Manchester is a city in the north west of England at the heart of the sprawling Greater Manchester urban area. Originally achieving fame for textile manufacturing and its role in the Industrial Revolution, in the recent decades it has reinvented itself as one of Britain’s most cutting-edge cities, with notable successes in spheres such as popular culture, art, sporting achievement and media as well as maintaining its reputation as a hotbed in manufacturing, engineering and scientific research. It is arguable that Manchester is well on the way to replacing Birmingham as England’s “second city”.
The idea of Manchester as a popular destination for tourism is perhaps one of the more recent developments in the city’s history but it is nevertheless one that it has met with considerable aplomb. Manchester is a great choice for a city break and there’s plenty for your dog to enjoy while you are there.
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Dog Friendly Manchester Must Sees
East Lancashire Railway
There’s no better way to explore the Greater Manchester area while also celebrating its past than with a trip on this 12.5 mile heritage railway that runs steam engines between Heywood and Rawtenstall. There are seven stops along the way and plenty of scenery to enjoy on route. Dogs must be kept on their lead but they do travel for free.
Ducie Street Warehouse
A social hub in the heart of the city, Ducie Street features bars, cafes and restaurants but also a cinema where they have a weekly dog-friendly showing of a suitably dog-themed film. We are always keen to recommend doggy cinema experiences, and it is even better to find locations where they take place on a regular schedule.
Altrincham is about 10 miles to the south of the city of Manchester, but its market makes the 45 minute trip well worth the effort. There are craft and local produce vendors, a play area for children and an indoor food hall to explore.
Manchester Walking Tours
Sadly, the majority of Manchester’s best museums and galleries are off-limits for any dogs except for assistance dogs, so the best way to look around Manchester with your four-legged friend will again be a guided tour.
The Best Dog Friendly Walks in Manchester
A 600-acre municipal park on the edge of the city limits, Heaton Park boasts play areas, an animal centre, a tram museum, golf course, bowling greens and even horse riding. Unfortunately, none of that is of any use to your dog – particularly the horse riding – but they are unlikely to mind, as we have found that dogs are extremely resourceful when it comes to finding their own fun in the park. The boating lake, woods and wide open areas will definitely help them in their quest.
One of the Greater Manchester landscape’s most notable mainstays are its reservoirs. There’s one adjoining Heaton Park and another couple at Debdale Park in Gorton. At 45-acres, it is one of Manchester’s largest inner-city parks and your dog will find plenty to sniff.
Wythenshawe Park and Gardens
A 270-acre park to the south of the city’s Old Trafford area, Wythenshawe Park is a combination of open grassland and woodland, plus formal gardens, wildflower meadows and a community farm. The now-standard water element is provided by Baguely Brook, which flows through the south of the park. It is also noted for its sporting facilities: Wythenshawe Park is the home of Manchester Harriers Athletics Club.
Chorlton Water Park
A local nature reserve in Chorlton-cum-Hardy, Chorlton Water Park consists of a large lake surrounded by grassland and woodland. Also flowing through its southern side is the River Mersey, having snuck all the way in from Liverpool. If your dog’s appetite for splashing around is still not satiated, the good news is that Sale Water Park is also nearby: just follow the river upstream.
Clifton Country Park
A local nature reserve set in the Irwell Valley, in between Old Trafford and Bolton. Clifton Country Park boasts a lake as well as the River Irwell and 118 acres of grassland and woodland to explore.
An area of green space just to the east of the city centre, through which flows the River Medlock. This riverside reserve has been reclaimed by nature on the site of an old power station’s ash tip and it has created a beautiful natural oasis in the heart of one of the country’s most populated urban areas.
Dog-friendly Cafés and Restaurants in Manchester
Ezra & Gil
20 Hilton Street, M1 1FR
49 Peter Street, M2 3NG
A modern-style coffee shop in the heart of the city’s Northern Quarter, Ezra & Gil combines coffee, light meals and desserts as well as grocery shopping and provisions. Its two locations boast different menu choices.
The Molly House
26 Richmond Street, M1 3NB
Nestled in the city’s Gay Village, The Molly House is a licensed premises offering wine and beer alongside coffee, tea, cocktails or tapas in a relaxed setting.
1 Eagle Street, M4 5BU
Housed in the sole remaining original building from the city’s Smithfield Market, Mackie Mayor boasts pizzas, burgers and sandwiches on large, communal dining tables in a contemporary brick-walled setting.
16 Newton Street, M1 2AE
Located in a Grade-II Listed former warehouse building in the Northern Quarter, Cottonopolis combines a friendly and lively bar setting with imaginative Asian menus.
6 Tariff Street, M1 2FF
138 Oxford Road, M13 9GP
An independent coffee shop with two shops (plus an additional coffee bar at Hatch, on Oxford Road), Takk is inspired by the Scandinavian love of coffee and coffee shop culture. In addition to worshipping the bean, they also specialise in brunch options.
19 Cafe Bar
19 Lever Street, M1 1BY
Another hip and happening brunch spot and coffee bar in the city’s Northern Quarter, 19 Cafe Bar stands out for its Doggy Date Nights, where single dog owners can bring their pets and try to find love. Or single dogs can bring their owners and try to find love, presumably it works both ways.
