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The Top Things to Do in St. Peter's Square Manchester

The Top Things to Do in St. Peter’s Square Manchester

From my experience, there’s just so many places in Manchester that are worth visiting. Among these great locations is St. Peter’s Square, which is arguably Manchester’s most famous attraction. 

St. Peter’s Square is a public square in the Civic Quarter at the Manchester city centre that contains cultural, commercial, and civic buildings, such as the Central Library, Old Town Hall, and the Midland Hotel.

Should you step into this magnificent place in Manchester, which parts should you go to first? Well, you need not worry as I listed my favourite things to do while stopping in St. Peter’s Square Manchester to help you out! 

Visit Manchester Central Library

Visit Manchester Central Library's Homepage

Manchester Central Library


Address: One St Peter’s Square, Manchester M2 3DE, United Kingdom

Contact details: +441612341983

Operating hours: Monday to Saturday – 9 AM to 8 PM, Sunday – closed

Manchester Central Library is an absolute must-visit for all those seeking a delightful and enriching experience! 

This architectural gem not only houses a treasure trove of knowledge but also offers a vibrant and captivating atmosphere that will leave you utterly spellbound.

The stunning blend of old-world charm and modern design is sure to leave you in awe. The grandeur of its historic facade, adorned with intricate details, instantly transports you to a bygone era. 

Once inside, you’ll find yourself immersed in a world of endless possibilities. Also, the library’s (Row 78, John Rylands Library The Complete Guide) vast collection of books is a bibliophile’s paradise. 

Whether you’re a fan of classic literature, a history buff, or simply seeking inspiration, you’ll discover a captivating assortment of works that cater to every interest and age group.

Among the collection of books (books about Manchester), you can find significant pieces of texts that relate to Manchester and the unique flares of foreign scriptures that came to the city. I’m one who loves to read some historical facts, and this is the best place to be! 

I easily lose myself in the shelves, and I suggest you stop by this place if you still have one thing left to mark in your itinerary. 

Pro tip:

While you’re in the area, explore the stunning architecture and design of the building. Take your time to admire the intricate details, including the grand entrance hall, the impressive reading room, and the beautiful stained glass windows. 

It’s a great opportunity to appreciate both the historical significance and the aesthetic beauty of the library.

Explore the Manchester Art Gallery's Homepage

Manchester Art Gallery


Address: Mosley St, Manchester M2 3JL, United Kingdom

Contact details: +441612358888

Operating hours: Tuesday Sunday – 10 AM to 5 PM, Monday – closed

Another great place to visit if you’re an art enthusiast like me is the Manchester Art Gallery! This wonderful place is full of amazing artistic and cultural pieces that have existed throughout the span of Manchester’s long history. 

This art gallery showcases a diverse range of artworks, spanning centuries and representing various artistic movements. 

From classical masterpieces to contemporary creations, there’s something for everyone to appreciate and admire. The collection includes renowned artists like Turner, Constable, and Pre-Raphaelite painters, among others.

Not only does the gallery house exceptional artwork, but it also provides a welcoming and inspiring atmosphere. 

The beautifully designed spaces and galleries create a sense of tranquillity, allowing you to immerse yourself in the art and connect with it on a deeper level.

One of the highlights of visiting the Manchester Art Gallery is the ever-changing program of exhibitions and events. 

These exhibits often feature thought-provoking and innovative works by both local and international artists. It’s an opportunity to witness the cutting-edge of contemporary art and discover emerging talents.

Moreover, the gallery offers a range of educational and interactive activities, making it an excellent destination for families and individuals of all ages. 

Another advantage of the Manchester Art Gallery is its central location in the heart of the city. It’s also conveniently situated, making it easily accessible for both residents and tourists. 

Whether you’re exploring Manchester for the first time or have lived here for years, the gallery is a must-visit destination that showcases the city’s vibrant cultural scene.

Pro tip:

For first-time travellers visiting the Manchester Art Gallery, take advantage of the gallery’s free guided tours. 

These tours are led by knowledgeable staff or volunteers who can provide valuable insights into the artwork and help you navigate the gallery’s vast collection.

