Destinations / City Breaks / Manchester
One of the UK's largest Metropolitan areas, Manchester has a population of 2.6 million inhabitants. A huge player in the Industrial Revolution, one of the most impressive parts of the industrial heritage, Ancoats, is a collection of mills which spun cotton, housed a glass industry and a chemical works. This was once called the 'Workshop of the World'. It's easy to understand why the city is thought to have been the influence for Charles Dickens' novel "Hard Times".
Many interesting landmarks include Castlefield, site of a Roman Fort and Bridgewater Canal (1761); Victoria Baths, neoclassical Central Library and the former Daily Express Building, an Art Deco gem. Manchester can claim to be home to the world's first railway; it hosted the first meeting of the Trade Union Congress and was the place where scientists first spilt the atom. In nearby Ramsbottom, the iconic Peel Tower is a tribute to Sir Robert Peel, founder of the Metropolitan Police Force. Equally, the borough of Salford close by was the birthplace of L.S Lowry, the renowned painter of "Matchstick Men". A thriving performing arts and culture tradition in the city is visible in the Manchester Opera House, Royal Exchange Theare, Whitworth Art Gallery and Palace Theatre.
Old Trafford The Theatre of Dreams is a fluttering sea of red and white scarves as Manchester United supporters warm up for a big game and, not too far away, the City of Manchester Stadium is home to Manchester City football club. A frenetically, fanatically football mad city, it would seem that Manchester blue or red has the Premier League all sown up.
A vast musical heritage includes the Halle and BBC Philharmonic symphony orchestras, a chamber orchestra and a marvellous of brass band music heritage. The musical scene also has been inspired by Oasis, The Smiths, Joy Division ,New Order and The Stone Roses. The 1960's icons, The Hollies, Herman's Hermits and the Bee Gees all hailed from here and, today, the Manchester Evening News Arena is the largest music venue in Europe. The Royal Northern College of Music is the only UK "conservatoire" cited as a centre of excellence in teaching and learning and you can hear free student recitals almost daily.
Not forgetting telly fans, Manchester is home to Granada TV which produces the longest running and best loved programme "Coronation Street" - the world's oldest soap. Heaton Park is a vast green swathe in the north of the city and is Manchester's healthy lung - a perfect afternoon escape to stroll the gorgeous gardens. A super city for shopping, Manchester has all the brand stores, designer boutiques and malls. In fact, the city has something to offer just about everyone. Manchester is a winner!
Did you know...?
Manchester has 2 Premier League Team: Manchester City and Manchester United
The atom was first split in Manchester in 1917
Oasis and Joy Division hail from Manchester
Top Reasons to Visit Manchester
- The Arts
- Its Vibrant Town Centre
- From Football to Shopping
Manchester's Music Scene: The Smiths, The Stone Roses, Oasis, Joy Division, Elbow. Do we need to say more? The best musicians from Manchester show what talent is in the city. Head to a concert, go to a pub, listen to music.
Art Galleries: Being a rather creative city, full of artists and musicians, no doubt that there are great art galleries around the city as well. Check out Manchester Art Gallery that was started in 1823, and the 100 years younger Gallery of Costume.
Royal Exchange Theatre: If you’re into theatre, do not miss a show at the Royal Exchange Theatre. With its special setup, no seat is further away than 9 meters from the stage, making it the largest ‘theatre in the round’ in the country.
Its Vibrant Town Centre
Manchester Canal Street: Better known as Gay Village, this part of Manchester seems rather quiet during the day and lights up at night. Themed nights at reasonable prices make it the best spot to head for a great night out.
China Town: Pass through the iconic Chinese archway and head into the third largest China Town in Europe. There are lots of Chinese restaurants and supermarkets around. During Chinese New Year the whole place turns into a huge celebration.
St. Peter Square & Library: Not to confuse with the one in Vatican City, Manchester's St. Peter's Square is where the beautiful Manchester Central Library is located. The impressive building features a neoclassical rotunda, which is rather unusual in the North.
Manchester Town Hall: Completed in 1877, the town hall is built in a new-gothic architecture and one of the architectural highlights of the city. Enter the building and be blown away by the interior: fairy tale stairways and stunning archway windows.
From Football to Shopping
Football Museum & Stadiums: When in Manchester, football is something that you can’t ignore. In the Football Museum, you’ll learn about the importance of football in the city. If you’re a real fan, visit the Old Trafford Stadium or the Etihad Stadium, depending on your preference.
Trafford Centre & Sea Life: This is a must for some retail therapy. The massive building strikes with a beautiful interior, loads of shops, a massive food court and a cinema. Sea Life has over 5,000 creatures living underneath the surface of the oceans.
St. Ann’s Square: Another one for the shopping queens: brand boutiques, cute little shops and all that in narrow street and beautiful small passageways. Also home to St. Ann’s Church, a wonderful Parish Church with beautiful stained glass windows.
Manchester Airport Transfers & Weather
You can get the train, which is a short walk from the terminal. It takes approx. 20 minutes and stops at Manchester Piccadilly. It departs every 10mins and costs £6 per journey.
Alternatively, you can take the bus to the city. Departing every 10mins, it takes approx. 45mins to 1hr 15mins and costs approx. £4.
You can also get your own private transfer which takes approx. 30mins and costs approx. €50pp return based on 2 people sharing.
* Prices and times for transport from the airport are subject to change