Travel Diary: Manchester

I don’t know about you but I love having a nosey into people’s holiday albums and where better to do it than the blogosphere. Originally, this started off with just a bit of Facebook stalking, flicking through the album. But now I’ve finally found a place where people are actually asking me to stalk their holiday photos. I hope I’m not the only one who thinks like this now. Despite this love, me personally, I’m not very good at documenting my holidays. Well, I’m very good at taking the photographs, in fact I’ll go away and take hundreds of snaps but then they’ll just kind of sit on my laptop for months….okay years, with my parents hounding me to get the photos sorted as they want to see them. I think all my family members have lost hope now and expect to see the holiday photos in about twenty years time when I finally sort them. But the good thing is blogging kind of encourages me to maybe take less photos and actually sort through and discuss them, a little diary which will be interesting to look at in the future and maybe interesting for you to look at now.

Now I didn’t quite go on a holiday, it was just two days away but I thought it was a good start. My brother is going to Manchester in September to start a years teacher training course and needed a flat, so we went with a mission to find somewhere to live, it was either that or a cardboard box. I’ve been to a few cities up north, namely Leeds, York and Sheffield (so well travelled) but Manchester is one of those places I’ve always been desperate to go to, and finally here was my chance.

We spent most of the first day exploring the suburbs of Manchester and travelling around on tram and bus and doing a whole load of walking. We saw some really nice areas and also some pretty bleak ones but we found the perfect place for my brother to live in, a lovely town with a trendy reputation and not too far from the centre. Once we had found the place we found the flat, this involved knocking round a lot of estate agents but luckily we found a property which hadn’t even got on the market yet, went and viewed it and it was perfect. Job done! Everything felt ridiculously easy and allowed us to have the whole of the next day to just explore central Manchester without the pressure of having to find a flat.
I can truly say I have the worst sense of direction known to man, but even I managed to navigate my way around the city, kind of. I’m sure there is tons that we missed but we did see enough for me to come to the conclusion that I love Manchester and I will definitely be revisiting. There were some really cool alternative places around the outskirts and the whole city was just exploding with character and buzz. I must say I don’t think I’ve ever seen as many Greggs so close together in my life though! Once we had had a mooch around admiring the architecture and surroundings, we did a little window shopping. I couldn’t resist but pop into Selfridges and was SO tempted by a MAC lipstick, but held back because I have simply spent way too much money as of late.
There was also a crazy shop selling every single pencil eraser you could possibly imagine, and a few funky stationary bits and bobs. Manchester was full of quirky shops like these that I just couldn’t but explore. However I am still impressed with myself for not splashing the cash although I will be back with money in my hand to buy up things from all these shops!
Once the day drew to a close we made our way back to the station and had the relatively easy but long train journey home. Overall I really enjoyed Manchester and will definitely be back to visit my brother and do a little bit of shopping!
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