Manchester

Why go there?

Think of Manchester and many people think of football, but there’s more to this city than it’s sporting history. From its proud industrial heritage to its new found architectural fame, this northern city is brimming with vitality.

Key gateways

Airports:

Manchester, John Lennon Liverpool, Leeds Bradford

City map

Key attractions

Stadium tours – Manchester City and Manchester United

A city that is as proud of its football teams as it is its heritage, Manchester boasts two Premiership teams, and two impressive stadiums, both of which offer fascinating tours. So, whether a “Reds” fan, or a fan of “The Sky Blues”, visitors can’t help but be in awe of the sheer scale of these great stadiums.

Websites:

tickets.mancity.com

www.manutd.com

Book on the VisitBritain Shop – Manchester City / Manchester United

Open Top Bus Tour

From the city’s crucial role in the industrial revolution, to the bustling shopping and nightlife of the present day, this 90 minute tour through Manchester features 15 stops – showcasing the city’s science, history, music, art and sport.

Book on the VisitBritain Shop

Website: manchestersightseeingtours.com

The Lowry

The Lowry is vibrant centre for arts and entertainment. Home to the UK’s largest collection of works by L.S. Lowry, one of the best loved British artists of the 20th century, it also offers a programme of theatre, opera, musicals, dance, music, comedy and visual arts – with an ever changing programme of events and activities

Website: thelowry.com

National Museum of Football

For all fans of the “beautiful game” the National Museum of Football is well worth a visit. Free to enter, but with a selection of optional Football+ choices which can be purchased to test your football related skills, this is a great value attraction for the whole family.

Website: nationalfootballmuseum.com

Imperial War Museum North

In a building designed by international architect Daniel Libeskind, this waterfront attraction uses interactive displays to show how lives have been, and still are, shaped by war and conflict.

Website: iwm.org.uk

Still to be discovered

For those who have visited Manchester before, here’s a selection of attractions that they may not yet have discovered:

BBC Studios Tour

A tour of the BBC Studios at MediaCityUK gives a rare peek behind the scenes of some of the country’s favourite TV programmes. There is a dedicated tour for children between the ages of 6 and 11, and a general tour – both of which are highly rated amongst those who visit.

Website: bbc.co.uk/showsandtours

Manchester Museum

With 4 floors of displays and exhibitions featuring over 4000 objects from around the world, Manchester Museum showcases exhibits from natural history and the environment to technology and the environmental, and includes objects as remarkable as dinosaur skeletons and mummies from Ancient Egypt.

Website: museum.manchester.ac.uk

City of Manchester Distillery

Gin is undergoing something of a renaissance in the UK, and the City of Manchester Distillery is part of this exciting trend. Home to Manchester Three Rivers Gin, the city centre’s first distillery and award-winning interactive Gin Experience offers visitors a unique opportunity to appreciate and participate in this gin revolution – and even take home a bottle of personalised gin.

Website: manchesterthreerivers.com

Museum of Science and Industry

On the site of the oldest surviving passenger railway station, the Museum of Science and Industry looks at ideas which changed the world, from the Industrial Revolution to the modern day. Entrance to the museum is free, with just a charge applying to some of the many fascinating exhibitions and special events.

Website: msimanchester.org.uk

Shopping

From big name brands to “one offs”, Manchester is a paradise for retail therapy. Not only is the city home to large shopping centres, and the nation’s favourite department stores, there are bargains aplenty at Cheshire Oaks outlet centre, and a wide range of independent stores in the city’s Northern Quarter.

Website: visitmanchester.com

Just a stone's throw away

The following is just a selection of some of the destinations that can be easily reached from Manchester. For many of them using a Britrail Pass is a simple and cost effective way to get around.

The Peak District

Britain’s first National Park comprises high moorlands and limestone hills, perfect for walking, mountain biking, or spot of caving. This region is also home to the grand stately home of Chatsworth House, and the spa town of Buxton – and all just under an hour away by car, or just under 2 hours by train, from the city centre of Manchester.

Website: peakdistrict.gov.uk

The Lake District

Awarded UNESCO World Heritage Site status in 2017, The Lake District has to be seen to be believed. With lakes and villages, set against the stunning backdrop of the breath-taking mountains, it is little wonder that this beautiful scenery inspired some of the nation’s greatest poets.

Website: lakedistrict.gov.uk

Liverpool

Beatlemania, Anfield Park and the new shops, restaurants and bars of Edge Lane – Liverpool is bursting with things to do. And with more museums and galleries than any other UK city outside of the capital, it’s the perfect spot for a culture-packed visit.

Website: visitliverpool.com

Chester

The city of Chester has the oldest, longest, most complete Roman walls in Britain. A destination, bursting with history, it’s just over an hour away from Manchester by train or car

Website: visitchester.com