I remember the week before I started university: anticipation, nerves and excitement bubbled inside me, and a lot of advice filled the air, most of it summarised to “work hard; play hard”. While working hard is quite obvious, on a student budget, it may seem quite difficult to play hard. Luckily, Liverpool is a beautiful and lively city, where even something trivial as just walking around the city centre can be quite calming or eventful. There’s plenty to do as a student, from brain games to party nights, and whether you’re on your own or with a group of friends, there is something for everyone, so here is just ten of the countless things to do in Liverpool as a student.
LiverpoolONE is the place to be for students. From the entertainment hotspots to the hundreds stores and restaurants around, LiverpoolONE is the place to have a good time with friends, or even shop and relax by yourself.
Most notably, the Junkyard Golf Club and the Odeon cinemas are where most students tend to hang. The Junkyard Golf Club is a neon, lively place full of “Crazy Golf, Mad Cocktails and Bad Puns!” There are three 9-hole mini-golf courses: Pablo, Bozo and Gary, and students pay £8.50 per person. Above the Junkyard, is the Oden cinema. Here, you can watch the latest films for as low as £5.75 per person, sometimes even lower.
Not everyone is into golf. Everyone’s different, and has different interests, so why not hang out at a place with a variety of social activities? Near LiverpoolONE, at Clayton square, Lane7 is a place for everyone. Whether you’re into bowling, beer pong, darts, arcades and so much more, Lane7 has a whole range of packages and vouchers to have a fun-filled day with your mates.
If you’re a person who lives for the nightlife: have no fear, Concert Square is here. Surrounded by the biggest clubs in Liverpool, such as Level and Electrik Warehouse, and pubs such as McCooley’s, Concert Square is the social hub of Liverpool. Itconsists of a square of outdoor seating to meet up with friends and grab a shisha pipe or a drink before having the night of your life.
The first thing you notice about Liverpool’s city centre is the giant Radio City Tower. When I first moved to Liverpool, this tower became a landmark for me, and if I was starting to feel lost, I would look up and understand my location in reference to the tower, or head towards it and find my way from there. Liverpool is magnificent city, but tour buses to see it all can be quite expensive. For just £5.50 per person, students can get a breath-taking view of the whole city just from the top of the Radio City Tower. The Radio Tower Viewing Gallery Experience is open daily from 10:15 – 17:15, and if you’re new to the city, it is a perfect way to really take in and see the city in all its glory.
Scattered around Liverpool City Centre, Escape Rooms are an entertaining and intellectually stimulating way to bond and connect with your friends. Some of the top-rated Escape Rooms include: Exit Strategy and Escape Hunt.
Liverpool is rich in history, science and the arts. And most of it is free to explore!
If you’re into history, the Merseyside Maritime Museum, the International Slavery Museum, World Museum, the Museum of Liverpool and Liverpool Central Library are the perfect places to be. The Museum of Liverpool is the largest museum dedicated to a city in the United Kingdom, and there is so much to explore in the Liverpool Central Library. From the discovery room, Picton Reading Room and rooftop views, you could spend hours in this mesmerising library.
If you’re into the arts, the Walker Art Gallery, Output Gallery, the Open Eye Gallery, FACT, Bluecoat and the Tate are the some of the best places to go. While most are galleries, Bluecoat incorporates visual art, dance, literature and music, and includes weekend events and freelance talent. FACT, on Wood Street, not only has two art galleries, but a cinema dedicated to film, media and modern art.
As a bonus, the Merseyside Maritime Museum, International Slavery Museum and Tate are all on the Royal Albert Docks. Whether you want to explore these museums, visit the Victorian Carousel, take part in the all year round free events, find a quiet place to get some work done, or even just enjoy the view across the Mersey, the Royal Albert Docks is something you can’t miss when studying in Liverpool.
For those who have a love for adventure, Liverpool Wake Park might be just what you need for that adrenaline boost. Based at the Liverpool Water Sports Centre in the middle of the Liverpool Waterfront, you and your friends can experience a range of packages from Wednesday to Sunday from 11:00 – 22:00, and get discounts on other action-packed events, such as bike tours.
We’ve touched a little on the arts, but for those who are passionate for music, drama and theatre, the spirit of culture is spread throughout Liverpool. The Empire Theatre, Epstein Theatre, Capstone Theatre, Liverpool Philharmonic, Liverpool Playhouse and so many other theatres are constantly buzzing with a mixture of amateur and professional musical and dramatic performances. The prices of these shows vary, and some locations, such as the Capstone, have student discounts. Big concerts are hosted in the M&S Bank Arena. While the Beatles Museum may be expensive, there are places such as the Jacaranda Club and the Caravan Club to truly experience the Beatles and the heart of Liverpool’s live music. There are plenty of other venues to listen to free live music. If you love live music, Liverpool is truly your oyster.
I was taking an Uber to the train station once, and the driver said something that has always stuck with me. He told me, “The thing about Liverpool is, no matter what niche, or whatever you’re into, there’s always something for you. And even if you don’t find it, you make it.” Nothing highlights this more than Bold Street. Thrift and furniture shops, comic bookstores, themed restaurants and cafes and with the Bombed-Out Church at the end, Bold Street is a vibrant, multi-cultural and thrilling place to be.
For a minimum £20 per person, why not have a blast with your friends and go to the Ultimate Indoor Paintball. Located on Vauxhall Road, Ultimate Indoor Paintball is the only indoor paintball venue in Merseyside, and is recognised as the leading paintball arena in the North West, as well as the cheapest.
Samuel L Jackson talks about Liverpool, stating, “I love Liverpool, the city. It’s actually great, I had a great time. God, it’s changed. The whole river front has changed and there’s loads of nice tapas restaurants. We found this amazing Chinese restaurant, too, which was right by where I was living, which was great.” Furthermore, Alison Steadman talks about her love for Liverpool, saying, “Liverpool still feels like my hometown though I haven’t lived here for many years. I’ve got a close connection with it and come back frequently. I love the dock, I love LiverpoolONE, all the regeneration that’s gone on.” Whether you participate and any of the ten things above, or go beyond and explore the Cathedrals, Chinatown or St George’s Hall, or take a trip on the Merseyside Ferry: there is so much in Liverpool to experience, explore and truly “play hard.”