Brighton Up Your Day With a Trip To Palace Pier
With all the fun (and frights) of the fair, an amusement arcade and a restaurant named the ‘spiritual home’ of fish and chips; Brighton Palace Pier remains just as iconic as when it opened in 1899. It may be the biggest attraction in the South East, but that doesn’t mean that the Palace Pier’s just a place for tourists to flock to – there’s plenty to see and do for us locals, no matter how many times you’ve treaded its 118 year old wooden boards. It’s time to take a stroll along Brighton Palace Pier… oh I do like to be beside the seaside!
Scream if you want to go faster
Whether you’re a thrill-seeker or fancy some family fun, Brighton Palace Pier has a ride for you. Get your adrenaline pumping (and be prepared to scream) on the terrifying Turbo Coaster – known as the pier’s speed demon, thanks to its two steep drops and loop, spin at speed on the dizzying Galaxia and brace yourself to defy gravity as you loop and dive into the air on the amazing acrobatic Air Race. There’s also Crazy Mouse, Horror Hotel and Wild River for adrenaline junkies of all ages looking to get hearts pounding.
Or if you want to take your daredevil ride reputation to the next level, get on the Booster! Many of us know it as THAT ride at the end of the pier; the one that catapults riders 130ft into the air, spinning them and turning them upside down in the scary, but exhilarating, process. Open your eyes (if you dare!) and enjoy some of the best views of Brighton from the top – but be quick, you won’t be up there for long as you speedily descend back down towards the sea!
Looking for something a little more leisurely but still full of nostalgic fun? Take a spin on Twister, twirl in the Cup ‘n’ Saucers, belt up and accelerate on the Dodgems and whizz around on the Waltzers. Of course, no trip to the pier is complete without a ride on the quintessential Carousel’s majestic horses or a slide down the Helter Skelter – fairground institutions that all ages enjoy.
For children between 1.2m and 1.8m, the i220 is a must. This brand new ride takes you straight into the sky, spinning you around for an out-of-this-world view of Brighton. Younger ride-lovers won’t miss out either – with rides such as Dragon Fly (a colourful flying dragon ride), the fabulous Fantasia (where children can choose to drive a fire engine, a rocket or a racing car, to name just a few options) and the super-cool Mega Slide giving them plenty of giggles. To burn off extra steam, get them bouncing on the Palace Pier’s trampolines and bouncy castle or playing in Palace Play – the pier’s newest attraction!
The indoor multi-purpose soft play area (for children over 0.9 metres tall) has four fun storeys and a massive slide too. There’s also a separate play area so toddlers can also enjoy soft play fun. Along with the i220 and Palace Play; Palace Pier is adding an 18 player roll-a-ball Dolphin Derby this year too – to celebrate returning to their original name!
Fun for all
A pier visit just doesn’t feel right without trying your luck on the arcade machines, does it? Packed with traditional favourites (including the 2p machines!), claw toy machines and simulators; the Palace of Fun is guaranteed fun for all the family. And as it’s indoors; it’s a great rainy day place to while away a few hours. Your competitive side won’t just be unleashed in the Palace of Fun, The Dome – with NBA basketball game and air hockey table will see you go head-to-head with friends, family or the machine to bag yourself points to covert to amazing prizes. There’s also classics such as Hook a Duck and Tin Can Alley to try to win yourself or your beau a prize.
Delicious seaside smells waft in the air
When thinking of food to enjoy on the pier, tummies rumble and thoughts turn to hot sugary doughnuts, soft and creamy ice creams and of course, mouth-watering fish and chips. But these aren’t the only delicious delights to tuck into as you take a seat in the striped deckchairs.
For those with a sweet tooth, there’s crepes, milkshakes, frozen yoghurt, churros and a sweet shop filled to the brim with favourites such as Brighton rock, dummies and more. Or, if you’d prefer a savoury treat, you can choose to feast on hot dogs, burgers, sizzling sausages, rice and noodles or traditional shellfish, along with fish and chips, of course!
Speaking of fish and chips, a visit to Palm Court Restaurant is a must for all fans of sustainable seaside fare. In fact, Michelin star chef Heston Blumenthal even called the Palm the ‘spiritual home of fish and chips’ – high praise indeed. Dine in style with a glass of fizz or if you can’t find a seat in this popular pier establishment, you can always take a stroll, chomping your chips as you go – just watch out for those pesky seagulls!
Thirsty? You’re in luck. Palace Pier has two bars; Victoria’s and Horatio’s – both great places to enjoy a tipple or two. Victoria’s – named after the late, great queen – is a cosy bar, providing a snug spot to indulge in afternoon tea, home-cooked food and cold beers overlooking Brighton’s regency seafront, whilst Horatio’s is spacious (with room for up to 350 people) and a great bar for kicking back, watching live sports and enjoying live music. There’s a panoramic beer garden too – perfect for summer days sipping away in the sunshine.
Thinking ahead to the summer, Palace Pier will truly come alive with the sounds of live music, as talented musicians serenade pier strollers, on each Saturday of the school holidays. But before that, Brighton’s iconic Mod Weekender (27th -29th May) will rev up the fun with the arrival of scooters, a mod tribute band and a free showing of classic Quadrophenia, all taking place on the pier.
Whether you’re a thrill-seeker, a keen foodie or just fancy chilling out in a deckchair with one of the most beautiful views of Brighton in your sights, Palace Pier is the perfect place to unwind, forget your worries and experience that whimsical Brighton spirit!
ABSOLUTE readers can enjoy 25% off ride wristbands by booking in advance and buying online at www.brightonpier.co.uk.