Travel: Manchester – Coffee Shop Hopping? Secret Hideouts?

So, Spring is now in full swing and the flowers are finally blooming after a long time waiting for longer days and more sunshine (which is a special occasion celebrated in the UK because of how rare sunshine is)!

Travel: Manchester - Coffee Shop Hopping? Secret Hideouts?

Are you really a blogger if you don’t take a picture of a cherry blossom tree in Spring?

Today’s blog post is all about a day trip to a city rather than short breaks or longer breaks that I’ve already posted about.

Me and my best friend Amy decided we would go ‘Coffee Shop Hopping‘. We don’t know if it is a thing, but we are both coffee enthusiasts and are on a mission to seek out the most perfect coffee art, so we’re making it a thing!

Manchester was our day trip destination purely because it is convenient for both of us to meet in the middle as she lives 20 minutes by train from Manchester and I live about 25-30 minutes by train and we both know the city fairly well due to our close proximity to the centre.

We started our trip by walking around and finding the first coffee shop to catch our eye and we came across the LADbible office, and who would have guessed that a small Facebook group that posted viral content could end up being so massive that they actually need an office, and it truly shows how powerful the internet is!


We then ended up walking around the pretty streets of the Northern Quarter

Travel: Manchester - Coffee Shop Hopping? Secret Hideouts?

And came across The Koffee Pot Bar & Cafe, which was a great place to start our Coffee Shop Hopping! This was my first coffee shop where I received my first latte art coffee and it makes me feel like I’ve been living under a rock as I’ve never had an artisan coffee before despite all the coffee shops I’ve been to from local to chain coffee shops.

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Whilst here me and Amy both ordered the latte and Amy had a brownie, whereas I had the poppyseed lemon cake, because lemon cake has to be one of my most favourite cakes! This coffee shop had the most lovely cake and coffee and the prices were very reasonable, as I only paid £5!

After this coffee shop we decided to venture further into the Northern Quarter and this place is just littered with coffee shops that it is so hard to decide where to go! I told Amy that I was researching online for coffee shops with quirky concepts and I found Ziferblat, where their concept is that ‘Everything is free; except for the time you spend.‘, which really caught my interest when I came across it. You pay 8p for every minute that you spend there, you can eat and drink as much as you want and you’re meant to clean up after yourself before you leave.

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The place was very spacious and on entering the building it felt like a secret hideout, as you walk over to the door and you think it’s closed, but all of a sudden an employee answers using the door entry system and all of a sudden you see a lift that takes you up to the hideout! I spent just under £3.20 here, which is a fantastic price!

After consuming so much caffeine, we decided to take a break from it and do a spot of shopping, because you can’t come to Manchester and not shop around the Arndale!

We walked around Exchange Square, which is full of pretty architecture and was actually created following the unfortunate event in Manchester of the IRA 1996 Manchester bombing

We went to Clinique in Selfridges, so that I could buy a little haul, which I’ll share in a future blog post!

Then we decided to head to New Cathedral Street, full of the high-end luxury stores to window shop, but then Amy’s bad influence pushed me into Louis Vuitton and it turned from window shopping to finding the item I had on my wish list for ages, and like a best friend would, she kept egging me on to buy the item or I’d go home and regret not buying it because I should ‘treat myself‘ pre-payday.

Travel: Manchester - Coffee Shop Hopping? Secret Hideouts?

I was eyeing up a Louis Vuitton belt for quite a long time, but every time I looked into buying it I kept thinking about how many things I could buy with the money that the belt costs, but as they say…

You only live once!

So, with so many belts to choose from, which to choose…

Travel: Manchester - Coffee Shop Hopping? Secret Hideouts?

I ended up finding the perfect belt after the many variations to pick from and ended up with the Ellipse Monogram Belt (Product Code: M6919U for those who are curious) and I can’t wait to start pairing it with my outfits!


Travel: Manchester - Coffee Shop Hopping? Secret Hideouts?

Get you a best friend who helps you model things for the blog!

