Travel to Manchester England – Episode 660

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Travel to Manchester England (Podcast)

Hear about travel to Manchester England as the Amateur Traveler talks to Helena Ringstrom from fountainoftravel.com about her adopted home.

Helena is originally from Sweden but came to Manchester to study and has been there for 8 years.

Helena says, “when people think of England they often think of very historic cities. You have the likes of York or Chester. Manchester isn’t like that. Manchester didn’t actually become a city until 1853. It’s quite a young city. It’s got quite a modern history. There wasn’t really much happening in Manchester until the industrial revolution. For modern visitors, you have that combination of industrial history but then you have a young spirit in the city itself. It is very much regenerating at the moment. You have a lot of new food establishments opening up. You have a lot of students. It is a big university city. And obviously, you have football which I am sure everyone loves. You have that juxtaposition of old and new that makes it a really interesting place to visit.”

Helena recommends that you can easily spend 5 days in the city and then do some day trips to fill up a week-long trip.

She starts us in the Northern Quarter which is a center for cafes, bar culture, vintage shops, and independent businesses. With its fire escapes and red brick buildings, it is often used as a filming destination as a stand-in for New York. The area is also well known for its street art. Helena recommends Manchester food walks tours as a great introduction to the Northern Quarter. Have a quick dinner at Mackie Mayor which is an indoor market.

Nearby neighborhood Ancoats is only recently being renovated into a new area with bars and restaurants.

The Science & Industry Museum is located on the site of the world’s first passenger railway station. It is an interactive museum spread across 5 buildings where you can learn more about Manchester and the industrial revolution. At one point Manchester processed 65% of the world’s cotton. Next door you can find a very different experience at The Crystal Maze. This is an experience based on a game show from the 1990s.

Even though Manchester did not develop until the industrial revolution, it was a Roman fort and nearby the Science & Industry Museum is the ruins of Roman Mamucium.

Make sure you make a stop at the beautiful John Rylands Library which Helena says looks like it was plucked from a Harry Potter film.

Manchester Cathedral was built in the 1400s but was heavily damaged in WWII. Check out the more modern stained glass windows like the “fire window”.

Around the University area in South Manchester, you can visit the Manchester Museum and the Whitworth Art Gallery as well as the Pankhurst Centre dedicated to one of England’s leading suffragettes.

For a side trip, Helena recommends a visit to Salford where the Manchester ship canal originally ended at Salford Quays. Also in Salford is The Lowry museum dedicated to “matchstick men” artist LS Lowry. There are 5 Imperial War Museums in England. Three are in London but one, the Imperial War Museum North, is in Salford. You can also take in a football game.

Along the way, Helena recommends numerous restaurants, a visit to Europe’s 3rd biggest Chinatown, art galleries, unique shops and more. Give a list and see why Manchester has a hold on Helena and many others.

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Show Notes

Fountain of Travel
Visit Manchester
Manchester
Northern Quarter
Spider-Man in Manchester
Manchester Street Art
Cities of Hope
Manchester Food Walks
Afflecks
Afflecks
Symbols of Manchester
Mackie Mayor
NQ64
Evelyn’s Cafe Bar
Ancoats
Seven Bro7hers
Science and Industry Museum
The Crystal Maze
Mamucium
Alberts Schloss
John Rylands Library
Manchester Cathedral
University of Manchester
Manchester Metropolitan University
Manchester Museum
Whitworth Art Gallery
Pankhurst Centre
Sunday Roasts
The Refuge
The Temple
Pankhurst Centre
Salford
Salford Quays
The Lowry
Imperial War Museum North
Coronation Street Tour
Manchester United
Old Trafford
Manchester City FC
Chinatown, Manchester
Manchester Art Gallery
Canal Street
Richmond Tea Rooms
City of Manchester Stadium
Manchester Music
Manchester Academy
Jimmy’s
The Deaf Institute
Yes
Matt and Phreds
Manchester Pride Parade
Chinese New Year
Manchester Ship Canal
Peak District
Speedwell Cavern
Mam Tor
Fletcher Moss Park and Parsonage Gardens
29 Free Things to Do in Manchester

Community

about Travel to the Big Island of Hawaii – Episode 629, Ryan wrote:

I want to thank you and guest Justin Barnes for providing a great amount of insight back on episode 629, Travel to the Big Island of Hawaii. My family and I traveled there back in March and we ended up getting to experience several of the suggestions made during the show.

We especially enjoyed the Place of Refuge National Park, horseback riding through Waipio Valley, and Papakolea Green Sand Beach. We were even lucky enough to swim with dolphins after renting a kayak at Kealakekua Bay in Captain Cook. 
A tip for anyone who is planning to visit the big island and hopes to swim with or even just kayak along next to dolphins, without paying for an expensive tour, is to keep an eye on the weather forecast. Plan to go on a warm, sunny day. We ended up going twice, striking out on the first day which, was overcast. Get there before they open at 7:00am so that you don’t have to wait while others fill out paperwork and prep because if there, the dolphins typically only stay in the bay for an hour or two and you could miss out if there’s a line.   
One suggestion, for which Justin was spot on, was to stay several nights on each side of the island, Hilo and Kona. It really helps to map out and group together destinations, making the most of your time on the island. Even after listening to the podcast, I was surprised at how large the island is and how long it can take to get from one site to the next. 
 
Thanks for the great content each week. I know it takes quite a bit of effort to produce a weekly show and I appreciate it.
 
Ryan

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by Chris Christensen

Chris Christensen is the creator of the Amateur Traveler blog and podcast, and a co-host for This Week in Travel podcast.

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