Beer Gardens in Manchester & Salford

Ian Jones, Food and Drink Editor

After a whole lot of wet weather, we’re finally getting some much-needed 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).

Escape To Freight Island
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


New to Stevenson’s Square, Public is the Northern Quarter’s new local, from the team behind Evelyn’s.

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The Refuge

The Refuge is a restaurant and bar based at Kimpton Clocktower Hotel, specialising in bright, exciting small plates.

Bar or Pub
Central Bay

Central Bay is a new waterfront dining and drinking destination at Quayside MediaCity, opening summer 2023.

Bar or Pub

Peste is a bohemian bar and bookshop with vintage reads and records.


Cottonopolis is one of the Northern Quarter’s standout venues, serving stunning food and beautiful cocktails in one of the city’s best-looking spaces.

Retro Bar Manchester
Bar or Pub
Retro Bar Manchester

Longstanding alternative venue in the centre of Manchester with a basement space for live music, clubnights and comedy events.

The Fitzgerald
Bar or Pub
The Fitzgerald

Speakeasy-style cocktail bar with dark lighting and a superb range of drinks, plus regular comedy events and live music.

Bar or Pub

Nordie is a superb bar and restaurant in the heart of Levenshulme.

The Alan

This high-end city-centre restaurant has an excellent afternoon tea option that more than matches up to the superb main menu.

Moxy Manchester City

Moxy Manchester City is a stylish 146-bedroom hotel in Spinningfields, with an attractive living room lobby and modern, well-stocked bar.

Bar or Pub
Le Social Wine Bar

Le Social is a stylish wine bar and tasting room, focusing on exhibitions by local artists as well as natural wines, deli boards and continental plates.

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