Future Manchester

How many of our hidden (and not so hidden) gems have you visited?

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With the end of semester drawing ever closer, and possibly with it your final few weeks in Manchester, we thought it was a perfect time to highlight just some of our favourite spots across campus and the city that you should definitely consider visiting to help you make the most of our wonderful city.


Take a break in Christie’s Bistro

One of the most beautiful cafes on campus – this old library (as pictured above) wouldn’t be out of place in Harry Potter. Make sure to order their hot chocolate!

The Whitworth

A real gem on campus, the Whitworth is an incredible space, situated in the grounds of Whitworth Park.  With a full programme of exhibitions and events, and a great café, the Whitworth is space for everyone.  

The newly reopened Manchester Museum

You may have seen the queues as the Manchester Museum reopened after it’s amazing refurbishment. This gem in the heart of campus and should definitely be on your list of places to go if you haven’t already. From the vivarium, to dinosaurs and one of the largest collections in the UK of Egyptian and Sudanese artifacts, a wander around the museum is a wonderful way to spend some time relaxing after your exams (or taking some time away from revision).

John Rylands Research Institute and Library

Use it as a study spot, a learning resource, or simply a day out. Whatever you choose, a visit to The John Rylands, with its Neo-Gothic beauty will have you in awe of your surroundings and its history. The current exhibition “Worker’s Playtime” is on until September.

Chill with Turing

Just beyond Sackville Street is the lovely Sackville Gardens, and right in the middle you’ll find a bench space next to a life-size sculpture of Alan Turing. Read about his life while you enjoy the summer sunshine (fingers crossed).

… And a Vimto

Just over the road off Sackville Street, you’ll find Granby row – and there a giant bottle of Vimto, standing proudly at the site of the original factory where the first batch of Vimto was ever made.

It was created in 1908 at 19 Granby Row in Manchester city centre by John Noel Nichols. It was originally sold under the name Vim Tonic, which Nichols shortened to Vimto in 1912.

The giant wooden bottle and berries was first commissioned by J.N. Nichols plc, and carved by environmental artist Kerry Morrison out of an oak tree from a sustainable forest, before being successfully installed in Granby Row in 1992.

University Blue Plaque Tour

Explore the rich heritage of campus by following student Lena’s Blue Plaque Tour, and discover some of the famous happenings and people that have graced our historical buildings. A great way to see some areas of campus you might not have been to!

And beyond…

Ancoats peeps

When you’re wandering through Ancoats, you might notice some brass eyepieces set into the brickwork of the buildings there. Get a bit closer and you’ll find that these peepholes reveal artwork hidden the building architecture. Thing is, nobody really knows what they are, how many or why they even exist. But stumble upon them and you’ll be glad you did, getting a brief look into Manchester’s hidden past.

The Hidden Gem Church

No hidden gem list could ever be complete without mentioning St Mary’s Church, otherwise known as the Hidden Gem. Wander across from the Town Hall and down Brasennose Street for marbled pillars and stained-glass windows and discover possibly the most peaceful spot in the city centre. Plus, don’t forget to check out the famous artwork inside.

Northern Quarter Street Art

Wander round the Northern Quarter and take in the ever-changing street art scene of the Northern Quarter and surrounding areas. Also, you might spot Lemn Sissay’s poem ‘Flags’ along the tiles on Tib Street.

Castlefield Bowl

One of Content Creator Rachel’s favourite spots: “One of my all-time favourite places to visit. This is such a wonderful part of the city that is often very tranquil but can also have a nice low-key buzz of other people taking a break by the canals. I have spent so many moments sat here with a coffee or bubble tea and a book. It’s also lovely to be there in the evening with the lights reflecting onto the water and the subdued party buzz atmosphere in the background from surrounding bars and pubs. If you get the chance, visiting The Wharf is a great stop for a chill and cosy drink too!”

Check out a Makers Market

The Maker’s Market roams various locations across the North West offering a chance to support small businesses selling crafts, jewellery and food and drink. Check the site and make a note of their calendar where you can find them interchangeably in Ancoats, the Norther quarter and  Salford Quays, as well as in Sale, Cheadle, Chorlton and West Didsbury

Whatever your favourite place is, enjoy taking it in and spending time with friends. And, if there’s somewhere that’s not on our list but is definitely on yours – make sure you find time to visit!

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