Whether you love it or loathe it you have to admit, once the Christmas lights have gone up in city centres and the evenings have started getting darker earlier everything becomes a little bit magical. I for one am obsessed. And you know what they say? There is no place like home. Manchester city centre has become a winter wonderland since Nov. 3 when the lights went up. I may be biased but there is no other place I’d want to be this December. From Christmas markets to the theatre here is what’s going on in Manchester over Christmas 2018.
Christmas markets might be one of my favourite things about Christmas time itself. The bratwurst, crepes, and cheese fondue are literally what I look forward to all year round. Manchester Christmas Market is always a pretty major affair. However, in 2018 they have gone big. Starting on Nov. 9 the huts will go up and the markets will be spread across a massive nine different sites in the city centre. Albert Square, St Ann’s Square, King Street, Exchange Street, New Cathedral Street, Exchange Square, Cathedral Gardens, Market Street, and The Corn Exchange will all hold host to festivities through the winter months.
Fear not, you will still be able to buy German Market favourites like bratwurst, käsewurst (cheese sausage, don’t knock it until you’ve tried it), and mulled wine, as well as a whole host of other treats. Lots of the stalls at the 2018 Manchester Christmas Market are also businesses based in Manchester and the North West so you’ll be indulging yourself and supporting local businesses too — win win.
Make sure you stop by Northern Soul Manchester’s stall in Albert Square for mac and cheese and alcoholic shakes. Home Sweet Home will be on King Street serving the most delicious waffles and crepes or if you would rather stick to German market tradition The Witch House will be on New Cathedral Street and serving all the beer and sausage you could want.
A new addition to the festivities over Christmas in Manchester is the ice village. Heralded as the first in Britain, so if you aren’t feeling the festive cheer yet you will after visiting. Hosted in the Cathedral Gardens it will include an ice bar, cave, toy factory, and grotto all made out of 250 tons of ice. You’ve been warned, it is going to be cold in there. There will be an ice rink outside too so bring your skates. Whilst highlighting all that is good about Christmas there will also be a nod to the city’s history including a Votes For Women badge as tribute to Emmeline Pankhurst. Combining Christmas and feminism, my two favourite things, I don’t think I am going to be able to stay away.
And since Christmas is about treating yourself and spending time with loved ones there is also so much amazing live music and performances going on around the city on the run up until Christmas. Wicked is playing throughout December at the Palace Theatre. If panto is more your cup of tea Cinderella is on at the Opera House starring noughties heart throb Gareth Gates. MGMT, Lily Allen, and Alan Walker are also playing around the city throughout December so, whilst it might be cold outside there is no excuse not to go out.
There is no where else I would rather be to see in Christmas in 2018 and if the ginormous Christmas market, ice village, and entertainment don’t drawn you in I don’t know what will. I can’t wait to wrap up warm, wander around the huts, and eat so much food I feel a little sick.