutiques, bistros and restaurants
- A whole spectrum of nightlife from mainstream clubs to live music, comedy, unique bars and underground clubs
- Everything is in comfortable walking distance from the town centre
Brighton’s Foodie Festival
Foodies Festival, the UK’s biggest celebration of food and drink is a well established haunt for lovers of weird and wonderful cuisine. Travelling around the country, the festival stops off in Brighton Hove Lawns in May to deliver a mouth-watering selection of local and artisan produce, cocktail competitions, live food shows and demonstrations from top celebrity chefs. If you’re in town during the Foodie Festival and you’re looking to line your stomach, a pitstop here is a must!
The Great Escape
Calling all rock and rollers! As Europe’s leading festival for new music, The Great Escape has been showcasing the best up-and-coming bands and solo artists for over a decade. Held in venues across Brighton in mid-May, there’s a wealth of fresh talent to discover, as well as special guest appearances by a few well-known names.
Best bars and pubs in Brighton:
The White Rabbit, North Laines
The White Rabbit is a quirky pub pretty much smack bang in the middle of town. An amazing place to grab a pint and watch the world go by.
The Lion & Lobster, Hove
One of the oldest pubs around, The Lion & Lobster has two beer gardens and a regency restaurant. Spot on!
The Hop Poles, Middle Street
Known for its intimate atmosphere, ever-changing menu and striking décor, this pub is perfectly located just a stone’s throw from the beach or city centre.
The Ginger Dog, College Place
A friendly boozer in Kemptown that offers a top selection of beers, wines and spirits.
Pub du Vin, Ship Street
Located a pebble’s throw away from the beach, Pub du Vin offers all the fantastic services of Hotel du Vin in a more chilled out setting. The pub houses a selection of local ales, a fine spot for hop headed beer lovers.
Druids Head, Brighton Place
One of Brighton’s oldest drinking holes, the Druids Head was established way back in 1510. This traditional pub has maintained its original features and houses a variety of beautifully kept Sussex ales.
Hobgoblin, York Place
A homely and unpretentious pub known for its alternative roots and relaxed vibe.
North Laine, Gloucester Place
A homage to Brighton’s brewing history, this colossal pub in the heart of Brighton is famous for brewing its own beer in its on-site, state-of-the-art microbrewery.
The Basketmakers Arms, Gloucester Road
The Basketmakers Arms is a tavern style pub situated on the very edge of the lanes. A regular in top 20 lists nationwide, it’s known for its real ales and fantastic homemade dishes using locally sourced organic produce. You a few early evening with the lads, you simply can’t go wrong.
The Black Dove, St James’s Street
This eccentric Kemptown pub houses 60 real ales in its fridges as well as classic
beers on tap and a wide range of classic cocktails.
The Evening Star, Surrey Street
Now owned by Dark Star Brewery, this pub was one of the first UK breweries to produce hoppy American-style beers that helped kickstart the craft beer movement. It’s close to Brighton train station and the diverse drinks menu contains a jaw-dropping mix of bottled beers from around the world.
The Cricketers, Black Lion Street
Established in 1547, The Cricketers is a pub with a wild history. The original landlord Derrick Carver was burnt at the stake for his religious beliefs and the pub is supposedly the place where Jack the Ripper plotted his grisly murders. It was also featured in Graham Greene’s novel Brighton Rock. Nowadays the pub is better known for its charm and character, as well as its array of Sussex-brewed beers. A visit here is an essential part of any Brighton stag weekend.
Brighton Beer Dispensary, Dean Street
A recent addition to Brighton’s pub scene, the Brighton Beer Dispensary is the result of a collaboration with the Late Knight Brewery. The pub has 10 ales on handpull or straight from the cask, three keg lines, four draught ciders and over 50 bottled beers all chosen on the recommendations of its knowledgeable staff.
Best clubs in Brighton:
For a boozy night out on the tiles, Yates offers a top mix of party tunes, bundles of atmosphere and drinks prices that won’t bust the bank. Young crowds flock to this centrally located late night haven every weekend, so if you’re in the mood for cutting some shapes, it will not disappoint.
A bizarre cross between club, carnival, circus and high-quality freak show, the Funfair club is anything but dull - and a night out within its four walls won’t be forgotten for a very long time. Expect flamboyant circus performers, a lady attempting to hammer a nail into her nose, fire breathers snake charmers, premium party hits and a drinks menu to die for.
For anyone deep into their dance music, particularly House, this warehouse themed hipster joint is the place to be. The Haunt is one of Brighton’s most up and coming late night spots and with the best Indie DJs gracing the wheels of steel every week, you won’t find a better spot to drink, dance and get lost in the music.
The Green Door Store
This heaving underground party den is oozing with industrial charm and not only is The Green Door Store one of the city’s coolest gig venues, it’s got a roster full of top notch DJs with aim and one aim only: to make you move those hips. For reasonably priced drinks, epic tunes and lots of late night antics, The Green Door Store wins every time.
Food: eat like a local:
The balcony at Kensington Garden Café provides views over the liveliest part of the North Laines. Their full English breakfast is huge, delicious and won’t cost you an arm and a leg, but you can’t book a table in advance - so get in quick.
If oysters and champagne are more your style, then grab a table at Riddle & Finns (http://www.riddleandfinns.co.uk/
) over on Meeting House Lane. The menu consists of mainly seasonal seafood, but they do have meat and veggie dishes too for those who can’t stand sea fayre. All the food is fresh and well presented, which matches the impeccably stylish décor.
Vegetarians need look no further than Lydea (http://www.iydea.co.uk/Iydea_Vegetarian_Restaurant/Welcome.html
) in Kensington Gardens. A cheap-eat buffet style restaurant, diners can pile their plates with freshly-made quality veggie dishes and quite simply, fill their boots (even if your tastes are more carnivorous, you and the boys are sure to get a feed here before a big night out on the town).
Part restaurant, part specialist grocer, Bills (http://bills-website.co.uk/restaurants/brighton/
) serves breakfast, brunch, lunch, high tea and dinner, and is famed for its own unique take on classic British food.
The best time to visit:
Summertime sees Brighton filled with locals and tourists looking to catch some sun on the beach or wandering through the lanes and diving in and out of the hundreds of boutique shops.
During the winter,Brighton is a little quieter, but the cool shops and the outdoor ice rink at the Royal Pavilion still draw big old crowds around Christmas.
The best view of the city:
Pavilion Gardens is the best place to take the perfect postcard picture of the iconic Brighton Pavilion - go on, grab a snap for the scrap book.
Taxis are pretty cheap and you should be able to get around for under a tenner. Buses run regularly and provide a quick journey from the town centre to Churchill Square, Brighton’s main shopping district.