Viewed by many as the capital of the North of England, Manchester is famed for it’s football and music scene. Home to two universities, this young, vibrant and cutting edge city always has ‘something going on’ making this an ideal choice for a celebration of any kind.
Wherever you are travelling from, getting to Manchester is not an issue. You have access to the largest airport outside of London and two major railway stations, Victoria and Piccadilly. The Virgin service will get you from London to Manchester in little over 2 hours but should you choose to drive, the M60 outer ring road will lead you onto the M6 (if you’re heading North or South) or the M62 (East or West) with ease.
Despite having the image of being very wet, the rainfall and number of rainy days in Manchester are surprisingly less than the UK average. As with any city, it puts on a good show when the weather is good in spring and summer but it does also have it’s fair share of dull and grey days.
The great thing about Manchester is just how easy it is to get around; everything in the city centre is generally within a five minute taxi ride. The Northern Quarter or Deansgate are a safe bet for accommodation, as there is a high probability that you will spend a significant amount of your time in these areas. You also have the usual options for stay ranging from low budget (from £16 per person per night) to luxury which will really depend on your budget. Our pick has to be self-catering apartments (from £25 per person per night) for groups larger than four, as there are thousands to choose from in and around the city centre, some which can sleep up to eight people.
You have the obvious choice here of watching a game of football live or even in a city-centre pub, as the atmosphere can be just as electric. But if you fancy more action then quad-biking, clay pigeon shooting and other outdoor activities are available a short distance from the city. The go-karting circuit is within the city centre if you’re short on time but if you’re not, Blackpool Pleasure Beach (Amusement Park) is a excellent day out and only an hour away by train.
Every type of cuisine you can imagine is on offer here. The Deansgate and Oxford Road regions offer the largest and best variety including, of course, the late night takeaways that we’re all too familiar with. If in doubt, you are best heading to Rusholme’s Curry Mile where you will find yourself spoilt for choice with options, but do bear in mind that it is not walking distance from the city centre. Spinningfields also has some good options that are worth a review.
Drink & Party
Spinningfields is best for those of you who prefer an early start and an early finish. You have some great bars and restaurants on offer which all close around midnight. Castlefield is also an option that caters for an older crowd, but this is best reserved for summer stags. You could then venture onto nearby Deansgate Locks.
Deansgate Locks has a small selection of popular late night bars which are all in close vicinity and open until about 3am. You could easily spend your entire night here.
Oxford Road and Deansgate offer very little in the way of clubs, but they do have an excellent choice of bars scattered around, ranging from student to the exclusive types and members only, generally open until the early hours.
Printworks normally caters for a younger audience and has mainly chain restaurants and bars within walking distance of each other. It is generally a safe bet if you experience trouble getting in elsewhere.
Northern Quarter is widely considered the place to be and you could easily find yourself here until it's light. You have a huge array of places to choose from, each varying massively from the next, but do your research and there will undoubtedly be a venue that caters for your taste in music.
It is generally a safe city. Provided that you’re not wearing a Manchester City football shirt in a Manchester United pub on derby day; causing conflict with door staff or dealing with street gangs in Moss Side, you should be okay and certainly better for wear than the Stag at least.