When you hear Manchester football definitely comes to mind. However, the great British city has much more to offer and deserves to be known for its historical charge, the architectural beauty of the buildings, its artistic value, but also the fun it hides. A vacation here can be everything you want!
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To get from the airport to the central area of the city (about 13 km away) you will have several options, so don't worry about this aspect. Most tourists choose the train, the fastest and cheapest option, because the journey will only take 15 minutes and you will pay £3.20. You can also choose to go by bus, either by line 103, either by private route Stagecoach 43, in which case the price remains the same, but the time increases: 45 minutes. Of course, you also have the option of taking a taxi, and the journey will cost around £20.
What do you use to get around Manchester?
As for transportation in the city, of course, the most affordable option is public transportation, mainly composed of buses and the subway. The ticket costs £1.40 and a day pass £7.10, and you can buy tickets or a pass directly from the driver, at counters in town, in shops that have PayPoint or online. If you're planning your trip over the weekend you can purchase a weekend pass for just £6.80. There are even 3 buses running in the city center (lines 1, 2 and 3) and the trip is free! You can read more about public transport here:
If you want less hassle you can choose the taxi, and the fare for one kilometer is £1.22, plus a standard starting fare of £2.30. Of course, there is also the possibility renting a car, and fees start at £20 per day. You can compare the prices of several companies here.
The accommodation offer is very wide in Manchester, as you will find here from hostels or apartments, up to 5-star hotels. Prices for a room for 2 people start from 30€ per night, but if you want to stay in a central area, with more facilities available (something we also recommend to be closer to the main attractions tourist attractions, and take advantage of the atmosphere in the heart of the city), you will pay a minimum of €50 per night.
Here are some recommendations of places that will not disappoint you:
- Ibis Budget Manchester can be an attractive option for bargain hunters, as you will be able to find rooms starting from as little as €35 per night.
- Piccadilly Central it is right in the heart of the city, and for only 60€ per night you will be close to any tourist attraction, and you will stay in a hotel with a retro feel.
- Britannia Hotel it's a 3-star hotel straight out of the movies. If you are looking for an aristocratic atmosphere, elegance, and want to feel the center of attention, this is your answer! The price to sleep a night among the chandeliers, golden railings and marble is only €70 per night.
If you are up to 4 people and prefer the freedom of your own apartment, we have found an offer not to be missed. This central apartment offers tourists a large and very welcoming space for only €120 per night.
You should also consider purchasing a tourist card if you want to benefit from exciting discounts and offers, but also hassle-free. The most advantageous offer is the Manchester Pass a tourist card, which gives you free entry to several tourist attractions, tours, discounts and free public transport. A one-day card costs €45, for two days it will cost €65, and for three days €85, and you can find out more here.
If you want to make the most of your time here, it's best to leave with a well-established plan of what you want to see. For this reason, I have prepared a proposed itinerary for three days spent here, which you can follow.
Of course, the place to start exploring Manchester is right downtown, which occupies a fairly large territory. You will have the opportunity to enter the local atmosphere, between historic buildings surrounded by modern constructions, groups of tourists and even the specific hustle and bustle. We recommend that you walk without a fixed route, letting yourself be carried by your own steps. You will probably also end up in Albert Square, where you will notice a fascinating building
Manchester Town Hall
Built in the 19th century, it has a truly imposing exterior, and inside you can admire specially designed rooms that describe the history of the city and even embody its main attractions, as well as a collection of remarkable murals.
It is 10 minutes' walk away Manchester Cathedral, built in the 15th century, which carries the medieval air and the image of the specific architecture of Great Britain. It's not just the outside that's gorgeous, it's also worth taking a look inside, where you'll find murals, statues, stained glass windows and gold details. It is open daily from 9:30 am to 4:00 pm and entry is free.
National Football Museum
And because, after all, football is what made Manchester famous, you need to include something specific in your itinerary from your first day here. What better place than right National Football Museum, located only 5 minutes from the Cathedral? Trophies, gear, highlight videos, and even the game's first rule book are kept here. Of course, hands-on activities are also available to visitors, and entry costs £11 (free with Manchester Pass), and is open daily from 10am to 5pm.
