Oh Manchester! What a city!
So little time, so much to see, do, explore (and most important of all, EAT!!).
So much in fact that it can be a bit overwhelming… But fear not, I went and did all the leg work (quite litterally, see below), so you don’t have to!
Ready for the ultimate weekend getaway guide to Manchester?
How to get there:
From London, you can jump on a train (departing from Euston station) and you’ll be there in just under 2 hours. Easy-Peasy.
Where to stay:
Location, location, location! I can’t quite stress how truly brilliant it is to only be 5 min away from bed when you’re trying to get home with a belly full of burgers and one too many delicious cocktails. And the same obviously goes for excellent coffee / pastries / brunch the next morning. Because priorities.
We stayed in a great room in the Northern Quarter that we rented through Airbnb. Our hosts were lovely, the price was reasonable and the location was absolutely amazing and I highly recommend you give them a shout if you’re heading to Manchester any time soon and are looking for a place to stay!
Manchester has a very efficient (and cheap! You can get a weekend tram pass for about £6!) public transport network.
But then again, you can very well walk to all those places (and get one more slice of cake thanks to all the money + calories you’ll be saving! #winwin)
What to see + do / A few highlights:
Explore the reds & blues of Manchester: As for many cities, my favourite thing to do is just to wander the tiny streets and try to get a feel of what it would be like to live there. And Manchester is perfect for meandering!
If you’re a bit of an architecture nerd (or as much in love with red bricks as I am), Manchester will steal your heart within seconds!
The whole city is an absolute architectural gem.
Most major buildings are built in a Gothic style, but there’s also a few interesting contemporary buildings out there…
And then the street art situation isn’t bad either…
Manchester, home to the oldest public library in the English-speaking world, has many historic libraries and each is more beautiful than the next.
From Chetham’s medieval building, to John Rylands’ Victorian neo-gothic architecture, the Portico Library’s stunning 19th century design and Manchester Central Library’s recent refurbishment, a tour of the Mancunian libraries is a must for book and history aficionado alike!
(very Game of Thrones, don’t you think?)
Football fanatics: Football is somewhat of a religion in Manchester and if you’re into it, you’ll be in heaven!
Whether you’re supporting the Red Devils or the Citizens, there’s nothing quite like watching a live game at home. And if there’s no game when you visit, the Museum of Football makes for a great alternative!
Where to eat + drink:
For brunch: Evelyn’s
Evelyn’s is a small but perfectly formed café in the heart of Manchester’s hipster-dreamland Northern Quarter.
Utterly flooded with light, it’s an Instagrammer’s paradise!
Oh, and they also happen to serve up a near-perfect brunch… AND they take bookings! #miracleshappen Read more
For lunch: Soup Kitchen
Serving up freshly prepared, delicious British café food (think soup, sanwiches, jacket potatoes…), Soup Kitchen is a neighbourhood gem and a Mancurian (and now mine!) favourite come lunchtime! Read more
For tea: Proper Tea
Located right opposite the Cathedral, it’s the most adorable little tea house you’ll ever find.
They serve up fantastic tea & fabulous homemade cakes, making them the perfect spot to rest your worn-out feet (and make good use of all those calories you burnt!!) Read more
For a special occasion: Hawksmoor
Mancurian outpost of London’s famous Hawksmoor group, there’s no better place to go for top-knotch steak & along with all other fancy dinner sheninigang.
Really good cocktails too. And the most indulgent of side dishes (looking at you, pulled pork mac’!! ?)
For burgers: Almost Famous
Possibly the best burgers I’ve ever had anywhere in the world. And god knows I’ve had A LOT!! Read more
For drinks: Dusk til Pawn
One of Manchester’s top cocktail bars, Dusk til Pawn’s creative concoctions are the perfect start (or end!) to an epic night out! Read more
For a snack: Lunya
Part deli, part tapas restaurant, Lunya is any foodie’s dream.
If you’re particularly fond of Spanish food (I like you), then you’ll love it as much as I did.
Here you can buy anything you’d find in your local spanish tienda…
Perfect for a light snack or buying provisions for a picnic!
Anyhting I’ve missed? I’m already noting down ideas for my next trip to Manchester, so let me know!