SNAKE PASS ROAD TRIP
Three days. Two overlooked cities crammed full of culture and good eats. One road trip...
Sheffield and Manchester are separated by the hulking Peak District. To get between them you can go the (ahem) ‘suggested’ route. Or you can take Snake Pass.
You know what to do.
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This road trip is ideal if you’re short on time and you like mother nature’s best bits but also want to soak up some culture...
You’ll be starting off at one end of the A57 for a day in Sheffield. You can either stay overnight or head straight on from Sheffield to the Derbyshire section of the Peak District. Here you’ll come upon Snake Pass. It’s a - you guessed it - winding road that crosses the Pennines.
This is a mountain pass so the scenery is beaut, which is why you’ll be rubbing shoulders with motorcyclists, semi-pro cyclists, and Tour of Britain racers. It takes about an hour and a half to get to Manchester from Sheffield.
What you'll do
It’s a short enough drive to do the whole thing in a day. But that would mean cutting short visits to Manchester and Sheffield. Make it two days to take in both cities properly, and three if you want to roam about the Peak District too.
Start your day at Sheffield’s Steam Yard for great coffee and fronuts… it’s a french toast doughnut. Sheffield is known as the “Steel City” but the Millenium Gallery and Winter Gardens are both easy on the eye and worth a look. Make a quick stop at The Street Food Chef for a lunchtime burrito. Then it’s on to The Crucible Theatre to catch a play. Squeeze in a pint and ping pong at Picture House Social.
After cruising by the peaks you’ll hit Manchester. Head straight for Ancoats. Most people will make for the Northern Quarter (which is beaut) but Ancoats is a vibey neighbourhood with loadsss to offer.
Feed the thirst at for craft brews, or Cha-ology for Japanese tea. The best pizza in the city lives here too. Spend all your time and money at Rudy’s, it’s the stuff of Neopolitan dreams. Finish your day with a sunset stroll to take in the street art. Nice.
Where to stay
The Florentine, SheffieldIn eggs we trust…
The Florentine is an easy walk from the centre off Sheffield. The rooms have cosy wood-panelled nooks, industrial details and quirky wallpaper plus all the mod cons. But we recommend going all out on one with a roll-top bath too. Downstairs in the pub they have a wood fired pizza oven and a Josper charcoal grill for cooking up their signature 28-day aged Yorkshire beef steaks.
Need To Know• 2 nights at The Florentine
• 1 double room with en suite (price for 2 people)
• Flat screen TV
• Breakfast included
Gardener's Cottage, Peak DistrictNot feeling a city stay? Splash out a little more cash and enjoy a lazy stay mid-route in the hills of the Peak District instead at Gardener’s Cottage. All cobblestones and exposed wood beams, it’s also got a log burner to relax in front of with a glass of vino after a hard day’s hike. Sitting inside Alstonefield Manor, you can also take in the landscaped gardens and beaut views across the valley before a stroll to the award-winning George Inn for dinner.
Need To Know• 3 nights at Gardener’s cottage
• 1 king size bed (price for 2 people)
• Log burner and fully-fitted handmade kitchen
• Great pubs and restaurants in Alstonefield village a short walk away
Hotel Gotham, ManchesterRight in the centre of Manchester, Hotel Gotham is your splurge option at the end of the route. The grand art deco building was a former bank so the hotel has piggy bank shaped shortbread biscuits and moneybag do-not-disturb signs. The plush monochrome and leather-clad rooms have eqyptian cotton king beds and the mini bars come stocked with rum-flavoured fruit pastels and ‘a hangover cure’. Plus, you get complimentary access to the private members club on the top floor.
Need To Know• 2 nights at Hotel Gotham
• 1 double room with ensuite (price for 2 people)
• Complimentary membership to Club Brass for your stay
• Breakfast included