As one of the top cities in the UK, there are many fun things to do in Manchester and the city caters for all types of visitor’s needs.  With one of the best city centre shopping facilities on offer in the UK, a famous nightlife and a world famous sporting scene, you might need more than the weekend to take in all that this cosmopolitan city has to offer.


There are many shopping places in Manchester boasting a huge selection of shopping opportunities.  Taking aside the shopping oasis of the out of town  shopping centre that is the Trafford Centre, Manchester offers store upon store of high street favourites that litter the city centre streets as well as the UK’s biggest city centre shopping centre – the Arndale.   Or for the more quirky items, head down to Manchester’s trendy Northern Quarter where you will find anything from independent fashion stores, record stores, homeware stores and vintage shops.  Alternatively, you can splash the cash at Spinningfields, an area purpose built to host the best names in designer clothes, including Armani, Mulberry and DKNY or head over to the high end department stores of both Harvey Nichols and Selfridges, who offer a host of top designers under one roof.


Over the years Manchester has become known as the city of sport and this is a well deserved reputation.  As the location of two of the world’s best football teams, Manchester United and Manchester City, both teams have played their part in putting Manchester on the sporting map.  With both teams offering stadium tours, you don’t need to wait for a match day to see the huge arenas that these star football teams play in! 

Manchester is also home to Old Trafford Cricket Ground, as England’s second oldest Test Cricket venue, a visit to Old Trafford Cricket Ground is sure to delight any cricket fan.  Or if cycling is more up your street, cycling enthusiasts travel far and wide to visit the National Cycling Centre in Manchester, which includes a velodrome and is also the home of Team Sky!

Lastly, if after visiting all the sports venues still hasn’t satisfied your hunger for sport knowledge, head down to the National Football Museum located within the city centre and uncover the past of England’s favourite sport.


As an extremely cultural city, a visit to one of the museums in Manchester will not disappoint.  Explore Manchester’s Roman history, marvel at the impact of the Industrial Revolution on the city, or learn about the women’s suffrage movement at one of the many museums on offer.  More museums in Manchester can also be found slightly outside the city centre, including the Imperial War Museum located at Salford Quays.  With 2 million visitors a year to Manchester’s museums and art galleries, Manchester makes for a fantastic city trip if it’s culture that you’re after.


With a rich history, Manchester is highly regarded for it’s architecture that can be found around the city, showcasing buildings from the Victorian era through to contemporary design with many buildings attributed to the former Cotton Mills, many of which remain visible today.  Manchester’s Town Hall holds a Gothic revival style and is regarded as one of the most important Victorian buildings in the UK and definitely worth a visit.  More modern examples of architecture can be found in the Urbis building, as a museum and exhibition centre, Urbis contains around 2,200 horizontal glass panes and forms an iconic building of Manchester city centre.  Another example of the modern architecture of Manchester can also be found in the Beetham Tower, containing a Hilton hotel, offices and apartments, this building is the largest building in Manchester as well as the tallest residential building in Europe, and plays a significant part in the Manchester skyline.

Music and Entertainment

Manchester has spawned many of the UK’s greatest music artists including Oasis, Joy Division and The Smiths, as well as popular bands such as Take That and The Bee Gees and is still providing great entertainment to this day.  From the upcoming sounds of Night and Day and The Deaf Institute, to the jazz and blues of Matt and Phred’s and Band on the Wall, Manchester offers a number of high profile small music venues that only add to the intrigue and trend setting nature of the city.

If West End shows are more up your street, then take a look at what’s on at the theatres in Manchester, with many West End shows touring or previewing at the Manchester theatres, there’s often a musical, show or play that you can enjoy. 


As a cosmopolitan city, an array of culinary delights is expected when visiting Manchester and this it does deliver.  For celebratory meals or a real fine dining treat, take a look at Manchester House where you can sample fine dining with a Manchester twist thanks to celebrity chef Aiden Byrne, or pay a visit to Australasia where pacific dining takes place in an extremely trendy environment.  Or if you are looking where to eat in Manchester for a lower budget, Croma offers a delightful menu of pizzas with unusual toppings, including an all day breakfast, and Ning, located with the Northern Quarter, offers a delicious Malaysian menu and is often frequented by locals and those in-the-know.


Popular with celebrities, Manchester’s nightlife caters for all tastes and budgets.  If you’re looking for an evening of cocktails with the girls then try Kosmonaut, located in the Northern Quarter and serving up a selection of popular and original cocktail creations, or Tusk, also located in the Northern Quarter this serves up an African atmosphere with delicious cocktails to suit. 

For those looking for a trendy place to dance the night away in then Deansgate is a popular choice for many and is the location of many a celebrity’s night out.  From the upscale bars of Mojo and The Liar’s Club to the clubbing spots of The Bijou Club and Suede, Deansgate will keep you dancing all night.

And for those looking for a place to relax and enjoy a typical northern pub, The Circus Tavern is voted as one of the best pubs in the UK and crams an awful lot into such a tiny space – all adding to the atmosphere of course!  Or those looking for a wide selection of whisky (over 200), great ales and a good atmosphere should try The Briton’s Protection – voted Manchester’s best pub two year’s on the row, it’s definitely worth a visit.

Trains to Manchester

Traveling to Manchester by train with East Midlands Trains is easy and convenient with our Sheffield to Liverpool Lime Street service offering trains to Manchester Picadilly station.  Plus, if you book in advance you may find that your ticket is cheaper than you think!

Book your train tickets to Manchester