Old illustration of a snowball fight
Snowball fight. Illustration courtesy of Central Library.

Christmas in Manchester and the North

Creative Tourist

Christmas comes but once a year… and if you’re looking for alternative or interesting things to do over the festive period, you’re in the right place. From not-on-the-high-street shopping guides to our top festive theatre picks we’ve been busy as elves getting our recommendations of things to do for maximum fun, minimum stress together. Although we can’t guarantee that you won’t fall out with your mum/brother/best friend/boss at some point during the Christmas period, we can at least point you in the direction of some of the more interesting independent shops, markets and things to do. And if all else fails, head to the calm sanctuary of the gallery; our guide to the best exhibitions on now in the north is updated throughout the festive season.

Here are our picks

  • 1. Christmas Theatre and Concerts

    Cinderella at RNCM

    Theatres and concert halls all across the North West are now selling their Christmas wares – and with the big day fast approaching, it is best to plan ahead as the top tickets sell out faster than Santa on a speeding sleigh.

  • 2. Christmas Shopping

    Handmade Stoneware by Consall Forge Pottery at Form Lifestyle Store

    We’ve compiled an alternative list of gift-central suggestions to keep you as far from the hellish throngs of Market Street as possible this Christmas.

  • 3. Family things to do at Christmas

    The Lanterns at Chester Zoo

    Our guide to the best things to do with kids this Christmas to keep little and big giddy-kippers out of trouble (and the selection box).

  • 4. Free Things To Do At Christmas

    Courtesy of MCDC

    Stuck indoors with the family? Check out our top suggestions for free things to see and do over Christmas, that aren’t just about Christmas.

  • 5. Christmas Food and Drink

    Don’t worry about the calories, the holidays are coming so that means it’s time to eat, drink, be merry and overdo things to a shocking degree.

  • 6. New Year’s Eve 2017

    NYE 2015 at the Kazimier. Photo: Mina Bihi.

    The New Year is celebrated with pizzazz almost everywhere in the world, and the North is no exception. Here’s our guide to the very best events in Manchester and the North in 2017.