A few months ago the Southern Railway website had a special 24 hour long offer for a certain amount of tickets at a 90% discount. For many frustrating hours I tried booking (the website kept crashing because of increased traffic) and eventually I managed to book a few journeys, including a return London - Brighton for only £1.60. I assumed Brighton to be quite far away but actually it wasn't at all; the journey from Victoria station took less than an hour in the end.
I had an amazing (long) day exploring the city. I was incredibly lucky with the weather as it was a rare sunny day without being too hot, which meant everything looked much brighter and more awesome than it would on an ordinary gloomy UK day. The first place I visited was the astonishingly gorgeous Royal Pavilion, a former royal residence that with its Indo-Saracenic style made me think of the Taj Mahal in India and Fata Morgana in the Efteling in the Netherlands. I was in awe of how beautiful it was and must have spent more than half an hour snapping pictures from the building (just the outside too as I didn't have the time to explore it on the inside as well). It was by far the highlight of my visit to Brighton.
The Brighton Museum and Art Gallery is located opposite the Pavilion so I went there next. It's very small compared to the museums I've gotten so used to in London, but it was an interesting visit nonetheless. I particularly like an exhibition on puppets they had there. Wandering back outside I came across the Victoria Gardens (which had an absolutely gorgeous fountain, its water sparkling in the sun) and the Brighton Pier, which was populated with sugar hyped children. I didn't go on any of the rides myself (a combination of a lack of time and interest) but I did have fun walking around and taking photos of it all, especially because everything looked so shiny basking in the sunlight (hey it doesn't happen often that I see a lot of sun here, it was a rarity I will continue to mention throughout this post :P).
From the Pier I took a very long walk (3km each way) along the famous Pebble Beach, getting distracted by heaps of tourist shops along the way so it took me nearly an hour to get to my destination. I particularly loved the colourful little houses along the beach that people could rent for a day, or longer, to make their own little space. As 99% of the places there sold nothing but fish I opted for calamari for lunch which I normally very much enjoy. Unfortunately these were incredibly greasy and made me ill by just looking at them so eventually I fed them to the seagulls (they were shouting "Mine, mine, mine", and I couldn't just ignore them, could I?).
The reason I took the long walk was because I wanted to visit the Hove Museum & Art Gallery as I had read they had a "Wizard's Attic". Unfortunately they didn't mean Harry Potter or Gandalf but it was fun to visit nonetheless. Basically it was a part of the museum intended for children and through stories and tricks of the wizard it was trying to educate kids. They also had a very cool exhibition downstairs called "Mr Watt, Grumpy Man of Metal", displaying funky statues made out of, of course, metal.
The way back into the city was much quicker as I didn't get distracted by the shops along the beach the entire time. When I got back to the Pier I made my way to some shopping areas, including the cute streets with alternative shops that made up North Laine and a weekend market with crafts and cakes and such where I bought two beautiful textile hearts filled with lavender as well as a delicious walnut cupcake for dinner. I also went into a lot of awesome cookery shops and basically started planning everything I want to have in my kitchen once I have my "own" kitchen. Having a little over an hour left before my train to London would leave again I also had a quick browse through the nearby Churchill Square Shopping Centre where, very randomly, they also had dinosaur animatronics in the middle of the shopping centre o.O
As soon as I came closer to city centre I was amazed by the gorgeous architecture and clear blue sky (Sun! In England!)
Be warned.... 5000 pictures of the Royal Pavilion will follow
Spot the moon
No, I didn't go bungee jumping...
At the Hove Museum & Art Gallery, follow the wizard!
His eyes followed you across the room. Literally O_O