Walking around Manchester’s city centre offers a gallery of constantly changing artwork, which lights up back street allies and complements the city’s industrial architecture. Manchester’s street art changes so frequently that from week to week you can never be sure what you will find. This makes walking in the city a constant exploration of discovery.

The wonderful weather that blessed us for Easter weekend allowed us the opportunity to walk unaided by umbrellas or hoods so that we could fully enjoy the height-defying street art that wraps its self around many a building in Manchester’s city centre.

But first, a pit stop!

Before any adventure truly begins, fuel is needed for the road ahead! We headed over to the wonderful local bakery, Pollen, which specialises in sourdough bread and viennoiserie baked goods. It’s set along the waterway of New Islington, offering great views with a baked treat and delicious coffee.

Pollen Cafe - pastries and coffee

If you don’t have time to sit in and enjoy in house, don’t worry, it’s easy to take away in a brown paper bag for later… just look at some of the mouth watering loaves on offer!

Pollen Cafe - loaves of bread to buy

Manchester’s Street Art

With our tummies full and our blood racing with caffeine we set off in search of Manchester’s street art, and where better to go than the Northern Quarter? This bohemian area is famous for its street art, as well as its vast array of independent stores, tucked away bars, and music venues.

Our Planet

We’ve been chomping our way through Netflix’s new show, Our Planet, which is narrated by Britain’s national treasure, Sir David Attenborough, so our first stop was see this wonderful piece of work just off Thomas Street. If you haven’t watched it yet we’d strongly urge you to – it’s a stunningly filmed piece of work exploring our diverse world and the tragic impact that human activity is having in even the more remote locations.

We’ve heard that there’s street art like this to promote the show in cities all around the world, have you seen any? If so, please share them with us, we’d really like to see them!

Worker bees at the Koffee Pot

The Koffee Pot is somewhat of an institution in Manchester, cafe by day, bar by night. It’s seems only fitting that they have the city’s symbol, the worker bee, adorning the side of their new location on Oldham Street. It’s eye-catching and pretty damn wonderful all round – but then again, Spud are avid bee lovers, so we would think that!

Manchester Street Art - worker bees
Manchester’s symbol, the worker bee, is emblazoned across the side of local institution the Koffee Pot’s residence

For the love of music with Vinyl Revival

The Northern Quarter is well known for its independent music shops, and Vinyl Revival on Hilton Street stands proud with this bright tribute to music across its shutters. Usually this would be hidden away while the store is open during the day, but we were treated to a rare Bank Holiday glimpse.

Vinyl Revivals shutter art - people enjoying music
A rare Bank Holiday glimpse of Vinyl Revival’s shutter

Back streets and alley ways

To get a look at some of the most experimental and thought-provoking pieces of street art in the Northern Quarter you need to venture from the main streets.

No pitta pocket is safe from this hungry embrace!
These stained glass windows are stunning!
Manchester Street Art - street art on a car park corner wall
There’s something on every hidden corner to discover
Manchester's back streets art - owl
Manchester Street Art - girl wearing beanie peers out
These haunting eyes found us from beneath the spring green
Manchester Street Art - Loving older couple in an embrace has been tagged over
We just managed to capture this embrace before it was overtaken by new artwork
Manchester's allies are adorned with bright artwork and symbols
Bright colours assault you down unassuming back streets
"B******s to Brexit" makes an unsassuming spot in the Northern Quarter
Amongst a mess of tags hides a political message

More than street art…

Despite the wave of building work taking place across Manchester, deliberate care has been taken to maintain and celebrate the city’s older architectural legacy. The Northern Quarter is no exception, and history and modern life meld together here. These are just a handful of our favourite examples from our Easter walk.

We’re excited to explore the Northern Quarter again to see what else we will find! Have you visited Manchester? If so, please do send your photos to us, we would love to see them!

If you’re looking for inspiration on what to do next, why not take a look at our other Manchester and UK blog posts!


Vicky

Hola! Vicky here :)

10 Comments

Cynthia | Adventuring Woman · May 14, 2019 at 12:14 am

Wow, Manchester has AMAZING street art! And I’m glad you’ve reinforced the importance of good snacks before walking around finding it. That is quite essential 😉

Jane Frith · May 2, 2019 at 1:49 pm

Fabulous! I only live a couple of hours away, but had no idea about the wealth of street art in Manchester. These are so clever. I love the one with the owl especially. Day trip required methinks!

    Vicky · May 2, 2019 at 1:50 pm

    Thanks for stopping by Jane. You should definitely come to Manchester for a day trip in the sunshine, I’m sure there will be a whole lot of new artwork to explore!

Usha Sitaaraam · April 29, 2019 at 1:26 pm

Loved the street art. I had been to Manchester recently, missed the street art. I loved Manchester. I would so love to visit the Koffee Pot. Thanks for the this.

MonkeysVentures · April 28, 2019 at 11:10 pm

Loved reading about Manchester! And the street art is so unique. The female portrait is so beautifully done! You are right, those eyes are captivating! Thank you for sharing!

Lynn · April 28, 2019 at 6:42 pm

What a fun way to spend a weekend! I really love the variety and totally agree that getting off the main streets is where you’ll find the best art 🙂 Pollen looks delicious, I probably would’ve made more than one pit stop there!

Anisa · April 28, 2019 at 6:38 pm

I never knew Manchester had such amazing art. My favorite has to be the one for our planet, its just such an important message.

Alecia · April 28, 2019 at 4:19 pm

Perfect weather, good food, and amazing street art. What more could you ask for? Manchester looks like a great place to explore!

Kara DiDomizio · April 28, 2019 at 3:42 pm

Loved your beautiful photos of Manchester and all of the street art and architecture looks stunning! The slice I saw on the train did not do it justice and would absolutely be thrilled to meetup and explore Manchester properly next time I come across the pond to the United Kingdom!

The Koffee Pot sounds awesome as does Pollen! I am absolutely a sucker for a good bakery! 😍

    Vicky · April 28, 2019 at 3:43 pm

    Kara, we would LOVE to explore Manchester with you! You just name the time 😉

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