There are plenty of free things to do in Brighton, and they are fun-filled activities that you can do whether you are on a budget or you simply don’t want to spend a lot of money. When you are looking to take a budget trip to Brighton you can spoil yourself silly with activities like day and night trips, visit parks and museums, among other activities – all for free!
Brighton is a hive of activity with quirky and otherwise awesome events happening throughout the year. In this little guide I have put together all the best free things you can do in Brighton throughout the year.
Free things to do in Brighton Night Clubs with Live Music
Sticky Mike’s Frog Bar
Sticky Mike’s Frog Bar is one of Brighton’s quirkiest bars with free nights out within the city. The venue is one of Brighton’s attractions with free entry and one of the best places in Brighton to dance the night away. You will also be able to see some local and international live bands in the venue downstairs – but these can have paid entry depending on what band is playing.
Green Door Store
Located directly under the Brighton Railway station is a late-night bar called Green Door Store, a live music venue and nightclub. The store is accessible to many revelers, and it is also one of Brighton’s best live music hubs. The entrance to the bar is completely free. A total of 14 events in a week guarantees something for everyone at the Green Door Store. This is definitely one of the coolest free things to do in Brighton.
Do you love old-school Jamaican and Caribbean music? If yes, then Great! You will absolutely love dancing and drinking cocktails at the Jamaican music bar Riki Tik. Great music from the likes of Calypso, Dancehall, Rocksteady, Reggae Roots, Dub, and Soca, just to mention but a few. There are weekly, and monthly special guest DJs and takeovers as well as monthly club events, and most of them are completely free!
The Bees Mouth
The Bees Mouth is a small bar packed with unique beers from Belgium and around the World. The bar is a bit dark and mysterious, buzzing with activity, which reminds me a bit of those old Belgian pubs I loved to visit when I was still living in Antwerp. Each week there are particularly exciting life drawing events, most of which are free. They also host events such as open mic nights, jazz forums, and cinema nights.
Free in Brighton Markets and Craft Fairs
Brighton Craft Alliance
The brightest local talents are showcased in Brighton Craft Alliance for curated art, craft and vintage fairs. This amazing craft and art market features contemporary art, craft, design and photography. If you love art than this free market in Brighton is something you won’t want to miss. A great market to visit when you are looking for free things to do in Brighton.
Made 4 U
Made 4 U is a monthly event within Sussex to support local craft and other home-based businesses. The platform is affordable and open to everyone to buy or sell. The various goods available for sale in the stalls are artwork, bags, cakes, candles, cards, cosmetics, gifts, jewelry, knitted items, photos, and among others. Mark your calendar to attend the fair every second Saturday of the at Central United Reformed Church in Hove.
The Fairy Tale Fair
This amazing and cute fair has a loyal following in Brighton and it is very well-established. This fair offers amazing opportunities to buy handmade gifts. Through shopping at the Fair you can support local talent and businesses
The Open Market
Since redevelopment in 2014, the historic Open Market has housed over 50 of Brighton’s local producers and creators. Besides, most of them have great talent and knowledge. Most of the stall holders offer food and drinks but some of them also offer crafts and antiques. The open market has many stalls with a range of traditional products such as butchers, fishmongers, eggs, fruit, and vegetables.
Free things to do in Brighton Theatre and Comedy
Brighton Fringe Festival
The Brighton Fringe Festival takes the lead as the most influential fringe festival in the World. The event runs through the month of May for four weeks. There are over 700 individual competitions that take place with a quarter of them being free.
Anyone can put on an event and it is an open-access festival, meaning anyone can attend. Expect anything ranging from music, dance, theatre to comedy. The best part of the festival is that there is always something or other to do. Definitely something to look out to when looking for free things to do in brighton.
Free Comedy – Brighton hosts fantastic comedy gigs throughout the year, but attending them can set you back a pretty penny. Regularly, a few venues around the city host free comedy nights with local talent. Do have a look at those evenings held at The Victory Inn and The Quadrant.
Free Museums and Exhibitions in Brighton
Built between 1787 and 1823 for the Prince Regent and later King George IV, the Pavilion is an extravagant palace and probably one of the most iconic buildings in Brighton. Although visiting the Royal Pavilion is not free, you can walk around the gardens without tickets. Walking in the gardens is one of the best free things to do in Brighton.
Hove Museum & Art Gallery
The Hove Museum and Art Gallery a world of fine art with toys, cinema, and local history. Also, the Museum is stocked with the finest craft collections in the country. The museum has some great exhibitions that are very interesting for kids making this an amazing museum to visit on a family trip to Brighton. The entrance is free for everyone.
