BIMM Cities / Student Tips

Keep Exploring: Manchester

15th February 2021

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Our colleges are located across Europe’s most musically rich cities. As a BIMM student, you’ll immerse yourself in the same city as musical legends and the industry’s future game-changers. With inspiration all around, you’ll work with like-minded people to create tomorrow’s music industry.

Here, BIMM Institute Manchester alumna Abbie O’Neill takes you on a tour of her musical city. While social distancing may stop us from attending concerts for a short while, there is still so much going on in Manchester to keep you busy!

Best Places to Eat and Drink in Manchester 

Manchester boasts some of the finest eating experiences you could ever wish for. If you and your friends can’t decide on what to eat, wander on down to The Printworks in the city centre and you’ll find something for everyone! With restaurants including Hard Rock Café, Wagamama, Nandos and Chiquito, you and your new friends will be spoilt for choice.

Manchester’s answer to Man Vs Food, Red’s True BBQ can be found off Albert Square and will feel like you’ve stepped into a different world. Mammoth burgers, juicy wings, and an extensive array of spicey sauces, a visit to Red’s can only be compared to an otherworldly experience!

Now something for your vegan friends, V Revs Vegan Diner is the best-of-the-best when it comes to creating vegan junk food that can keep up with its carnivorous counterparts. A quick scroll through their Instagram feed will have your mouth watering as they display their American diner-style cuisine.

And if tequila and pizza is your idea of a good night out, Crazy Pedro’s is the place for you! With two city-centre locations, both buzzing with a party atmosphere that will last well into the early hours, it is the perfect place to start your evening. Boasting unique pizza flavours such as ‘The Mac Daddy’ and ‘Nacho Libre’, Crazy Pedro’s caters for meat-eaters and vegetarians alike. Also, worth a considerable mention of their own is the heavenly cocktail menu that comes with a side of old-fashioned sweets.

One simply cannot discuss food in Manchester without mentioning the famous Curry Mile in Rusholme. Yes, you did read that correctly: a mile… of curry, ish. The Curry Mile has upwards of 70 Asian and Middle Eastern eateries, including sit-down restaurants, kebab houses and takeaways. And, because of its location in between Rusholme and Fallowfield, it is teaming with students at the end of a night!

Also, worth a mention are the classic student jaunts such as Courtyard, Footage, Font, and Soup Kitchen for affordable cocktails and delicious food.

Best Places to Shop  

If shopping is your thing, Manchester has you covered! Located in the city centre, Manchester Arndale has a shop for everything a new student could possibly need, from clothes to household goods, with an expansive food court for when you need to sit down and recharge. Make sure to keep an eye out in early September for the Student Lock-In event that sees your student discount rise to 20% and more across all stores! And if you don’t mind hopping on a bus, the Trafford Centre is just outside of the city centre. Think the Arndale but with an Odeon and Laser Quest!

If you’re after something a bit quirkier, the Northern Quarter is the place to be. Oozing with charm, it boasts independent vinyl stores, second-hand clothing shops, unique eateries and tattoo studios. As well as the shops, the streets of the Northern Quarter are full of eye-catching street art, perfect for an impromptu photo shoot. It’s often used as the filming location for TV shows and films. So, keep your eyes peeled for the cast of Peaky Blinders or the next big blockbuster movie.

Also located within the Northern Quarter is the pinnacle of the Manchester shopping experience: the self-titled ‘emporium of eclecticism’ Affleck’s. Filled to the brim with the weird and the wonderful, Affleck’s is bursting with life. From jewellery to posters, vintage clothes to tattoo studios, vegan beauty products to vintage children’s toys, Affleck’s is a mystical and magical place that every single student must experience at least once.

Things to See 

While the city is pretty quiet at the moment, by September our favourite locations will once again have opened their doors, and the top of our list is Junkyard Golf. There is no better place for a fun evening filled with terrible golf playing and funky cocktails. If game nights such as this are your cup of tea, Dogbowl (just off Oxford Road) will be perfect for you, offering fabulous food and drinks at student-friendly prices. Not to forget the marvellous Fab Café, if for no other reason than there is a literal Tardis on the inside!

If you are after a more subdued evening, the independent cinema HOME (found in Deansgate) is the perfect place to sit back and relax while immersing yourself in international art, theatre, and film. And when the museums and art galleries open again, students will be spoilt for choice. From Manchester universities’ ‘Manchester Museum’ to Whitworth Art Gallery – not to mention the National Football Museum and the Greater Manchester Police Museum – endless hours can be spent soaking up the history and culture.

On the three days of the year when the sun shines, The Castlefield Bowl is the perfect place to kick back and relax with your friends. Similarly, Whitworth Park, Platt Fields Park and Heaton Park are perfect for an afternoon kick about, a quiet walk or a BBQ with your new course friends.

And as for when the music venues get the go-ahead and reopen, you will be spoilt for choice with a music venue on every corner! Manchester Arena is at the heart of the city centre. Venues such as Albert Hall, Night & Day Café and Gullivers have near-daily events. And Oxford Road alone boasts some of the city’s most famous venues, such as O2 Ritz Manchester and Manchester Academy’s four rooms. You will get to experience the majority first-hand as BIMM Manchester uses a number of the city’s best venues for their End of Term and End of Year events!

Find out more about BIMM Institute Manchester here. You can also learn more about life in this metropolitan city here. Excited to join us? Apply now. We can’t wait to meet you. 

Author

Abbie O'Neill