The weather may have started to turn, but nothing’s keeping us indoors this October– we’re braving the cold and getting swept up like the leaves with all the brilliant events going on in and around Manchester. From fun Halloween events to brand new bottomless brunches – we’ve rounded up the very best things to do in Manchester this October.
1. Celebrate the city’s Black-owned businesses with the return of Manchester’s Melanin Markets
Melanin Markets – organised by Bianca Danielle and Kelly Morgan – is set to return this October, this time on the ground floor of HOME and with a special twist. There, the organisers will combine art, music, food and so much more – all created by the city’s talented Black community – whilst showcasing some of the best Black British owned businesses in the UK. For the first time ever, this event, which takes place on October 9, is hosting a ‘King Edition’ which will uplift and spotlight Black men in business, creating a safe, authentic atmosphere for Black men to showcase the wonderful range of business, interests and narratives they hold.
2. Explore a magical forest inspired by the wizarding world with the return of Harry Potter: A Forbidden Forest Experience
A woodland trail inspired by the Forbidden Forest from the Harry Potter and Fantastic Beasts series will be returning to Arley Hall & Gardens in Cheshire this Autumn. Taking fans on a journey that will quite literally illuminate some of their favourite Forbidden Forest moments, the incredible experience makes for a perfect getaway if you’re looking to escape the city. With illuminating sets, atmospheric lighting and magical creatures from the Harry Potter and Fantastic Beasts series, there is plenty to discover along the way. Book tickets to Harry Potter: A Forbidden Forest Experience here.
3. Enjoy a Blackout Dinner at 20 Stories
20 Stories blackout dinner is back, with a special event in collaboration with Nyetimber this Halloween. Enjoy dinner with only the light from the city and a thousand candles providing the ambience, with a very special menu in store for the night. The events have previously sold out pretty quickly, so if you want in, you’ll have to act fast.
Step into a world amplified by all things Gaga, as Donna Marie – the world’s number 1 Lady Gaga impersonator – takes to the stage to perform some of the star’s biggest hits. Accompanied by a delicious brunch, guests can enjoy music, dancing, and free-flowing booze, alongside a number of fun drag performances, too. Get tickets here.
5. Enjoy bottomless curry for just £20 at this Indian restaurant in Manchester
We’re all familiar with the classic weekend pastime of bottomless brunch, but now the popular Indian halal restaurant in Manchester, Zouk Tea Bar & Grill is offering bottomless curry. To celebrate National Curry Week, which takes place between October 3-9, Zouk has collaborated with Indian beer brand Kingfisher to serve up an absolute feast for the eyes and senses. Guests at will be able to tuck into as much curry as they can eat (either vegetarian or chicken) alongside bottomless naan breads and rice, plus a bottle of Kingfisher beer (or a soft drink) thrown in for good measure. And all of this can be enjoyed for just £20 per person!
Get into the Halloween spirit this October with this stunning candlelight concert, where talented performers will perform their own renditions to some of the most haunting tracks of all time. Think Thriller by Michael Jackson, Hedwig’s Theme from Harry Potter, and even This Is Halloween from The Nightmare Before Christmas. Get tickets here.
7. Spot hidden monsters around the city centre
Halloween in the City is back for 2022, with a number of fantastic inflatable monsters popping up on top of some of Manchester’s most recognisable buildings. From three-eyed monsters to giant dragons, there’s plenty to spot, and they’ll all be dotted around all corners of the city, too. Created by Filthy Luker and Pedro Estrellas from Designs in Air – the huge inflated creations will be put on display across Manchester city centre, and they’ll be available to see for a short time period only, officially creeping up on October 25 before slithering away on October 31 once Halloween is over.
8. Tuck into tacos and caviar as this Mayfair hotspot’s new Manchester branch
Set to open on October 14, MNKY HSE has selected Manchester to house its second-ever UK restaurant, with a site snapped up on Lloyd Street. Loved for its upmarket Latin American-inspired menu, guests can dig into tacos, caviar, ceviche, sea bass and more, alongside luxurious platters designed for sharing and stunning cocktails inspired by the region. Think whiskey, rum, tequila and agave-based concoctions, sweetened with South American flavours such as dark chocolate, lime, chilli, tropical flowers and more.