Market Street and Exchange Square
And because you are right next to it Market Street and Exchange Square, the city's most famous shopping spots, don't miss the opportunity to stop for some souvenirs. You'll find everything from local shops and boutiques to international luxury brands, so you're sure to leave here with something to your taste. But if you're looking for a mall, go to Manchester Arndale, also located in Exchange Square, the biggest mall in the city, with over 240 shops and restaurants.
And if the evening catches you here, you can spend a few hours in the area Printworks (5 minutes from Exchange Square) where Manchester's most popular bars and restaurants are located. You're guaranteed to have fun here, along with tourists and cheerful locals, with whom you'll make some great memories!
You can start your next day from Castlefield, an urban heritage park, one of Manchester's most popular and interesting neighborhoods, for which you must reserve a few hours. The pedestrian area gives you the opportunity to enjoy the buildings of the Victorian era, in the setting of the water of Bridgewater Canal, near lively bars. The ruins of the Roman fort are also found here Mamucium, Castlefield Art Gallery, and if you want something more romantic you can take a boat tour, for around £15. Lines 1, 3, 33, as well as 6 metro routes run nearby.
Museum of Science and Industry
Another interesting place you should check then is Museum of Science and Industry, which you can find 5 minutes from Castlefield. If you are passionate about the evolution of technology you will surely be delighted to see everything from steam washing machines to prototype airplanes and tanks. The museum can be visited daily between 10:00 and 17:00, and the entrance is free.
John Rylands Library
It is another 10 minutes' walk away John Rylands Library, a place you should not miss, an objective with historical, cultural and architectural value. The building that houses the approximately 100,000 books, documents, maps and sketches (some of priceless value) is considered to be among the most beautiful neo-Gothic buildings, with an interior of particular beauty. Anyone is fascinated by the entire framework created! You can visit it from Wednesday to Saturday, between 10:00 and 17:00, and the entrance is free.
Manchester Art Gallery
And for those passionate about art, it will be a fascinating place Manchester Art Gallery, located 10 minutes from the Library. The place is a real treasure of art, as it houses works from all historical periods, some internationally renowned. And here the entrance is free, and you can visit it from Tuesday to Sunday, between 10:00 and 17:00.
Old Trafford Stadium
For your last day in Manchester we have prepared a slightly different route for you. The first stop is the most famous place in Manchester: Old Trafford stadium. Don't worry, it's open to the public even when there aren't matches, and you can enjoy tours and interesting activities in the place where football history was written for £27 between 09:30 and 16:00: 00. You will be able to get here with buses 255, 256, 263 or the Navy, Pink or Purple metro lines.
IWM Museum North
If you then take the X50 bus for 5 stops you will arrive at IWM Museum North, a place that combines modernity, through the building built in a unique style, with history. The museum tackles the theme of the Second World War, letting you teleport back several decades. Entrance is free, and you can visit the museum daily between 10:00 and 17:00.
It is a very interesting shopping and leisure centre, which is on the list of the most visited places in Manchester, perfect to end your trip. It doesn't look like an ordinary mall at all, and its size will amaze you. You will find here, in addition to the classic shops and restaurants, a swimming pool, a mini-golf course and even palm trees, all in a very beautiful building. To get here take the X50 bus or the Red metro line.
If you are still in Great Britain, you must also try the native version of some dishes already known here, because you will be amazed by the difference in taste. Some of these preparations are Fish and Chips, English Breakfast or Bangers and Mash (sausage puree). For dessert you must try Manchester tart, with raspberry jam and coconut. And of course, you have to accompany everything with a english tea.
As for the places where you can stop, such a big city offers you a lot of possibilities, so you will find suitable places for all tastes. For example, if you are looking for an elegant atmosphere we can recommend it Dishoom Manchester, if you like Asian food MyLahore, for very affordable fast food dishes Northern Soul Grilled Cheese, and a safe option for anyone, as it is on the tourist charts, is The Laundrette. Of course, we also recommend a bar: Three Little Words.
Manchester deserves the attention of tourists not only for football, but for its entire value. A holiday here, in any month of the year, offers you a complete experience: history and modernity, culture and fun, art and sport. It is a city with an intriguing air, where everyone can find themselves!