Although you can try to avoid any thoughts of the upcoming festive season, as October draws to a close, it’s hard to ignore the signs. Once the clocks fall back, you cannot fail to see imaginative and artistic shop windows changing with the certainty of late autumn leaves; Halloween orange and black, to Christmas red and gold. So why not feel inspired by the glowing colours around you, and start planning a Christmas city break with a difference?
Nowhere is the warm fiery glow of celebration more evident than ‘the UK’s original, award winning Manchester Christmas Market’. Billed as the biggest and best festive offering to date, it opens on 10th November and runs to 20th December. As nearly 350 stalls will be spread over 10 sites, not only will there be something for every age, but the entire city centre will be transformed into a winter wonderland.
In the true spirit of a welcoming and inclusive city, the focus is on international Christmas celebrations, but with the unique addition of a famously warm northern hospitality. There is the European Christmas Market on Albert Square, the French Christmas Market on King Street, a German Christmas Market on St Ann’s Square, and finally the World Christmas Market on Brazennose Street. All offer the best examples of traditional wooden and metal crafts, artisanal goods, and not forgetting essential hot spiced drinks to warm the coldest evenings.
With the most colourful light and music extravaganza promised on Friday 4th November at 7.30pm, the countdown to holiday festivities will get underway. To date, it has not yet been revealed who will be flicking the switch and we are still awaiting the announcement of the acts performing on the night. However you can be assured that there will be a heady mix of celebrity glamour, and music to get you in the dancing mood. As fireworks explode over Albert Square, it will be a sparkling night to remember.
Continue the dancing theme by reserving a slot at the ice rink at London Road Fire Station. ‘The Winter Gathering’ promises a magical location amongst the stunning buildings and courtyard opposite Piccadilly train station. It’s impossible to feel anything but warm and festive as you take to the ice, laughing as fearless children weave in and out! Exertion rewarded as you wobble off the wet rink and into a comforting hot chocolate. A perfect way to relax. http://www.manchestereveningnews.co.uk/whats-on/whats-on-news/london-road-ice-rink-manchester-12011513
If the giggling and shrieking has warmed your voice box, consider hiring one of Bar Hütte’s carol-oke pods. These private karaoke machines will be both seen and heard on Spinningfields Square, Deansgate. Music will include festive favourites as well disco classics for those who want to continue dancing. Once again all refreshment tastes will be catered for, and it promises to be even more popular than last year. http://www.manchestereveningnews.co.uk/whats-on/food-drink-news/bar-hutte-opens-spinningfields—8152510
And of course the ultimate in festive colour, light and warmth can be found in many of the city’s carol concerts. However if you want something different, the Royal Choir are being hosted by the John Rylands Library on the 4th December. In the quiet atmospheric surroundings of the library’s grand Historic Reading Room, you can take a break from shopping, and embrace the true meaning of Christmas, as well as support local charities.
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