Winter sports in Manchester


Wind, storms, frost. We are seeing them all at the moment. Winter has arrived and forecasters are embarking on their perennial speculations about snow. Will we, won’t we? Regardless of the weather, we want to show you that Manchester is an active and invigorating place to visit. Especially in the depths of December and January.

Natural highs and chills

Set aside the weather inconveniences and look at the possibilities instead. We can all enjoy a breath of fresh air. Choose from city-based strolls on canal-side footpaths; woodland paths by reservoirs; and endless trail routes in our spectacular national parks. The region is a huge natural play area for everyone. And if you want to try more traditional winter activities, you are spoilt for choice.

If you’re lucky it might snow. It transforms the green spaces in and around the city into a real winter wonderland. The rolling dales, with their dark grey stone walls, provide a spectacular backdrop. We think our northern landscape rivals the Alps in beauty. And like the Alpine tradition of après ski, we recommend taking your frozen face to one of our cosy local pubs. Thaw out with steaming homemade food and excellent drinks.

Adrenaline spills

Chill Factore remains one of our top family-friendly attractions for winter activities. Like the outside temperature, it is cold inside but no wind chill and dry atmosphere. Perfect slope conditions. As you’d expect from the longest indoor ski slope in the UK, they cater for all abilities. You can hire all the equipment you need to get started on the excitement immediately.

Adrenaline junkie but don’t fancy skiing? Amongst the extreme sledging and the luge, they also offer Snowscoot and Airboarding. Snowscoot combines elements of snowboarding and BMX biking. Airboarding takes you closer to the snow, as you zoom down the slope on a specially designed air inflated board.

For outdoor skiing and snowboarding opportunities, head out to the dry slopes of Ski Rossendale. Once again, its focus is on inclusivity and they welcome all abilities. You can take lessons, hold parties, and enjoy the entire atmosphere. It’s not just the slope, they are also on the heritage ‘Shoe Trail’ route. This is a town-based project, which takes inspiration from Rossendale’s historical links with the shoe and brick industry. If it snows, take your snow shoes!

Icy thrills

No winter experience is complete without ice skating. There are a couple of options at this time of year. You can find the winter pop-up Manchester Ice Rink in the courtyard of the old London Road Fire Station. This is part of Manchester’s Winter Gathering, so there are other fabulous attractions there. This is open until the 8th January 2017.

If you want to head indoors for perfect skate conditions guaranteed, Silver Blades in Altrincham is the answer. They offer lessons for all, ice hockey, late night skating, parties, and many other events. You may even just want to watch their modern adaptation of Alice in Wonderland on 10th December.

Please contact us for more information about how we can make your winter stay in Manchester an invigorating and active experience!


Leave a Reply