Greater Manchester is open for business, with venues following strict guidelines and Covid-safe enhanced cleaning regimes. When out and about, please remember to follow Government guidelines around social distancing, wearing a face covering where required (unless exempt), wash your hands regularly, and seek open spaces with good ventilation where possible. 


1. Watch some serious athletes perform in Bolton  

Bolton’s famous IRONMAN UK event returns for two days of sporting spectacle on Friday 2 July and Sunday 4 July, and with Bolton’s IRONMAN being one of the toughest of the year, the athletes need all the support that they can get from Greater Manchester-based spectators. 

Events kick off on Friday 2 July with Night Run, a 5K fun run that will see hundreds of men and women, aged 16+, run a course that starts on Le Mans Crescent, heading through the town centre, and into Queens Park. Runners will then come back to town, finishing in Victoria Square on the same finish line as IRONMAN UK athletes. 

Then on Sunday 4 July, the main event commences as Bolton welcomes IRONMAN UK for the twelfth time, with athletes aged 17 to 70 taking part in the action. The gruelling triathlon gets underway with a 2.4-mile swim at Pennington Flash, before athletes complete a 112-mile bike ride followed by a full marathon that ends in Bolton’s Victoria Square. 

2. See the city transformed by the Manchester International Festival 

The biennial Manchester International Festival has returned and is running until Sunday 18 July with a mix of virtual and in-person events taking place across the city, plus the much-loved Festival Square is back, this time taking place in Cathedral Gardens, with food and drink, and free live music and DJ sets. 

The festival includes several open-air exhibits that you might see while wandering around town, including Big Ben Lying Down with Political Books in Piccadilly Gardens, Portrait of Black Britain at Manchester Arndale, and Captioning The City at venues across the city centre; as well as special events and installations at venues including Manchester Central, Manchester Jewish Museum, The Whitworth, Great Northern Warehouse, and plenty of online events. 

A full calendar of events across the festival can be found on the MIF website

3. Continue your love affair with the beautiful game 

With the England team proving heroic in the EURO 2020 tournament, whatever happens next you can continue to channel your passion for the national team with the current major exhibition at the National Football Museum.  

The English Football Hall of Fame focuses on 50 of the game’s most inspirational and influential figures, spanning all eras from the 1880s. Objects on public display for the very first time include; Manchester City legend Colin Bell’s MBE, England captain Billy Wright’s collection of gramophone records, and a host of famous footie shirts worn by legends such as Sir Stanley Matthews, Tony Adams, Sheila Parker and Sue Lopez. 

4. Snoop around Salford’s historic hall 

Ordsall Hall in Salford is welcoming visitors back to explore the Hall and hear about some of the people who made it their home. From Monday 5 July self-guided visits are back where you can independently explore Ordsall Hall’s historical rooms and museum by following a one-way route throughout the building, at your own pace. Various times are available Mondays, Tuesday and Sundays. One-hour private tours are also available on Mondays and Sundays throughout July but booking in advance online is recommended.  

5. Hear powerful stories of over a century of war 

The Imperial War Museum North have recently reopened with their latest temporary exhibition, Aid Workers: Ethics Under Fire, which explores the ethical dilemma’s aid workers encounter whilst working in conflict zones. The fascinating exhibition is part of the museum’s Refugees Season, and from Monday 5 July, the museum is back open daily by free-to-book advance tickets.  

6. Be personally chaperoned around town 

If you want a tour with a difference and one where you are in complete control of what you see and do, book in for a Manchester Taxi Tour with the legendary John Consterdine.  

John’s fun and flexible tour style allows you to pick and choose to visit anywhere in Greater Manchester, whether you want to follow music threads at places like Salford Lads Club and Sifter Records, visit Corrie filming locations, see the best football pubs, or just have a standard history tour that isn’t confided to just the city centre.  

What’s more, John has recently upgraded his taxi to a roomy electric vehicle with huge glass roof that glides quietly through the streets as you take everything in from the comfort of your back seat and even offers a new Afternoon Tea Taxi Tour

7. Get back to nature at Northern Roots 

In the heart of Oldham, five minutes from the town centre, lies a hidden wilderness waiting to be discovered. Loved by locals who know and visit it, the Northern Roots site stretches all the way from award-winning Alexandra Park in the north, past Park Bridge Heritage Centre, to Bankfield Clough in the south; 160-acres of lush urban green space looking out onto the foothills of the Peak District where you can walk, run, bike or ride. 

