For many Brits, a visit to the north of England isn’t complete without a quick visit to the city of Manchester. It’s one of the country’s most vibrant cultural hubs and has everything that any good city needs - a unique and creative culture, a buzzing nightlife, and plenty of history to boot. When you spend your gap year in this unofficial capital of the north of England, you will certainly not be disappointed!
Sounds just like London, right? Absolutely not! Manchester has a very unique vibe and atmosphere, and many people prefer it to the country’s capital. Sure, it may still be a big city but it is nowhere near as big as the expansive London and it never feels quite as busy and crowded. As there aren’t quite as many tourists compared to in London, you will find that it is much easier to blend in and live like the locals do.
There are so many reasons why Manchester should be your choice of destination for your working holiday - here are just a few of them!
Manchester has quite the reputation for its nightlife. There are hundreds of pubs, bars, and clubs dotted around the city so no matter where you go, you will be able to easily find somewhere to pop into for a drink. The weekends are particularly lively as every Mancunian knows how to party! Whether you want to sample some local craft beers or sip on cocktails all night, you’ll definitely be able to find something for you on the streets of Manchester.
Every city has a hip neighborhood where all the hipsters hang out. But guess what? Manchester doesn’t just have one trendy neighborhood - there are actually a few! The Northern Quarter is probably the first one that springs to mind for most people as it boasts long-established independent shops and bars. It’s also where you will see some of the city’s most colorful street art. One other neighborhood worth checking out is the eclectic Ancoats. There are loads of popular eateries and bars in this up-and-coming part of town. Slightly further out of town is the bohemian Chorlton, while foodies travel even further to get to the popular Altrincham.
Haven For Foodies
Mancunians are also known for their love of food, so there is no surprise that there is a great mix of eateries in the city. From well-heeled fine-dining establishments to more low-key diners, you won’t have to hunt too hard to find a decent meal no matter your budget. One thing you will notice in this city is that the street food is exceptional and there are a few different places you’ll be able to browse food stalls. For instance, the Arndale Food Market and Hatch are both right in the center of the city. Be sure to wash everything down with a pint from local favorite, Dan’s Brewery.
Northerners Are Super Friendly
People from the north of England are known for a lot of things, but the most famous has to be how friendly they are! You won’t find it hard to make friends in Manchester, that’s for sure! And that’s especially the case if you decide to find a pub job on your working holiday - lots of punters love to stand at the bar and chat to the bartender. You can never be sure who you might end up having a chat with!
Easy Links To Surrounding Countryside
You don’t have to hole yourself up in the city. Thanks to Manchester’s convenient location, you will have excellent public transport links to the surrounding countryside. In the surrounding Cheshire countryside, you will be able to discover Quarry Bank, Lyme Park, and Haigh Hall and Country Park. If you fancy some more city action, Liverpool, York, and Leeds aren’t too far away on the train!
Capital Of Sport
We can’t really write a whole piece about Manchester and not mention sport! After all, it’s the home of Manchester United and Man City, two of the biggest football teams in the whole of the UK. There’ll certainly be plenty of chance to catch a game or even just have a good old football chat with a local in a pub. Manchester isn’t just football mad, though - the Mancunians love all kinds of sports, and there will be plenty for you to get involved in!
Manchester really is one of the best cities in the UK - just ask anyone else who has spent a prolonged period of time there. Most people don’t want to leave!