We've roughly split all the green spaces in Brighton, Hove and the surrounding area into the 5 categories below, with a bit of a review from us on some of the highlights! There are dozens upon dozens of parks around the city and many of them have a unique character or feel, so grab a stick, ball or picnic and get exploring!
Since there are over 75 parks, playgrounds and green spaces dotted around the Brighton & Hove area, we've highlighted a few of the biggest, most interesting or best equipped parks and mapped them out separately. These are parks you could happily spend a whole day exploring and have plenty of space for picnics, sports, playing or just generally relaxing.
These parks cover large open spaces, great for walking the dog or playing anything that needs plenty of space! Many of them also have playgrounds or added extras for you to explore, with some of them meandering off into woodland. These are mostly located around the edge of Brighton and Hove and provide a nice getaway from the business of central Brighton.
Smaller parks, but usually more central than their larger siblings, these are great places to take kids for that after-school play in the summer, or to sit down with a book or a lunchtime snack. Most of them have playgrounds and we would like to make a particular mention of St Nicholas' Play area, which actually covers 3 separate parks, right in the centre of Brighton, that are well hidden if you're not looking for them. The churchyard is easy to spot, but a bit further up the hill is a sizable play area and across the road is a large, hidden garden and lawn, ideal for walking dogs or escaping the bustle for a bit..
Brighton and Hove both have a lot of squares, flower gardens and plazas dotted around and this list tries to catch them all. Sometimes these green spaces are just a small, fenced grassy area with a couple of benches and trees to grab your lunchtime meal in, but some of them extend down to the seafront and have their own monuments or flower gardens. The AIDS memorial at the New Steine being a notable mention.
The South Downs represent Brighton and Hove's local national park. Spanning 1,600 square kilometers with a walk from Eastbourne to Winchester, the area around Brighton alone has several points of interest, all accessible via bus and footpaths. The best starting point is to get a bus up to Ditchling Beacon - which marks the highest local point (and often has an ice cream van, if the weather is nice). From there you can head off into the rolling hills in any direction you like!
A lot of the fun is that you can roam freely around these amazing hills, but there are plenty of highlights to aim for if you want a target. As well as the previously mentioned Ditchling Beacon, the Chattri Memorial and Devil's Dyke are both within bus-ing (or walking, if you're adventurous) distance. A handful of the Top Parks, mentioned above, also blend into the South Downs and can serve as good starting points.
For more specific walks from us, please click here.
We didn't include a map for this section, since the South Downs pretty much surround the city!