From its vibrant music scene to its bustling bars and restaurants, Manchester is a diverse and creative city with plenty to do and see – no matter your budget. Whether you’re a seasoned city girl or a weekend road tripper, here’s our list of top 10 things to do under £10 in one of the UK’s most-loved urban centres.
1. Get cultured at the Manchester Art Gallery
Located right in the centre of the city, the Manchester Art Gallery hosts a great selection of free art, photography, fashion and film as well as a wonderful gift shop. Current exhibitions include a showcase of Mary Quant’s iconic retro designs and a display of various stunning impressionist paintings.
2. Catch a film at HOME
From blockbusters to indie flicks, this is the place to catch a movie on a budget. Just a short walk from the city centre, HOME also hosts festivals, seasons, events and discussions on cinematic themes and films, making it a must-visit for budding film buffs – see the website to find out more and book tickets.
3. Reach new heights at Rock Over Climbing
For a more energetic activity, test your skills and agility at a bouldering session at Rock Over Climbing. Described as rock-climbing stripped down to its raw essentials (no ropes or harnesses!), bouldering is a fun way to keep fit and work out with your BFFs. The centre is a short walk from Manchester Victoria Station, and sessions cost between £7.50 and £9 – or register online for even cheaper entry.
4. Admire the exotic at Fletcher Moss Park and Botanic Gardens
For a bit of fresh air, take the metro down to Didsbury and get back to nature at the beautiful Fletcher Moss Park and Botanic Gardens. Filled with wonderful plants and flowers from all over the world, it’s the perfect spot for a walk – just grab a coffee and get ready to turn your Instagram feed up a notch.
5. Raise the barre at KNT Danceworks
Leotards at the ready! Home to the prestigious Northern Ballet School by day, KNT Danceworks also offers classes to dancers of all ages, from ballet to jazz and tap. A short walk from Oxford Road Station, it’s the perfect place to learn some new moves with friends – catch a class for just £6.
6. Spend some spend in Ziferblat
Whether you’re shopping or sightseeing, a coffee break is a total no-brainer – so why not opt for something a little different? Located in the city’s Northern Quarter, Ziferblat is a café concept like no other – everything inside is free, except for the time you spend in there which costs 6p per minute. Eat and drink as much as you like, or grab your laptop and headphones and make it your cool new study place.
7. Have a laugh at The Frog & Bucket
A venue that launched the careers of some of our favourite comedians (think Peter Kay and Johnny Vegas), this cool club in the Northern Quarter is the perfect place to spend an evening in Manchester. Catch an open mic night for just £3 or hit the weekly Thursday Night Live for £10.
8. Wander through the bookshelves at the John Rylands Library
If you’ve ever wished you owned a book collection like Belle from Beauty & The Beauty (we know we have), the John Rylands Library is a must-see for literary fans. An architectural landmark in Manchester’s city centre, the building’s impressive neo-gothic exterior offers a taste of what you can expect inside – spectacular, high-ceilinged rooms, stained glass windows and over 200,000 books to get lost in.
9. Strike it lucky at the Dog Bowl
Whether you’re hanging out with friends, family or having a date with bae, bowling is always a winner. From its hip neon lights to its gleaming wooden floors, Dog Bowl is a bowling alley with an extra dose of cool that serves up freshly-shaken cocktails and tasty Tex-Mex food while you play. Prices range between £4-£8, and students bowl half-price with a valid student ID.
10. Grab a pizza at Rudy’s
After wandering round art galleries, watching the latest films and exploring the gems of the Northern Quarter, you might start to feel a bit peckish. Head to Rudy’s, arguably the best pizza spot in town, and treat your taste buds to fresh, authentic Neapolitan pizza with prices starting at just £4.90. Yes, please!