Travel: Manchester - Coffee Shop Hopping? Secret Hideouts?

Louis Vuitton Ellipse Monogram Belt

I think the only thing that ruined the experience of buying the belt are the staff working there, because they seem to see young people and walk off in the opposite direction and I spent 15 minutes waiting for a staff member to approach me as I wanted to try the different belt sizes. I know we appear ‘young’, but that doesn’t mean we’re there to waste their time, because some of us genuinely work really hard and save for ages for things like this and it ruined the excitement of purchasing something I’ve wanted for ages. I decided to just be honest about the experience, as I think sometimes as bloggers we all sugarcoat our day-to-day experiences and only let people see the bright and dandy side of things, but we choose to leave out negative experiences.

So, after spending too much money in one go, we decided to go and watch Beauty & The Beast at Odeon in The Printworks.

Travel: Manchester - Coffee Shop Hopping? Secret Hideouts?

I won’t lie, I’ve never been a fan of Disney and even when I was younger I just couldn’t get myself into the movies and I don’t know how I got talked into watching the movie. But, I thought it was actually quite an enjoyable, feel-good movie, although I did think there was a little too many songs that the whole film turned into a musical, and I am normally really off-put by movies that are musical-based, but that is my personal opinion because I’ve always been very tomboyish, so I preferred action and horror/paranormal movies to cheesy romantics.

Travel: Manchester - Coffee Shop Hopping? Secret Hideouts?

Amy’s happy face when she managed to drag me into 2 hours of singing

So by this time, it was about 7pm, so we decided it was a good time to go and find somewhere to eat before heading home and we just enjoyed some architecture on our way to Chinatown, as Amy suggested that we try out a Vietnamese restaurant, as we are both Chinese, so Vietnamese food is quite similar to Chinese food.

We headed to a restaurant called I Am Pho and I was definitely not disappointed! The food was absolutely amazing and I am so glad Amy recommended the place. I’ve never tried Vietnamese food, but after this experience I’d happily come back again! For the amount of food we got, paying just under £15 was brilliant! The staff were lovely and the food looked as good on the plate as it tasted! Did I mention that they have the most Instagrammable gold and marble tables?

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As I’m typing up this blog post right now it makes me want to go again! Out of all the coffees I had all day, the Vietnamese Iced Coffee with Condensed Milk has to be my favourite! I think after all of the running around the iced coffee was just so refreshing, but the coffee in general was just something out of heaven!

Following dinner we decided it was time to go home and Manchester looks like a completely different place when the sun goes down, the city just slowly lights up as the sun sets!

Travel: Manchester - Coffee Shop Hopping? Secret Hideouts?

Sunset in the streets of Manchester

Travel: Manchester - Coffee Shop Hopping? Secret Hideouts?

Home time! (Piccadilly Train Station)

I hope you enjoyed today’s blog post on my day trip to Manchester as much as I enjoyed my day there! Not every trip has to be a long trip, just taking one day out of your busy schedule is enough to just enjoy your surroundings and the weather (assuming you manage to catch a rare day of sunshine if you’re in the UK)!

There will be a blog post coming up on staying a few days in Manchester, as I am off to Manchester again next week to celebrate me and my boyfriend’s 2 year anniversary, as it is the place we first met.

If you want to read anymore of my travel series, I have listed the links down below:

Travel: Easter/Summer UK Travel Inspiration Series – Blackpool, Lancashire

Travel: Easter/Summer UK Travel Inspiration Series – York, North Yorkshire

Travel: Tenerife Autumn ’16 – Why Are The Canary Islands So Different From Mainland Spain?

Travel: Las Vegas Roadtrip 2016 – Is It Really Worth Adding to Your Bucket List?

NYE 2016 in Birmingham, UK

If you enjoyed reading today’s post please give it a like and maybe a little follow if you want to be updated on my future blog posts!


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  • Reply agogo22 April 9, 2017 at 11:53 pm

    Reblogged this on msamba.

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