This once industrial city has reinvented itself as a truly contemporary metropolis
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This once industrial city has reinvented itself as a truly contemporary metropolis, with modern landmark buildings such as the Lowry Centre, a thriving art and culture scene, and world-class sport. Being home to the world famous Manchester United Football Club it's no wonder trains to Manchester are so popular.
It's often cited as the world's first industrialised city, and elements of Manchester's industrial past can be found as you travel throughout the city.
Manchester is served by the following train stations:
The bold mix of old and new is what gives Manchester its unique character which is why trains to Manchester are becoming more popular. You can get cheap train tickets to Manchester if you book in advance and watch out for best price availability. For more information see the section below on cheap train tickets to Manchester.
For ideas on what to do in Manchester and places to visit please see below our guide of things to do in Manchester.
Want to stay over? Book a great value hotel in Manchester.
If you know that you are travelling to one of Manchester's stations ahead of time you have a great chance of securing a cheap ticket because you can plan and book in advance. This type of ticket is called an Advance ticket. You can book your train tickets up to 12 weeks in advance of departure.
We understand however, that you don't always know exactly which train you want so now you can also buy our great value range of Advance tickets and reserve your seat up to 15 minutes before you board a CrossCountry service, via our website or our Train Ticket app, subject to availability.
See our information about how to get cheap train tickets and fares.
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Manchester has something for everyone from museums and galleries, to sports stadiums and music venues. Plus, most of the venues are free to visit! Here are some of the top attractions in Manchester:
Manchester art gallery is a popular cultural destination. The collection covers over six centuries up to the present day and they are especially renowned for their collection of 19th century British paintings. There's a lot on offer for families and best of all its free. If travelling by train to Manchester, you can reach the art gallery from Manchester Piccadilly, Manchester Oxford Road or Manchester Victoria stations by taking the Metrolink from Mosley Street or St Peter's Square.
This is definitely one for the football fans - visiting Old Trafford stadium and taking the tour to experience the story of the club is a trip that many people would never forget. The 'Experience' package that was recently launched combines a day out at the award-winning museum and tour attractions with a family dining experience in the Red Cafe. You can travel to Old Trafford from Piccadilly Gardens by bus. The journey takes approximately 20 minutes.
A Land Fit For Heroes: War and the Working Class 1914-1918
24 May 2014 - 01 February 2015
The People's History Museum's changing exhibition A Land Fit For Heroes examines how the war changed society, radically altering the social, economic, cultural and political outlook of the British people. It looks at why people supported the war (and those that didn't), the role that women played in the war effort, how home life was radically changed, the influence the war had on politics and the labour movement and life after the war.
For those who are not Manchester United fans and instead support Manchester City club, special attention has been paid to offering a fantastic tour of the grounds. The tour includes the box level, the corporate lounge, the directors' box, dressing room, the walk of pride / players' tunnel, warm-up room, press facilities, the pitch side and dugouts. Manchester City is approximately five minutes in a taxi from Manchester Piccadilly Station.
Situated in the heart of Manchester, the Royal Exchange Theatre is home to some of the most interesting and unusual spaces in the North West. The theatre is a great idea if you want to spend an evening watching a play or concert. They also offer costume hire if you are feeling adventurous. The Royal exchange theatre is about a 15 minute walk along the river from Manchester Victoria station. You pass the beautiful cathedral on the way so stop to take a look.
Home to over 230 shops. Many visitors chose to travel by train to Manchester so that they can easily bring home all the shopping bags. Trafford centre is a destination of its own with a cinema, restaurants, extensive shop portfolio and fully equipped with family facilities. From Manchester Piccadilly station you can reach the Trafford Centre by bus. The Trafford Centre often hosts events such as wedding fairs, charity events and celebrates holidays.
Visit the National Football Museum in its new home at Urbis and explore the world's finest collection of football artefacts and archives. Admission is free and there is plenty to keep kids of all ages occupied.
Manchester Cathedral, or The Cathedral and Collegiate Church of St Mary, St Denys and St George in Manchester, is a Medieval church built in the eighth-century which has survived both the Manchester Blitz and the 1996 IRA bombing. It and its surrounding buildings such as Chetham's Hospital School of Music are some of the oldest buildings in Manchester, the Chetham Library said to be the oldest public library in Europe. It is an area of Manchester whose heritage is literally stunning.