Manchester

Travel guide - Manchester

Manchester is a city in the north of England that is famous for its two football teams: Manchester City and Manchester United. But it was also once a prosperous industrial city, severely affected by the economic crisis of the 1980s. Today, Manchester is a popular tourist destination that is worth visiting for its museums, music and cultural attractions.

Manchester’s monuments, sites and must-see neighbourhoods

During your visit to Manchester, head to the canal district of Castlefield. This where the city of Manchester began, with the construction of a Roman fort called Mancunium. And this is where the city’s industry was developed, too, with the creation of the first industrial canal named Bridgewater Canal. The world’s first public railway, which linked Manchester and Liverpool, also first saw the light of day in this neighbourhood. If you are a fan of street art and urban exploration, make your way to the northern neighbourhoods where you can contemplate works of graffiti on the red brick facades of the abandoned warehouses.
You can also admire neo-Gothic monuments in Manchester, such as the John Rylands Library, the city hall, the Clock Tower and the Manchester Cathedral. Built in a more Greco-Roman style, the Manchester Central Library is also worth a visit, as is the city’s network of underground tunnels.

Manchester, a football capital

Manchester is a city where football is almost its own religion. Its two biggest teams have hosted some of the world’s most famous football players, including Eric Cantona, David Beckham and Cristiano Ronaldo. You can visit the National Football Museum during your stay. Like most museums in England, it is free and offers an exhibition that is accessible to children.
To immerse yourself even further in the city’s football culture, visit the Old Trafford Stadium (Manchester United) in the southwest or Etihad Stadium (Manchester City) in the northeastern part of the city.

Culture, music and museums in Manchester

The Science and Industry Museum (MOSI) is known as one the city’s most beautiful museums. Built in the old train station that was once the end of the Manchester-Liverpool line, it is immense and free to visit! There you can discover old steam machines, different forms of transportation and looms.
Stop by the People’s History Museum to learn more about the labour, union and political struggles that got their start in this city—as did the suffragette movement that eventually led to English women, as pioneers in Europe, being granted the vote in 1918.
You can also visit The Lowry, which is home to an art gallery and theatre, the Manchester Art Gallery and the Whitworth Art Gallery, along with the arts centre known as the Cornerhouse.

Traditional and alternative shopping in Manchester

For your shopping needs, nothing is better than heading to the Trafford Centre or the Arndale shopping centre. The Manchester Craft & Design Centre  is home to designer boutiques. You can also explore the luxurious Spinningfields or Selfridges, the large, traditional English store.
For a more alternative, underground shopping experience, head to Afflecks, in the northern part of the city. Clothing stores, thrift shops, record stores, tattoo and piercing stands and more. Here you will find an atmosphere similar to that of Camden Market in London. Finally, you can also visit Levenshulme Market, in the south, where you will find some fifty different stands and plenty of food options.
And don’t forget that Manchester is also where Oasis, the Gallagher brothers’ band, was born. Stop by Sifters Records, where Liam Gallagher used to buy his records! You can also walk through Burnage, the suburb where Noel Gallagher still lives today.

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