Beer Gardens in Manchester & Salford

Ian Jones, Food and Drink Editor

After a whole lot of wet weather, we’re finally getting a little bit of sun. And what’s the best thing to do in the sun? No, not water-skiing, that’s for lunatics, it’s having a cold pint in a beer garden with your mates. And that’s what this guide is all about: revealing Manchester and Salford’s very best outdoor spaces to enjoy beer, cocktails or whatever boozy (or non-boozy, we don’t judge) drink floats your boat.

Our top picks

GRUB Manchester

GRUB Manchester, 50 Red Bank, Cheetham Hill, Manchester, M4 4HF - Visit now

The best venue in the Green Quarter, by some measure, Grub has plenty of outdoor seating to enjoy food and drink on a sunny day, and shelter when it’s wet. If you haven’t been yet, why not?

Freight Island

Freight Island, Mayfield Depot, 11 Baring St, Manchester, M1 2PY - Visit now

It doesn’t get bigger than Freight Island, which is basically one huge outdoor drinking space, with a few indoor spots for good measure. There’s about a dozen areas to kick back and enjoy some food and drink, so you’re very likely to get a space (although booking ahead is always advised).

Freight Island

The New Oxford

The New Oxford, 11 Bexley Square, Salford, Manchester, M3 6DB - Visit now

Bexley Square is at the heart of Salford’s most fast-growing and desirable area and it’s also home to The New Oxford. It’s a classic old-school pub with a vast range of drinks to enjoy on benches outside. Expect cheerful staff, friendly punters and enough open space to enjoy the sun when its out – plus protective umbrellas when it isn’t.

The New Oxford

The Briton’s Protection

The Briton’s Protection, 50 Great Bridgewater St, Manchester, Greater Manchester, M1 5LE - Visit now

Ask anyone who knows anything about Manchester pubs and they’ll soon start waxing lyrical about The Briton’s Protection. It’s one of the oldest pubs in Manchester – if not the oldest pub – and it has a magnificent, sun-trapping outdoor space to sit and enjoy beers and whisky with friends. Highly, highly recommended for all you beer garden connoisseurs.

Ben Williams

Ducie Street Warehouse

Ducie Street Warehouse, Ground Floor, Warehouse, Ducie St,, Manchester, M1 2TP - Visit now

Fast-becoming one of the city’s standout venues, DSW (as those in the know like to call it) has an awesome terrace round the back that captures the sun.


Ducie Street Warehouse

Common Bar

Common Bar, 39-47 Edge Street, Manchester, Greater Manchester, M4 1HW - Visit now

Alan Partridge might not approve but we’re enormous fans of the pedestrianisation of the Northern Quarter, and Common’s area on Edge Street is one of the district’s very best. It’s quiet enough to avoid the Ibiza strip feel of nearby areas but full of trendsetting 20-30somethings, just like the early days of the NQ.

Common Bar in Manchester's Northern Quarter
Ben Williams

The Eagle Inn

The Eagle Inn, 18-19 Collier Street, Salford, M3 7DW - Visit now

A great Salford pub, The Eagle Inn has greatly expanded its outside drinking area, both front and back, making it perfect for either popping in for a quick half or settling in for a session with like-minded pals.

The Eagle Inn pub in Salford
Adam Bruderer

20 Stories

20 Stories, No. 1 Spinningfields, 1 Hardman Square, Manchester, M3 3EB - Visit now

A beer garden, or roof terrace rather, so good they named the venue after it. Here’s where to go for those awe-inspiring views of the city skyline being vastly changed by faceless corporations (the jury’s out on the latter).

Port Street Beer House

Port Street Beer House, 39-41 Port Street, Manchester, Greater Manchester, M1 2EQ - Visit now

Port Street Beer House is a great NQ drinking spot. But it’s the outside that shines: a great sun-splashed beer garden, cosy enough to be friendly but spacious enough to feel safe and relaxed. And let’s not forget the beer. You’ll struggle to find a better choice of ales in Manchester.

Port Street Beer House Father's Day
Ben Williams

Terrace NQ

Terrace NQ, 43 Thomas Street, Northern Quarter, Manchester, Greater Manchester, M4 1NA

High above Thomas Street, Terrace NQ offers a beautiful rooftop beer garden. When the sun is shining, this is easily one of the most pleasing places to sink a pint in the Northern Quarter.


Marble Arch Pub

Marble Arch Pub, 73 Rochdale Road, Manchester, Greater Manchester, M4 4HY - Visit now

It’s not the biggest outdoor drinking space in the world, but it’s an exceptionally nice one and the beer here is so good that we’re willing to overlook it.

Ben Williams

The Beech

The Beech, 72 Beech Rd, Manchester, M21 9EG

If you fancy moving out of town, jump on the Metrolink and head to Chorlton. While the residents are often lampooned as the “liberal urban elite”, you can’t argue with the choice of watering holes on offer. The Beech is a grand choice if you fancy switching seats to chase the late evening sun.

