A student guide: the City of Manchester
With four different universities in Manchester, it really is a student-friendly city. It has one of the largest student populations in the UK and Europe, and the city has lots of cheap options to ensure affordable student living.
Good Areas to Live
Victoria Park, Fallowfield and Withington are all popular student areas offering cheap housing and good transport links.
Chorlton is full of creatives and graduates and is a great place to live if you’re not after the party atmosphere of student living.
Manchester is great when it comes to transport. Choose from regular buses, trams and train connections. One of the most popular buses for Manchester students is the “Magic Bus” – a cheap regular bus service. You can get a weekly ticket for £8.50.
Manchester is not particularly great for cyclists, though it is getting better. There is a cycle lane that links Fallowfield with the universities and the city centre. However, the city does have a reputation for bike theft, so if you take your bike then you’ll need a really sturdy lock.
There are three different train stations in Manchester: Piccadilly, Victoria and Oxford. The direct route from Piccadilly to London only takes two hours.
Manchester United, Manchester City and the Lancashire County Cricket Club all have their clubs based here. The National Cycling Centre and Manchester Aquatics Centre offer extensive sporting facilities, including an Olympic sized swimming pool. Manchester also has the country’s largest martial arts club. Fitness First offers a student gym membership which makes keeping fit easy.
The Northern Quarter has captivating street art (free art!), as well as record shops and relaxed cafes.
The Palace Theatre, Opera House and Lowry offer a variety of discounted performances from ballet to musicals.
For something more educational, visit the Manchester Museum for Egyptian Mummies or the Imperial War Museum North or The Lowry for arts and history. John Ryland’s Library offers medieval manuscripts and exhibitions on the early European printing revolution
Known for its music scene, Manchester has plenty of venues, bars and clubs ideal for a wide range of people. From Fab Café, where fans of cult film and TV can revel together in a diverse range of music to Satan’s Hollow, a heavy metal venue, to popular Indie venue 5th Avenue; there’s a bar whatever your tribe. Canal Street is packed full of gay clubs and most of them straight-friendly too, particularly Poptastic, perfect for a fun night out. If Drum and Bass or Dubstep is more your scene, then you’ll have no doubt heard about the Warehouse Project already.
Places to Eat
As a big city you’ll find all the usual suspects such as Pizza Express, Nando’s and Zizzi’s, but there are also many indie restaurants perfect for your palette. Trof offers everything from breakfast to burgers and everything in between, as well as cocktails, gigs and open mic nights. Curry Mile is along Rusholme, so a must if you love Indian cuisine! On the cheap end of the scale, Lal Qila, Sangrams and Lal Haweli are student favourites.
Places to Shop
For huge shopping malls, the Arndale and Trafford Centre offer high street names, and for something quirky, vintage or independent, Affleck’s Palace is a goldmine of the unusual.
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