A city of famous four

What a better time to visit Liverpool than in January – said no one ever! And yet, it didn’t scare or put me off. I had to plan my 2 days off quite quickly and without any hesitation, I put my finger on a spinning globe (in other words, I opened my google maps) and picked a place I haven’t seen, yet. In 30 minutes my train tickets were bought and my accommodation was booked. I was going to Liverpool!

But why? Do you have someone there? Are you going on your own?! This is just a handful of questions I heard from my friends and colleagues. Funny enough no one asked if I am going for a football game. Oh well, they know me well… but let’s start from the beginning.

If you use public transport, the best option is to take a train. However, be mindful of ticket prices – they can be a tad too expensive, so book in advance or in less popular hours. In my case I followed a second rule and travelled during the work days, so my tickets were relatively cheap for a 4-hour train journey. I always use Omio app that shows plenty of British and European connections and on top of that you have your tickets in one place, so no need to collect them from the machine at the station. Automation is what I like.

All of must have noticed a climate change, at least to some degree. As a proof of this, it is my first winter I haven’t seen snow (even during my Christmas stay in Poland!) January was such a mix of cold and mild weather; rainy and gloomy days as well as blue sky and fresh, crisp air. The weather looked promising a week before my journey… which had suddenly changed to a full week of rain. Bummer! Luckily, my work kept me busy and I didn’t even had a chance to worry about it. All geared up for a proper cold and rainy weather, I took off to the north! I had no expectations, no hopes, just a plan to enjoy a new place. And what a surprise it was, when the train door opened at the Lime Street Station with the blue, sunny sky welcoming me at the platform.

First credit was given to Liverpool right at the station where I found a water dispenser that shows you how many plastic bottles were saved by topping up your own bottle. You must know one thing about me. I believe that our actions have a big influence on our environment and the planet. As much as I can, I try to travel with my own water bottle and own collapsible coffee cup. Small steps make a difference, so why not start from today?

Royal Albert Dock

Right, as soon as I refilled my water bottle, I set my destination to the famous docks. I wandered through busy streets of Liverpool with typical local bars, interesting cafés and restaurants. Colourful murals hidden in tiny mews, mix of architecture from old, damaged buildings through Georgian, dark brown brick terraced houses. It’s one of those places where you can find eye-catching places and soon spot piles of rubbish and poorly maintained properties. In less than half an hour I was by the river in the famous docks.

Sun was really making this day pleasant and even wind didn’t bother people too much. Royal Albert Dock is a home of plenty of museums, art galleries, and let’s not forget, the Beatles statue. This area is very well maintained and kept in a good shape. The industrial dock vibe is mixed with modern glass buildings (like RIBA) and other skyscrapers. Like in most parts of the UK, you can enter museums for free (with the exception of special exhibitions). If you fancy a visit to a museum stroll to Museum of Liverpool, Merseyside Maritime Museum, RIBA North and Tate Modern. The first two I can highly recommend if you are travelling with your little ones. You can also buy a tour in the Royal Liver Building and see the city from the top.

Hello, is there anyone?

My afternoon destination was set to Baltic Triangle as this place came up several times in my research. As soon as I left the city centre it felt as if I was going to a very odd place. In my head I was going to a trendy area that uses its raw, warehouse-like vibe to host plenty of cafes, pubs and independent businesses. I guess it might be true during the daylight. During the evening it felt like a big miss! I had to say no to some dodgy alleys offered by google maps and had to stick to main roads. Luckily, I found amazing murals and… that would be all.

Chinatown and Central District

I usually don’t judge a book by its cover, so I promptly set a new destination to Chinatown. Thinking that the streets of Chinatown will be full of people, busy restaurants and corner shops (just like in London) was a false assumption. I couldn’t be more wrong. Yet again, I was surprised by lack of life on the streets. Nelson St with its iconic Chinatown Gate was empty, with just few people passing by in a rush.

My last destination for that night was a stroll through Bold St and neighbouring streets. So this was the place where all Liverpool citizens were hiding! Restaurant on a restaurant, café next to café, pubs and more! People in and out, familiar city buzz and all that evening glamor! Make sure you visit this place, regardless if you are a meat eater or a vegan activist, there’s a place for everyone. As long as the exteriors leave space for improvement, the interiors of those restaurants are appealing and welcoming inside.

One of the best libraries in the UK

Last but not least, I wanted to call out an awe-inspiring place! The Liverpool Central Library is a place that stole my heart! Located in a historic building doesn’t reveal what a surprise is waiting inside. As soon as you enter, you see a bright, modern interiors with an oval shaped centre finished with a glass dome. Colourful neon lights at the end of each bookcase, visible zones, sitting areas and cafes. Each floor has plenty of desks with computers around the oval bannister, armchairs, coffee tables and sofas to chat and discuss. People were eating, drinking and talking. Some people were focused on their projects and yet no one complained or disturbed one another. Such a great vibe!

Well, let’s be honest, whilst Liverpool is not the most obvious holiday destination, it is definitely a good place for a day trip. If you are a big the Beatles fan, head to their statue, official stores or hope on one of the city double decker tours, visit Liverpool’s stadium, take a walk inside of one of the biggest British Cathedrals and if you love plants, head to the South and visit a massive Sefton Park with its Palm House or simply take a suburban train and head to the beach!

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