A guide to your visit to Manchester
Manchester is the former industrial heart of the United Kingdom and today is one of the most exciting and dynamic cities in the country, with hundreds of thousands of people visiting the city each year for culture, business, sport and more.
If you’re visiting from abroad it’s likely that you’ll be arriving through Manchester International Airport, which services around 26 million passengers annually, with routes to 200 major international destinations and budget flights from EasyJet, Jet2 and more.
There are three main train stations in Manchester City Centre, Piccadilly, Oxford Road and Victoria with direct rail services from across the country including London which takes just over 2 hours direct. The metro link tram and a busy bus network will get you around the city and further afield in the city region from there, if you don’t fancy a stroll in the famously lovely Manchester weather - best bring an umbrella just in case.
The cities architecture is a real mix; from ultra-modern buildings of swanky apartments and new retail to the beautiful gothic architecture of Manchester Cathedral and John Rylands Library, so there’s plenty of Instagram moments as you stroll around the city centre.
There’s museums and galleries aplenty here too for the culture vultures. Top picks are the Manchester Art Gallery and the Whitworth, the Manchester Museum, the Imperial War Museum North, the museum of Science and Industry, The Lowry and the National Football Museum. There’s also a growing number of small independent galleries in areas like the Northern Quarter.
If culture’s you’re thing you might want to visit in June for the Manchester International Festival, the world’s first festival of original, new work and special events, which takes place every other year in venues across the city. But don’t worry if you can’t get over for the festival, on any night in the city you’ll stumble across a gig from exciting upcoming musicians or famous stars, comedians and pretty much whatever else you’re into.
Many people will also know Manchester for the football that’s played there. The city is home to Premier League titans, Manchester United and Manchester City, both of whom bring thousands of people into the city every week for premier league games and visitors from Europe for European club competition matches at Old Trafford and the Etihad Stadium. Both stadiums have daily tours available on most weekdays for visits fans of the beautiful game.