Student Weekly Tips: Making the most of the summer break — things to do in Manchester over summer (or before you leave!)
Whether you’re staying over the break, have a bit of time left before you go home for the summer or are leaving for good, here are some suggestions of fun things to see and do in Manchester this summer!
Places to eat
“One of the many benefits of Manchester being so diverse is the range of food we have from all different cultures! I would definitely recommend taking a trip to Chinatown or even Corn Exchange to try food from all around the world. If you’re feeling less adventurous and just want some yummy food and drinks, there are great spots on Peter Street and Ancoats. If you have a sweet tooth, I’d personally recommend La Vie Café — the waffles are out of this world! But after a walk around town, you’re bound to find some amazing spots you’ll really enjoy!” — Iqra, Speech & Language Therapy
“There are a lot of nice places to go for a coffee in the Northern Quarter. Ezra & Gil is one of the most popular cafes; as well as an interesting selection of drinks, they have a varied brunch menu too. If you’re after something sweet, 2 of my favourite places to go for dessert are Wasabi Dessert Bar in Chinatown, which has a good range of authentic Asian desserts, and Sweet Talk, just off Oxford Road. The latter is a bit more pricey but they have things you may not have tried before, like herbal jelly and taro ball bowls, and coconut milk with purple sweet potato. Also, the décor is cute and it’s just a lovely setting for a dessert room!” — Olivia, Psychology
“I quite like Café 19, it has fluffy pancakes, and the breakfast is delicious. There are also a few markets such as Levy Market. Take the time to discover all that Manchester has to offer and take a chance to try something new. I’ve never been obsessed with bubble tea before, but now that I have tried brown sugar bubble tea, I quite like the taste. I want to try a tearoom over the summer; I would especially love the pastries and lovely atmosphere.” — Salma, Politics & International Relations
Things to do
“Personally, I like doing lots of sports and excursions during the summer, so here are some tips:
If the weather is nice, maybe have some fun with watersports. I have tried out the Trafford Watersports Centre (Sale Water park), where you can do things like kayaking or paddle boarding. With the weather being nice, it might also be worth going for a hike in the Peak District. You can, for example, go to Edale, which takes approximately 45 minutes by train from Manchester Piccadilly. From Edale, a popular hike is to Kinder Scout. Have a look at some maps beforehand to plan your trip. (Tip: To find the beginning of the hiking routes, walk past the Edale Mooreland Centre (visitor’s centre), with lots of routes starting off walking a little bit of the Pennine Way, which begins next to the pub called ‘The Old Nags Head’). Remember to bring enough water and potentially waterproofs when hiking.
Something not directly in Manchester, but a short train ride away, near Liverpool, you can enjoy the sunshine at the beach. Crosby Beach has beautiful sand and some sculptures (‘Another Place’). However, if you want to go for a swim, do not go there, as the muddy ground makes it impossible to swim! But I’m sure you can find beaches nearby that allow for swimming if you want to.” — Isabella, Materials Science & Engineering
“If you fancy a bit of a challenge with your friends, try an escape room! You’re ‘locked’ in a room for 60 minutes and must work as a team to find clues and solve puzzles in order to get out. There are loads of different themes you can do, from Wild West to zombies and magic. Breakout and Escape Hunt are 2 of the ones you can do in Manchester. You can usually get student discount if you go between Monday and Thursday. It’s a fun way to spend an hour whilst testing yourselves at the same time.” — Olivia, Psychology
“I like to simply take strolls in parks or around parts of the city in Manchester. Over the past weekend, I was walking around with my friend and we both discovered a Manchester flower shop around Ancoats. It was quite lovely and I’ve made a note to look up flower markets or displays in the future as it was a great experience.” — Salma, Politics & International Relations
Places to visit
“For something non-typical for summer, the indoor ice rink in Altrincham (Planet Ice) is open all year-round. The benefits of going ice skating in summer is that it is usually less crowded and it gives you a chance to cool off. But remember to bring a sweater for inside. Altrincham also has a nice food market hall which you can check out.” — Isabella, Materials Science & Engineering
“A spot I would definitely recommend is Beech Road, full of independent cafes, bars and fun spots to hang out. It is not too far from Chorlton Water Park, which is also fun for picnics and relaxing — especially after a stressful exam season — if the Manchester weather permits it!” — Iqra, Speech & Language Therapy
“I like to visit some of the stores that are more local and lesser-known, and I quite like to discover the shops around the city centre. There are very lovely smaller shops that hold vinyl records, manga, vintage books, music and so on. I recommend taking a day trip as well via the train to some of the places that have lovely scenery, such as the Lake Peak District.” — Salma, Politics & International Relations
We hope you enjoyed reading this week’s tips. Whether or not you’re staying in Manchester, have a lovely summer! Make sure to have fun and most importantly, take some time off from your busy schedules to just unwind and relax — you deserve it!