Nightlife & Clubbing
Liverpool is a city that is very proud of its nightlife, both due to the variety and quality on offer. From superclubs to pubs with dogs, a thriving gay quarter to comedy venues on the waterfront, dance warehouses to concept bars, Liverpool at night has many faces. We’ve divided some of our top tips into the city’s various districts, although everything is so close together that you can easily explore.
Seel Street and the area around it have undergone a major transformation in the past decade or so, to the point that it is now a go-to for nightlife. No matter what you’re looking for, you’ll find it here. Glamour and Latin dancers in a former Polish church: Alma de Cuba. Hawaii’an-themed cocktail bar: Aloha. Traditional pub with top-notch food: The Monro. Hot dogs, steins and a bar with a secret code: Salt Dog Slims. Arts hub specialising in whisky and real ales: MelloMello. This is without even mentioning Santa Chupitos, Almost Famous or Empire. And of course, if you’re staying out until the bitter end, The Peacock and Heebie Jeebies are always good for a dance.
Some of the best traditional pubs in the city are dotted around Hardman Street or one of its myriad off-shoots. The Pilgrim and Ye Cracke, the latter a favourite of John Lennon when he was an art school student, are two excellent atmospheric pubs in the shadow of Liverpool Cathedral. Further down, opposite the bombed-out church, sits The Roscoe Head – a real ale specialist pub which is one of only seven pubs in the country to appear in every edition of the Good Beer Guide. The Cambridge, on the University of Liverpool campus, is the watering hole for various academics, students and thinking drinkers. And last but certainly not least, there’s The Philharmonic Dining Rooms – a cracking pub in a grade-II listed building with famously ornate toilets.
Liverpool’s LGBT nightlife is centred around Dale Street, Cumberland Street and Eberle Street – all of which surround Stanley Street, the de facto heart of the city’s gay quarter. Garlands is arguably the most iconic club in the quarter, with Thursdays and Saturdays being particularly popular for fans of glamour and craziness. There are plenty of other great places to dance until sunrise, including G-Bar, Pink, Heaven, Navy Bar and Superstar Boudoir. If you want something a bit quieter, pubs in the area include The Poste House (with its upstairs disco), The Curzon and the iconic Lisbon.
There’s only one place to start when discussing the world-famous Mathew Street…and that is, of course, The Cavern Club, where The Beatles honed their skills while playing nearly 300 shows in the early sixties. The club sees live music seven days a week from 2pm onwards, with the Saturday night Beatles tribute a particularly popular highlight. With bars such as Rubber Soul, Lennon’s Bar and of course the Hard Days Night Hotel, the spirit of the band infuses the rest of the street, which is one of the busiest and most vibrant for nightlife. For something a little quieter though, try Hopskotch – the food and drink element of boutique hostel HOAX – is located at the other end and hosts regular live music and open mic nights.
Concert Square and the area around it is one of the liveliest spots in the city, seven nights a week. It’s home to some of the city’s biggest bars and clubs, from national names such as Walkabout and Revolution to The Krazyhouse, a Liverpool institution. Through the week, it’s particularly popular with students and large parties.
Ten years ago, the Baltic Triangle area was predominantly warehouses, many of which were disused. Since then, it has gradually been given a new lease of life as the centre of the city’s creative and digital sector. As a natural result, the area’s nightlife has grown too. Camp and Furnace is the obvious place to start. The truly unique space houses everything from a bar packed with international beers to Eurovision parties, Scandinavian festivals, Biennial installations and weekly food slams. It’s perfectly complemented just around the corner by the Baltic Social, recently opened on the ground floor of Elevator Studios and offering a more intimate setting than its neighbour.
As well as these bars, the area has quickly been recognised by the city’s club promoters, taking advantage of the warehouse spaces to stage some of Liverpool’s hottest club nights at venues such as HAUS and Kitchen Street pop-up.
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A unique drinking and dining experience with three bars in one complex; the Bierkeller is a real piece of Bavaria in the heart of Liverpool City Centre.
Alma de Cuba is Liverpool’s most spectacular restaurant and bar; an island in the heart of the city, an independent spirit that leaves a lasting impression.
Winner of Best Bar, Best Restaurant and UK’s Best Venue.
HOAX, Liverpool’s first boutique five star hostel, opens this summer 2013.
Events space, eatery, bar, music venue, boutique caravan hotel, indoor park, photographic studio, camp shop, exhibition space.
The Cavern Club is the world famous music venue where the Beatles played in the early 1960s and now featured in the computer game The Beatles: Rock Band.
Situated off Dale Street, Garlands is one of Liverpool's liveliest clubs offering funky hard house to an audience of eccentric party goers. Affiliated with the neighbouring G-Bar, Garlands is devoted to the city's gay clubbing community.
The Cavern Pub features a wall of fame showing the names of all the artists who have played at the Cavern Club since 1957 plus Cavern memorabilia on display inside the pub.