According to several studies in just a few years, the Manchester metro area will top Birmingham, being the fastest-growing city in the country. Manchester is not only popular among the locals, but among outlandish too. A 2007 report shows that this area is the third most frequented by foreign tourists.
Cottonopolis was also important in the 18th century, being the first industrialized city in the world. Shortly after the Industrial Revolution it became the international center of cotton spinning and the texture industry. Today the central district of the city is part of the UNESCO World Heritage Site project, mainly because of the many 19th century cotton mills. In addition, these buildings are the reason why the city is frequently called Cottonopolis.
The climate of the city is temperate maritime, just like most of the British Isles. Light precipitation, mild winters and cool summers are characteristics of this climate. The average temperature varies between 1 and 20 °C in a year. Manchester has an average of fifteen rainy days in a month.
Numerous ethnicities are represented in the city. Despite the fact that the majority of residents are white, over 77 percent, numerous other ethnic groups are also present, like Indian, Pakistani, Black Caribbean and Chinese.
Beside the ethnical diversity, an architectural diversity is also noticeable in the city. All the major architectural styles are represented in Manchester from Victorian to modern. Most of the buildings in the city, which today are real tourist attractions, were raised because of the construction boom during the Industrial Revolution. Many of these are reminiscent of Venice.
Beside these historical sights the city has many modern buildings too. The city is home to several skyscrapers, because of a new project to avoid the overcrowding of the city. Because the outskirts of the city are already swamped with residential buildings and to keep green areas in the city, the only option was to spread vertically. It is said that the number of tower cranes in use represents the wealth of a city. Well, in Manchester, there are seven skyscrapers under construction, other eight are already approved and nine more are proposed. When it will be finished, the Piccadilly Tower will be the tallest building in the city, with a height of over 180 meters. Till then, the Beetham Tower is the tallest one in Manchester. The architect liked the building so much that he bought the penthouse on the upper two floors of the tower. Today this is the highest residential area in the UK.
It is necessary for a city to have large open places such as plazas and parks, in order to compensate the concrete jungle formed by the skyscrapers. Sadly, most of the medial street patterns were cleared in the 1970s. If you want to get to the Market Street, a retail street, from north than you can go through the Long Millgate, which is among the few surviving ancient streets. The Market Street is one of the most popular shopping areas in the city. This pedestrian street has shops on both sides. The Arndale Center, which is an indoor shopping and entertainment center, is also situated here. Because motorized vehicles aren’t allowed in this area, it is very popular among street traders and entertainers.
Another popular shopping area in Manchester is the Deansgate. The large number of shops and restaurants keep the street busy during the day, while the bars and pubs are very popular nightlife scenes. The buildings of this street are in contrast with each other. The best example is the Beetham Tower, built in 2006 and the Barton Arcade, a Victorian building. The latter today is a shopping arcade with over a dozen shops and boutiques.
The Great Northern Warehouse is an example of a historical building renovated and used with other purpose than it was built for. For 64 years, this warehouse was used to store railway goods, but today it’s an entertainment center. Most of the nine shops operating here are furniture shops, but you can also find a carpet store as well as a coffee shop. A Virgin Active club is also located here, just like a 16-screen cinema and a casino. The Oceana, a large, themed nightclub was also arranged beside the five bars. You can find everything you need at the bars located in The Great Northern Warehouse. Bar 38 is a bar and nightclub, just like the Relish. Additionally the Relish has a restaurant zone. Several other upscale restaurants offer you the best of food of Italian and Spanish cuisine, like the Evuna, the Numero and the Linen.
The Manchester wheel was very popular among both locals and tourist after it was installed in 2004. Because of its popularity, it was reinstalled in the spring of 2007. It is compared to the London Eye.
Still the nighttime economy remains one of the most profitable sources of income of the city. With a history of nearly three decades, the parties are never ending in this British city. The estimated capacity of the city center is quarter of a million visitors. During the national holidays and other events, this is needed. Even during an ordinary weekend between 100 and 150 thousand people spend their nights in one of Manchester’s bars and clubs.
Maybe the most appealing parts of the city are the microbreweries. The beer is becoming more and more popular in the UK, even threatening the supremacy of the traditional whiskeys. Of course, if you are looking for a whiskey made with much attention and of high quality ingredients, Britain is the best place.
This city is one of Britain’s top holiday destinations because of its rich cultural life and history. Manchester is a very open-minded city and the best examples of this are the modern skyscrapers, which create a beautiful harmony with the Victorian styled buildings.