Dog Friendly Pubs in Manchester
Oxford Street, M60 7HA
Impressively housed in a high-ceilinged atrium with ceramic pillars, the elegant and roomy Refuge offers a drinks menu in addition to an eclectic menu of international cuisines.
6 Slate Wharf, M15 4ST
A large venue divided up into open areas and cosy nooks and alcoves, The Wharf also offers outdoor seating on its terrace and even a space to play Boules. Do dogs play Boules? There’s only one way to find out.
43 Thomas Street, M4 1NA
A warehouse-style bar offering guest beers and a cocktail menu, Terrace NQ also boasts three leafy rooftop terraces.
The Jane Eyre
14 Hood Street, M4 6WX
A neighbourhood bar in Ancoats which offers a classic cocktail menu, plus wines, local beers and small plates.
The Bay Horse Tavern
35-37 Thomas Street, M4 1NA
A laid-back Victorian-inspired pub, The Bay Horse Tavern is at the heart of the Northern Quarter. It offers craft beers and wholesome pub grub, as well as bottomless brunch and Sunday roasts.
The Deaf Institute
135 Grosvenor Street, M1 7HE
An eclectic and fun independent pub divided across three storeys near Manchester Metropolitan University, comprising a basement bar, a cafe/bar and an upstairs music venue, in addition to a smoker’s terrace.
Dog Friendly Shops in Manchester
Betty and Butch
253 Barlow Moor Road, Chorlton, M21 7GJ
149 Bury New Road, Whitefield, M45 6AA
114 Wilmslow Road, Handforth, SK9 3ES
An independent pet store and dog deli with three locations around Greater Manchester. Established in 2010, Betty and Butch specialise in natural food and treats for dogs of all shapes and sizes, plus the usual array of toys and seasonal goods. Your dog is bound to have a good time.
53 Oldham Road, M1 1JR
A famous independently-owned record store near the Arndale Centre which first opened its doors in 1978. You can now shop for all the latest releases or classic titles with your pooch in tow.
66 Tib Street, M4 1LG
A butcher, deli and tasting rooms in the heart of the Northern Quarter. Considering the heaving platters of delicious meats and cheeses available to try here, we salute the owners’ decision to allow dogs inside. It is surely a cartoon waiting to happen.
34-36 Oldham Street, M1 1JN
A vintage clothing store which first opened in 1994, Pop Boutique boasts a huge basement full of classic clothing and furniture, as well as hairdressing by Barbarella and their own in-store Blue Daisy Cafe. Your dog will come out with a whole new confidence.
58 Tib Street, M4 1LG
A boutique florist shop, Northern Flower specialise in contemporary flower arrangements and plants of all shapes and sizes. Your dog won’t know what to sniff first.
57 Whitworth Street W, M1 5WW
A retro night time arcade and neon-lit bar, Dog Bowl also boasts five full-length ten pin bowling lanes. The perfect place to unwind for you and your four-legged friend after a busy day hitting the shops.
Dog-friendly Manchester: Where to Stay
If you’re looking to stay in a dog friendly hotel in Manchester, here’s our recommendations:
Moxy Manchester City
8 Atkinson Street, M3 3HH
A laid-back, contemporary style city hotel in the Deansgate area of Manchester, Moxy Manchester City is ideally located for the Northern Quarter, Gay Village and Old Trafford areas of the city.
Moxy is known to be a stylish place for humans – with a complimentary cocktail (or mocktail) on arrival, and dogs can enjoy a warm welcome. There is a non-refundable pet fee of £15 per day, with a 2 pet maximum per room.
40 Chorlton Street, M1 3HW
A red brick hotel set in an old cotton warehouse in the city’s trendy Gay Village, not far from Manchester Piccadilly Station. The canalside location makes for a great dog walking spot, too.
100 King Street, M2 4WU
Set in central Manchester, a few minutes walk from the (dog-friendly) Arndale Centre shops. Hotel Gotham represents one of the more luxurious options for you and your pooch, having recently been voted the city’s most stylish hotel. If your canine companion has a taste for the high life it could well be worth the extra money.
Hyatt House, Manchester
55 Booth Street, M15 6PQ
A modern apartment-style hotel in Chorlton-on-Medlock, not far from Old Trafford or some of central Manchester’s best parks. From the outside, this 4-star complex does lack some of the charm of the other suggestions in our list but the big plus is that every suite is its own self-contained apartment rather than a traditional hotel room.
Cottages and holiday lets
It’s probably fairly obvious from what you’ve read so far that Manchester is a very big place. Essentially, the Greater Manchester area is a series of towns and cities that have slowly grown closer together over the years. However, it is also an area rich in countryside and green spaces, not far from the Peak District and surrounded on all sides by some of the country’s most famous and desolate moorland.
Unless you have a very specific area of the city you mean to explore, then the chances are your trip to Manchester will involve some travel at some stage, be it by train, tram, bus or car. If that is going to be the case, it could be well worth considering cottages or private lets – homes away from home that will also serve to give you and your furry friend a break from the fast pace of life in the centre of town.
Many of Travelodge’s 570 sites in the UK are pet-friendly, including these two in the centre of Manchester:
Travelodge Manchester Central Arena, Great Ducie Street M3 1PT
Travelodge Manchester Piccadilly, 31 Piccadilly, M1 1LU