Destinations

24 Hours In Liverpool

By Patrick Hanlon and Russell Alford aka The GastroGays
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“Liverpool is the pool of life,” Carl Jung remarked. A trip to Liverpool should showcase how classic and traditional yet cutting edge and contemporary it is. Here’s our guide to the Merseyside city in one day, seen through its exhibitions, cuisine, entertainment and architecture.

9:00am: Breakfast/brunch at Love Thy Neighbour

Cool Californian vibes abound at Love Thy Neighbour, an American West Coast-inspired cafe specialising in healthy, trendy dishes, great coffee and cocktails from early morning ’til night. Whether you delve into a Buddha bowl, crunch some Cali toasts or opt for all day brunch, this is the ideal light and bright start to a day spent discovering Liverpool’s charms and quirks.

Love Thy Neighbour

10:15am: Peruse the Exhibitions at Museum of Liverpool

Find out where, why and how Liverpool began, tracing history through time at the Museum of Liverpool. An expansive exhibition space set across several floors tracing Liverpool’s roots, documenting how emigration and industry shaped it and offering interesting exhibitions on cultural identity and the city’s future. You’ll even discover Liverpool’s unique connection with Shanghai and how the two cities are closely intertwined. Entry is free and guided tours are also available.

museum of liverpool exterior outside gastrogays exhibition

12pm: Stroll through the Cavern Quarter

Music and entertainment flow through Liverpool’s veins and the Cavern Quarter is the historic beating heart of the city’s live music scene. Relive the Merseybeat era of Cilla Black, Gerry & The Pacemakers and the city’s most famous singing sons The Beatles with a stroll around the historic nightlife quarter, which centres on Matthew street. Pop into the original Cavern Club, trace the Music Wall of Fame and enjoy the strum and melody of the many street buskers. At night, this precinct still comes alive with music, dance and flowing drinks.

1:30pm: Lunch at Fodder

Like stepping into a family’s front room adorned with memorabilia, time-forgotten trinkets and good, honest cooking never farther than a whiff away, Fodder is a unique canteen-style café located in the Baltic Triangle. Here, you’ll find the traditional Mersey dish of Scouse at the star act, served  in the middle of the dining room on a vintage sideboard three ways: mutton, liverbird (chicken), and blind (vegan). Grab a bowl, fill it up, add some pickled beets and cabbage, tower up with a couple of slices of buttered bread and Bob’s your uncle. Served with builders brew tea or filter coffee and a dessert - local delicacy Wet Nelly - if you fancy it after, this is a Liverpudlian food experience like no other.

3pm: Coffee at Rococo

Perched above Church Street, blink and you’ll miss Rococo, a beautifully-designed, lofty café spread across two floors with an eclectic mix of interiors, artwork and lots of mismatched tables and seating. Warm up with a coffee or chill out with an iced lemonade as you lounge on one of the comfy seats, catch up on what’s going on in the world or flick through one of the magazines.

4:15pm: Albert Dock

Liverpool has a distinct maritime heritage, so there’s no better spot to while away a couple of hours than Albert Dock. Set right by the water, a series of incredibly well-kept (Grade I listed) Victorian dock buildings and warehouses are now home to several restaurants, bars, boutiques and museums, including the Tate Liverpool. Tracey Emin and William Blake, two British artists of very different times are showcased ‘In Focus’ side by side in a unique coming together of the two visionaries – you’ll see Emin’s My Bed (1998) displayed for the very first time in the north of England

7:15pm: Dinner at Maray

The star of Bold Street, ‘Maray' is the name on everyone’s lips as this Middle-Eastern infuenced small plates spot has fast become one of Liverpool’s hottest tables. Sip an Aperol Spritz - a speciality of the small, well-formed bar - as you savour the sights and smells of small plates leaving the kitchen tempting you to order the same. It’s rare to find a menu where the sound of every dish grasps hold of your tastebuds refusing to let go, so ordering can become a bit of a mean experience.

Whatever you order - worth noting that most dishes mingle around £7-£9 - a Levantine-meets-Mediterranean feast awaits, from slow-cooked beef cheek with sweetcorn and coffee to smoked lamb shawarma with watermelon and saffron yoghurt. The vegetable dishes vie to steal the show, in particular a roast savoy cabbage with anchovy butter and ash, and the half-baked cauliflower with sliced almonds, pomegranate, harissa and yoghurt. The solitary and overwhelming negative of this meal is the prospect of it ending.

MARAY Roast half cauliflower almonds pesto Maray Liverpool Bold Street restaurant

9:00pm: G&Ts at Jenever

Round out the night by clinking glasses at a bar set along the world’s only street with a cathedral at either end! Choose from over 100 British and international gins at Jenever on Hope Street, a gin palace set over a two-floor townhouse. Named after the predecessor to modern-day gin, at Jenever all manner of gin cocktails and speciality jenever are served, with specifically-matched garnishes for gin and tonics in particular. There’s a smooth soundtrack of easy listening lulling away, little table-top board games dotted around and you can even test the team’s gin particulars.

11:00pm: back to get some zzzzz

Housed in the Grade II-listed former Transport Department of Liverpool Corporation building on Hatton Garden, The Richmond, BW Premier Collection building originally dates back to the early 1900s. Following a huge revamp a couple of years ago, it now has over 150 bedrooms and a collection of 52 individual apartments where we stayed. Perched just off Dale Street, you’ll find that it’s one of the most centrally located and best value hotels in Liverpool.

By Patrick Hanlon and Russell Alford aka The GastroGays 

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