Friday, 11 July 2014

Sandwiches, Spending and Screaming | A Day in Manchester

It's my first blog post, and a long one at that!

I go to university in Norwich, which is pretty much the geographical polar-opposite to where I normally live, Cheshire. As a result of this, the large majority of students are from down south, and haven't ever ventured into the 'wilderness' of the North. Basically, this means many have no idea where/what Cheshire is, which makes meeting new people incredibly awkward as I try and create an invisible air map of the UK, with very little geographical knowledge, and point somewhere high. After the first two days of Freshers, I decided enough was enough, and came up with the much shorter answer of "near Manchester".

"I'm from Manchester, I swear."

The truth is, while I do live about forty minutes from my fake hometown, I could probably count the times I've actually been there on both hands! On Monday, however, I decided to venture up and visit a fellow UEA Northener after realising we really couldn't stand any more seconds apart (there was a lot of screaming, running, and jumping on the spot - people stared, we didn't care).

The day was absolutely amazing, for obvious reasons, but one feeling that I couldn't escape was that of my genuine love for Manchester. It is such a unique and diverse city, around every corner you can find something new and exciting, whether it's a weird and wonderful café, or beautiful street art.

I found this gorgeous painting (of what I am 98% sure is a Blue Tit) on my way from Piccadilly Station to Afflecks.
A beautiful silver sculpture and perfectly decorated alcoves adorning the one and only, Afflecks Palace.
Part of what makes the city so great is what is actually has to offer - it is one of the most culturally electic urban areas in the UK, has not one, but TWO football teams (let's not go into which one is the best), and, in my opinion, is definitely up there as far as shopping destinations go!


If you're up for the traditional shopping experience, head to the city centre, the Arndale or the Trafford Centre, there is everything you could ask for and more, including the biggest Boots I have ever seen! However, if you're looking for a more alternative/interesting visit, look no further than Afflecks Palace (pictured above). There aren't enough words to sum up everything that goes on under their roof, but I want to be a part of all of it! Unparalleled levels of restraint had to be had in order to stop ourselves from buying them out of postcards and beads, however I did break down and purchase a little co-ord (they did student discount, it had to be done). It's a place you have to visit at least once in your lifetime, and once you have done, you'll never want to leave!

Trying on top hats, because we're fancy like that.
Any trip to anywhere would not be complete without sampling the local cuisine, and this excursion was no different. After spending around half an hour trying to locate the cheapest deal for the tastiest food, we settled for Superstore, which is part Grocer, part Kitchen. We weren't expecting much from a specials menu that cost only £4.50 for pretty extravagant sounding sandwiches, but we were extremely surprised. Superstore is just the right mix of minimalist and efficient, yet still with a little weird edge that made it a throughly interesting place to sit down for lunch. In short, it was really really cool.


Myself and Emma both indulged ourselves and had the 'Peppered flat iron steak with onions, mushrooms and cheddar cheese on ciabatta', and I can honestly say it was one of the best meals I have had in a restaurant for a very long time. My mouth is salivating just thinking about it. 5 billion stars. Yum.

I also ordered a 'Strawberry and Rhubarb Posh Pop', which was so very delicious!
Hopefully I haven't bored you all too much with the 'I LOVE MANCHESTER' gushing, but seriously, if you have any opportunity to spend a day - or longer - there, take it! I had such a great day and will be making my way back as soon as I have the chance, even if it only is to 'pop' into Afflecks and buy the gorgeous oversized checked shirt that's been haunting my dreams!

Have you guys been on any day trips recently? If you have please leave a comment below so I can see where else I need to explore!

Lots of love,
Challot :) xx

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P.S. Sorry about the VERY long post, I promise they won't all be this wordy!

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