Attend a performance at the Bridgewater Hall

Attend a performance at the Bridgewater Hall's Homepage

Bridgewater Hall


Address: The Bridgewater Hall, Lower Mosley St, Manchester M2 3WS, United Kingdom

Contact details: +441619079000

Operating hours: Per booking basis

I feel like this list is for those who love the arts, because seeing a performance at the Bridgewater Hall is truly worth it in my books. 

I’ve been fortunate enough to attend some unforgettable events there. The hall’s exceptional acoustics elevate every performance, whether it’s a symphony orchestra, chamber ensemble, or soloist. 

The sound quality is pristine and immersive, ensuring an excellent listening experience from every seat. Renowned musicians and ensembles from around the world grace the stage, showcasing their talent and leaving a lasting impression on the audience. 

The Bridgewater Hall offers a diverse range of performances, catering to various musical tastes. 

Classical music enthusiasts can indulge in orchestral concerts, while fans of jazz, pop, and world music can enjoy captivating performances by celebrated artists in those genres. 

Despite its size, the hall manages to create an intimate and engaging atmosphere, fostering a sense of connection between the performers and the audience. 

The architecture and interior design of the Bridgewater Hall are visually striking, adding to the overall experience. Beyond music concerts, the venue serves as a cultural hub, hosting lectures, talks, and educational programs related to music and the arts. 

Overall, the combination of superb acoustics, world-class performers, diverse repertoire, intimate atmosphere, visual aesthetics, and cultural offerings make seeing a performance at the Bridgewater Hall a must-visit experience for any music lover.

Pro tip:

Book your tickets in advance when visiting the Bridgewater Hall in Manchester. As a popular venue, performances can sell out quickly, especially for renowned artists or highly anticipated events. 

Discover the People’s History Museum

Discover the People's History Museum's Homepage

People’s History Museum 

Address: Left Bank, Manchester M3 3ER, United Kingdom

Contact details: +441618389190

Operating hours: Wednesday to Sunday – 10 AM to 5 PM, Sunday – closed

I’ve always felt that the People’s History Museum is a special place worth visiting as it offers a fascinating exploration of the history and struggles of the working class and ordinary people in Manchester. 

The museum showcases rich historical exhibits, including artefacts, documents, and multimedia presentations that vividly depict important events, movements, and individuals that have shaped the country’s social, political, and economic landscape. 

It employs engaging interactive displays that allow visitors to actively engage with the exhibits, creating an immersive and memorable experience. 

With a focus on social change, the museum highlights the fights for workers’ rights, suffrage, LGBTQ+ (Things to know about the lgbt walking tour manchester) activism, anti-racism movements, and more, providing insights into the lives of marginalised groups throughout history. 

Themes explored at the museum encourage visitors to reflect on progress made in social justice and consider ongoing challenges. 

Additionally, the museum actively engages with local communities, hosting events, workshops, and talks to promote dialogue and understanding. 

With a commitment to accessibility, the People’s History Museum creates a welcoming environment for visitors of all backgrounds and abilities. 

Pro tip:

Plan your visit during weekdays and arrive early in the morning to avoid crowds and enjoy a more peaceful experience.

Relax in St Peter’s Square Gardens

Relax in St Peter's Square Gardens' Homepage

St Peters’ Square Gardens  

Website: N/A

Address: Corporation St, Manchester M4 3BG, United Kingdom

Contact details: +441612345004

Operating hours: Everyday – 9 AM to 11 PM

Ah, who doesn’t want a relaxing time once in a while? I mean, I’m one who loves exciting adventures and an artistic journey through the different museums in the world, but there’s something about simply relaxing in a soothing environment.

This is where the amazing and beautiful gardens (Row 343, gardens manchester) of St. Peter’s Square really shines through!

First and foremost, the gardens provide a tranquil and serene environment, allowing visitors to escape the noise and chaos of the city. It’s a perfect spot to unwind, reflect, and find peace amidst nature. 

Also, the gardens boast a stunning display of scenic beauty. The well-manicured landscapes, vibrant flowers, and graceful fountains create a visually pleasing experience for nature enthusiasts and those seeking picturesque views. 

Moreover, these gardens hold significant historical value as they are located within Manchester, which is home to thousands of different plant species in the country. 

Exploring the gardens allows visitors to immerse themselves in the rich history and cultural significance of the area. 

