Also known as England's 'Capital of the North', Manchester is a city with plenty to offer. Boasting a wealth of buildings of architectural interest, museums, art galleries and leisure facilities, there's always something to do here.
Throughout the year Manchester hosts a variety of annual events. One of the newest is the Beer and Cider Festival, which takes place at the end of January. Being home to the third largest Chinatown in Europe, Manchester hosts a grand celebration to welcome in the Chinese New Year. One of the longest running festivals is the popular Viva! Spanish and Latin American Film Festival. This takes place in spring of each year. Attracting visitors and locals alike, is Manchester Day, which is a celebration of the good things about the city. The highlight of the day is the mile-long parade through the city. Tourist information is available from the Manchester Visitor Information Centre, which is located at Piccadilly Plaza.
When comparing grocery shopping, clothing and eating out, the cost of living in Manchester is generally lower than in London. Manchester is significantly cheaper than London for things like leisure, and rental accommodation.
Manchester Airport is accessible by car, taxi, train and coach. Trains operate approximately every 10 minutes from Manchester Airport Station to Manchester Piccadilly. The journey takes approximately 20 minutes and costs around £4.50. Alternatively, travellers can take the Metrolink, which also operates from 'The Station'. Trams run every 12 minutes, and cost around £5 for a day ticket. For those that prefer to catch a black taxi cab, there is a rank situated outside each terminal. The journey takes approximately 25 minutes and costs around £20. Taxis in Manchester tend to be cheaper than in London. The Metroshuttle is a free bus service that links rail stations and shopping centres in the city. Stagecoach single fares cost from £1 to £3.10 depending on journey; alternatively, the Stagecoach 'Dayrider' is available for about £4.10. A cheap hostel room in Manchester costs from roughly £12 per person, per night. 3 star hotel accommodation is available from around £60 for a double.