Hire a car at Manchester airport and discover why the locals are so proud of their vibrant city, and venture further afield for more northwest hotspots and the peaks of the Pennines. Book car hire Manchester airport
Why hire a car at Manchester airport?
The airport has good public transport connections, but everyone knows England's trains aren't the cheapest, so you'll probably find hiring a car the most economical way of experiencing the northwest.
That all-important first mile:
driving out of Manchester airport?
Exit the car park onto the Ringway Road, turn left for the M56 and right for the B5166 - both lead north to the city centre, while the M6 is just a couple of miles away and connects destinations across the northwest.
In the Terminal 1 arrivals hall exit baggage reclaim, walk straight ahead and you'll soon bump into car hire desks. In Terminals 2 and 3 you need to cross the road outside the arrivals halls. You'll find car hire facilities behind the taxi ranks and bus stops.
If you want to take a piece of Manchester home go to, er, Manchester. The shop named after the city specialises in Manchester-made leather goods.
As you would expect from an airport the size of Manchester's, there are plenty of cash machines - located in both arrivals and departures halls in Terminals 1, 2 and 3.
Shun the sandwich and coffee option and sample some more sophisticated fare at the peaceful Runway Brasserie, located between Terminals 1 and 2 and reached by the impressive skylink.
If you find that perfect designer gift in duty free stores Biza and Alpha Airport Shopping, but don't want to lug it around on holiday, they'll gift wrap it and have it waiting for collection when you get back.
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The city has come a long way from the mills and factories of its industrial heyday. The locals are proud of their heritage but keen to point out Manchester's contemporary culture. And it's not just Oasis and The Smiths.
The country's first national park, the Peak District boasts a diverse landscape, spectacular views and charming rural villages, and offers a great opportunity to escape the hectic pace of the city.
Rising from the regenerated docklands of Salford Quays, The Lowry is among the region's premier cultural attractions with two theatres and extensive studio space for musical performances and art exhibitions.
Crossing the Pennines to Yorkshire is no longer the crime it once was, fortunately. So that means Manchester's visitors can enjoy the historic beauty of York Minster and the quaint medieval streets of the Shambles without fearing the consequences upon return. For a slightly closer excursion, the cutting-edge boutiques, buzzing bars and cosmopolitan cafés of Leeds are just 56 miles away.