Have a Great Weekend Break in Manchester
Manchester’s famous for its football team and Factory Records – but there’s more to the third largest city in the U.K. than Man U. and music. There’s great shopping, a thriving café culture, gorgeous architecture and a fascinating history.
In fact, there’s far too much to cram into one day, so take at least a weekend to discover the multitude of exciting and unique things there are to do in Manchester.
Weekend Mornings in Manchester:
Wake up in one of the fantastic hotels in Manchester* close to the town centre or only a hop, skip and a jump away from your nearest Metro station. The city is at your feet and a rumble is in your stomach – so head to Trof in Fallowfield first for a big breakfast.
Alternatively, you could head to the Ship Canal – the network of channels that connect Manchester to Liverpool and on towards the sea. Houses and flats back onto the waterway, giving it a strangely urban feel. Hire a barge and see the hidden city with its old industrial bridges and buildings as you drift along. If you don’t fancy the responsibility of handling a boat yourself, take one of the daily cruises and learn how the historic canal shaped today’s Manchester.
Weekend Lunchtimes in Manchester:
If you’re peckish and happy to splash out a bit, take the Metro to ‘The French’ –the first restaurant in the UK to get a Michelin Star. It’s a pretty ritzy place and the haunt of Manchester’s elite, frequently attended by some of the city’s most infamous footballers. If you wear dark shades, a fake tan and an air of faint insouciance, you might even get mistaken for one of them.
You should also consider popping past the Royal Northern College of Music to catch a free performance from its students; the celebrated conservatoire opens up its doors to the public to help its prodigies get used to performing in front of a live audience.
Weekend Afternoons to Evenings in Manchester:
Why not head to one or two of Manchester’s weird and wonderful galleries and museums? The imposing Whitworth Gallery always has something going on – as well as art and photography, it’s home to the largest collection of antique wallpapers in the UK. You could also take a detour to Lowry building: in a billowingly beautiful modern structure, you’ll find exhibitions, live shows and comedy and plenty of interactive stuff for children to get stuck into.
For shopping and a spot of supper, head to the Northern Quarter – its cafes, bars and clothes shops are suffused with a cool, bohemian atmosphere. Flick through the vinyl in bounteous record stores then head to cocktail bar Walrus for great Japanese food and refreshing drinks.
Weekend Night times in Manchester:
Though best-known as the cradle of Post-Punk and Britpop, there’s a lot more to Manchester than grungy genius. The likes of Noel Gallagher, Ian Curtis and Bez were inspired by the live music scene in the city; stick around the Northern Quarter to be similarly inspired. Head to the oldest live music venue in the city – the Band on the Wall club – to experience some of the freshest acts in Manchester; there’s no booking ahead so turn up, buy a ticket and enjoy.
Finally, put on your dancing shoes: go to Funkademia for a groovy soul night, or if you fancy clubbing and a vibrant gay scene head to Canal Street. No need for a taxi – take a cheap night bus back to your hotel, secure in the knowledge that though the city may have exhausted you, you have by no means exhausted its delights.
*This post on Weekend Breaks in Manchester was brought to you by Accor.