9. Follow this Halloween-themed trail with poisonous and hair-raising species
This October, Chester Zoo will be running a new free interactive Halloween trail for the very first time and it’s set to give you the creeps as well as allow you to get to know these curious creatures better. Throughout the month of October, visitors can take a wander along the zoo’s indoor trail where they will encounter interesting species like the Komodo Dragon, Gaboon Viper, Poison Dart Frogs, Blue Komodo Viper, Tarantula and the upside-down Jellyfish.
The abandoned Camelot Theme Park has opened its doors to the public once more, but it’s not the joy-filled kingdom of fun it once was. A darkness has swept through the land and left a swarm of zombies in its wake, each one burning with an all-consuming hunger for human flesh. This time the screams you’ll hear won’t be from thrill-seekers riding rollercoasters but from pale-faced passengers in cars who couldn’t resist a trip back to the nostalgia-inducing amusement park they once visited as a kid. Think you’re brave enough? Book tickets here.
11. Party at Albert’s Schloss for Oktoberfest
In true Albert’s Schloss-style, the fun German-inspired bar is celebrating Oktoberfest, with nightly shows and entertainment, delicious steins of German beer and plenty of Oktoberfest-inspired grub. Dance, sing, drink and eat up until October 3rd, when the party will be officially closing for the year. All Oktoberfest biers at Albert’s Schloss will be on sale for £6 per pint, with Paulaner Oktoberfest, Spaten Oktoberfest, Hacker Pschorr, Hofbräu and Löwenbräu making up the menu.
12. Pick your own pumpkins at these pumpkin patches near Manchester
Autumn is in the air, and there’s nothing more that we love than the anticipation that the season brings. But first on the agenda = Halloween. Whether you’re doing it for the ‘gram or just absolutely love getting your carve on, there are a range of pumpkin patches in and around Manchester to pick your own this year. Multiple fields near Manchester are now abundant with these orange orbs so get picking! Check out the best pumpkin patches to visit near Manchester here.
Oktoberfest is getting a Mancunian spin this weekend, with the arrival of Manctoberfest at the BEC. Drink German lagers from steins, fill up on tasty German treats, and enjoy some of the finest music to come from Manchester (performed by tribute bands, rather than the actual Gallagher brothers, of course). Impersonating Oasis, The Stone Roses, New Order, Happy Mondays, and Noel Gallagher’s High Flying Birds, there’ll be plenty to enjoy, witha few tickets remaining here.
14. Get cosy with the return of The Oast House’s famous winter tipi
Popping up in Spinningfields every single year without fail, the tipi at The Oast House has become an institution in itself… An annual highlight, one might say. Reopening on Friday 7th October, the tipi at The Oast House but has been completely reimagined for 2022 – boasting three tents joined together with a huge open hub, allowing guests to see into the main bar and soak up the party atmosphere. The Oast House’s snug retreat will also feature firepits and live music alongside winter cocktails, hot chocolate, mulled wine and tempting street food, just in time for the chilly weather.
15. See a mesmerising performance of The Lion King at the Palace Theatre
The beloved production The Lion King– which has been running since 1997 – will finally come to Manchester as part of a brand new residency, after its 2020 UK tour was postponed as a result of the pandemic. Telling the famous story of Simba and his journey to Pride Rock in a whole new way, the show is made up of over 50 actors, dancers and singers, who’ll all be taking to the stage at Manchester’s Palace Theatre in October 2022 right up until February 2023.
Sure, it might be bingo – but this is definitely nothing like your Nan’s typical Tuesday nights down the community centre. Hosted by the Boy Toy butlers and some of London and Manchester’s best drag queens, guests will get to enjoy their choice of brunch dish, alongside bottomless fizz for an hour and a half. If that wasn’t all, there’ll be plenty of games and performances to enjoy, too, with four whole hours of fun in store. Get tickets here before they’re gone.
