Manchester is not renowned for its green spaces but it does have a few parks and gardens that you can escape to on a pleasant day (also rare in Manchester!). A few options are listed below:
Heaton Park is a huge park located just four miles from Manchester City Centre and easily accessible via bus from Shudehill Interchange. The park is open to the public from 8am in the morning and all gates into the park will be closed just before dusk. Entry into the park is free, although there may be a small charge for parking within the park. The park hosts its very own animal centre which is open daily in summer from 9am until 6pm. Visitors are able to view and interact with most of the parks resident animals including cow, alpacas and goats. There are also a number of rabbits and guinea pigs. Be sure to watch out for the courtyard neighbours, a pair of peacocks who love nothing more than proudly strutting around the animal centre. The park also has a large paddock which is occupied by a herd of donkeys, which often take children on short rides in the park. The donkeys are a popular attraction and so be sure to book prior to your visit. Located in the park is Heaton Hall, a 17th century country house which belonged to Sir Thomas Egerton. The hall makes a fantastic backdrop for any photograph and a picture outside it is a must for any visitors to the park who wish to remember their grand day out. The park has a large enclosed children?s play area accompanied with seating facilities. Heaton Park hosts a range of activities throughout the year, a list of which can be found at their website. If you have a little extra time, you can visit the 12 acre boating lake and view the resident geese, ducks and swans, or if you?re feeling a little more adventurous, during the summer months you can hire out a rowing boat for you and your party. Heaton Park is a must for any visitors wishing to view the very best of what Manchester has to offer!
Piccadilly Gardens is a large green, open space located in the city centre of Manchester on the edge of the Northern Quarter. The gardens where revamped in 2001 as part of the regeneration of the city centre. You will find open green space and fountains in the centre of the gardens. In the summer months this makes a perfect picnic spot. The only original feature left from the redevelopment is a large statue of Queen Victoria. Piccadilly Gardens is also severed by a few retail and food and drink outlets, all reasonably priced. The Gardens are centrally located and just five minutes? walk from Manchester Piccadilly Rail Station and a ten minute walk from Manchester Victoria Rail Station. The gardens are an open space and so accessible at all times.