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Manchester - Waterside capital of the North
There is something for everyone in Manchester: art galleries, libraries, museums, shops as well as the Old Trafford Football Stadium. The Quays is a stunning, not to be missed, waterside cultural center, a phoenix that rose out of the derelict docklands. The city is home to the unique neo-Gothic John Rylands Library resembling a church.
Best time for travelling to Manchester
For visiting Manchester during festival time, it has an excellent selection of annual events, including the Jazz Festival at the end of July, with the best of Manchester's jazz musicians and international musicians coming together to produce original music. The city hosts the Manchester Literature Festival in September and October, with live events across the city including readings, special events and book signings. The Manchester Food and Drink Festival takes place with indoor and outdoor events over much of the city during about ten days in September. Being home to the third largest China Town, Manchester draws a huge crowd for the Chinese New Year celebrations in January to February.
You can find out about all the events at the Manchester Visitor Information Centre at Piccadilly Plaza.
Tips before travelling to Manchester
The cost of living in Manchester is generally less expensive than in London but about average for the UK.
Manchester local information
Travel by train to the city center from Manchester Airport station to Manchester Piccadilly in about 15 minutes at a cost of around £4.50. The Metrolink journey to central Manchester takes about 35 minutes, also costing around £4.50, or take the Number 43 bus. There are taxi ranks at Terminal 1. With an approximately 25 minute travel time the taxi fare to the center is around £18. Manchester has budget accommodation from around £15 per person in a shared room. The cost of a 3 Star hotel starts from around £60 per room. The city's sights can be explored on foot. Otherwise, for getting about there are trams and buses. The Metroshuttle bus is free and operates on three routes which serve all the major central areas. Stagecoach buses cost about £1.50. You can buy a tram day ticket for about £5. Transport for Greater Manchester (TfGM) sells the System One or "any bus day ticket" which are valid on all buses regardless of the operator. Taxis are cheaper in Manchester than London. Traffic in the city can be very slow.