8 Cultural Things to See in Manchester

Manchester is the second biggest city in England and therefore, you will have plenty of things to do here! There is a thousand-year-old history, impressive architecture, and many ways to learn about its art and culture. It is also great for people looking for an escapade with nature or adventurous activities. Here are 8 cultural things to see in Manchester when you visit. Book your flights through Cathay Pacific to have a more hassle-free trip.

8 Cultural Things to See in Manchester - John Ryland  Library

1. Manchester Museum

Manchester Museum is England’s biggest museum that belongs to a university. It is owned by the University of Manchester and it has a collection of 4.5 million items from all over the world. That is quite a lot, right? The main focus is on the sides archaeology, anthropology and natural history. You can also learn about the origins of the city through the special exhibition; it says that Manchester was originally an underwater area and then converted to a swamp. Also, don’t forget to take a look at ‘Stan the Dinosaur’ which is one of the most preserved T-Rex skeletons excavated in 1992 in South Dakota by Stan Sacrison.

2. Chinatown

Chinatown in Manchester is the second-largest Chinatown in the United Kingdom and the third-largest in Europe! It is said that the first settlers came here in the 20th century and started living here peacefully. The main feature of Manchester’s Chinatown is the arch located in Faulkner Street. It was completed in 1987. Today you can see many shops, bakeries and not only the Chinese but also Thai, Singaporean, Malaysian, Japanese shops here. Therefore, if you want to try out Asian meals in Manchester this is the place you should visit.

3. John Rylands Library

John Rylands Library is one of the most famous libraries in Manchester. It was founded in the 1990s by Enriqueta Augustina Rylands in memory of her husband and later, it was merged with the library of the University of Manchester in 1972. The building is itself a masterpiece with its late-Victorian neo-Gothic style. There are over  250,000 printed volumes and one million manuscripts in the John Rylands Library. It has many special collections like Aldine Collection, medieval manuscripts, a copy of the Gutenberg Bible and personal papers of historical figures like Elizabeth Gaskell and John Dalton.

4. Fletcher Moss Botanical Garden

Fletcher Moss Botanical Garden, which is also simply known as Fletcher Moss is one of the best places to spend time with nature in Manchester. This botanical garden was named after the person who donated it to the public, Alderman Fletcher Moss. Fletcher Moss Botanical Gardens has many waterfalls, ornamental sub gardens, rock gardens and many flowers in bloom. It also offers recreational activities for its visitors; there are tennis courts, rugby and football pitches for anyone who enjoys those kinds of games. If you get a little tired of all those activities, you can have a snack and relax in the cafe in the botanical garden.

5. Manchester Art Gallery

Manchester Art Gallery is located on Mosley Street in Manchester city centre. Today, its collection is established in three connected buildings, two of which were designed by Sir Charles Barry with the Greek Ionic architectural style. There are more than 20,000 items on display in the Manchester Art Gallery. Among them are oil paintings, watercolours paintings, sculptures, ceramics, dollhouses and armoury. It also has a great collection of Victorian art and artworks from the French impressionist, Pierre Adolphe Valette who painted in Manchester in the 1990s. You can also check out their official website to know more about the guided tours and temporary exhibitions. The Manchester Art Gallery is open daily from 11.00 AM to 4.00 PM.

6. Heaton Park

Heaton Park is the largest public park in Manchester covering an area of over 600 acres. This place is great to have a picnic with your family or to simply read a book away from the busy city. There are many other attractions in Heaton Park. The Heaton Hall is one of the main highlights; which one of the finest buildings in Manchester built according to the Palladian style with sandstone and stuccoed brick. You can also visit the Animal Center if you are an animal lover! Here you can find goats, pigs, alpacas, donkeys and many other animals. Also, don’t forget to visit the Hazlitt Wood Pond, which is a secluded area with a nice view.

7. Manchester Cathedral

Manchester Cathedral is a very impressive architectural building from the early 13th century and it is located on Victoria Street in Manchester city centre. It was built according to the Perpendicular Gothic style. The Manchester Cathedral is built using three types of stone which is prominent is sandstone and limestone. When you go inside, you can see that the walls are made of a dark purple-brown Collyhurst sandstone while nave floors are made of limestone which contains crinoid fossils. You can also go to the Visitor Center and learn more information about the Manchester Cathedral and the items inside it.

8. Manchester Town Hall

Manchester Town Hall is another iconic building in the heart of Manchester and therefore, chances are low that you will want to skip it! It is a Victorian, Neo-gothic style building that was built in 1877. The design was by architect Alfred Waterhouse. One of the highlights here is the Sculpture Hall which contains statues and busts of people like the contributors Richard Cobden and John Bright, John Dalton and James Joule. You can book a guided tour to explore all of the interiors. Outside the Manchester Town Hall, you can see the Great Abel which is an 85-meter high clock bell tower. It is the sixth tallest building in the city and there are 23 bells in it.

If you have your children with you, you may want to stop by Legoland Manchester, Sealife Manchester or InflataNation Manchester to burn off some energy!

rachel bustin

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