17. Explore the best of Banksy at this huge, exclusive art exhibition coming to MediaCity
This October things are about to change as a big art exhibition dedicated to artist Banksy is coming to Salford. The Art of Banksy, is the largest touring exhibition of Banksy’s artworks, and will be located at a new purpose-built gallery in the heart of MediaCity. The Art of Banksy will display 145 prints, canvasses, screenprints, unique works, limited-edition pieces and more, covering a period from 2002 to 2017, and also features some of the artists’ lesser-known works for a bit of variety.
18. Cosy up with a film and a view as the magical, immersive Backyard Cinema comes to this Manchester rooftop
Perfect for movie-lovers and adventure-seekers, Backyard Cinema offers an immersive cinema experience that is more than just the movies, and it’s soon coming to Manchester. The immersive cinema experts will be building a purpose-built 330-capacity, indoor winter cinema on the platform of Depot Mayfield for a limited 10 week run which starts from October 21. The screening room will be filled with custom-made giant bean bag seating for guests to get cosied up in with ushers serving seasonal cocktails and sweet treats to create the most magical place to watch a movie.
Another fantastic event for Beyoncé fans to enjoy, the highly popular Queen B bottomless brunch is back this month, with drag queen Cara Melle bringing the Sasha Fierce vibes. Enjoy a menu of pizzas for brunch, alongside bottomless booze, fun Beyoncé-themed performances, plenty of singing, and plenty of dancing. Get tickets here.
20. Visit Manchester’s first ever café dedicated to Japanese soufflé pancakes
A café specialising in the viral food sensation, Japanese soufflé pancakes, known as Fuwa Fuwa, will be opening its doors in Manchester New Square this October, and we can’t wait to see that jiggle jiggle. Fuwa Fuwa, meaning ‘fluffy fluffy’, is North America’s largest soufflé pancake and dessert café, and now it’s coming to Manchester. Tasting like a delicate balance between a soufflé and a traditional pancake, soufflé pancakes are soft, bouncy, and light, and although they take a while to be made, they are definitely worth the wait. And the toppings are to die for!
21. Take part in this special Pokémon-themed treasure hunt art trail at the Trafford Centre
The Pokémon Company International has announced a partnership with The Trafford Centre, in the form of an art trail called Pokémon: Art Through the Ages, which will be exhibited in the Manchester shopping centre. A special, treasure hunt-style event will take place this autumn throughout the Trafford Centre, where visitors will be able to discover hidden art of the 151 Pokémon originally discovered in the Kanto region. The Pokémon art, available to visit between October 27 and November 13, will showcase a wide variety of artistic techniques and styles from across the ages, including cave paintings, stained glass and oil paintings.
22. Explore over 100 independent stalls at The Night Market
This October, Mancs will able to wander through a sea of independent stalls surrounded by striking Edwardian architecture as The Night Market heads to Manchester’s Victoria Baths. Repurposing the empty swimming baths for one night only on October 7, The Night Market will take residence within the stunning Grade-II listed building to create the ultimate shopping experience meets an alternative festival night out. Filling the entirety of this extraordinary building with artisans to artists, jewellers to designers, bakers to candlestick makers (and so much more), The Night Market UK showcases the finest Mancunian small business talent with over 100 independent stalls.
23. Glide into Halloween at the fun new Scare Skate
Skate Manchester is returning for 2022, but rather than waiting until Christmas, organisers have given the event a spooky twist for Halloween. Opening on October 21st, Mancs will be able to enjoy the spooky ice rink, with guests encouraged to dress up for the occasion. The ice rink will be set within the wonderful Cathedral Gardens, where guests will also be able to see the annual Jack-O-Lanterns in the trees, and the fantastic Halloween in the City monsters that pop up on our city’s buildings every year.
24. Curl up with a scary movie at home
Fancy staying in now that the weather has turned? The cooler forecast for October is the perfect excuse to snuggle up at home in front of Netflix – with tons of brand new horrors to enjoy in the spirit of Halloween. Check out our streaming guide for Halloween here.