Liverpool is home to one of Britain’s biggest industrial heritages. Like much of the North of England, Liverpool has its roots in the industrial revolution, when it became a major port. This made it a hub for diversity and culture as people from all over the world travelled into England via Liverpool. The city is a haven for music-lovers, having created ‘Merseybeat’, a style of music that produced The Beatles, The Who and The Kinks. Liverpool is considered to be a ‘capital of culture’ in both England and Europe, with numerous art galleries, museums, and a vibrant nightlife. Here are some of the city’s highlights to inspire you on your next trip to Liverpool.
Also see: Best places to visit in the UK
1. Albert Dock
Albert Dock is evocative of Liverpool’s rich industrial history, made up of docks and warehouses along the waterfront. Standing since 1846, Albert Dock was the first non-combustible warehouse system in the world, as the complex uses iron and brick in place of wood. Albert Dock has historically been one of the foremost and innovative docks in the world, and a front runner in technology such as hydraulic cranes. Today, Albert Dock is a heritage site and attracts around 4,000,000 tourists every year. This is a great place to find entertainment and food, as well as explore the well-preserved history of this maritime city.
2. World Museum
The World Museum is one of Liverpool’s biggest museums, featuring exhibits on natural science, historical culture, space and more. The museum has existed since 1851 but has been renovated multiple times to accommodate its growing collections (and popularity with visitors!) The museum currently houses an aquarium and live bug house, home to a variety of exotic beasties. There is even a planetarium which puts on regular shows for those interested in astronomy. The museum is free to visit, making it an ideal location for a day out.
For fans of outer space and space travel, Liverpool’s Spaceport makes a perfect day trip. The centre features a number of rooms centred around different themes, including the solar system and spacepods, each with their own hands-on activities. There is also an ‘interactive zone’ with activities and games based around gravity and light. Finish your trip with a visit to the planetarium to learn more about space. The Spaceport is great for family fun or anyone who loves the Milky Way!
4. St George’s Quarter
Liverpool’s St George’s Quarter is a heritage site featuring some gorgeous Victorian architecture. This is also one of the retail hubs of the city so you can do some shopping in these beautiful surroundings! In addition to shopping and art opportunities, St George’s Quarter boasts a number of popular theatres. Catch a show at the Liverpool Empire which regularly hosts West End productions on tour. While you’re in the area, be sure to visit St George’s Hall which is one of the most beautiful examples of neo-classical architecture worldwide. The Hall is free to visit and was home to the famous 2015 sculpture ‘Poppies’ where thousands of ceramic poppies were placed to commemorate the First World War Centenary.
5. Merseyside Maritime Museum
The Merseyside Maritime Museum is located on the historical Albert Dock and is the best place to go to learn more about Liverpool’s industrial history. The museum celebrates Liverpool’s international importance, acting as a gateway to the world and connecting Britain to many other nations and cultures. At the museum, you can learn about Liverpool’s role in emigration – with many people travelling to America from Liverpool throughout America’s history – as well as the famous ship Titanic, which had strong links to its registered city of Liverpool. The museum also holds regular events on subjects of interest to Liverpool’s history so there’s always something new to learn.
6. Walker Art Gallery
Home to one of Britain’s largest art collections, the Walker Art Gallery is a must-visit in Liverpool. The gallery features European art dating from the 14th century to the present, including work by Hockney, Rembrandt and Lowry. The gallery holds an extensive number of paintings, as well as sculpture and even fashion, making it a wonderful cultural hub. There are also regular events and temporary displays to explore, as well as family workshops and daily tours. This is a delightful place to learn about art and history in beautiful Liverpool.
7. Liverpool Cathedral
One of two cathedrals in the city, Liverpool Cathedral was built in 1904 but has been altered and re-imagined many times since. The cathedral was originally designed by Giles Gilbert Scott who also designed Battersea Power Station in London, and England’s iconic red telephone box. Liverpool Cathedral is the longest in the world, with an external length of 189 metres. It is also one of the world’s tallest, soaring 101 metres high, and the fifth largest in the world. Entry to the cathedral is free and it hosts a variety of community events and services. Stick around long enough to hear the bells ringing as they are the highest worldwide.
Liverpool’s Chinatown is home to Europe’s oldest Chinese community as well as an impressive range of Chinese businesses, eateries and facilities. Enter through the Chinatown Gate – an unmissable arch that is the largest of its kind outside of China and originally built in Shanghai, a city that is twinned with Liverpool. The streets here are named in both English and Chinese, and decorated with beautiful lanterns. Grab a bite to eat here to experience some authentic East Asian food. Try North Garden for delicious food that’s popular with the locals. Or if you want to cook your own, stop by Chung Wah Supermarket to pick up some fresh produce and Chinese specialities.
