On the Doorstep: 4 places to visit near Manchester on the 4 day June Bank Holiday weekend
It would simply be a crime not to visit Liverpool whilst in Manchester. A short 50-minute train journey, which will often cost you less than a fiver, Liverpool has many great things to do with its packed cultural heritage. If you’re into your sport, then there are football clubs Liverpool and Everton, or if you would prefer a day out at the races then there’s Aintree too. The city is also packed full of museums and art galleries such as the Tate, the World Museum, the Museum of Liverpool and the Walker. If, however, shopping is more your thing then Liverpool One has all the shops you need, from Urban Outfitters to Waterstones. And of course, as a city with a large musical heritage, you’ll find an array of gigs you can attend in places like the huge M+S arena, which hosts stars like Dua Lipa to Little Mix, or the more intimate but historic Cavern Club. If you’re a fan of the ‘fab four’ then this is the city for you. From the ‘Beatles Experience’ to guided Beatles tours around the city, people come from across the world to see the sights of this amazing place.
Another fantastic city, just under an hour away via train, is Leeds. Popular for being more than just a great shopping destination, Leeds has lots to offer. Watch a new play or musical at the Leeds Playhouse, browse the many independent record shops, or check out the wide range of sports, music and entertainment at the First Direct Arena. If you’re looking for ‘instagrammable’ locations then be sure to check out the Corn Exchange, a beautiful independent boutique shopping location, housed in a former Victorian exchange.
Chester is another great city to visit, just an hour away by train. Known for having one of the most impressive roman histories of any city in the UK, this is a great place to just wander around and explore. From walking the walls of the city, to the old Roman amphitheatre, the history of the city is just extraordinary. During the summer months check out the ‘Moonlight Flicks’, an outdoor cinema in the grounds of Chester Cathedral. Watching a film as the sun goes down, in such a beautiful setting, is simply a once in a lifetime opportunity.
4. The Lake District
A simply beautiful location, just on the doorstep of Manchester by train, the Lake District is a must-visit. Follow the steps of the poet Wordsworth, go hiking in the beautiful settings or go rowing on Windermere Lake. I would recommend staying at the YHA Windermere, a great youth hostel in a beautiful location – just on the edge of Windermere Lake. It is “cheap as chips” and a perfect way to stay in such a stunning location, whilst still sticking to the student budget. Before jumping on the train back to Manchester, be sure to check out ‘Home ground’, which is rated one of the best brunch spots in the whole of the UK. My mouth is drooling just thinking about how nice it was…!
Aled Hanson, Postgraduate student