Fresher’s week is rife with countless opportunities; it’s an exploration of what’s on offer just waiting for the eager freshers to unlock. It’s all fantastic fun and if you manage to find some super cool hangout spots; even better. As a fresher myself, I’ve attempted to make the most of all that Brighton and beyond has to offer, whilst familiarising myself with my new flat, friends and all things freshers.

   During an exciting first week at Sussex, many famous Brighton landmarks were visited. As you might expect, Brighton’s famous Pier was top of the agenda and a thrilling time was had at the Pier Party towards the end of the week. Once officially known as the Brighton Marine Palace and Pier, it was formally renamed the more simple title of Brighton Pier in the year 2000 by its owners.

   The pier itself is free to enter, however you will encounter costs if you plan to go on the rides. Also, if you’re looking for a bite to eat then make sure you try their crepes if you fancy a treat to enhance your visit. Business and finance student, Robbie Sutherland said that visiting the pier was his highlight of fresher’s week as ‘it offers great views and it’s a unique attraction that we don’t have where I’m from.’

   Brighton, as a city, is the perfect place for tourists and students alike as it has a distinct appeal that never wears off. The Lanes, situated in the heart of the city, are a collection of twisting narrow alleyways featuring a mix of antiques, jewellery, designer labels and interior design boutiques. Brighton’s worst kept secret Choccywoccydoodah is an art and design focused chocolaterie hidden away amongst the Lanes that produces one of a kind cake sculptures that are like nothing you’ve seen before. Even if you don’t have a slice of cake in their café, it’s worth going just to take a peek at the treats on offer.

   Both Falmer and East Slope bars are fresher favourites that Sussex students are more likely than not to hold fond memories of for years to come. Falmer Bar, in particular, is the one for my friends and I where we bonded together on the first night at uni and we have been back many times since. If you’re looking for somewhere cosy to take some time out on campus, then Room 76 is the place to go. Tucked away behind Falmer Bar, they sell an incredible selection of coffee and cakes that are not to be missed; the perfect place to go when you have time to spare between lectures.

   Historically, Brighton has a wealth of culture available and all on your doorstep. The Royal Pavilion is a former royal residence used as a seaside retreat by King George IV. The palace incorporates Regency grandeur and is influenced by the visual styles of India and China. Having visited the Pavilion personally, I am able to vouch for the elegance and beauty to be found inside. Whether you’re a history fan or not, the Pavilion itself is a work of art that can be appreciated at any age. Student tickets cost £9.50, which is a bargain for what you’re getting in return.

   Another classic landmark that was visited during Fresher’s week was the Brighton Wheel. The undeniably iconic sight is one to lap up whilst you can as recently Brighton and Hove Council refused permission for it to stay in the city for another five years, meaning you only have a short amount of time to take a ride on the wheel before it is dismantled next year. However if you’re still looking for a thrill featuring dizzying heights then the i360 is planned to open next summer. For those wondering, the i360 is a 162-metre observation tower that is currently being constructed on the seafront of Brighton. Guests will be able to glide up to 450 feet high, enjoying 360 views of a 26-mile area. Designed by the team behind the London Eye, it will be interesting to see if the i360 achieves as many visitors and as much global recognition that the iconic London attraction has.

   A final destination that all students should visit at least once is Brighton’s Churchill Square shopping centre. The architecture of the building is unique and you will probably find yourself lost in there at least once but it’s all part of the fun. Home to a spectacular selection of 80 shops, it’s the ideal place to indulge in some retail therapy in between studying. Regardless of your budget, there’s a shop that caters for everyone.

Lauren Wade

Image by Berit Watkin

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