Manchester! What a city. Last week I spent much of the week, and all of the weekend, re-living some of my best student days in and around Manchester. Except now, I have a little more pocket money to spend at sustainable restaurants, hotels, and on vintage clothes… Here’s my sustainable travel guide to Manchester, one of my favourite places in the North of England.
What To Do In Manchester: 5 Must-Sees In The City
Manchester is home to so much: historical sites, cultural spaces, second-hand stores, and as we found out, some of the best food in the country. If you’re planning to visit the Northern city, I would recommend planning your trip at least a week in advance. Restaurants get booked up quickly – even on week nights – and it’s clear that the city is a bustling metropolis, with a lot of people out and about at any given time.
1. Stay at Selina
When it comes to finding somewhere to stay, my best recommendation is Selina, a hostel located in the Northern Quarter. Here, you can find private rooms at half the price of most hotels of the same standard – we booked The Loft, which came with a kitchenette, desk area, living area, and generous floor space.
2. Book In At These Restaurants…
If you only try one restaurant while in Manchester, make it Erst. Here, I had food that made me laugh it was so good. The delicious small plates, the amicable service, and the reasonably priced menu made it a 10/10 experience.
Other great restaurants we visited included El Gato Negro, a delightful three-storey Spanish tapas bar on the fancy King Street, The Refuge, a hotel with multiple eateries, and Rudy’s Pizza in Ancoats, an incredibly popular pizza place (for good reason). We were unable to book in at Rudy’s, but managed to score a walk-in table, and the staff definitely try their best to fit everyone in.
3. Go Second-Hand Shopping
Manchester is known for its textile industry, and while it’s a bit of a shame that so many fast fashion brands are located there, it does have one upside: the second-hand shops! Norther Quarter is home to the majority of these, and I’ve outlined my favourite second-hand shops in Manchester in a wider guide to help you navigate these.
4. Go For Brunch
Manchester has a strong brunch scene. Whether you want a greasy-spoon-style joint, or a delicate patisserie, they have it. Check out my favourite Mancunian brunch spots – yes, I wrote a whole guide because they were just that good.
5. Support The Independent Shopping Scene
Finally, get yourself off the beaten path and over to some independent shops! From the bougie knick-knacks at Deadstock General Store and contemporary menswear at Oi Polloi, to sustainable fashion at Beaumont Organic and peaceful interiors at Form, Manchester is home to some brilliant independents.
Of course, there’s also a huge nightlife scene, from jazz bars to clubs, as well as great cinemas, and art and history museums! This is another successful trip to add to the list of my favourite eco holidays around the UK, and boy it was a good one. I hope you enjoy it as much as we did!