Invite Others – Five Things to Do In Manchester
1. BBQ in your garden – It might be the most obvious but since socialising is finally here, we’ll be meeting up for some sizzling food and chats in our outdoor spaces. We can’t guarantee the weather will be sizzling but we can guarantee it’ll be an experience if anything, especially if like me, you might need to invite someone to light it for you! As we know, having meals together is a great way to share your story and show hospitality.
2. Werneth Low – If you love Manchester and love a view, head south east to Werneth Low for a decent stroll and a highland view of the city centre. There’s also a nice pub (Hare & Hounds Inn) you can check out although you might want to check it’s open first… Meet up when you get there and enjoy a perfect view of our rapidly-growing city skyline. It could be a great opportunity to share your story with someone (it’s also one of the most visual spots on Bonfire Night).
3. Drive-in Cinema – No, seriously, Manchester has been doing them for a few years now and there’s a few dotted all over the city and surrounding areas. A simple google search will help you find one closest to you and it’s an experience if anything. Plus there’s usually some classic films for all the family to enjoy! Why not serve practically and pay for another person/household if you can.
4. Escape to Freight Island – If you like independent food businesses, stalls and markets, this is a charming changeable market with unique bars, restaurants and events from all over Manchester in the heart of the city centre (opposite Piccadilly train station). It lies outside in the old Mayfield Depot and the businesses come together, park up and serve some delicious socially distanced goodies, all outdoors! Booking is easy and it’s not too pricey either. It’s also great if you all fancy something different to eat or drink as there’s a selection of various food trucks based on whatever theme they’ll be doing – There are also outdoor heaters when it gets a bit chilly. I’ve popped some similar honourable mentions below.
5. Manchester Canal Walks – The spring weather will eventually pick up (I’m praying for a 2018 summer y’all, don’t worry) and we can take advantage of some of the most underrated places, right on our doorsteps. The canal network spans throughout the region and you don’t have to travel too far to experience it. I’d HIGHLY recommend experiencing Manchester this way.
– Castlefield (The Wharf) – is about a 2 mile stroll and mainly in the city centre if you fancied a bite or brew as well. You can experience the city in a way that puts you back in time. This is probably one of the shortest canal walks, but seeing the city from this perspective is incredible!! If you love Manchester history like I do, you can see where some of the city’s oldest streets once lay. It’s one of my favourite walks in town!
– Saddleworth – This canal walk showcases some of the Pennines and there’s a mix of industrial charm, historic mills and it’ll rack up your steps too!
– Ashton Canal – Beginning at the New Islington tram stop, veering off through Fairfield and ending at Ashton-under-Lyne or head out more towards the north, which will take you through Ancoats. This route might suit cyclists better but you can stop and turn back at any point or get a tram.
– Macclesfield Canal – This was the very first walk I discovered when I moved here. If you want to get away from the busy vibes around the towns or the city, this walk is perfect. Like a few country parks in Manchester, this truly feels like you’re at least 100 miles away from a bustling A6 or a Magic Bus. A bit more south of Greater Manchester, you could end up at Lyme Park if you start from the Higher Poynton connection (Anson Road). If you start from Lyme Park though, there’s a decent pub called The Boar’s Head with outdoor facilities in Poynton that you might want to end up at. There’s also an adjacent path on the route for horse riders who might trot past you which could be fun for the kids to see. 🐎 Overrall it’s one of my favourites. I’d recommend getting a train to Disley and cutting through Lyme Park through the canal route and to Higher Poynton (which is super posh) and you can get a train back from Middlewood Station.
There are many free things to do in Manchester and lots to see and experience with others, especially if you’re on a budget. There are some fantastic indoor places too but we’re obviously not quite there yet. Your story is important and inviting others to hear it is definitely worth doing, but hearing someone else’s story can be just as encouraging. I hope this gives you some practical solutions to potentially being quite vulnerable. Again, please feel free to PM me on instagram for more details or if you have any other ideas we can share together in the comments section on the post. ✌️ @ianjgwatson.
Ian is part of the CCM team and is based at our Fallowfield site. He is a regular worship leader at CCM as well as taking a lead on CCM graphic design and social media.