The cafe in the trees at the Whitworth
Image courtesy of The Whitworth

Oxford Road, Manchester

Creative Tourist

Stretching all the way from the Curry Mile – with its glittering sari emporiums, Indian sweet shops and mixed reputation for actual curry – up toward the city centre, Oxford Road is not only home to two Universities, the Royal Northern College of Music, an Olympic-sized pool and a good number of the city’s best music venues, it’s also the busiest bus route in Europe. Yes, this is student land, but cultural institutions such as The Whitworth art gallery, Manchester Museum and International Anthony Burgess Centre also make the area a real draw for locals and tourists alike. There are also two parks: Whitworth Park, which dates back to 1890, and Grosvenor Square, a small patch of green that was once a church and where now, on sunny days, the locals come out to bask in bookish style.

The Oxford Road Corridor is the site of serious scientific innovation; here, you can visit the place where the atom was split, and doff your cap to the building dedicated to pioneering computer scientist and code breaker Alan Turing. Once home to philosopher Friedrich Engels and writer Elizabeth Gaskell, the area can boast its fair share of artistic prestige, too. Here, history and innovation still exist side by side.

Discover our top picks

Theatre 22 September–7 October 2017, from £10

People, Places and Things at HOME

Emma is an actor trying to overcome addiction, but what else can help her cope with life’s problems?

Sports 20–23 September 2017, from £10:00 - 15.00

We’re Not Really Here – A Football Opera at Contact

The excitement of a goalmouth scramble and the pressure of a penalty shootout are put under the spotlight in this new theatre show about football fandom.

Music 4 October–11 December 2017, FREE

RNCM Autumn Season

Featuring a legendary chanteuse, an exploration of science in music, a bombastic orchestra recital and a classic film with musical accompaniment, the RNCM’s Autumn Season is action-packed and offers something for everyone. Read on for our top picks.

Music 11 October 2017, from £15.00

UpClose: Aziz Ibrahim – From Lahore to Longsight at HOME

Longsight-born guitarist Aziz Ibrahim has worked with the likes of The Stone Roses, Simply Red and Paul Weller – but his own album, Lahore to Longsight, is the focus of this concert, which charts the journey of Aziz’s father from a divided India to Pakistan to Manchester, recording Aziz’s own path to self-identity and cultural acceptance in the process.

Music 9 September 2017–31 May 2018, from £15.00

Manchester Camerata 2017/18 Season

Featuring Snoop Dogg’s producer, a live video artist, plus a gospel choir and re-interpretations of Muse and Metallica, the 2017/18 season by ‘probably Britain’s most adventurous orchestra’ is as diverse and inspiring as ever. Discover our highlights and picks for the weeks and months ahead.

Festivals 22 September 2017–31 March 2018,

HOME Autumn/Winter Season

From revolutionary inspired art to ‘sassy’ Hip Hop Christmas cabaret, check out our guide to HOME’s Autumn/Winter Season.

Comedy 13–14 October 2017, from £20.00 - 25.00

Hocum Pokem at Contact

Turn the camp dial past 10 with this drag reinterpretation of cult classic Hocus Pocus.

Comedy 7–9 December 2017, from £20.00 - 25.00

Jinkx Monsoon & Major Scales: The Vaudevillians at Contact

Taller than over the top, further than too far, this is drag queen cabaret at its silliest and most satisfying.

Comedy 27 October–11 November 2017, from £6.00

Flying Solo Festival 2017 at Contact

A box of performance chocolates where every single pick is delicious? It can only be Contact’s Flying Solo Festival.

Theatre 28–29 November 2017, from £10.00 - 15.00

Re-member Me at Contact

Re-member Me brings the ghosts of Hamlets-past back to life through Dickie Beaus lip-syncing master class.

Manchester District Guides

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

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The front of Didsbury restaurant Volta.

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