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Manchester Museum

Home to dinosaurs, mummies and live animals, this free attraction boasts collections of precious artifacts from nearby English locations and faraway cultures.

The centrally located Manchester Museum brings natural history to life for young and old alike and is ideal for keeping the family entertained on a rainy afternoon. Explore the museum’s various exhibitions across several beautiful Victorian galleries. You’ll find one of the U.K.’s largest and most important collections of ancient Egyptian artifacts, dating as far back as 10,000 B.C. There’s also a collection of Roman antiquities and other finds from Manchester and the local region.

The museum grew from the personal collection of one wealthy local manufacturer from the 19th century and became part of the Manchester Natural History Society in 1835. As more and more artifacts were donated from around the world, the museum had to upscale several times. Eventually the famous architect Alfred Waterhouse was asked to design the present-day museum building. Waterhouse also designed Manchester's Town Hall and the Natural History Museum in London.

The current building has been open since 1890. Visitors often say the museum looks deceptively small from the outside. Once indoors, you’ll find everything from prehistoric fossils to live amphibians and reptiles in the award-winning vivarium. Downstairs, kids will be amazed by the enormous Tyrannosaurus rex that is about 70 million years old. They often laugh when they learn his name is Stan, after the man who found him (Stan Sacrison). The huge skeleton stands alongside a large collection of other fossils and natural history items.

There is no admission fee for the museum, but a small, voluntary donation for upkeep is appreciated. The museum is open daily, except December 24-26 and January 1. Exhibits vary; find details on the museum’s website.

Manchester Museum is centrally located on Oxford Road, near the University of Manchester. There is car parking available for a fee on nearby Booth Street West. The museum is about a 15-minute walk from Oxford Road train station and there is a free Metroshuttle bus, which services city center train stations as well as some car parks and bus stops, from Victoria station to Oxford Road.


Guide to Exploring around Manchester Museum


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Best Lodging Options Near Manchester Museum

See all 1,306 Properties near Manchester Museum
Macdonald Manchester Hotel & Spa $69
Macdonald Manchester Hotel & Spa

Macdonald Manchester Hotel & Spa

London Road, Manchester, England
     
    4.0 out of 5.0 Stars

    Located in Manchester City Centre, this spa hotel is within a 5-minute walk of Canal Street and The Gay Village. O2 Apollo Manchester and Piccadilly Gardens are also within 15 minutes. Picadilly Station and Manchester Piccadilly Station are within a 5-minute walk.

    Britannia Hotel - Manchester City Centre $36
    Britannia Hotel - Manchester City Centre

    Britannia Hotel - Manchester City Centre

    35 Portland Street, Manchester, England
       
      3.0 out of 5.0 Stars

      Located in Manchester City Centre, this hotel is within a 5-minute walk of Canal Street, The Gay Village, and Piccadilly Gardens. Albert Square and Manchester Art Gallery are also within 10 minutes. Picadilly Gardens Station and Mosley Street Station are within a 5-minute walk.

      INNSiDE by Melia Manchester $73
      INNSiDE by Melia Manchester

      INNSiDE by Melia Manchester

      1 First Street, Manchester, England
         
        4.0 out of 5.0 Stars

        Located in Manchester City Centre, this hotel is steps from Deansgate Locks and Deansgate. Albert Square and Bridgewater Hall are also within 10 minutes. Deansgate-Castlefield Station and Manchester Deansgate Station are within a 5-minute walk.

        Motel One Manchester Piccadilly $90
        Motel One Manchester Piccadilly

        Motel One Manchester Piccadilly

        34 London Road, Piccadilly, Manchester, England
           
          0.0 out of 5.0 Stars

          Located in Manchester City Centre, this hotel is within a 5-minute walk of Canal Street and The Gay Village. Piccadilly Gardens and Manchester Conference Centre are also within 10 minutes. Picadilly Station and Manchester Piccadilly Station are within a 2-minute walk.

          The Midland - Manchester $93
          The Midland - Manchester

          The Midland - Manchester

          16 Peter Street, Manchester, England
             
            4.0 out of 5.0 Stars

            Located in Manchester City Centre, this spa hotel is steps from Manchester Central Library, Deansgate, and St. Peter's Square. Albert Square and Canal Street are also within 5 minutes. St Peters Square Station is only a 2-minute walk and Mosley Street Station is 7 minutes.

            Staycity Aparthotel Manchester Piccadilly $74
            Staycity Aparthotel Manchester Piccadilly

            Staycity Aparthotel Manchester Piccadilly

            8B Gateway House, Piccadilly Station Approach, Manchester, England
               
              4.0 out of 5.0 Stars

              Located in Manchester City Centre, this aparthotel is within a 5-minute walk of Canal Street and The Gay Village. Piccadilly Gardens and Manchester Arndale are also within 10 minutes. Picadilly Station and Manchester Piccadilly Station are within a 5-minute walk.

              Mercure Manchester Piccadilly Hotel $67
              Mercure Manchester Piccadilly Hotel

              Mercure Manchester Piccadilly Hotel

              Portland Street, Manchester, England
                 
                4.0 out of 5.0 Stars

                Located in Manchester City Centre, this hotel is within a 10-minute walk of Manchester Arndale, Manchester Palace Theatre, and Albert Square. Bridgewater Hall and Manchester Central (GMEX) are also within 15 minutes. Picadilly Gardens Station is only a 2-minute walk and Mosley Street Station is 3 minutes.

                Motel One Manchester-Royal Exchange $90
                Motel One Manchester-Royal Exchange

                Motel One Manchester-Royal Exchange

                11-15 Cross Street, Manchester, England
                   
                  0.0 out of 5.0 Stars

                  Located in Manchester City Centre, this hotel is steps from Royal Exchange Theatre and Deansgate. Albert Square and Printworks are also within 5 minutes. Market Street Station is only a 5-minute walk and Mosley Street Station is 6 minutes.