Once used for rope-making during Liverpool’s maritime boom, this is now the centre of the city’s independent community. It’s here you’ll find Bold Street, which really does have a Bohemian vibe all of its own, with an eclectic mix of second-hand clothing stores, bookshops, bars and live music venues. It’s also a great place to eat, too, with some of the most interesting restaurants in the city. Try Neon Jamon for tapas, Maray for small plates of French food and Mowgli for Indian street food.
Set slightly back from the river, the beautiful Georgian Quarter has one of the finest collections of period buildings outside London. Right in the middle of this architectural splendour is Hope Street, home to the Everyman Theatre, some of the city’s finest restaurants (like The Art School) and some great bars (like the Pen Factory). But if it’s tourist attractions you’re after, walk to the end of Hope Street to the Anglican Cathedral. Amazing inside and boasting superb views.
You can’t even take a stroll besides the Mersey without tripping over a cultural attraction or ten. The Albert Dock is a tourist destination in its own right, so if you stay here you could be forgiven for not setting foot anywhere else in Liverpool. A collection of national museums, the Tate, The Beatles Story, the Echo Arena and an enviable collection of restaurants and bars to relax in between the sightseeing opportunities all add up to the perfect Liverpool city break.
Part of Liverpool’s World Heritage Site and one of the UK’s most important historical hot spots, a trip to St George’s Quarter is a must for any self-respecting culture vulture. Museums, art galleries, memorial gardens, concert rooms, civic halls and some fine Victorian architecture attract more than six million visitors a year. And if your eyes can take any more stimulation, there are three theatres within five minutes’ walk of each other - the Royal Court, the Empire and the Playhouse.
South of the city is Chinatown, home of the oldest Chinese settlement in Europe. Standing as the gateway to the area is the stunning red and gold ceremonial arch. At 13.5 metres high, its claim to fame is being the tallest standing arch outside mainland China. It’s great at any time of the year, but best if you can join the crowds who descend there every February to watch the Chinese New Year celebrations. There are parades, performances from community groups and plenty of market stalls.
Fancy a late night garage rave? There’s only one place to head for. The Baltic Triangle is one of Liverpool’s hippest spots right now – and it’s just a 15-minute walk from Liverpool ONE. Full of creative and innovative businesses, there’s a fantastic nightlife scene, with the cavernous Camp and Furnace recently named one of the coolest bars in the UK.
Don’t expect slick or polished – the Baltic Triangle has a real work-in-progress feel to it, but that only adds to its hipstser charm.
Fab Four fan? Take a trip to The Cavern Quarter to tick off another item on your Beatles bucket list.
The area circles around Mathew Street and, alongside all the musical memorabilia, buskers and live music venues, there’s a range of restaurants and bars that don’t have a Beatles theme.
No trip here would be complete without visiting the Cavern Club, though.
Sadly, the original closed in 1973 and was filled in by workers building the Merseyrail underground. But the new one (built with the original bricks) has all the noisy, sweaty joy of the previous incarnation.
Liverpool is one of England’s most cosmopolitan cities and was the 2008 European capital of culture. Whether you’re passing through, looking for heritage, culture and entertainment, checking out the universities, or planning a weekend break, there are plenty of reasons to book a hotel room in Liverpool. And with quaint fishing villages and market towns on its doorstep, there's so much to see and do in the surrounding area of Merseyside.