Manchester Craft & Art Fairs Weekend Guide

Creative Tourist

This weekend the two biggest art fairs in the North roll into town. Introducing: Manchester Art Fair 2018, the North’s premier art fair returns to Manchester with its largest offering yet and under a proud new title. And, for anyone with even a passing interest in the beauty of the handmade or artful design, the annual award-winning Great Northern Contemporary Craft Fair (GNCCF) at Upper Campfield Market is the place to be.

Here’s our guide for what to do in Manchester this weekend (in between the art fairs!).

Here are our picks

  • 1. The Midland Hotel

    The Midland Hotel, Peter Street, Manchester, Greater Manchester, M60 2DS - Visit now

    Where to stay.

    The Midland is a convenient place for both fairs, we’d highly recommend The Principle on Oxford Road too.

    If you’re looking for some of the most unique places to stay in Manchester this weekend, you’re in luck, we pick out the top upscale accommodations with a twist.

  • 2. Pot Kettle Black

    Pot Kettle Black cafe in Manchester.
    Pot Kettle Black - courtesy of venue

    Pot Kettle Black, Unit 14, Barton Arcade Deansgate, Manchester, Greater Manchester, M3 2BW - Visit now

    First things first. Breakfast.

    Tucked away in Barton Arcade, a small but beautiful shopping centre between St Ann’s Square and Deansgate, is Pot Kettle Black. This cosy cafe serves up both excellent coffee and an inventive brunch menu (8am-3pm daily) – we particularly recommend the figs on toast, with whipped ricotta, fresh mint and infused honey. There are comfy seats, wifi and plenty of plug sockets here; Pot Kettle Black may be off the beaten track, but’s bang on in our books.

    Find our best breakfast in Manchester picks here.

  • 3. The John Rylands Library

    The historic Reading Room in John Rylands Library
    Image courtesy of John Rylands Library.

    The John Rylands Library, 150 Deansgate, Manchester, Greater Manchester, M3 3EH - Visit now

    Where to go.

    John Rylands Library houses a collection of rare books that spans five millennia – including an original Gutenberg Bible – in a neo-Gothic building that took nine years to build. It’s one of our top places to stroll around on a weekend and is just a short walk from Pot Kettle Black.

    Manchester isn’t short on attractions, check our pick of the top theatres, museums and galleries.

  • 4. Platzki

    Ian Jones

    Platzki, Deansgate Mews, Great Northern, 255 Deansgate, Manchester, M3 4EN - Visit now


    Our reviewer came away from his meal wondering why he’d never thought of trying Polish cuisine before. Nicely situated between Upper Campfield Market and Manchester Convention Centre, Platzki scores at the top end of the cafe scale.

    Here’s our guide to the best lunches in Manchester.

  • 5. Flok

    Ian Jones

    Flok, 5 Stevenson Square, Manchester, M1 1DN - Visit now

    To Drink.

    Flok is a much-needed addition to the fast-growing Stevenson Square area of the Northern Quarter. A bar which offers sophistication, superb tapas-style food and an impressively well-stocked bar.

    We’ve also put together our favorite pubs, gin bars, bars and craft beer places in Manchester.

  • 6. Mackie Mayor

    Mackie Mayor

    Mackie Mayor, 1 Eagle Street, Manchester, M4 5BU


    Head over to the Grade II listed market building in the Northern Quarter, reopened last year after a huge refurbishment. There’s two good bars here and enough choice of food to please anybody. We recommend Honest Crust Pizza, but we always recommend pizza. Mmm, pizza.

  • 7. Nightclubs in Manchester

    nightclubs in manchester clubs in manchester
    Courtesy of Hidden


    If you’re still standing… check out the city’s solid-gold after hours scene. Manchester offers such a variety of venues at which to feel young and alive, or at the very least, just alive. We went along to see YES a couple of weeks ago and loved it.