Manchester’s Northern Quarter is one of the most exciting areas of the city centre, with everything on offer from vegan food and fun nightlife to vibrant street art and great coffee. However, it can sometimes be hard to know where to start when exploring the area. Because of this, we’ve compiled a handy list of our favourite spots in the Northern Quarter as a guide to making the most of what Manchester has to offer.
Night and Day
Manchester is famous for its music scene, and Night and Day Cafe has been playing a key part in this since it opened in 1991. The venue has played host to numerous international and local acts over the years, from Arctic Monkeys, My Chemical Romance and Paulo Nutini to Manchester’s very own Elbow. You can check out upcoming music listings and purchase tickets here.
Night and Day is also a cafe-come-bar, open, as you’d expect, during both the night and day to serve food and drink. There are also small art exhibitions showing vibrant works by local artists, making the bar one of the Northern Quarter’s creative hubs.
The Northern Quarter is known for being a popular spot for a night out, and is served by plenty of interesting bars. One of our favourites is Crazy Pedros, where you can grab a slice of pizza to go alongside your drink.
The bar is nestled down a side street and offers a mix of outdoor and underground seating, making the atmosphere great for any time of day. If you’re lucky there might even be a DJ on site to turn Crazy Pedros into a true party spot – what’s not to love?
We couldn’t write an article about the Northern Quarter without including Afflecks. Afflecks is a truly one-of-a-kind shopping centre which houses over 60 independent small retailers offering everything from clothes, artwork and homeware to tattoos, piercings and books.
You could probably spend hours exploring everything on offer across the building’s three floors, though be careful not to get lost! If you did lose your way there’d always be a friendly face to point you in the right direction: Afflecks prides itself on its friendly, welcoming and inclusive ethos.
Manchester is well served for vegan food, and the Northern Quarter has many options to choose from. We’d recommend V Rev, a retro vegan diner which serves 100% vegan burgers, hotdogs, and kebabs, all of which are reasonably priced at around £10.
The staff are friendly and the restaurant’s ethos makes it an excellent place to try out some meat-free alternatives created by those passionate about a plant-based lifestyle (and they taste really good too). The location on Edge Street is also a plus, with the option of outdoor seating on the pedestrianised road.
We love a good plant shop here at The Mancunion, as evident in our article covering the best plant shops in the city. Flourish is a great place to start, located at the edge of the Northern Quarter just off of Market Street – the exterior is so colourful that you’d struggle to miss it!
Plants at Flourish spread out onto the street alongside an array of colourful pots which promise to brighten up your space. It’s important to support local Manchester businesses, and you can do this here at a very reasonable price, with friendly staff and cheaper alternatives to the often overpriced houseplants in the rest of the Northern Quarter.
19 Cafe Bar
19 Cafe Bar is undoubtedly one of the best brunch spots in the Northern Quarter. The independent cafe is located on Lever Street (just above Piccadilly Gardens) and opens from nine to five to serve breakfast, brunch, coffee and cocktails.
You can either opt for a classic hearty brunch (I’d recommend the veggie breakfast) or something more decadent, such as the kinder pancakes or banoffee French toast. Whatever you choose, the service is quick, the staff are friendly and the location is in a prime position, close to bus services whilst benefiting from some of the Northern Quarter’s effortless cool.
If you want to read about what else The Mancunion Lifestyle team are loving, you can access the full series here.
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