A Dog-Friendly Guide To Brighton

A Dog-Friendly Guide To Brighton

Brighton is such a densely packed city with lots to see and do over a very small area. You might think you could cover it all in a single weekend but there's a surprising amount of exploring to be done if you don't want to miss anything.

It's been years since I've visited. So I was eager to put together a travel guide for myself and to share with anyone else thinking of making the trip. Although this trip was only a brief one, I wanted to make the most of the two days spent there. I had a list of must-see attractions and must-do activities. As well as a top pick of places to eat and drink.

The result is this dog-friendly travel guide to Brighton. In all honesty, Brighton is packed with amazing shops and eateries, you could pick somewhere at random and chances are it would be a great, and likely vegan and dog-friendly too!


A Dog-Friendly Guide To Brighton

Dog-Friendly Parks In Brighton

Brighton has some beautiful and expansive parks. Drop by one of them with a picnic on a warm day or simply stroll through when passing by. You could also visit nearby South Downs, Hollingbury Woods, or Friston Forest if you want a break from the bustling centre.


Preston Park

A stunningly beautiful urban park in the heart of Brighton's city centre. The land is home to the 'Preston Twins,' said to be the largest and oldest Elm trees in the world.


Stanmer Park

One of the most visited parks in Brighton. Stanmer offers vast countryside with beautiful woodlands and extensive land to explore. One of its most unique features is the 18th Century working village.


St Ann's Well Gardens

Not far away from Hove seafront is St Ann's Well Gardens. Home to a wide range of native and exotic trees. These gardens are unique in appearance attracting an abundance of wildlife.


Withdean Park

Famous for its lilac collection, Withdean Park is on a fairly steep hillside flanked by broadleaved woodland. The park covers 38-acres of open space with green views of the South Downs.



A Dog-Friendly Guide To Brighton

Dog-Friendly Beaches In Brighton

As with most beaches in the UK, there are restrictions for dogs between April and September. The dog-friendly beaches map will come in handy. Although no one was paying the ban much notice with little to no enforcement happening. Make of that what you will!


Brighton Beach

During the off-season, this is a great spot for dog walking along the 4-mile promenade and up to the Brighton's Victorian Pier. There's a lot going on whatever time of year you visit, and as a result it gets incredibly crowded.


Kemp Town Beach

A short 15 minute walk from the central pier, you'll find Kept Town Beach. This stretch has all the same facilities with a more peaceful atmosphere than Brighton's Central Beach. If you don't fancy the walk, you can hop on the dog-friendly Volk electric railway instead.


Hove Lawns and Hove Beach

Although popular, the Hove Lawns and Beach are a little quieter than the other beaches. There is a beautiful seafront walk to enjoy with the lawns providing a relaxing green spot to enjoy.



A Dog-Friendly Guide To Brighton

Dog-Friendly Attractions In Brighton

A few intriguing 'landmarks' worth a cursory glance when passing by include the Madeira Lift, West Pier, Anna's Museum, the remains of the Royal Suspension Chain Pier, and the Brighton Waste House. Below are a few of the best dog-friendly attractions in Brighton that will take up a little more of your time.


Brighton Beach Flint Grotto

This small sculpture garden can be found on Brighton seafront and viewed from the promenade. Built by Rory McCormack, and under threat of the council, this peculiar display attracts a lot of attention. The fenced off area houses life-sized models and sculptures.


Michelham Priory Gardens

This Tudor house is set on a private island, surrounding by England's largest medieval water-filled moat. There are seven acres of grounds to explore, including a gate house, watermill, great barn, and medieval herb garden. Dogs are welcome in the main museum gardens.


Royal Pavilion Garden

Designed by architect John Nash for King George I, Brighton's Indian style Royal Pavilion is magnificent. But it isn't dog-friendly. The beautiful Regency-style gardens surrounding the pavilion are though, and they're well worth visiting. When everything is in bloom, these gardens are stunning.


Volk’s Electric Railway

Take a ride on this 135-year-old electric railway with your companion. The route runs for one mile along Brighton seafront, taking passengers from Brighton Palace Pier to the Marina. There's a small exhibition at the visitor centre with a selection of authentic railway hats and clothes to try on. The dog enjoyed his short open-air train ride, and was given a huge fuss by the staff.



A Dog-Friendly Guide To Brighton

Dog-Friendly Pubs and Bars In Brighton

Brighton has lots of dog-friendly pubs so finding somewhere to enjoy a drink won't be difficult. I've tried to cover all bases from from classic pubs to real ale tap rooms, as well as cocktail lounges and live music venues.


Camelford Arms

A traditional laid-back public house that welcomes dogs but not children is my favourite kind of pub. Having been voted as the most dog-friendly pub in Brighton, the Camelford Arms is a good spot for relaxing after a long day exploring the city. I was disappointed I didn't get to visit this time round.


BRZN

An incredibly welcoming little taproom. They really love their beer, and it shows. The atmostphere was incredibly friendly with the staff and all the patrons welcoming us in to join them. Even for someone like me who isn't a beer fan, they could tempt me to drink—and it was fantastic.


The Mesmerist

This seventies-style lounge and cocktail bar spans three floors and has a roof garden. The friendly laid-back atmosphere makes it the ideal spot regardless of whether you're dropping by during the day or late at night. We didn't get to drop by on this visit but dogs are welcome.


Plateau

A natural wine and cocktail bar located in Brighton's South Laines. They also serve small seasonal plates using local Sussex produce, although we only stopped by to sample the wine. The bar is small yet beautifully decorated with a laidback atmostphere where dogs are welcome.


