Manchester was hailed as the world’s first modern city in the early 19th century, and the birthplace of the Industrial Revolution...
... still bristles with confidence and energy today. Whether you're coming for the buzzing cultural scene, one of the two huge football teams, or something else entirely, you'll be joining over 40 million leisure and business visitors a year. Manchester shows no signs of slowing down.
Arriving at Manchester Airport
Manchester is one of the best-connected business and leisure destinations in the country, and its airport has three terminals handling over 23 million passengers a year. With direct flights to more than 200 destinations, and 60 national and international carriers, it’s the third busiest airport in the UK, after London Heathrow and Gatwick.
Train is the quickest and most convenient form of public transport for getting into the city. You can reach the station from the terminals via a covered walkway, and the journey to central Manchester takes around 20 minutes, with regular services seven days a week. You can also join the Metrolink tram network at the station. Trams run every 12 minutes, but they're stopping services that run through the city's southern suburbs. Unless you're heading to that part of town, the train is a better option.
For a cheaper journey, try local bus and coach services, which reach the city centre, in 20 to 35 minutes. Or save your energy for seeing the city and splash out on a metred taxi, available outside all three airport terminals.
Manchester Christmas Markets
From mid-November every year, Manchester’s city centre goes into festive overdrive. Like all the best Christmas markets, this one isn't just about shopping – it also delivers live music, pop-up bars, food stalls and bags of seasonal atmosphere.
Chinese New Year
You'd expect a colourful Chinese New Year display from the city with the UK’s second largest Chinatown, and Manchester doesn't disappoint. The celebrations run for three days every February. Dragon parades and lion dancing are established traditions, refreshed with new customs like street food markets, storytelling and family activities.
Manchester Irish Festival
Manchester has a big Irish community, and St. Patrick’s Day kicks off weeks of celebration that run into mid-March. Offering much more than just green face paint and Guinness, this event is in its third decade, and is the largest festival of Irish culture outside Ireland.
Manchester’s annual summer carnival is held mid-June, and has grown into a vivid celebration of the city's communities and cultural scene. Expect parades, food stalls, live performances and more in locations across the city centre. If you want to see the city come together, this is the time to visit.
Manchester's biggest live music festival takes over Heaton Park for an entire weekend each June. It started life as an indie gig almost a decade ago, and past headliners have included Frank Ocean, Chaka Khan, and George Ezra.