A Weekend in Liverpool

Friday, 8 May 2015

Blair and I recently spent a busy weekend in Liverpool seeing as many sights as we possibly could in 48 hours.  We both love going to museums and art galleries, and Liverpool is great for that sort of thing as there are soooo many great culture spots.  As we only had 48 hours I'd planned quite an ambitious itinerary including 4 museums, 1 art gallery, 2 cathedrals and a bombed out church, a tour of the Liverpool FC stadium, some cool bookshops, and of course, great food.  Amazingly we managed to do it all, and I'm so glad I had the sense to book Monday off work as I definitely needed a day of rest to recover!

After we arrived on Friday our first stop was The World Museum. Spreading over 6 floors this is a huuuge museum which even has an aquarium, a bug house, and a planetarium We could have spent hours here as there’s so much to see - there’s lots of interaction along the way too which makes it a really fun experience. I think it was actually my favourite attraction of the weekend!

Next up we visited the Walker Art Gallery which, like The World Museum (and in fact, every attraction we visited over the weekend), is free to enter - although obviously it's nice to leave a donation.  They had a mix of classic and modern art, my favourite being the contemporary stuff as I'm not really a huge fan of older paintings.

The last two stops on our list for Friday were the bombed out church and the Liverpool Cathedral.  The bombed out church, or the Church of St Luke, was badly damaged during the Liverpool Blitz in the 40's and now sits as a ruin, roofless with vines growing up the sides.  It's used as a venue for events and exhibitions now, and in fact they were in the middle of setting it up for something when we went there. I'd love to go there for some kind of event, I imagine it would be really cool inside - I love ruins!

The Liverpool Cathedral was our last stop before dinner and man is this place huuuuuuge.  It's probably the biggest cathedral/church I've ever been in, very impressive.  I'm not religious in the slightest but I do like to have a sit down in places like this just taking in the surroundings and enjoying the quiet.

We finished up our Friday by going for dinner at Lucha Libre where we enjoyed frozen margaritas, and a mexican feast of quesedillas, chicken wings and burgers.  Yuuuum.  By some coincidence I had  happened to have been out for a similar meal at a mexican street food place in Edinburgh called Bodega the night before where I'd had some amaaaazing tacos, so that's why I plumped for a chicken burger here (otherwise I'd probably have gone for tacos as they sounded ace).

As we're old and boring, we just headed straight back to the hotel after dinner where Blair promptly fell asleep and I lay and read a book (Amy Poehler - Yes Please, in case you're interested).  Party animals!

The next morning we were up bright and early for another long day of sightseeing.  We had planned on going to Moose Coffee for breakfast as I'd read great things about their American style breakfasts but unfortunately when we got there at 9.15 it was already full with a queue of people outside waiting for tables.  Waaah, no waffles for us!  Instead we got bacon rolls from a van and ate them standing outside a bank sheltering from the rain.  Oh the glamour!

We then got on a bus out to Anfield stadium where we'd booked a tour at 11am.  I'm a huge LFC fan so was super excited about it!  Hahahahah.  OK so yeah, Blair is obviously the fan, not me, but I actually really enjoyed the tour.  The tour guides were really fun and it was interesting hearing lots of facts about the team and the stadium, which is currently undergoing a multi-million pound refurbishment.  They are stopping the tours in a few weeks time due to this redevelopment so we were amongst the last people to see the current players lounge and changing rooms etc before they are knocked down, pretty cool.

After the tour we got back on a bus into the centre of town and headed straight for the (freezing cold) docks where a lot of the museums and galleries are.  We started off at the Museum of Liverpool which has pretty much everything you could possibly want to know about Liverpool, its history and its people.  Again, we could have spent hours here going round everything (e.g. there was a Beatles film we could have watched) but as we had such a tight schedule we kind of sped around and skipped out the less interesting looking bits.  One of my favourite bits of the museum was the transport section with its full size train carriages on display (you could even sit inside one) - as geeky as it sounds, I bloody love trains.