The Roundhill

If you're looking for a modern pub with a relaxed atmosphere and 100% vegan-friendly menu, The Roundhill is a great choice. They serve craft beers from local producers with freshly-made plant-based dishes. We certainly felt very welcome and the dog was well cared for. The vegan roast was excellent but the deserts were phenomenal.


Signalman

A welcoming dog-friendly pub with a little sun trap of a garden outside. There were lots of dogs here, and all of them were welcome. There's plenty of space, both inside and out, to relax with friends and their furry companions.


A Dog-Friendly Guide To Brighton A Dog-Friendly Guide To Brighton

Dog-Friendly Restaurants In Brighton

As with all my travel guide, I focus on eateries that are both dog-friendly as well as vegan-friendly. These places offer a generous plant-based menu, often using seasonal and/or local ingredients. Your dog will be welcome to dine with you whether you drop by for breakfast, lunch, or dinner.


Cin Cin

Both dog- and vegan-friendly, this Italian restaurant offers a plant-based menu to enjoy alongside your companion. Seating is arranged around the kitchen, encouraging a social atmosphere with an option of a private dining area for a quieter experience.


Kusaki

This is the ideal choice for a dinner date. Kusaki offer a fully plant-based Japanese menu, matched with cocktails, sake, whisky, and wine. The restaurant has a wonderful atmostphere with a beautifully decorated interior. The presentation of the dishes is wonderful, and everything we tried was declicious.


No Catch

If you want traditional seaside food but vegan-friendly – No Catch should be on your list of places to eat. This restaurant offers classic seafood dishes made plant-based. Dogs are welcome too and they might even get a treat.


Purezza

Famous for being the UK's first 100% vegan pizzeria, Purezza have continued to be one of the most highly rated restaurants. They handcraft their pizza using sourdough and have their own homemade vegan cheese with unique toppings. We shared three different pizzas and they were all fantastic. It's a casual dining experience and super dog-friendly.


Neighbourhood

Nestled in the North Laine, Neighbourhood is a cosy little dog-friendly cafe with a 100% plant-based menu. They serve dishes made using locally sourced ingredients with mostly wholefood recipes, aside from the traditional sweet treats. They also serve a vegan Sunday roast, which is often hard to come by.


A Dog-Friendly Guide To Brighton

Dog-Friendly Cafes and Coffee Shops In Brighton

Knowing the best places to grab coffee in the morning or drop by for a late afternoon snack is a must for me when travelling. I like to avoid taking a risk on an unknown cafe, and head instead to a highly recommended coffee shop. These are the best cafes and coffee shops to visit with your dog in tow when in Brighton.


Black Mocha

Situated in the North Laine area , Black Mocha are well known for their hand roasted single origin coffee—which was the best coffee I had in Brighton! We ate breakfast here too before heading back out to explore the lanes.


Artist Residence

Dogs are not just welcomed but treated like special guests at this hotel. Not only was the coffee and breakfast we ordered delicious, a box of treats were left at our table for the dog. It was quiet with a beautiful view, and service for some of the best we received.


The Laughing Dog Café

This dog-friendly cafe is a gift shop, art gallery, and print studio all rolled into one, positioned right in the heart of the marina. Their menu has vegan options making it the perfect spot for breakfast or lunch. If you're looking for gifts, this is the place to shop from small independent brands and makers.


Metro Deco

This 1930s-style cafe serves coffee, cakes, and dog treats. They even host doggy birthday parties. The simple menu is made up for by the vintage-inspired decor. It's a cute spot if you're looking for somewhere different to the typical coffee shops, which are everywhere in Brighton.


Pelicano

A great spot to grab coffee and enjoy the Brighton lanes from the pavement seating. The coffee shop itself is rustic and cosy, serving lattes, pasteries, and bagels. We ordered cold brew and sat outside, attracting the attention of dog lovers who stopped by to say hello.


A Dog-Friendly Guide To Brighton

Dog-Friendly Shops In Brighton

With or without a dog, I don't find shopping much fun. However, what makes Brighton different is its vintage shops, record stores, independent boutiques, and antique emporiums; making the city a fantastic place for thrifting.

If you're keen to pick up gifts or a souvenir, you'll find independent shops and local makers in the historic alleyways of Brighton known as The Lanes. Don't skip North Laine where you'll find all the highstreet favourites, as well as more independent shops and boutiques.

Just like the rest of the UK, dogs are welcome in most stores just ask first. If your companion deserves a treat, drop by You're Pawfect for toys and apparel. They even have a cafe menu with dog-friendly drinks and cookies. We dipped in for extra supplies after extending our Brighton visit, and the staff were super helpful.



A Dog-Friendly Guide To Brighton

Dog-Friendly Accommodation in Brighton

Accommodation isn't a problem in Brighton. A few of the larger hotel chains, like Ibis, Holiday Inn, and Travelodge, allow dogs (for a fee). They are the most affordable but also least comfortable, in my experience. Opt for a boutique or independently-run hotel instead, if you can.


Dog-friendly Brighton Hotels

Although there is plenty of dog-friendly accommodation in Brighton, the real issue is securing a place before they're all booked up. Brighton is a popular holiday destination, and if you don't plan ahead you could be stuck with limited options – or none at all.

Another issue is parking, which is notoriously hard to find in Brighton and expensive when you do. It's the reason I opted for renting an AirBnb with parking included. The most reasonably priced option is the London Road car park.



Photographs by Jack Spicer Adams and Sophie Davies


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