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You’ve spent the last few months, weeks, or maybe even hours cramming in the library to finish your course work. You’ve just found the light at the end of the seemingly endless tunnel of exams with real life is just around the corner. You couldn’t have made a better choice in a city than Liverpool in which to study but you can’t help but feel like you’ve missed out on a few things through the hazy blur that is university.
Well, when it comes to proceeding in the city, you’ve come to the right place. From secret gems to the damn right cliché Liverpool has it all, and so do we. Here are our top 10 things to do in the city before your time here ends.
The Tower Experience is near the top of the list of must do/see activities in the city. Spot all of Liverpool’s great landmarks as you take in a breath-taking 360˚ view from the rooftop of the highest Cathedral in the UK – 152m (500ft) above sea level, two lifts and 108 stairs and on a good clear day you will see the Blackpool Tower! En route to the peak you will also see the bell chamber that includes the heaviest and highest peel of bells. The Vestety Tower, named after its benefactors the Vestety Family, has a floor top height of 101m (331ft), an unrivalled base for photographers, view seekers and even date nights.
The Philharmonic Hall, along with it’s Royal Orchestra, is one of the largest gems on Merseyside’s crown. The Phil is renowned for bringing some of the most prestigious and interesting shows to our shores, from classical music to Alt festivals, film screenings to musicals. One of the best things about the intuition is just how accessible it is with tickets being very reasonably priced, especially when you consider the calibre of shows on offer. We highly recommend an evening at The Phil, whether in the main room or the brand spanking new Music Room, prefixed by a drink or two in the Philharmonic Pub, a beautifully quaint, old world pub which is famously home to the oldest toilets in the city, dating back to 1898.
This one airs slightly towards to the more cheesy sides of things, but it is definitely one that needs to be ticked off the life in Liverpool bucket list. You may also get the chance to tick off a few others such as the Cathedrals, the Phil and the Pier Head for the ferry. On this hop on hop off tour you may also get to tick off some of the other must visit sights such as the Cavern, the Albert Dock and the Museums and Library. There is also a Beatles bus tour on offer that takes you around some of the most iconic and important places to the fab four such as Penny Lane and Strawberry Fields.
Bongo’s Bingo is a relatively new addition the culture, especially on a list that includes 218-year-old architecture. None-the-less, Bongo’s Bingo is a bloody big bonanza that should be experienced in the city from whence it came. The events are now finding success all over the world, such as in Dubai and Ibiza, but the festivities began right here, in the wondrous warehouse that is Camp and Furnace. The premise is simple, bingo and beers. When you’re not punching in your numbers with a chance to win prizes and money, you’ll be dancing on the tables to rave classics and singing at the top of your lungs. The nights are definitely X-rated and not for the faint hearted, but, before you leave for real life, leave you brain at the door and indulge in this innovative night out.
This is one not to be snubbed. On a sunny day there are few better places to find yourself than Liverpool’s docklands and you’re in luck, we’re in the height of summer. You have various choices on offer – the standard car ferry, or something a little more touristy, which we would recommend. On the right day the views are glorious and there is nothing quite like being on the water in the sumptuous sunshine. As it is the season there are summer evening crossings, a fantastic way to top off a leisurely day out. The Wirral is wonderfully picturesque place to dock, so this is one for any budding photographers out there, especially as the sun sets.
City Bikes are Liverpool’s answer to the Boris Bike scheme in London. This might sound like an odd one when we’ve left off things such as The Beatles Museum and the Cavern, however we get the feeling that you may have already done those standard sights, so this is something a little different. We recently rented out a few bikes for only £3 and rode around Sefton Park, down through Otterspool Park, along the river and in to Otterspool Festival Gardens where we took a picturesque break to take in the stunning oriental scenery. We finished the journey off by continuing along the river to refresh ourselves with a well-deserved ice cream at the Albert Dock. When the sun is out, there are few things better than cycling through nature, something that is hard to do in many cities, but not Liverpool.
Lark Lane is situated just off Sefton Park, the cities busiest, biggest, most beautiful public garden. Every time we take somebody new down Lark Lane for breakfast, lunch, dinner, a drink, a walk, a…(you get the picture), they always come back to us with the same phrase: “I feel like I’m abroad”. It’s true, there is a rare atmosphere down the lane that does an incredible job of making you feel as relaxed as you do on your jollies. The quaint strip is packed full of bars, restaurants, shops and many more independent businesses for you to leisurely pop in and out of. Again, not necessarily a big hitter when it comes to tourist attractions, but a hidden gem not to be glazed over.
Whether you are a red, a blue or neither, you cannot live in Liverpool without going to a game. The two colours run through the veins of the city fuelling a rivalry that can be heard in cabs, bars and streets across the city, as well as comradeship that knows no bounds since the Hillsborough disaster. Whether you’re a football fan or not there is nothing like going to a home game at either Goodison Park or Anfield, even when compared to other footballing cities. It’s a truly scouse experience and an infectious one at that so, before you know it you’ll be jeering and cheering a plenty!
The Minton tiled floor in St.Georges Hall is considered one of the best of its kind in the world and is revealed to the public in short bursts to sustain its impeccable condition. Made up of more than 30,000 individual tiles it was covered up in the 1860s to allow dancing and events to take place there without damaging the floor beneath. The historic hall offers ‘A Night on the Tiles’, evenings where guests can walk on the tiles and also enjoy a glass of fizzy wine. This historic sight is a perfect double bill coupled with the public Library’s Picton Reading Room. The room was built between 1875 and 1879 and is a sight to behold, like something out of a Harry Potter film. Keep your hands on your valuables and your voices down as the slightest pin drop reverberates around the room in a very unique way.
Liverpool is one of few cities in the country; neigh in the world, that has its own beach. Crosby does an excellent job of being a city suburb and a seaside town whilst also being home to Antony Gormley’s famous art instillation that is ‘Another Place’. The instillation consists of 100 cast-iron statues scattered across the shore, stretching almost 1km out to sea. A day at the beach is a must during the summer, and you can do this by driving only 20 minutes out of the city centre, along the river.
We’re sure that you’ve found your own personal favourite Merseyside activities but it can be hard to know about, let alone experience, everything that the city has to offer.
Sure, there are some more famous tourist attractions, but we feel that this list compiles a few of those along with some subtler, local tips.
Keep us posted on anything else we should be adding to the list on Twitter @TheGuideLpool
If you’ve found some amazing must-dos during your time in the city then feel free to get in touch at [email protected].
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