Charlie shares 10 Places to Visit around Manchester
As a student who made the move to Manchester to having studied both my undergraduate and postgraduate here, I knew that I would experience a vibrant and diverse city with a rich cultural heritage, bustling nightlife, and lots of opportunities to explore. However, I didn’t know where or what to start with. I’ve written this blog as a starter guide for incoming students by listing the top 10 things from my 4 years of experience to do in Manchester, hopefully this will give new students an idea of the wide array of opportunity in this city. Whether you’re looking for world-class entertainment, delicious food and drink, or fascinating history and culture, Manchester has something to offer everyone.
1. Music and Arts
Manchester has a global reputation for its vibrant music scene. With bands like Oasis, The Stone Roses, The Smiths, and Joy division, it is hard to find a city where more music has been produced. With its thriving music and arts scene, there are a wide array of gigs, concerts, and theatre productions that incoming students need to visit at venues like the:
– Manchester Arena
– O2 Apollo/Ritz
– Palace Theatre
– Opera House
With bands and musicals from all over the world performing in Manchester on a weekly basis, it is imperative for you to visit these venues!
2. Northern Quarter
The Northern Quarter is one of Manchester’s trendiest neighbourhoods, and it’s packed with fantastic bars and pubs that are perfect for a night out. Wolf at the Door and Yard and Coop are two of my all-time favourites in NQ, offering cheap delicious food, innovative cocktails, and plenty of student deals that will keep you coming back.
3. John Rylands Library
The John Rylands Library is one of Manchester’s most iconic buildings, and it’s well worth a visit for anyone interested in history, architecture, literature, or simply wanting to feel like they are in Hogwarts! The library’s stunning neo-Gothic architecture is truly breath-taking, and the collection of rare books and manuscripts is fascinating.
4. Manchester’s Museums and Art Galleries
Manchester is home to a wealth of world-class museums and galleries, with my personal favourites being the renovated Manchester Museum, the Science and Industry Museum, the Manchester Art Gallery, and the National Football Museum. Whether you’re interested in art, science, history, or football, there’s something for everyone in Manchester’s museums and galleries.
5. Football Stadiums
Manchester is one of the UK’s football capitals, and there are two major stadiums in the city: Old Trafford, the home of Manchester United, and the Etihad Stadium, the home of Manchester City. Even if you’re not a big football fan, if you’re lucky enough to see a game at one of these iconic stadiums, you will definitely not forget it.
6. Rudy’s Neapolitan Pizza
If you’re looking for the best authentic pizza in Manchester, look no further than Rudy’s. This award-winning pizzeria is my favourite place to eat in the city, and it’s easy to see why. Located on Peter Street, the wood-fired pizzas are a must-have, the atmosphere is lively and friendly, and the prices are reasonable.
Another favoured venue of mine, also located on Peter Street and in various other locations in Manchester is NQ64. As a retro gaming bar in the Northern Quarter, it is not your normal bar, but one that’s perfect for anyone who loves video games, nostalgia, great music, and drinks. The bar is filled with classic arcade games, consoles, and pinball machines, and the drinks menu is just as impressive as the game selection.
8. Albert Schloss
Albert Schloss is a German-style beer hall and restaurant that’s perfect for a night out with friends. With live music from bands and DJ’s every day of the week, you are guaranteed to have a great time. The lively atmosphere, delicious food, and huge selection of beers and cocktails make it one of the most popular venues in the city.
The Printworks is a former printing press that’s been transformed into a vibrant entertainment complex. There are dozens of bars and restaurants to explore, however it is the VUE cinema there that I have utilised the most in my time at Manchester. With extremely comfy recliner seats, the VUE cinema makes a perfect lazy Sunday activity.
10. Trafford Centre
Lastly, the Trafford Centre is one of the UK’s largest and most impressive shopping centres, with hundreds of stores, restaurants, and attractions to explore. Even if you’re not a big shopper, the architecture and design of the centre is truly impressive, and there’s always something going on, from circus events and seasonal activities happening all the time.
Hopefully this list will you an idea of the extensive and fun opportunities that Manchester offers, and whilst these are my personal favourites, this list doesn’t even touch the surface. Manchester is a city that’s full of life and energy, and therefore there’s always something new to discover.
Written by Charlie, current International Business and Management MSc student