Our second stop at the docks was Tate Liverpool.  As I mentioned above I am much more into modern art than classic so I was really looking forward to this.  They had a great mix of pieces here from artists like Jackson Pollock, Marcel Duchamp and David Hockney.  My favourites were Simon Starling's 'Five-Man Pedersen' and Thomas Schutte's 'Four Sisters in the Bath' (I didn't get a photo of this one so here's a link!).

Our final museum of the weekend was the International Slavery Museum which had been recommended by my friend Jemma.  Slavery is something that I'm embarrassed to say that I don't know a great deal about so this was really interesting, and obviously pretty horrifying.  Again, Blair and I commented on the fact that we would have liked to spend more time here properly taking everything in but by now it was early evening so we had to move round pretty quickly.

Before heading back to the hotel to get changed for dinner we went to visit the Metropolitan Cathedral - one of the most unique looking buildings in the city.  I have to admit that I wasn't as impressed by this as I was by the Liverpool Cathedral we'd visited the previous day, but it is a pretty cool building and worth a look if you're interested in modern architecture.

The food highlight of the weekend was without a doubt our dinner on Saturday night at Fazenda, a Brazilian rodizio with a unique "all you can eat meat" concept.  You pay a set cost (£28.30 on a Saturday night), help yourself to their impressive salad bar, and then sit back and wait for the MEAT.  There's seemingly never-ending table service with waiters carrying around various types of meat (like filet mignon, lamb, chicken thighs wrapped in bacon, rump steak, black pudding, sausages etc etc) and carving it up at your table.  You're given a card with red on one side and green on the other so if you fancy a break then you can turn to the red side and the waiters will skip your table until you're ready to start eating again.  At first we just kept saying yes to everything but it got to a point where my meat plate was piled so high that I felt like I was never going to finish eating, so had to concede defeat and switch to red for a while.

Despite absolutely stuffing our faces with meat we somehow managed to find room to share a dessert as their chocolate tart sounded too good to resist.  I could only manage a couple of spoonfuls but Blair was more than happy to handle the rest (you should have seen his happy little face).  I think if I'd kept going I'd probably have had to stop on the way back to the hotel for a little sick.  So. Much. Food!

Unsurprisingly, after a completely indulgent dinner the rest of our evening was a bit of a write off so we ended up just lying in bed watching Britains Got Talent before getting a fairly early night again (ready for our super early train home the next morning).

We were staying at the Liverpool Central Travelodge as we'd kindly been offered a complimentary stay as part of their #BloggerLodge campaign.  The idea being that we use the hotel as a base for exploring the city.  To be honest I was slightly apprehensive about it as the last time I stayed in a Travelodge (about 6 years ago) it wasn't a great experience, and due to my job I've been completely spoiled with all my luxury hotel trips and have become *whispers* a bit of a hotel snob.

I was pleasantly surprised though and based on our stay in Liverpool, Travelodge have definitely upped their game in the last few years.  Our room was bright and had loads of space (including a long desk area, so plenty room for getting ready in the morning), a really comfy bed, tea & coffee facilities, a TV with freeview (I'd honestly expected the basic 5 channels), and a decent power shower.  And yeah, there was no mini bar or bathrobes or toiletries you could steal from the bathrooms, but it was clean, had all the space we needed and we got a decent nights' sleep so I really can't complain and if you're looking for a cheap weekend in Liverpool then I wouldn't hesitate to recommend it.

A huge thanks to Talented Talkers and Travelodge for the invite, we had an ace weekend - Liverpool has been on our "to visit" list for a while so I really appreciate being given the opportunity to explore the city.


  1. Liverpool looks like such a fantastic city to visit - so much culture! I haven't been since I was veeeeery small but I'd really like to go back x

    Charlotte / Colours & Carousels

  2. Oh my goodness, I want to go to Liverpool just so I can pack in all of the places you managed to in such a short time... though I might leave out the football stadium because it would be lost on me!