9. Museum of Liverpool
The Museum of Liverpool is the city’s newest museum and explores the cultural significance and history of Liverpool and its people. The museum’s collections feature a variety of culturally-important items such as fashion, décor and art, archaeological items and photographs. Liverpool is examined through its importance as a port and a gateway for diverse communities into England, as well as its impact on industry, music and art. The museum celebrates the city’s strong sense of identity and place in the world through interesting exhibits and interactive, family-friendly resources. The Museum of Liverpool provides an insightful and absorbing journey through the history of the city and its multi-cultural people.
10. The Cavern Club
The Cavern Club is infamous in the music scene as the home of The Beatles during their early years. The Cavern Club originally opened in 1957 as a jazz club and quickly became the hub of rock and roll during the 1960s. John Lennon, Paul McCartney and George Harrison each played here with other bands before forming The Beatles. The Beatles performed at the Cavern Club nearly 300 times in two years. The club also hosted other giants such as The Rolling Stones, Queen, Elton John and The Who before being shut down in the early 1970s. The club is considered a staple of Liverpool culture and history, and was rebuilt in 1984 using original bricks and plans. It has since hosted other world-famous British acts such as Oasis and the Arctic Monkeys. Visit the new Cavern Club to take a photo by the stage or to catch an indie act following in the footsteps of their idols.
11. Tate Liverpool
Liverpool is famous for its art collections and Tate Liverpool is one of its most well-known galleries. Tate Liverpool features work from the Tate Collection which showcases British art from the 16th century to the present. Tate Liverpool specialises in contemporary and modern art. The gallery stands on the historic Albert Dock and houses a café and shop alongside its expansive art collections. Attend a guided tour to learn more about the gallery or its art, or visit a special exhibition for an insight into modern art. Current permanent collections include work by Duchamp, Matisse, and Grayson Perry.
12. Liverpool Metropolitan Cathedral
The Liverpool Metropolitan Cathedral is the city’s second cathedral, having been built in 1967. This cathedral is nicknamed the “Catholic Cathedral” to distinguish it from the Anglican Liverpool Cathedral. The cathedral is the largest Catholic cathedral in Britain and serves the vast Catholic community in Liverpool. The Liverpool Metropolitan Cathedral has a distinctive circular design and unique structure, making use of both modern shapes and traditional features such as stained glass windows. Inside, the altar is located at the centre of the building and curved pews allow excellent views of the gorgeous stained glass panels above. Pair your visit to the cathedral with a tour of the Lutyens Crypt which features two halls and chapels as well as a treasury.
13. The Beatles Story
For music fans, a visit to Liverpool isn’t complete without experiencing The Beatles Story. This exhibition is dedicated to telling the history and influence of the international phenomenon, The Beatles. The exhibition features a range of artefacts from the Beatles and their career, including John Lennon’s round glasses, George Harrison’s first guitar, rare photographs and other memorabilia. Explore the history and wider influence of The Beatles, including their formation, their rise in popularity, the ‘British Invasion’, and each of the members’ solo careers.
14. Explore the Street Art
Liverpool has one of the best street art scenes in the country with impressive pieces featured all over the city. Go for a walk through Liverpool’s streets and see what you can find. This is an exciting way to explore the city and get lost in its culture. In the past, Liverpool has even hosted street art festivals to celebrate this ever-changing body of work. Book a walking tour with Seecret Tours for a more structured guide to the local street art.
15. 251 Menlove Avenue
Pay a visit to Mendips, the house at 251 Menlove Avenue and childhood home of John Lennon. The house was home to John Lennon from the age of 5 to the age of 22. At least one song was written for The Beatles at this location. Today, the building is indicated by the famous English Heritage blue plaque detailing the dates that Lennon lived here. Yoko Ono bought the house in the early 2000s in order to better protect it. Now a listed Heritage building, Mendips has been renovated and opened to the public. Take a tour inside this special home, now re-decorated to look as it did whilst Lennon grew up there in the 1950s. A Mendips tour is a unique and nostalgic Beatles experience.
RopeWalks is an area of Liverpool historically used by rope-makers who supplied the ships that sailed from Liverpool. The area still shows this history today, as the long streets were designed in such a way to allow craftsmen to lay out the rope during production. Now, the historic warehouses are used by the creative industry, much of which can be found on popular Bold Street. This street is a hub for independent cafes and vintage clothing stores. RopeWalks is also the centre for Liverpool’s vibrant nightlife scene, with a number of bars, music venues, and clubs to visit after dark. While you’re in the area, stop by St Luke’s church, locally called The Bombed-Out Church. Bombed in 1941, the church is now used as a memorial and an events venue.