8. Have a full day out in Stockport 

A phased reopening of museum sites in Stockport means that the superb Tudor manor house Bramall Hall, the eerie and poignant Stockport Air Raid Shelters, the fascinating Stockport War Memorial Art Gallery, and Stockport's oldest town house Staircase House are all now open, meaning you can make a full day of it in Stockport.  Tickets for all attractions need to be booked in advance

9. Romp around an old pile 

Following the news last week that The National Trust is in the early stages of a project to bring Castlefield Viaduct back into use – transforming it into a green oasis in the city – why not visit one of Greater Manchester’s existing National Trust properties such as Dunham Massey just outside of Altrincham.  

Or if you’re happy to travel further afield try Quarry BankLyme Park or Tatton ParkHaigh Woodland Park in Wigan is now open including the Children’s Woodland Adventure Play Park. 

10. Escape to Freight Island for food, drink and party vibes 

Bookings are now open to secure the best seats for the summer at Escape to Freight Island, one of Manchester’s newest and most popular party venues. Taking up space at the former railway station Mayfield, Escape to Freight Island offers 17 different food and drinks vendors, and a range of free and ticketed entertainment including; DJ sets, live musicians, and performances. Of course, on Saturday they will be one of many venues showing the England vs Ukraine on their big screen. 


Ironman UK Triathlon and Night Run
Sporting Event
Ironman finisher

Bolton welcomes IRONMAN UK again on Sunday 3 July, with athletes aged 17 to 70 taking part in the action.

Manchester International Festival
Festival Square at MIF19

A major highlight in Manchester's cultural calendar, Manchester International Festival (MIF) will return from 1-18 July with a vibrant programme of original new work from across the spectrum of visual and performing arts and music by artists from over 20 countries.

Still Gleaming: Euro '96 in Pictures
Image from Euro '96, woman in shorts

The exhibition of 18 Mirrorpix photographs captures an almost glorious summer in 1996 when football came home to grounds across England.

Ordsall Hall: Family Open Air Theatre Performances
Family Friendly
Ordsall Hall

Ordsall Hall is hosting a fantastic 3-month programme of outdoor theatre in the grand setting of the spectacular Grade I Listed Manor House.

Aid Workers: Ethics under Fire
Exhibition: Aid Workers: Ethics under Fire

Aid Workers: Ethics Under Fire explores the practical, emotional and ethical challenges faced by aid workers on the front lines of conflict zones. Revealing the dilemmas encountered and hard choices made by aid organisations working to support, care for and protect vulnerable populations forced to flee their homes because of conflict, this exhibition at IWM North takes decision making as its focus, using individual experiences to tell a global story.

Manchester Taxi Tours
Chauffered Tours
Manchester Taxi Tours

Take a unique tour around Manchester with John Consterdine, the city’s only Green Badge Tour Guide and Taxi Driver.

Northern Roots Tour
Guided Walk
Northern Roots Tour

Northern Roots Tour (All ages) Sunday 3 May 2020, 2pm, free Sunday 17 May 2020 , 11am, free Join us for a gentle stroll around Snipe Clough and learn more about our exciting project to build the UK’s largest urban farm and eco-park. Meet at the car park off Kings Road, at the junction with Honeywell Lane.

Bramall Hall
Historic House / Palace
Bramall Hall

This magical Tudor manor house is set in 60 acres of parkland with lakes, woods and gardens. The house contains 16thC wall paintings, Elizabethan fine plaster ceilings, Victorian kitchens and servants' quarters.

Stockport Air Raid Shelters
Historic Site
Surviving the Blitz - Stockport Air Raid Shelters,

Step back in time and experience the sights and sounds of Britain's Home Front. Wander around authentically reconstructed tunnels which provide you with first hand experience of daily life in 1940s war-torn Britain.

Stockport War Memorial Art Gallery
Stockport Art Gallery

The Stockport Art Gallery provides a changing exhibition programme of regional, national and international significance.

Lyme Park
Parkland / Woodland Garden
Lyme Park

Nestling on the edge of the Peak District, Lyme Park was once a great sporting estate and home of the Legh family for over 500 years.

Tatton Park
Historic House / Palace
Tatton Park

Rural, stately beauty on Manchester's doorstep

Haigh Woodland Park
Haigh Woodland Park

Explore and enjoy the stunning parkland, woodland and plantations at Haigh Hall at Country Park.

Escape to Freight Island
Escape To Freight Island

An axis of food, drink, music, immersive entertainment, festival takeovers and family focused happenings.



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