The gardens also offer spectacular views, providing a panoramic vista of St. Peter’s Square, the grand dome of the basilica, and the impressive architectural surroundings. It’s a marvellous vantage point to appreciate the magnificence of the Greater City. 

Lastly, the gardens provide an escape from the crowds that often flock to St. Peter’s Square. 

While the square itself can be bustling with tourists, the gardens offer a quieter alternative, ensuring a more peaceful and relaxed experience, especially during peak tourist seasons. 

Pro tip:

Prior to your visit, be sure to check the opening hours and any entry requirements to make the most of your time at St. Peter’s Square Gardens.

Take a stroll down Oxford Road

Take a stroll down Oxford Road's Homepage

Oxford Road

Website: N/A

Address: Greater, Station Approach, Oxford Rd, Manchester M1 6FU, United Kingdom

Contact details: N/A

Operating hours: Everyday 24/7

As someone who enjoys strolling so much, I can tell you that visiting Oxford Road is a fantastic experience for several reasons. 

Firstly, it is home to one of the most prestigious universities in the world, the University of Oxford. The campus itself is architecturally stunning, with beautiful college buildings, libraries, and gardens that exude a sense of history and knowledge.

Beyond the university, Oxford Road is lined with an array of captivating museums and galleries. The Ashmolean Museum, for instance, showcases an impressive collection of art and archaeology, spanning centuries of human history. 

The Museum of Natural History is another gem, housing fascinating exhibits on dinosaurs, fossils, and the natural world.

The road also boasts a vibrant atmosphere with an abundance of shops, cafes, and restaurants. You can explore independent boutiques, bookshops, and antique stores, discovering unique treasures along the way. 

The local food scene is diverse, offering everything from traditional English pubs to international cuisines, ensuring there’s something to satisfy every palate.

Oxford Road is also blessed with stunning green spaces, providing an oasis of tranquillity amidst the bustling city. 

University Parks, for example, offers lush lawns, riverside walks, and even a cricket ground, allowing visitors to relax and soak in the natural beauty.

Lastly, the road is conveniently located, making it easy to access other attractions in Oxford. 

Whether you want to explore the historic colleges, take a punt along the River Cherwell, or visit other iconic landmarks like the Radcliffe Camera or Bodleian Library, everything is within reach.

As a Mancunian, I think visitors should leave some space in their itinerary for a visit to Oxford Road. It’s a place where history, culture, academia, and modern life blend harmoniously, providing a rich and captivating experience for all who venture there.

Pro tip:

Make use of the city’s excellent public transportation system when visiting Oxford Road.

Manchester has a well-connected network of buses and trams (Guide to manchester trams), and Oxford Road is a major hub for public transportation. Instead of driving or navigating through busy city traffic, consider using the buses or trams to get around the area.

Shop at the nearby Manchester Arndale

Shop at the nearby Manchester Arndale's Homepage

Manchester Arndale 


Address: Manchester Arndale, Manchester M4 3AQ, United Kingdom

Contact details: +441618339851

Operating hours: Monday to Saturday – 9 AM to 8 PM, Sunday 10:30 AM to 5:30 PM

As an avid shopper, let me tell you why shopping at the Manchester Arndale is an absolute must! Trust me, you won’t be disappointed.

First and foremost, the Manchester Arndale is like a shopping paradise right in the heart of the city. It’s massive! 

You’ll find an incredible range of stores and brands that cater to every style and budget. Whether you’re into trendy fashion, popular high-street shops, or unique boutique finds, you’ll have a blast exploring the diverse range of options available.

What’s great about the Manchester Arndale is its unbeatable convenience. It’s smack in the centre of town, making it super easy to get to. 

Whether you’re hopping on a bus, taking the tram, or even driving, you’ll have no trouble reaching this shopping haven. It’s the perfect spot for locals and visitors alike, providing a hassle-free shopping experience with everything you need within reach.

Now, let’s talk about the food. The Manchester Arndale knows how to satisfy your taste buds. Picture this: a buzzing food court packed with mouthwatering options from around the globe. 

From delicious burgers and pizzas to exotic flavours and comforting classics, you’ll find a feast for every craving. It’s the perfect place to refuel and relax after an intense shopping spree.

