Wednesday, February 4, 2009

Brighton, East Sussex, England, UK: Autumn & Winter 2008

Beach town, party town, international town, gay town...

Without realising, we actually stayed in Brighton for 4.5 months. We basically choose this place randomly from the travel guide book, one or two weeks before we left Montreal. The reason that we chosen this place: It seems like a rich town (Brighton & Hove is a city), where we won't have difficulty to find some kind of job. In fact, we both ended up to work for the council. Me through out our stays in Brighton.

We stayed in a hotel near by the beach when we first arrived. It is called "Churchill Hotel". The hotel reminded us so much with the hotel in India: The wet and not very clean red carpet, the toilet which couldn't flush, the shower head which wasn't working, the TV which was spoiled ...
So when we managed to find a place to stay from Gumtree Brighton, we were more than delighted to move. The neighbourhood where we were staying is called "Bevendean". We always feel lucky that, we could stay in this quiet place with beautiful landscape.

The first time we saw the Royal Pavillion, i was kind of "wow!" The exterior is the Indian style dome, while the internal is decorated with the Chinese taste. It is built by King George IV and is said to be the symbol of Brighton's reputation for hedonism. The Brighton & Hove council got the dome of Royal Pavillion as its symbol.
The resident in Brighton can get discount for entry, while there is free admission when the country changes time during winter time.

Brighton Pier is the center piece of Brighton's pebbled beach. When the weather is warm, hundreds of people fills the shoreline. Some folks call Brighton, Little-London-on-the-sea. Around 1 hr by train or 1.5 hours by car from London, Londoners come here to enjoy the beach and party.

The Lanes, a jumble of 17th Century streets forming the heart of the Old Brighton. Now, it is full with boutique shops and fine restaurants. Every Friday, there is a "ghost walk" outside one of the bar.

North Laine, a pedestrian walking street area. It is a place for shopping. One can get from Vegetarian shoes to jewellery. There are a few vegetarian restaurants around here, our favourite is Infinity Food.
The thing i like the most in UK is: It is so easy to find vegetarian option of food. Basically most restaurants have a few vegetarian options. Besides organic food is popular in supermarkets, in very affordable price.

Stanmer Park. It snowed a bit when we were there. It was just mid-autumn. The sounds from the snow dropping on the leaves were ... i would say, "cheerful".

Lewes is just a small town around 15-20 minutes drive from Brighton. Sometimes, we just drive here to have a coffee. The town is nominated by Lewes Castle, one of the oldest castle in England. I personally wasn't as impressed by the castle as by the Royal Pavillion. There is a very old brewery just right beside of the river.

Stunning views of Seven Sisters Country Park, where the winding River Cuckmere meanders out to meet the sea at Cuckmere Haven.

Eastbourne is around 1 hour drives from Brighton. Like Brighton, the beach is pebble beach and there is a almost similar Pier.

i got the feeling that, the existence of the town is because of this castle. Arundel Castle is still a family home and it reflects the history of nearly 1000 years. Magnificient! It is around 40 minutes drives from Brighton.

This is not East Sussex...
In Southampton, my friend's restaurant, Fusion Noodle Bar.
Frankly speaking, the website is really so-so done, but the restaurant is well decorated and the food & price are both good.
We went there to drop him a visit and of course to get a free meal! :) It was really nice that i got to eat some real Malaysian food, like back home...

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