17. Liverpool FC
Football is a big deal in England, and one of the major teams in this sport is Liverpool FC. The team has won more trophies than any other in England. Don an iconic red football shirt and take a stadium tour at Anfield, home to Liverpool FC. Stadium tours offer an exclusive look inside the football grounds as well as team trophies and history. The stadium also offers a number of special experiences which add extras to the tour, such as meeting Liverpool FC legends, receiving a signed photograph and having a meal on the grounds.
18. Sefton Park
Sefton Park is one of Liverpool’s largest public parks and a favourite amongst locals. It consists of 235 acres of parkland and a number of historic features. These include the palm house, a conservatory built in 1896 to showcase exotic plants. Visit the palm house to see a number of historic statues and gorgeous architecture. In addition, Sefton Park features a Victorian bandstand considered to be the inspiration for the Beatles song ‘Sgt Peppers Lonely Hearts Club Band’. Come to Sefton Park for a relaxing day in the park, or to attend one of the many regular events held here.
19. Baltic Triangle
The Baltic Triangle used to be a thriving factory and workshop district in industrial Liverpool. Today, it’s home to the city’s fast-growing digital and creative industries. Visit the Triangle for exciting independent eateries and unique small businesses. Pop by Camp and Furnace for a unique indoor festival experience, with food, drink, music and entertainment, complete with open log fires and gorgeous rustic surroundings. For more fun, check out Constellations, an event space and eatery with a garden and studio. This is a great place to grab some brunch, host or attend an event, or to get creative in the community studio. After dark, find one of the Triangle’s nightclubs to party like nowhere else in Liverpool.
20. Crosby Beach
As a port, Liverpool has great access to some of Britain’s natural coastline. A little way out of the city lies Crosby Beach. This stretch of sandy beach looks out onto the Irish Sea with views of the Wirral and North Wales. Access is easy via public transport or by car, and worth it for the beautiful sunsets and views. Crosby Beach is also the permanent home of an art installation called Another Place, which features a number of sculptures along the beach. Here you will also find the starting point to a walking trail along the coast, and you can even bike through using official cycle paths.
21. Radio City Tower
The Radio City Tower is Liverpool’s world-famous radio tower. Built in 1969, it is 138 metres tall and originally had a revolving restaurant at the top. Today, there is an observation deck open for visitors whilst the rest of the building is mostly used for radio station use. Take an elevator to the top for some of the best views of the city, and to stand in a historic piece of Liverpool.
22. Silver Jubilee Bridge
The iconic Silver Jubilee Bridge near Liverpool was built in 1961. It spans 482 metres long and is 87 metres tall. It features a single arch and is now a listed building. The bridge is highly photogenic, with gleaming architecture that seems to shine in all weather. The Silver Jubilee Bridge crosses the River Mersey and is a landmark of the Merseyside area, acting as an entrance to Liverpool and the surrounding area. This is a must-visit location.
23. Formby Coast and Nature Reserve
For those who love hiking and beautiful natural landscapes, a walk along the Formby Coast is an ideal excursion. The beaches along the coast are sandy with windswept dunes and dramatic views. Go walking to find woodlands, farmland and prehistoric footprints. The area is home to a variety of wildlife, including indigenous red squirrels and rare beasties like toads, lizards and newts. There are even regular events for all ages, including treasure hunts, archaeological explorations, and walks that aim to promote preservation. Formby Coast and Nature Reserve is a lovely day out for everyone, and an opportunity to get to grips with England’s countryside.
24. Industry 1 Wakepark
For all the thrill-seekers and adventurers out there, there’s no better place to have fun in Liverpool than at Industry 1 Wakepark. Located at Liverpool Docks, Industry 1 allows visitors to wakeboard across the water. Wakeboarding is similar to skateboarding but located on water. Industry 1 provides a space that is open to experienced and new wakeboarders alike. They will teach you if you’re new to the sport, and provide a fun and social space if you’re already a keen wakeboarder looking to pull off some tricks. This is a great place to have some fun with this unique watersport – and all in the historic surroundings of Liverpool Docks!
25. Liverpool ONE
A trip to Liverpool is incomplete without stopping by Liverpool ONE. This large shopping complex is at the heart of Liverpool’s city centre and holds all of the most popular chain stores and entertainment facilities. Complete with a cinema, adventure golf, and even two hotels, Liverpool ONE is the largest open-air shopping centre in the UK. Liverpool ONE consists of six districts, providing street markets, fashion, department stores, restaurants and more. Liverpool ONE is easy to access with excellent transport links, and the perfect way to spend a day in the bustling centre of Liverpool.