Things to Do in Manchester

Creative Tourist

Not many cities have had as much influence on the world as Manchester. Culture and art is this city’s heart and now it’s time to welcome back Manchester. It’s time to restart. Starting in spring and growing throughout the year, the city’s arts scene has something to add joy to everyone’s life.

Culture is what makes life worth living, no matter what artform you love. From interactive exhibitions, beautiful watercolours to exhilarating live music, Manchester does the arts like no other city on earth. Below you’ll find some of the life-affirming events set to take over the city in the coming months. The people of Manchester have new stories to share and new people to meet. The interval’s over, it’s time to return to your seats.

For the past twelve months, most of us have been limited to four walls, living in a smaller world than we ever expected. But the world is back out there, your old hobbies await and new passions call. Now is the time to try out all those experiences you always planned but never had the time. The world is your oyster and we should never take it for granted again.

But more importantly, Manchester is your stage. The outside world will host countless fascinating performances and activities. The tables have turned so let’s dance on them again.

Spend a day in the city and it rapidly becomes apparent just how much it has reinvented its industrial past into a new, trendsetting present – and an ambitious future. There’s plenty of things to do in Manchester, from award-winning theatre and exhibitions to exciting food and drink offers, not to mention thriving literature and music scenes.

Discover our top picks

Band on the Wall
Music 3 March–14 May 2022, from £12

Band on the Wall Reopening Season

Following a major expansion project, Band on the Wall is throwing open its doors in March 2022, and there’s a huge reopening season on the cards.

House of Suarez + Contact: Vogue Ball 2022
Dance 11–19 February 2022,

Queer Contact Festival 2022

The ultimate celebration of art and creativity in the LGBTQ+ community, Queer Contact Festival returns to the Contact Theatre for 2022.

Cinema 30 January–10 March 2022,

Jarman at HOME

As part of a collaboration with Manchester Art Gallery and the PROTEST! exhibition, HOME host a complete retrospective of the films of one of the most influential figures in contemporary British culture.

Activity Until 30 January 2022, Pay as you feel

PUSH LAB 2022 at HOME

PUSH LAB 2022 is a week of workshops where you’ll be talking, playing and reconnecting, designed for artists of all disciplines and held at HOME.

Echo & The Bunnymen
Music 16–25 February 2022, from £37.50

Echo and the Bunnymen at Albert Hall

One of the most influential British bands in modern history, Echo and the Bunnymen are celebrating “40 years of magical songs” at the majestic Albert Hall.

Music 29–30 January 2022, from £0.00

RNCM Brass Band Festival at RNCM

The RNCM Brass Band Festival is back with a two-day showcase of some of the UK’s leading brass bands, plus top international soloists.

Music 4 February 2022 7:30 pm, from £15.00

RNCM Symphony Orchestra with Anu Tali (conductor) at RNCM

The RNCM Symphony Orchestra is joined by organist Anna Lapwood and conductor Anu Tali for an evening of specially selected symphonic works.

Music Until 8 July 2022, from £0.00

RNCM Lunchtime and Spotlight Concerts

It’s not just Symphony Orchestras or big name artists that perform as the RNCM, their lunchtime and spotlight concerts showcase the best student performers in more intimate settings.

Hannah Platt & Good Kids (Work in Progress)
Comedy 25 January 2022 7:00 pm, FREE

Hannah Platt & Good Kids (Work in Progress) at Fierce Bar

A double headlining stand up comedy bill from likeable Midlands sketch-slash-music double act Good Kids and Merseyside-via-Manchester’s finest misanthrope Hannah Platt.

Exhibitions Until 31 March 2022, FREE

Cancer Revolution: Science, Innovation and Hope

Explore how science is fuelling a revolution in cancer care and offering a hopeful view into the future with Cancer Revolution: Science, innovation and hope.

Welcome Back Manchester. It's Time To Restart.

Manchester District Guides

Medieval Quarter, Manchester

The Medieval Quarter, or Cathedral Quarter as it is sometimes known, is one of the oldest parts of Manchester and home to some historic gems and cultural must-sees.  

Photo of a handwritten label in a cafe that says "Ring for service with a smile"

Burton Road, West Didsbury, Manchester

Burton Road is the heart of West Didsbury, a beautifully maintained leafy hubbub of shops,…

Beech Road Chorlton, Manchester

A laid-back mix of gift shops, independent outfitters, restaurants, pubs and parks, on a sunny weekend afternoon it’s heaving.

The front of Didsbury restaurant Volta.

Didsbury, Manchester

Follow Oxford Road South through the Curry Mile, along Wilmslow Road, past Platt Fields Park…

Chorlton, Manchester

Chorlton is a left-leaning suburb a few miles south of Manchester’s city centre (and only…

Cheetham Hill, Manchester

As an area, Cheetham Hill gets a pretty bad rep. The foreboding architecture of Strangeways…