Manchester  ~  Hanging out in The Northern Quarter.

I thought I would share with you a few of the quirky shops and cafes that my friend Lisa and I visited in the vibrant Northern Quarter area of Manchester last week. This plethora of independent bars, eateries and emporiums is situated not far from the city centre and can easily be reached from both The Arndale and Piccadilly Gardens. 

Oklahoma. A must if you are after a quirky gift or something unique for the house, this colourful gift and homewares shop on High Street is a delight to mooch around. Ideal for cute stocking fillers and novelty items too. Has a super Christmas decoration section with lots of kitsch baubles and festive fun. I bought a couple of little fun presents from here. 🎄 

Craft & Design Centre.  Housed in a Victorian Fishmarket building , the Manchester Craft & Design Centre is home to several talented artists and maker’s workshops over two levels plus a wonderful little cafe. After admiring some of the crafters work we had lunch here. I can recommend the tasty frittata and salad. 😁 

Lisa and I find a Manchester Bee.

Northern Flower.  I was dazzled by the array of plants and flowers in this bijou florists on Tib Street. Describing itself as a Potting – shed boutique, Northern Flower has an impressive selection of cacti and succulents as well as beautiful pots and hangers. I couldn’t help but purchase a tiny cactus for my collection. 🌵 

Image from Pinterest.

Chapter One Books. A great place to relax with a coffee and cake this spacious and comfy coffee shop is also a book shop. We bobbed in for a brew and a chat and made the most of the comfy sofas. Its quite alright to settle down with a book and if you buy one you get a free drink. Oh and the cakes are good too! 🍰

Afflecks. No visit to the Northern Quarter is complete without a mooch round the institution that is Affleck’s on Church Street. Over 70 independent shops and businesses trade under one roof and any spare wall space is adorned with colourful street art. Fancy dress, vintage clothing, tattoo studios, music, art and quirky cafes can all be found here. Well worth a look. 🃏 

Bonbon Chocolate. Just as we were thinking about heading home Lisa and I stumbled into … a chocolate cafe! 

Bonbon Chocolate Boutique on John Street is an artisan chocolate makers that also serves amazing Hot Chocolate. Lisa tried a chocolate orange flavour and I had the chilli hot chocolate. The cafe area is tiny with only room for 3 or 4 small tables and chairs. But if you happen upon it in a quiet moment , why not enjoy the decadence.  🍮 

Of course I have only touched upon the huge amount of shops and cafes in the Northern Quarter, not to mention the many bars in the neighbourhood. Hopefully I have inspired you to visit! 

14 thoughts on “Manchester  ~  Hanging out in The Northern Quarter.”

  1. Back in the 1980s/early 90s I used to go shopping in Manchester one Saturday every month and loved it – my very first white kitten came from a pet shop on Tib Street – but as my life changed I gradually stopped going and my last visit there was in December 1994! I guess much has changed since then so maybe I should make an effort and have a day out there sometime 🙂

    1. I wish I got to go more. I liked Chapter one too. I bought a few xmas presents on my trip. Nice to find somewhere in the city full of independent non chain businesses. 🙂

    1. I have seen the film. 😁. The chocolate cafe reminded me of it too. Plus a chocolate cafe has just opened in my home town. In chocolate heaven. 😊

      1. Lucky you. The book really focuses on stiring your senses with the taste and smells of the chocolate. With a young Johnny Depp, the film stirs something rather different 🙂

  2. Awww this makes me miss Manchester so much! Love a wander around the Northern Quarter! I make sure to go back every summer when I’m back in the UK and so much has always changed but its good to see some of the old faves like Oklahoma and Afflecks are still going strong! x

  3. Love The Northern Quarter too! Don’t get there enough. Live about an hour away from Manchester. Looks awesome where you are though! Have never spent a Christmas abroad. Enjoy. Xx

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