The Beech Inn Chorlton

The Kings Arms

The Kings Arms, 11 Bloom street, Salford, Greater Manchester, M3 6AN - Visit now

One of Salford’s finest establishments, with a history that involves a reliably excellent series of live shows and ownership by Paul Heaton, one of the North’s greatest songwriters. They also have a small but perfectly-formed outside drinking area – get there early for a guaranteed seat.

The King's Arms pub in Salford.
David Dixon

The Whiskey Jar

The Whiskey Jar, 14 Tariff St, Manchester, Greater Manchester, M1 2FF - Visit now

Tariff Street has been closed off to cars and now you can sit outside and enjoy a drink safely, with minimal exhaust fumes. The Whiskey Jar is a great intimate, darkly-lit bar but it’s not ideal during hot sunny days, so sit outside when the weather is balmy.

The Whiskey Jar

Duke’s 92

Duke’s 92, 18 Castle Street
Castlefield, Manchester, Greater Manchester, M3 4LZ - Visit now

The Duke’s 92 beer garden is legendary across the city. This canalside bar is well worth a visit, assuming you can get in – its reputation can mean lengthy queues for a table. But it’s well worth it, the outdoor space is one of Manchester’s best.

The Woodstock Arms

The Woodstock Arms, 139 Barlow Moor Rd, Manchester, M20 2DY - Visit now

The Woodstock is a beautiful, traditional old pub with a wonderful beer garden. If you are over Didsbury way and in search of some outside drinking, you’ll struggle to find much better.

Courtesy of The Woodstock

Where to go in Manchester

Bar or Pub
Finders Keepers

Welcoming waterside bar in New Islington Marina, serving a wide array of carefully-curated cocktails.

City Centre

Highly-regarded wine-led, French-leaning wine bar and rooftop restaurant in the city centre.

Manchester Wine Tours

Manchester Wine Tours is a relaxed, fun wine tour, full of the city’s best food and drink, led by an effortlessly engaging host.

Bar or Pub
Henry C

Henry C is an intimate neighbourhood bar in Chorlton, serving up superb quality drinks.

11 Central

11 Central is a new bar and microbrewery launched by local brewing legends SEVEN BRO7HERS BREWING CO at the Central Bay site in Salford.

Bar or Pub
Kennedy’s Irish Bar

A fan favourite in Altrincham, Kennedy’s Irish Bar offers live music, a vibrant atmosphere and undoubtable Irish charm and hospitality.

Axe & Cleaver

This is the perfect pub for an indulgent weekend, following up a long countryside walk with a hearty and high quality meal.

Bar or Pub
On Bar

This multifaceted venue is primarily an award winning gay bar in Manchester’s Canal Street area – but that is not all…

Bar or Pub

This award winning bar is open six nights a week due to popular demand. Described as the ‘mecca of the north’ for the lesbian community, it is no wonder why.

Bar or Pub
Cruz 101

Everything you want in a Canal Street club can be found here. Cruz 101 – better known as Cruz – is an institution, and a must-visit in Manchester.

Old Pint Pot

This lively spot could be considered a jack of all trades – pub, restaurant, events space and live music venue.

Manchester Visitor Guides

Sunday Roasts in Manchester

Looking for the finest roast dinners in Manchester? Look no further. We've picked out the very best Sunday dinners in the city.

Federal Cafe Bar
Breakfast in Manchester

Manchester is strong with the breakfast force, and has some impressive form where brunch is concerned. Here’s our pick of the city’s morning glories.

Blossom on trees in Manchester
Parks and Gardens in Manchester

There are more green spaces in Manchester than you might think. We've picked out some of the best parks and gardens in and around the city.

Bars in Manchester

The best new bars in Manchester, plus some old favourites for good measure.

Stately Homes in the North

The North of England is blessed with countless stunning stately homes, many dating back decades and even centuries. Here are some of the very best.

UNITOM bookshop
Bookshops in Manchester

Manchester is a UNESCO City of Literature, so of course there are a few go-tos for books. Read our guide to discover the best places to pick them up.

Manchester Restaurant Deals

Manchester's restaurants are bending over backwards to create deals that take the sting out of eating out. Here are the best of the bunch for January.

Vegan Food in Manchester

Whether you’re a proud vegan or merely curious, let us guide you towards the best vegan food in Manchester for Veganuary.

Manchester District Guides

Spotlight on

May Bank Holiday 2024: Things to Do

Plan your May Bank Holiday weekend with our top picks from music, art, theatre, food and drink spots, whatever the weather.

Take me there

Culture Guides

Festival-goers at Green Island
Music in Manchester and the North

Gazing longingly towards the good times that will accompany the surely imminent sun, we take a look at the best music festivals coming up in Manchester and Salford.