Manchester has been a city I have grown to love ever since my little sister did an exchange year there and I visited her. Since then I have visited the city many times, especially since my friends and I became regulars to the close by Rebellion-Festival in Blackpool. Manchester might seem rougher than London and less picturesque, but be assured the café, arts and creativity game is strong here. So if you plan a visit to this city make sure to check out these few of my favourite hangouts.
Common is an all-time favourite of mine and an institution in the northern quarter, having been around for a long time and still being popular with everyone. Its artsy, breezy and a relaxed place to hang out any time of the day. It does a good breakfast, and is a great place to hang out for drinks and food basically anytime of the day. It gets busy in the evenings, but staff is super attentive and fast. (pictured above)
An fairly new addition to the foody-scene in the northern quarter, but a great one. Set in a beautifully renovated brick-house and spreading out over three floors including a tiny rooftop, Trof has the feel of a cozy country-pub that has had a hipster-makeover. They do breakfast, lunch and dinner: food is delicious and most dishes come with a twist, such as their vegan Beet and Pumpkin Wellington.
Like you stepped into Alice’s Wonderland, Sugar Junction is all about flowery tea-cups and layers and layers of cakes. Breakfast, Sandwiches and of course Afternoon Tea – this cute little spot a little hidden in the Northern Quarter has it all.
Just Between Friends
Possibly the best cappuccino in Manchester and my favourite coffee place in the city. Just Between Friends is a fairly new addition to the Manchester coffee scene and a great one. The stylish little shop is mainly catering to a take a away crowd but offers some seating in and outside. They do coffee in all variations and some light meals like cakes, granola for breakfast and sourdough-bread sandwiches, that are just as delicious as their Cappus.
Is it a shopping mall? An art house? A creative space for the angry, young and poor? Affleck’s is a eclectic collections of shops, galleries, cafés. There is vintage fashion, Japanese manga accessories, a tattoo and piercing parlour, band-shirts, punk and goth attire, hipster tote bags and two cute cafés all sprawled out over the four floors of this abandoned former business building. Be warned that you’ll get lost in this maze of too much stuff, but that is part of the fun.
You gotta love the irony of the name and everything else about this tiny little pub tucked away in the underground in what is essentially a public toilet. The crowd at the Temple is a fun, loud one but very friendly and its a great place to listen to music and people-watch. And of course also have a pint or two.
One of my favourite places to hang out in in Manchester the evenings for a few pints of dark fruit cider. Salisbury has the warm and cosy atmosphere of your regular pub, but the musical theme is all rock. You’ll hear your AC/DC, Nirvana, Rancid, there will be your great rock moments like “Bohemian Rhapsody” and your passages down teenage memory-lane with My Chemical Romance or Green Day. The tunes alone sure make for a good night out.