Things to Do in Liverpool

Creative Tourist

Liverpool exploded into life in the 18th century, rapidly turning from a small town into one of the world’s most important port cities. For 200 years, it eclipsed most of Europe in the trading stakes – nationally and internationally – Liverpool was where it was at.

What does that mean for the visitor today? You’ve only to look up: a skyline that’s part of a World Heritage Site, a waterfront that never fails to impress, and Georgian streets that are as graceful as they are grand. It is these architectural cheekbones that, along with the grand sweep of the River Mersey, make Liverpool such a visual treat. Sure, the city was for years on its uppers, its post-industrial decline as swift as it was comprehensive. But Liverpool has reinvented itself, as the UK Capital of Culture in 2008, as the home of the leading visual arts event Liverpool Biennial, as the place where artists make work and where a new, creative future is being written.

Step straight out of Lime Street Station and you’ll find yourself in the middle of the bustling St George’s Quarter. Together with the World Museum, is the Walker Art Gallery, housing a collection of historic and contemporary art. The Liverpool Empire, Royal Court and the Liverpool Playhouse Theatre are close by too. With two stunning cathedrals that sit on either side of Hope Street in the Georgian Quarter, the arrea is also home to the Everyman Theatre and some of the finest restaurants and bars in the city: The London Carriage Works, Pen Factory and the architecturally marvellous Philharmonic Dining Rooms are among our favourites.

Head to Liverpool Waterfront for a world-class visual arts offering alongside important historic exhibitions. Aside from an abundance of independent shops and eateries, the Dock is home to Tate Liverpool and its collection of contemporary art and changing exhibitions; the Merseyside Maritime Museum exploring Liverpool’s long nautical heritage and the uniquely important International Slavery Museum, examining Liverpool’s part in the Transatlantic slave trade.

Like the Liver Birds sitting atop the city’s most famous building, one turned to the sea, one turned to home, Liverpool is a city with a world view, yet a place with a personal, personable one too.

Discover our top picks

Lucy McKenzie at Tate Liverpool
Exhibitions Until 27 February 2022, from £9

Lucy McKenzie at Tate Liverpool

Spanning post-war muralism, fashion, music subcultures, gender politics and more, Lucy McKenzie’s first UK retrospective is not to be missed.

Sickert: A Life in Art at Walker Art Gallery in Liverpool
Exhibitions Until 27 February 2022, from £5

Sickert: A Life in Art at Walker Art Gallery in Liverpool

From sombre nudes to darkly-hued architecutre, the retrospective of Walter Sickert’s art at The Walker Art Gallery is a raw glimpse into Victorian-era life.

Toria Garbutt
Literature Until 17 February 2022, from £10

Spoken Word at the Mansion House

The Reader’s Spoken Word evenings at the Mansion House in south Liverpool’s Calderstones Park are back inside, with a packed line-up running into the New Year.

Cinema 11–13 February 2022, from £11.50

Cinema in the City at LUSH Liverpool

Set in the heart of the city centre, at LUSH Liverpool, Cinema in The City is back this February, with another weekend of contemporary feature films alongside shorts from emerging filmmakers plus food and drink from local traders

Visual Arts Until 1 December 2022, from £20

Graffiti at Zap Graffiti

Liverpool’s Zap Graffiti teaches all the basic skills and techniques you need to make a street-style creation you’ll be proud of.

Future Ages Will Wonder at FACT in Liverpool
Exhibitions Until 20 February 2022, FREE

Future Ages Will Wonder at FACT in Liverpool

FACT presents an ‘alternative museum’ of artworks that question our past and offer new ways of understanding who we are.

The Tudors: Passion, Power and Politics
Exhibitions 12 May–29 August 2022, from £6.00

The Tudors: Passion, Power and Politics at Walker Art Gallery

A treat for the eyes and curious minds, the Walker Art Gallery’s spring exhibition of Tudor portraits is sure to delight audiences.

Fog In My Head, 2021 (film still), image courtesy Suki Chan
Exhibitions 12 March–12 June 2022, FREE

Suki Chan: CONSCIOUS at the Bluecoat, Liverpool

The Bluecoat will offer an in-depth look at Suki Chan’s project CONSCIOUS, which tackles questions of collective consciousness and memory through films, photography, sculpture and virtual reality.

Yellow Furry Lullaby at FACT
Theatre 4 February 2022 7:00 pm, FREE

Yellow Furry Lullaby at FACT

London-based Korean diaspora artist duo Breakwater present a powerful storytelling performance examining the historical trauma of Chinese indentured labour.

Liverpool District Guides

Lark Lane, Liverpool

A little way out of Liverpool City Centre, and a short and leafy walk from…

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Art galleries in Liverpool

William Brown Street, Liverpool

As city centre districts go, this one is relatively small: a cluster of buildings along…

The ship in Liverpool Sound City

Waterfront, Liverpool

The waterfront, which takes in the Albert Dock and the Pier Head, is an integral…

Ropewalks and Chinatown, Liverpool

The Ropewalks is a part of Liverpool that combines old and new. Once crowded with…

Hope Street, Liverpool

One of Liverpool’s most graceful quarters can be found along Hope Street. Named after the…

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