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

Berlin Now: Theatre Season
Theatre 3 November 2016–5 November 2016, from £3.00

Theatre Season: BERLIN NOW at HOME

HOME celebrates the city of Bowie, burlesque and Brecht in a special new season BERLIN NOW that takes in crooners, cabaret and good old fashioned theatre.

Idris Khan
Exhibitions 14 October 2016–19 March 2017, FREE

Idris Khan at the Whitworth

Idris Khan’s artworks are that rare thing: both visually and conceptually fascinating. A number of Khan’s seminal pieces will be on show at this new solo exhibition at the Whitworth, showcasing the artist’s preoccupation with representing time over duration within a single instance.

Ghosts at HOME
Theatre 18 November 2016–3 December 2016, from £10.00

Ghosts at HOME

Sex, scandal and syphilis – as you might well imagine, not everyone approved of this play when it was first performed in 1880, but Ibsens classic is just as powerful as it ever was.

Literature 4 November 2016, from £35.00

National Creative Writing Graduate Fair

Are you a creative writer with aspirations to be published? Come and pitch your ideas to literary agents; learn about the writing life through panels, workshops and networking opportunities, and hear a keynote speech from author Kit de Waal.

Candoco Dance Company
Dance 16 November 2016–17 November 2016, from £7.00

Candoco Dance Company at Contact

Candoco prove that dance is not about perfection: it is about expressing who you are through movement…and maybe having a bit of fun along the way.

Graffiti on the side of a shop
Exhibitions 1 December 2016,

Straight Outta Manchester at Number 70 Oxford Street

This public lecture will be in the form of a panel discussion focusing on the role that Manchester music, fashion and ultimately youth cultures have played in forming the Manchester global (and local) brand image.

Families 15 December 2016–22 December 2016, from £5.00

The Siege of Christmas at Contact

Here’s the premise: someone has kidnapped the spirit of Christmas and you have to help find her. Where would you look? In a castle of course – or rather Contact and its crenelated roofline.

Manchester as Cosmopolis
Education 10 May 2017,

Manchester as Cosmopolis at Number 70 Oxford Street

This event will be a One Day Symposium on Global Migration to put forth a number of perspectives on how global skilled migration affects the local economy and society.

Exhibitions 13 March 2017,

Manchester, Ireland and the World at Number 70 Oxford Street

In this event, we will explore the social and cultural identity of the North West Irish community, as well as its interactions and intersections with other minorities, both local and global.

Manchester skyline at sunset
Cinema 8 February 2017–9 February 2017,

Beyond Babel at MMU Geoffrey Manton Building

Alluding to the Bible story of The Tower of Babel and the curse of diversity of tongues, Beyond Babel is a film festival that aims to celebrate multilingual life and showcase a wide range of films.

Manchester District Guides

The cafe in the trees at the Whitworth

Oxford Road, Manchester

Stretching all the way from the Curry Mile – with its glittering sari emporiums, Indian…

The front of Didsbury restaurant Volta.

Didsbury, Manchester

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

Salford museum and art gallery exterior

Salford, Greater Manchester

Cross over the River Irwell, and you’ll find yourself in another city entirely – Salford….

Beech Road (3)

Beech Road Chorlton, Manchester

It may not quite have the reputation of Benefits Street, but Beech Road in Chorlton…

Salford Quays visit britain WIDE

The Quays, Manchester

The Quays is an area that’s gone from busy industrial dock to 21st century cultural…

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,…