Once a thriving centre of industry in the north of England, Manchester has become a lively and vibrant European city with a strong sporting culture of football, cricket and cycling.
There are regular trains between the airport and Manchester Piccadilly railway station, which has connections to destinations throughout the UK. Buses service Manchester city centre as well as other local towns and cities. National Express operates coach services to cities all over the UK. All buses, coaches and trains leave from The Station, the airport's new transport interchange that is connected to all terminals by a covered walkway. Taxis are available outside all terminals.
The Midland is one of Manchester’s most famous hotels. The Grade II listed building has a 100-year heritage that is encapsulated in its luxurious comfort and style. www.qhotels.co.uk
The distinctive Hilton Manchester Deansgate is an iconic landmark on the city’s skyline. Guest rooms offer great city views from floor-to-ceiling windows. www.hilton.com/manchesterdeansgate
Voted Restaurant of the Year in the 2012 Manchester Food & Drink Festival Awards and named least expensive of the UK ’s top 100 restaurants by the Sunday Times, Ramsons and the Hideaway offers good food at great prices. www.ramsons-restaurant.com
Puccini’s Pizzeria is a traditional family-run pizzeria and restaurant in Swinton that is widely recognised as the best Italian in Manchester. It is budget conscious, but remains popular with celebrities despite its unfashionable location. www.puccinirestaurant.co.uk
If football is your passion, then Manchester is the place to be, with two world-class football teams inhabiting the city. Visit Manchester United at Old Trafford www.manutd.com or call in to the Manchester City’s Etihad Stadium www.mcfc.co.uk. If you prefer to stay impartial, why not visit the world’s biggest and best football museum at Urbis? www.nationalfootballmuseum.com
For shopping, there is something to satisfy every taste, from small vintage shops to leading department stores Selfridges and Harvey Nichols. If you’d prefer to take cover from the winter weather, try the vast Trafford Centre – an indoor shopping centre and leisure complex.