Five highlights from a weekend in Manchester, UK

Located in northwest England, Manchester is a lively, urban city with booming food, music, and nightlife scenes. Museums, sports, theaters, and shopping districts are just a few ways to indulge in all this city has to offer. I recently spent a weekend in Manchester, and here’s what I couldn’t imagine missing out on.

Northern Quarter. Northern Quarter is a perfect area to find accommodation. Restaurants, bars, and shopping are all reachable on foot from several nearby hotels and hostels. This neighborhood is a popular spot for enjoying a night out on the town with a variety of unique and independent bars. You can go on a shopping spree or an afternoon of cafe-hopping. Boasting a fun atmosphere, the Northern Quarter offers plenty to keep you entertained.

Pub Crawl. After experiencing some of the nightlife Manchester has to offer, I quickly learned it’s not a place to spend all night in one bar. There’s endless quirky bars all over Manchester, and many are clustered together making it easy to hit a few in one night.

Canal Street is recognized as Manchester’s LGBT centre packed with fun bars and clubs. We went to Oscars, an intimate bar showing musical film clips. They also serve magnificent cocktails, like the ones below in the photo on the left. In the Northern Quarter, Keko Moku is a funky tiki bar. Order a zombie, a cocktail that is literally on fire. There’s also a handful of bars right next door to Keko Moku. Manchester has a thriving music scene so don’t miss the opportunity for a night out. We went to 42nd Street Nightclub for a DJ playing a mix of alternative tunes.

Eat well. Manchester’s food scene is one to indulge in at full force. The Northern Quarter is packed with cool cafes and trendy restaurants. Manchester boasts the second largest Chinatown in the United Kingdom and the third largest in Europe. It’s situated on Faulkner Street and is marked with an impressive arch. Curry Mile (Wilmslow Road) is a must if you enjoy Indian, Middle Eastern, and Pakistani food. The road also features shisha (hookah) bars and world food markets.

Curry Mile - Manchester, UK
Curry Mile in Manchester, UK.

Afflecks Palace. Afflecks Palace is a building in the Northern Quarter packed with independent stalls and small shops and boutiques. Fancy dresses, costumes, jewelry, records, guitars, and vintage decorations are among a few items you can find in these alternative shops. The building is also home to a hair salon, tattoo and body piercing shop, theater, and cafe. Afflecks Palace is home to some of the most unique, alternative shopping in Manchester.

Escape Room. I’ve been told it rains a lot in Manchester. It rained the whole weekend we were visiting. Experiencing an escape room is a great way to get away from the rain for a bit and test your puzzle and riddle-cracking skills. We went to Lucardo located on the outskirts of Northern Quarter, a perfect location to grab a bite or beer before or after – or heck why not all of the above! The staff at Lucardo was very friendly and made it a fun environment for an interactive game.

Have you visited Manchester, UK? What were you favorite things to do in the city? What would you like to do there?

10 thoughts on “Five highlights from a weekend in Manchester, UK

  1. The place looks great to just hang out.I li plan it out for my next UK visit Museums, sports, theaters are the one to look out. Thanks for sharing

  2. I’ve never heard of Affleks Palace before but it sounds like just the type of place I’d be interested in visiting! I would love to check out the bar scene in Manchester based on the way you described it. I love bar hopping when I travel (and when I’m home) to see as many interesting bars as I can. Great list for visiting Manchester!

  3. Never been to Manchester but would love to. Infact, I have never been to Europe. In a city, part from the usual touristy things I love to walk. I think it brings me closer to the city and how the people live in that city. Did that in Hong Kong and loved a lot 🙂

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