Where should I live?
For first years, there’s the tempting option of living in student halls, surrounded by fellow students and near the main university campus. If you’re looking to move out of student halls or if the thought of sharing a bathroom doesn’t appeal to you, there are several other private student accommodations on offer nearby. Victoria Park is about as close as you can get to living at universities without bedding down at the student union, and is set amongst the curry mile and local student bars. Fallowfield is another popular student destination and is complete with a massive Sainsbury’s store and an endless supply of cheap bars touting 3-4-2 cocktails and 7pm-9pm happy hour. Housing in Fallowfield is typically cheaper than other student housing areas and cultivates a strong student community and culture (ideal if you want to get out there and make plenty of new mates). If you live close to the City Centre, there’s also the option of staying at home. Generally speaking, living at home and commuting to the university is cheaper than living in the centre, but many students who have lived at home during their time at university have described feeling a bit out of the loop.
What’s there to do on my days off?
There’s plenty to do in the city centre, from visiting local museums, to shopping in style, to hanging out in novelty Norther Quarter cafes. Transport links in the city centre have evolved hugely over the past few years, meaning getting from A to B has never been easier. The Manchester Museum is literally on the doorstep of the University of Manchester, next to a Starbucks and a handily located book shop. The Museum has several incredible artefacts on display, including a fossilised dinosaur skeleton, a giant crab, and a vast Egyptian mummies exhibition. If that doesn’t sell it to you, the Museum also offers free entry to all. For a shopping paradise, there’s the Arndale centre and its markets. One of the city’s biggest fashion gems is Affleck’s Palace, the home of all thinks quirky and unique. There’s also the nearby Football Museum (located in the modern Urbis building) and the Museum of Science of Industry.
What about the night life?
Night life in the city centre couldn’t be more diverse with cheesy student bars, classy high-end restaurants and a roaring gay village all muddled together nearby. There’s no need to worry about catching a light night snack, either; the Curry Mile is one of the longest stretches in the city, meandering past the universities in Rusholm and offering kebabs to famished, drink-addled students well into the early hours of the morning. The universities have also worked hard to safe-guard their students during night outs by issuing information about drinks spiking, theft, and getting home safely. As part of the movement to make Manchester safer for students, some taxis in Manchester have removed the need for students to carry cash around with them and now take payments via other methods. This means that students always have a route of getting home, regardless of whether they have money on them or not.