Manchester tours and excursions
It's easy to pick up a free map from the Visitor Information Centre and discover Manchester's rich history for yourself on foot on a self-guided trail. These are themed around museums and galleries, music, arts and theatres. Places need to be booked in advance. Visitors can also hire a personal tour with a Blue Badge guide and take advantage of their expert local knowledge.Tel: +44 871 222 8223.
As the home to two outstanding football teams, Manchester is something of a Mecca for soccer fans. Manchester United, one of England's most decorated teams, play at Old Trafford. Manchester City, who won the Premier League in 2012 and 2014, play at the Etihad Stadium, which was originally built for the 2002 Commonwealth Games. Walk in the footsteps of your favourite players and learn the history of your beloved teams on these fascinating behind-the-scenes tours.Tel: +44 161 826 1326; +44 161 444 1894.
Buxton is a major tourist attraction, thanks to its health-giving spa waters discovered by the Romans. Originating from an underground reservoir, its waters maintain a constant 28°C (83°F). The town also has many gorgeous buildings, including the Georgian Crescent, the Old Hotel dating back to the 16th century and once graced by Mary Queen of Scots, the Devonshire Hospital with its spectacular dome, and the elegant Edwardian Opera House, home of the annual Buxton International Festival.Tel: +44 1298 73033.
Blackpool is within easy reach of Manchester. The seaside town has been a traditional holiday spot for people from the Midlands and the northwest since the Victorian era. By turns kitsch and classic, the beach resort offers its famed Blackpool Tower, renowned for its illuminations, The Pleasure Beach funfair, which boasts one of the biggest roller coaster rides in the UK, as well as the requisite candy-floss, burger bars, piers, amusement arcades and donkey rides.Tel: +44 1253 478 222.