Things to do in Altrincham March 05 2014

Welcome to our guide to things to do in the market town of Altrincham.  Located on the south-west edge of Manchester, Altrincham is a leafy suburb whose centre has suffered economically since the opening of the Trafford Centre.  Nevertheless, it remains an interesting place in which to potter, with plenty of independently-owned shops and restaurants. Last updated: March 2014.

Activities and events in Altrincham

Altrincham’s relatively small size means that there aren’t a host of attractions in the town itself.  However, if you’ve an afternoon or evening to while away, there are a few things to keep you occupied.

Strap on your skates: Everyone who was brought up in south Manchester went ice skating in Altrincham as a child. The ice rink in Altrincham has been recently updated and is open seven days a week.  Visit the rink’s website for more details: Altrincham ice rink. There are more ideas for things to do with kids on the Day Out With the Kids website - there isn't that much listed in Altrincham itself, but there are some good ideas for activities a few miles further afield.

Make new friends: Enjoy a host of meet-ups and walks with the Hale & Altrincham Women's Social Group, who have a calendar of activities that any woman can join in with. Find out more here.

Visit a stately home: Located just outside Altrincham, Dunham Massey is an imposing Georgian house with a beautiful garden.  The rose garden is particularly lovely.

Something to do on a rainy day: Altrincham has a multiplex cinema, Vue, with six screens and all the usual multiplex bobbins.

Feeling crafty: If you like sewing, knitting and crochet, you can meet like-minded people for a natter at the local Stitch'n'Bitch group. The group meets regularly at the Griffin pub.

Six good shops in Altrincham

A fantastic concept that should be available in every town is Traders Outlet, where independent traders each rent an area within a store.  The traders are hand-picked to make sure that the shop offers the best from local businesses.  You’ll find jewellery, gifts, art and even a coffee shop.

The Belgian Bar (see below) now has a small shop by the side of the bar which sells its range of beers off-trade.

Greenginger Fabric is a cornucopia of fabric and haberdashery bits and bobs.  They have a lovely range of things to rummage through and will also hand-make curtains for you.

A fairly recent shop opening is Gummy Worm, a bright, modern sweet shop featuring an extensive range of traditional and new treats.

Altrincham Market has been in existence since 1290.  It’s a real, proper market, with different types of market during the week and a farmers’ and craft market on the first Friday of every month.

Beatnik is well worth supporting: it’s a relatively new record shop (remember those?!) and cafe on Greenwood Street.

Recommended Altrincham restaurants, cafes and bars


A trip to the Continent: For a town of its size, Altrincham has more Belgian bars than might be expected.  Almost adjacent to one another are The Belgian Bar and Mort Subite (which means ‘sudden death’).  Both have cosy interiors and a very long menu of eclectic, top quality beers. Just don’t ask about the story behind Mort’s premises.

The French connection: No guide to Altrincham would be complete without a mention of Franc’s, a long-established brasserie on Goose Green.  The menu of French bistro classics isn’t cheap, but the food is great quality and the surroundings are charming.  There is a good value Menu Bon Marché for lunch and dinner.

Good all-rounder: Every town should have its own Gin Palace.  Altrincham does, in the form of the Victoria, a recently refurbished pub on Stamford Street.  It has great food, well chosen drinks (even the soft drinks menu is interesting) and, best of all, occasional Pie & Jazz nights.

Best for breakfast: Y McGregor is a fantastic café with a slightly perplexing name. Its food is delicious, healthy and homemade, and it’s a great spot to go for breakfast.

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