Oh, and let’s not forget about the amazing atmosphere. The Manchester Arndale is clean, modern, and inviting. It’s a well-maintained space with plenty of room to browse, try on clothes, and make those much-desired purchases. 

You’ll also find cosy seating areas where you can take a breather and plan your next shopping move. It’s all about creating a comfortable and enjoyable experience for shoppers like you.

Pro tip:

Start early and plan your route strategically before visiting the Manchester Arndale to avoid crowds and for a better shopping experience.

Enjoy a meal or drink at a local cafe or restaurant

Enjoy a meal or drink at a local cafe or restaurant's Homepage

Sometimes, all you have to do is enjoy a trip down St. Peters’ Square and have a quick bite at their most amazing cafes and restaurants available. Based on my experience, here are some of the best resto bars and cafes to visit: 

  • The Anthologist St Peter’s Square 


Address: One St Peter’s Square, Manchester M2 3DE, United Kingdom

Contact details: +441616670640

Operating hours: Monday to Thursday – 11 AM to 11 PM, Friday 11 AM to 12 AM; Saturday – 10 AM to 12 AM, Sunday – 10 AM to 6 PM

  • The Alan Manchester 


Address: 18 Princess St, Manchester M1 4LG, United Kingdom

Contact details: +441612368999

Operating hours: Monday to Friday – 10am- 4pm

  • Ate Days A Week 


Address: Hatch, 103 Oxford Rd, Manchester M1 7ED, United Kingdom

Contact details: +44161236 9068

Operating hours: Monday to Thursday – 12 to 8 PM, Friday to Saturday – 12 to 9 PM, Sunday – closed

To give you a little perspective of my resto hopping experience in St. Peters’ Square Manchester, my friends and I decided to start our culinary adventure at The Anthologist. 

We were drawn in by its inviting atmosphere and tempting menu. As we stepped inside, the contemporary decor and warm ambiance instantly put us at ease. We were greeted with genuine smiles from the staff, who guided us to a cosy table by the window.

The Anthologist’s menu showcased a fusion of flavours, combining modern twists with classic favourites. We couldn’t resist ordering a selection of small plates to share, from the crispy calamari with zesty aioli to the mouthwatering lamb sliders with a hint of mint. 

Each bite was a burst of deliciousness, and we savoured every moment, sharing stories and laughter as we indulged in this culinary delight.

Eager to continue our culinary exploration, we made our way to The Alan, a charming restaurant known for its farm-to-table ethos and seasonal offerings. 

The rustic interior, adorned with wooden accents and vintage photographs, created a cosy and inviting atmosphere. The Alan’s dedication to sourcing local ingredients was evident in every dish.

The menu at The Alan was a celebration of seasonal flavours, and we opted for their chef’s tasting menu. Each course was a masterpiece, beautifully presented and bursting with flavour. 

From the delicate beetroot and goat cheese salad to the succulent pan-seared sea bass with a tangy citrus glaze, every bite was a symphony of taste. 

We tasted the exquisite flavours, paired with the perfect wine selections recommended by the knowledgeable staff.

To end our gastronomic journey on a sweet note, we headed to Ate Days A Week, a charming cafe known for its delectable desserts and artisanal pastries. 

As we stepped through the door, the aroma of freshly baked goods enveloped us, instantly whetting our appetites. The display case was a work of art, showcasing an array of irresistible treats.

Unable to resist, we ordered a slice of their famous salted caramel cheesecake and a flaky almond croissant. The first bite of the cheesecake was pure bliss—a perfect balance of creamy sweetness and a touch of saltiness that danced on our tongues. 

The almond croissant, with its buttery layers and delicate almond filling, was the epitome of indulgence. We also tasted each morsel, sipping our coffees and sharing delighted smiles.

That evening in St. Peter’s Square was a culinary adventure filled with laughter, delectable flavours, and the joy of sharing good food with great company. 

It was a reminder of the incredible dining experiences that Manchester has to offer, leaving us with unforgettable memories and a longing to return for more culinary delights.

Enjoy a meal or drink at a local cafe or restaurant

St. Peters’ Square is only one of a dozen places you can visit in Manchester! Now that you have a few activities (unusual group activities in Manchester) to consider before you plan your itinerary to visit, it’s time to go out there on an adventure in St. Peters’ Square! 

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