Macclesfield to Manchester Piccadilly

Cheshire's rolling countryside gives way to industrial heartland and the bright lights of bustling Manchester!


£12. 40 off peak on Cross Country Trains

Travel Type:


No. of Attractions:

8 places to visit

View journey Attractions
Journey Duration:

23 minutes

Route Frequency:

Hourly on Cross Country Trains, 3 per hour including by other train operators

Starting point:

Macclesfield Railway Station

How to get here

Journey fact:

Stockport houses the UK's largest collection of hatting artifacts at the Hat Works Museum. Stockport was once a major centre for hat-making, with over 100 hat factories at its peak in the 19th century. The museum, located in a restored Victorian hat factory, showcases this rich industrial heritage, featuring machinery, hats, and interactive exhibits that highlight Stockport's pivotal role in the hatting industry.

Journey Overview

This is an often underrated scenic route with an enthralling, captivating landscape unfolding out of the train window.

Cheshire countryside is resplendent in all its glory as the market town of Macclesfield sees rolling hills and lush green fields emerging, with quaint brick architecture and historic buildings as Prestbury arrives and patches of dense woodland interspersed with open farmland and the train twisting and turning gently as it speedily makes its way towards Manchester.

As the train approaches Adlington, the scenery shifts slightly to include more residential areas with neatly kept gardens and the occasional glimpse of a canal or river winding through the terrain.

This is classic ‘footballer’s wives’ Cheshire heartland, of almost palatial residences, leafy countryside but a growing sense of momentum and anticipation as the landscape becomes more built up and classic industrialised architecture of the north of England with the bright lights of Manchester approaching. But first Stockport, the football ground on the left with the floodlights standing out and not long after we leave the station, the elevated, panoramic views over sprawling but fascinating Greater Manchester, give a great vantage point on Stockport Viaduct. There’s a railway depot in Longsight on the right and the large Stagecoach bus depot on the left and eastwards in the distance, the Ethiad Stadium, home of Manchester City can be spotted, just before the train pulls into Manchester Piccadilly, set right in the very heart of this bustling, vibrant, eclectic City!


A Fab Day Out!

Start your day in Macclesfield, a charming town known for its rich silk heritage. Begin with a visit to the Macclesfield Silk Museum, where you can explore the history of silk production and see fascinating exhibits. Then, take a leisurely stroll around the picturesque Macclesfield Forest, enjoying the serene lakes and woodland trails. For a bite to eat, head to the nearby Picturedrome, a vibrant food hall offering a variety of gourmet street food.

Next, take the train to Stockport, where your first stop should be the iconic Stockport Viaduct, a stunning railway bridge that offers impressive views of the town. Just a short walk away, you’ll find the Stockport Air Raid Shelters, an immersive underground experience that takes you back to World War II. For lunch, stop by the Produce Hall in the Old Town, a trendy food market with a range of culinary delights.

In the afternoon, make your way to Manchester, a bustling city renowned for its cultural and historical significance. Start at the Manchester Art Gallery, home to an extensive collection of artworks ranging from classical to contemporary. Then, head to the nearby John Rylands Library, a neo-Gothic masterpiece that feels like stepping into a Harry Potter novel.

For a different kind of history, visit the Science and Industry Museum, which showcases Manchester’s industrial heritage with interactive exhibits and historical artifacts, or the National Football Museum. If you have time, take a stroll around the Northern Quarter, known for its street art, independent shops, and quirky cafes.

As the evening approaches, head to the Spinningfields district for dinner. This modern area boasts a variety of high-end restaurants and bars. Finish your day with a cocktail at The Alchemist, known for its creative and theatrical drinks, and toast to a day well spent exploring the diverse offerings of Macclesfield, Stockport, and Manchester. Enjoy a walk down the eclectic Canal Street, the heart of the one of the world’s most famous LGBT + districts.

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