Fuelled by a large student population and some cracking traditional pubs, craft beer bars and several nightclubs, Lancaster has an enviable nightlife scene.
Nightlife in Lancaster
If you wanted to learn more about 2-4-1 cocktails, cask ales and posh hot dogs (and their pimped fries), we heartily suggest The Study Room. A bright and trendy bar with plenty of seating, it’s located on Church Street and is a haven for students and hipsters alike with food served daily until 8pm and a late weekend license until 2am.
Head towards Lancaster Train Station and you’ll find a dense cluster of cool bars and hangouts. Merchants 1688 is a converted 17th-century wine cellar serving up a wide range of draught beer, cider and an extensive wine and gin selection, plus food served daily spanning lunch, dinner and early bird deals.
Next door you’ll find The Crypt, another historic watering hole which has covered a lot of ground during its time including being a punk music venue, a nightclub and more recently, a stylish basement cocktail lounge and wine bar. Both the food and drink menus opt for contemporary twists (see the Ginger and Chilli Margarita cocktail and the Spanish tapas dishes including raw ravioli). With a stylish and mature crowd, it’s an excellent late-night hangout.
Wander down Penny Street a little and you’ll find Tipple Cocktails. Billed as Lancaster’s leading boutique cocktail bar,their varied drinks menu includes a wide range of premium spirits, dozens of craft beers and a dazzling range of cocktails (which you can also learn how to make at one of their classes). Plus, with regular drink deals, happy hour offers from 5-8pm daily and free games of ping pong in their 2nd room, it’s a fun and affordable place to drink.
Finally, as the name suggests, Hogarths Gin Palace is the place to come for all things botanics. The Victorian-style two-level gin den stocks over 120 different brands and flavours behind the bar as well as a more-than-decent array of cask beer, wine and spirits. Plus, with two huge screens, it’s a great place to catch the big sporting action.
The Study Room
There’s no messing about with subtleties when it comes to The Pub on China Street. The city centre venue is a traditional public house with a strong rock and roll theme, a rock-loaded Jukebox, pool table and darts board plus an entertainment line up that includes poker nights and regular live music.
A little further up towards the River Lune and the Millennium Bridge is The Three Mariners, a seriously impressive pub that boasts over a dozen hand-pulled ales and craft beers and some terrific locally-sourced food all located in a Grade II listed 17th century tavern. Cosy in winter and with a large patio for the summer, it’s one of our favourites and a local institution.
Stone Well Tap on Church St, somewhat amazingly, has an even bigger selection of beer with more than 20 hand-pulled ales on offer, plus a dizzying array of bottles, cans and artisan gins. Open daily, the popular pub is a also a great live music hang out with guest bands every Friday and Saturday plus a regular quiz every Wednesday.
With the canal and the River Lune, there are plenty of river-side drinking opportunities in Lancaster. On the banks of the canal tow-path, The White Cross is a large converted 19th-century warehouse stacked with dozens of picnic benches for when the sun shines. The food is superb covering light lunches, main meals and their Sunday roasts while their bar is stocked with local brews from Coniston, Hawkshead, Ossett, Lonsdale and more.
A little further south along the canal you’ll find The Water Witch, another cracking water-side watering hole that makes the most of its large terrace with dozens of sun-facing tables. Housed in a converted stables with an evocative bare-brick interior, it also boasts a strong food menu covering British and European classics.
Lastly, the Lancaster Brewery is one of the leading breweries in the region where you can try their range of seasonal beer and tried-and-tested classics at their Brewhouse Tap before anyone else or book in for a tour of their brewery including plenty of samples. Located on the southern edge of Lancaster just beyond Williamson Park and a 10-minute drive from our Lancaster hotel, they also do a range of lunchtime sandwich options and have one of the biggest beer gardens in the city, capable of holding up to 200 people.
A short stroll from the Marketgate Shopping Centre, Glow Nightclub (previously known as Dalton Rooms), is open five nights a week covering everything from pop hits, indie classics to modern RnB, EDM and house music across its two rooms. Open until 4am, they do regular drink deals – especially midweek when it’s filled with local students – and have a range of tables and private booths you can hire for the night.
A few streets away on Spring Garden is Hustle. Open six nights a week, it’s one of Lancaster’s busiest bars known for their wide range of shots and shooters (they had 57 on offer at the last time of counting). With a late 4am license, party-starting DJs and a wide range of cocktails, it’s a strong late-night option that attracts students as well as a slightly older crowd.