Top 5 Quirky Shops in Brighton’s North Laine

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Brighton is beloved for many things – its pier, its notoriously pebbled beach, the magnificent pavilion - and its abundance of curious and quirky shops.

When you think of shopping in Brighton, the North Laine instantly springs to mind. Not to be confused with the Lanes in the seafront area of Brighton, the word ‘laine’ is actually an Anglo-Saxon word meaning large field. Historically, Brighton was full of these laines, and now the most notable one left is the North Laine, which is no longer a muddy field but a quaint part of town home to Brighton’s cultural quarter. It’s full of quirky shops, and we've put together a list of our Top 5 favourites - take a look!

Snooper’s Paradise

7 Kensington Gardens, Brighton BN1 4AL | Open every day 10.15am-5.45pm

Snooper’s Paradise is exactly what it sounds like, a snoop-fest for the most curious browsers and buyers. Enter through the turnstiles and you’ll find yourself in a shop bursting at the seams with interesting items to rummage through. Packed with thousands of items, there are many bargains and hidden gems to be found on the lower floor, and if you venture up the creaky stairs you’ll find Snooper’s Attic. The first floor houses the independent makers boutique, packed with 13 different brands and items to snoop at range from antique books and up-cycled vintage clothes to old jewellery and even preserved beetles in jars.

Click here for the website

Gelato Gusto

54 Kings Rd, Brighton BN1 2HJ | Open Saturday & Sunday 10.30am-5.30pm

No trip to the seaside would be complete without an ice cream. But forget your basic Mr Whippy with a flake - head to Gelato Gusto in the North Laine and try their enormous range of unique flavoured gelato including Lemon Meringue Pie, Sea Salt Caramel and Banoffee Pie. Each of their wonderful flavours are beautifully presented with bright colours that are almost too pretty to eat - but make sure you do because they are delicious! They always stock 30 flavours that rotate on a daily basis. The ice cream is freshly produced above the shop using milk from local Sussex cows - now you can’t get that in an Italian Gelateria!

Gelato Gusto now operates mostly from its dedicated production kitchen in Chichester; click here for their website

Vegetarian Shoes

12 Gardner St, Brighton BN1 1UP | Open every day 10.15am-5.45pm except for Wednesdays 1pm-5.45pm

Brighton is famously kind to the environment, so much so that Brighton Pavilion is the only constituency to date in which the Green Party has won a parliamentary seat. It’s no surprise, then, that this fondness for the planet extends to our animal friends and, as such, Brighton has its very own vegetarian shoe shop. It opened in 1990 and ever since has been selling a wide range of fabulous footwear - now extending to satchels and belts too - without using a single piece of leather, making it totally vegan and veggie friendly!

Click here for the website

To Be Worn Again

12 Kensington Gardens, Brighton BN1 4AL | Open every day 10am-6pm

Brighton is famously a second hand fashion treasure trove and thrifty locals and students flock to its vast selection of vintage clothes and furniture stores. As well as its North Laine store, To Be Worn Again also has stores in Sydney Street and Worthing, all stocking an impressively large selection of retro clothes - everything from Hawaiian shirts and old sportswear to vintage denim jeans, not forgetting a beautifully colourful shoe section. If you can’t make it to Brighton, fear not! They also have an online store and regularly hold kilo sales at their warehouse in Worthing, where you can get all you desire at just £15 per kilo!

Click here to visit their website

Hi Cacti

83 Dyke Rd, Brighton BN1 3JE | Open Wednesday - Monday 10.30am-50.30pm, except for Sunday 11am-4pm, and closed on Tuesdays

Step out of the busy and bustling Dyke Road and into this oasis of cool colours, beachy Tex-Mex products and tropical greenery; Hi Cacti is a female-run ‘cacti-concept shop’, started in 2015 and still selling easy care indoor plants, south by south-western home decor and botanical gifts all inspired by owner Sabina’s upbringing in Texas and road trips across the border. Sabina and co. also make lots of the shop’s products, including their concrete pottery, by hand in on-site workshop, and hold regular craft classes to share their knowledge and skills.

Click here for their website