Skip to main content

26th October 2022

Lifestyle Loves: Nights out you didn’t know you needed 

Tired of your standard, messy, freshers club night out? From axe throwing to live music, we’ve got you covered
Lifestyle Loves: Nights out you didn’t know you needed 
Photo: Nellie Hodgson @ The Mancunion

Freshers Week may be over but that doesn’t mean that Manchester hasn’t still got lots to offer. Many exciting bars and opportunities for nights out tend to fly under the radar, so here are some suggestions for places to visit if you want to try something new!

Big Hands

Photo: Erin Osman @ The Mancunion

An eccentric pub on Oxford Road just next to campus, Big Hands features a retro bar area and downstairs seating with energetic gigs and live music most nights of the week. The ambient red lights and dark scene, in addition to the American bar-esque collection of records and guitars on the walls, create its fantastic atmosphere. Combined with the occasional live band, it serves a great night out in Manchester. 

Their quirky rooftop garden is filled with fairy lights and plants, and is completely different to the vibe downstairs (and is covered in case of rain). There is a wide menu of drinks to choose from, including pitchers of four pints of beer! Big Hands is perfect for a relaxed night out with friends or family members, and an excuse to drink pitchers and listen to punk music for as long as you please!

Southside Tequila 

Photo: Nellie Hodgson @ The Mancunion

Southside Tequila is a cosy tequila joint. While its headline act is tequila, it also serves affordable tacos and nachos, perfectly suited for your student budget. Southside does not take bookings, so feel free to wander in anytime! It is well decorated with flags, banners, and band posters, and with a cool tequila-centred bar.

Inside there are lots of tables to sit at and enjoy the tunes that are sure to be crowd-pleasers. If loud music isn’t your scene, the garden has a few seats where you can order drinks and food straight to your table. Southside Tequila’s speciality food is Mexican, where the delicious tacos are only £1! 

As well as other beverages, there is an assortment of cocktails to choose from, mostly tequila-based, that are made by skilled bartenders. The 2-for-1 cocktails between 9pm – 11pm each night allow you to try as many as you please. This taco and tequila joint is just the place for an eventful evening and is based on Wilmslow Road in Withington, just a few minutes down from the big Sainsbury’s.

The Blues Kitchen

Photo: Nellie Hodgson @ The Mancunion

The Blues Kitchen, based in central Manchester, is an excellent night out if you need a break from the heavy fresher’s clubs. The uplifting live music on both floors allows a night out fit for everyone: to dance to an exceptional live band playing blues, soul, and funk, alongside older songs you know but may not have heard for a while. The live singers are superb, and you won’t be able to take your eyes away.

Wednesday nights at The Blues Kitchen feature half-price cocktails and three live music sets, making it the place to be. The décor transports you back to a 1920s American blues bar, with dark lighting and vintage lamps and walls. The Blues Kitchen, recently opened and emulating the one in London, is truly enrapturing, and one of the best nights out in Manchester.

Boom Battle Bar

Photo: Erin Osman @ The Mancunion

Having just opened up this year, Boom Battle Bar boasts a fun-filled, lively night out. It is unlike any other bar, offering axe-throwing, darts, beer pong, and even karaoke – perfect for a date or friends night out! The activities are sure to bring out your competitive side (if you don’t have one before you go, you definitely will after).

The funky lights and disco features allow you to be fully immersed, as well as the delicious food and quality bar. With its friendly and encouraging staff, you will never feel out of your depth (even when you’re throwing an axe). Boom Battle Bar, although already a well-known place for a night out, needs to be visited if you have not already!

More Coverage

Did you know that there’s a spa under Simon Building

Rumour has it that deep in the depths of UoM lies a hidden spa. Why? We cannot say. But should you embark on an adventure to find it? Absolutely.

Three years at university: What have I learnt?

As the academic year draws to a close, here are some of the more unexpected lessons I have learnt from three years at Manchester University

How do we tackle the student loneliness crisis?

At a university where 45,000 students cross paths every day, it should be impossible to feel lonely

Keeping on top of the news cycle: How to stay up to date as a student

Being a student can mean an incredibly busy schedule, so how can you make time to find out what’s happening in the world?