Booth Museum of Natural History
Also known as the Edward Booth museum, it is among the free things to do in Brighton. The Museum was founded in 1874 and it houses species of birds, butterflies, fossils, bones, and skeletons. The bone collections and fossil is the Museum’s main highlight as it dates back to the era of dinosaurs and woolly rhinos that roamed Sussex. The Booth museum is one of the best free things to do in Brighton.
Free Sightseeing in Brighton
Royal Pavilion Gardens – Brighton’s iconic Pavilion is not free entry, but there is no reason why you can’t enjoy it from the outside. The Pavilion Gardens are popular thanks to the exquisite oriental exterior of the Pavilion itself. The gardens are beautifully kept all year round, with wonderful flower beds and shady trees. In the summer, the gardens provide a beautiful vantage point and a great place to rest for a bit, enjoying the sun and flowers around you.
The Devil’s Dyke is the longest, most profound, and most extensive dry valley in the UK, which provides you with amazing views over Sussex. A walk through the valley leads you to discover wildflowers and many beautiful insects. If you want to walk the Devil’s Dyke you should go by car as it is quite hard to reach it by public transport.
Free things to do in Brighton The Piers
No trip to Brighton is complete without a stroll along Brighton pier. And it is free! Brighton pier provides a perfect view to take photos of the Brighton, wholly and Hove seafront.
There are several food kiosks for anyone who feels a bit peckish, and there are restaurants and shopping arcades in the area. If you intend to stay a while, you can hire a traditional striped deck chairs and enjoy the sunshine and the sea on the Brighton Pier.
Brighton’s West Pier remains one of the biggest attractions in Brighton, although the Pier itself might not be there anymore. However, it still takes the lead as the most in photographed buildings in Brighton. The skeleton of the old pier is a stark contrast wit the sea and provides a spectacular backdrop for pictures – especially when the sun is going down!
Paddle Round the Pier
On the 1st – 2nd July, Brighton hosts a massive beach and water festival which you are free to join. It is an annual event full of activities on land and sea perfect for both kids and parents!
Access to the whole of Brighton beach is free, as well as the beach in Hove.
There are promenade benches ideal for those who are a bit tired or just want to watch the sea for a bit. Something is always happening on Brighton beach, whether it is a dance class on the bandstand, a basketball match, or locals walking their dogs. If you want to spend money, there are fantastic bars, cafes, and restaurants you can visit. Something you cannot miss when looking for free things to do in Brighton!
Free Parks in Brighton
Kings Road Playground’s
On the West side of the West pier you can find the Kings Road Playground. The Park is fully enclosed, with a paddling pool and many excellent swings and slides. There are Cafes and toilets nearby, and it is a favorite to Brighton locals meaning it can be very busy, especially during summer.
This park has new fantastic facilities that came with its reopening in the summer of 2013. The new facilities can be found in the south side of the park and include the Velo Cafe and a lovely playground. The playground also has drinking fountains, picnic benches, waste bins and it is well fenced. This makes The Level a great place to take your kids on a day out!
St Ann’s Wells –
St Ann’s Wells is an ideal treat for tree-lovers and it is a great day out for both young and old. The best thing about St Ann’s Wells is that it is only a few to the Hove seafront. Nature conservation is vital within the Park as it is fenced off, and some areas have scented gardens to guide the visually impaired. St Ann’s Wells also has a great pond full of fish! A walk in St Ann’s Wells cannot be missed when looking for free things to do in Brighton.
Queens Park has a large pond, a cafe, and a well-equipped playground, a rolling lawn sitting on 22 acres with quiet wooded grasslands. The Queens park occupies a grand green valley that faces towards the southeast. The Park is half a mile from the sea on a steep slope with another half-mile of footpaths.
This park comfortably covers 40 acres with a mix of features. Some of these features are recreational facilities, large areas of open grass, mature trees, and flower beds. On the eastern edge of the Park you will find a public sculpture called the ‘Fingermaze.’ The statue is carved and lined into the Park with stone and lime mortar. The significant claim to fame for Hove Park is the Goldstone that weighs about 20 tons. There is a widespread belief that the Druids used the Goldstone for worship. The stone has a human face visible if you take a good look at it.
South Downs National Park
This beautiful National Park gives Brighton the best of both the rural and seaside worlds. As you walk around the Park, you can see why it is a perfect holiday spot for both pets and children.
Rottingdean is a village only 4 miles’ east coast of Brighton. You can easily make your visit to Rottingdean into a nice day out for the complete family. In Rottingdean you will find deserted and quiet beaches and beautiful white cliffs. A great day out when looking for free things to do in Brighton!
The undercliff stretches from Brighton to sunny Saltdean. You can decide to walk, run, or cycle as you enjoy the spectacular view of the sea. The Undercliff Walks are a great way to explore Brighton for free with your kids or dogs.