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squeezing in Brighton Pavilion on last day before leaving via Gatwick

I'm leaving London via Gatwick for home (US) on Jan 3rd and cannot fit in a trip to the Brighton Pavilion while in London. I had the idea to leave London in the early morning of Jan 2nd (apt is next to Holborn tube) via Thameslink from St. Pancras to Gatwick, taxi to a hotel nearby to drop off my bags (which they allow), then get back on the train to Brighton, see the Pavilion, back to hotel for night of Jan 2, going to Gatwick in the morning to go home.
I've gone so far as to reserve a room at a Best Western in Horley. This idea has seemed fine until now...48 hours before leaving for London.

Why Horley? I don't know. I think I got a good rate ($97) and saw it was close to Gatwick. And the Best Western there allows you to store bags early.

Other thoughts welcome and if someone has a smoother way (a different hotel location?) for 2 adults & 2 kids to see the Pavilion, would appreciate suggestions. Thanks.

Posted by
268 posts

We did the same thing at the end of our 10-day London trip in September. We enjoyed capping off our city adventure with a day in Brighton. The Pavilion is lovely and the town has a fun, hip vibe.

We hemmed and hawed over where to stay that last night near Gatwick and settled on the Gatwick London Hilton right at the South Terminal

I plugged in your dates and at £149 a night for 4, it looks to be a bit pricier than what you found in Horley. However, it was very convenient for dropping off our bags and catching the train to Brighton the day before our departure. The next morning it was a short walk to our morning flight home to Seattle.

Have a fantastic trip!

Posted by
4276 posts

It may be easier to walk to Farringdon for Thameslink than tube to St Pancras. Or a black cab.

Posted by
2316 posts

If you're tight on time then you might want to take another taxi from the train station in Brighton to the promenade, esp. since you are 4 people. I imagine the wind will be on the wet and clammy end of the spectrum at that time of year.

For some background on the Pavilion besides the usual sources, be sure to watch the Ian McKellan movie version of Richard III. Great staging of several scenes there.

Posted by
1364 posts

Is there a reason you don’t want to stay In Brighton itself? The train to Gatwick is only around 49 minutes. Alternatively you can arrange a taxi transfer direct from Brighton to the airport for around £45. A train for 4 will cost almost that.


Posted by
2316 posts

I agree with Alan -- a B&B on New Steine square beats a Best Western in Horley,
and the train trip between Gatwick and Brighton is pleasantly hassle-free --
but maybe it's too late for you to make arrangements.
OTOH, now I'm curious about ride-sharing apps and just how cheaply a car could be arranged ...