Lightopia festival is back for 2020 and tickets are now on general sale!
The award-winning lantern and light spectacular, Lightopia, made its European debut in Manchester last year.
The event features a festival of immersive lights, lanterns and installations. This year there will be a specially curated illuminated trail that ensures everyone can keep a safe distance.
Guests are ensured they will feel safe this year with wider footpaths, three entry points to reduce queuing and direct access to two car parks.
The festival will be lighting up Heaton Park this winter and throughout the festive season.
There will be a brand new Christmas showcase, which uses the Grade I-listed Heaton Hall as its sparkling backdrop, and will feature Santa’s sleigh and glistening snowflakes.
The showcase is complete with a giant interactive walking piano, meaning you and the kids can make up your own festive soundtrack.
There will also be the addition of a new Astronomy display which features a beautiful moon installation and a robotically controlled pad, which when stepped on creates an interactive Zodiac Sign installation.
There will also be an area dedicated to the Manchester Skyline, and an immersive Musical City encouraging visitors to dance their way through the lights.
This year’s festival will see the return of the much-loved Animals attraction and the Woodland Fairytale area.
There will also be the Lakeside water show, which is a visual masterpiece created by state-of-the-art projection.
Ian Xiang, Creative Director of Lightopia, says: “We are excited to bring Lightopia back to Manchester, and have once again created a world in which light, sculpture and art combine with traditional, Chinese lantern-making techniques to create an immersive experience, full of light and stories.
“We want our guests to become part of the Lightopia story, helping to create new forms of art as they interact and engage with the luminescent sculptures that trail through Heaton Park.”
Lightopia opens November 20th and runs until January 3rd, and will be open Wednesday-Sunday (it’ll also open Mondays and Tuesdays in school holidays).
Kids under three go free and child tickets are priced at £13, adults at £20 and family tickets are available for £60.
Tickets are on sale now – and there’s a special limited run of 20% off tickets available at the moment.
A massive cheese crawl is coming to Manchester next month
It doesn’t get feta than this!
You can tour Manchester’s best cheese spots as part of a huge Cheese Crawl across the city!
Calling all cheese-lovers, there’s a Manchester Cheese Crawl that takes you across town to the cheesiest spots in the city.
It features two hours of non-stop cheese-related fun, including everything from blue cheese to cheese quizzes and competitions.
The event description reads: “Calling all curd nerds and turophiles – yep there’s a word for your love of cheese – Manchester’s finest cheeses are being wrapped up into one 2 hour walking tour!
“Get involved in Manchester’s first and grate-est cheese crawl! The crawl is 2 hours of non stop in-curd-edible action. There will be a cheese whizz quiz and of course a bit of wine.
“The crawl will be packed full of the finest of Manchester’s brie-liant cheeses, with very mature fun facts, and the chance to heckle your quizmaster with your favourite cheese puns that will have your group crumbling faster than a wensleydale.
“Meanwhile you’ll feta believe you’ll learn a bit about cheese making, and be introduced to some cheese mongers and shops you just camembert to stay away from. It’s a whole different kind of ‘cultured’.”
The Cheese Crawl starts in St Ann’s Square every Saturday at 12pm and 3pm, starting Saturday May 1st and running until September 25th.
You’ll wander across the city before ending up in the Northern Quarter, trying the finest cheese Manchester has to offer on the way.
Tickets cost just £25 and include cheese samples, optional bread and crackers, and some red wine – and you can grab them here.
Dino Kingdom is bringing more than 100 animatronic, life-like dinosaurs to Manchester
Dinosaur fans won’t want to miss ‘Manchester’s biggest outdoor summer adventure’
This summer, from Friday July 23rd to Sunday August 8th, the team behind award-winning light and lantern festival Lightopia are bringing Dino Kingdom to Wythenshawe Park.
Dino Kingdom will be an epic outdoor, prehistoric exploration, with more than 100 life-like moving and roaring dinosaurs and creatures to uncover.
State-of-the-art 3D and AR technology will bring dinosaurs ‘back to life’, with unforgettable interactive experiences and thrilling fairground rides for all the family.
During the summer holidays, Dino Kingdom will be a must-see attraction. Here you’ll meet and interact with more than 70 life-sized dinosaurs – including a huge Tyrannosaurus Rex, and the biggest installation, the Apatosaurus, towering above at 18-metres long.
There will also be smaller dinosaurs to seek, including hatching babies and other interactive beastly beings amongst the woodland, including crocodiles, frogs, bees, spiders and much more.
Let your imagination run wild, in the ultimate family experience, as you trek through the prehistoric kingdom.
An educational experience as much as an adventure, it is perfect for those budding palaeontologists out there, with an excavation sand pit, dinosaur eggs, fossils, volcanoes, a giant dinosaur skeleton head and a walk-through fossil tunnel.
Dino Kingdom offers visitors an incredible journey of discovery and education through entertainment, from dozens of animatronic dinosaurs, 3D dinosaur projection mapping and fairground rides, to fun dino performances, hand puppets and costume characters, there’s something to entertain everyone.
Dinosaur trekkers can take a well-earned break and refuel with the wide offering of food and drink options and idyllic picnicking areas.
Dino Kingdom at Wythenshawe Park is happening from Friday July 23rd until Sunday August 8th 2021, and will be open from 11am till 7pm every day, with hourly entry slots.
Advance tickets are priced at £15 for adults, £13 for children (under 3s are free) and £52 for families of two adults and two children, concessions are priced at £14.
In even better news, you can sign up today to register for 25% off pre-sale ticket release – just head to the website here.
Tickets for the ‘world’s most entertaining’ cycling festival are on sale now
This is no ordinary cycling festival
By now we’re all dreaming about this summer, with the return of live events, pubs and festivals.
If it’s festivals you’re after, then look no further than Velio, a brand-new event celebrating life on two wheels.
Its debut festival is arriving in the North West this September, with three days and nights of cycling, immersive rides, music, comedy, food and drink, wellness and good times – and tickets are on sale now.
Located at the beautiful Cholmondeley Castle in the countryside of Malpas, Cheshire, Velio will be the first event in a series of pioneering cycling festivals created to provide unrivalled experiences on and off the saddle.
Both riders and non-riders can come down to enjoy the entertainment and feasts.
There will be different cycling routes and lengths for all ages, from the beginner to experienced riders, including the headline Velutopia ride – a 14km long stretch on closed roads filled with immersive entertainment, it’s a world-first cycling festival experience.
The unrivalled cycling experience will be made up of five routes – 3km,14km, 30km, 60km and 100km – and will cater from beginner to experienced riders, as well as including disabled cycling options and mini kids rides.
Velio festival will have entertainment, music and comedy, with a carefully crafted programme of international music artists, comedians and immersive moments across five stages.
Renowned vocal group Sister Sledge will be taking over the centre stage alongside fellow headliners Everything Everything. Also soundracking the mainstage will be a range of live acts including Elder Island and The Futureheads, as well as stellar DJ sets from Friendly Fires and Norman Jay MBE.
Expect a host of incredible tribute performances including The Bootleg Beatles and Da Funk (Daft Punk Tribute), as well as Mr Motivator getting the party started on the main stage.
The infamous La Discotheque will host their own stage with acts such as Crazy P Soundsystem and Disco Classics – featuring a live orchestra, with their fabulous flamingos, soul sergeants and queens to match.
Comedian Jason Manford will be providing a laugh a minute on the comedy stage presented by Altitude Comedy Festival with a stream of cherry-picked comedians, including Marcus Brigstocke, Shappi Khorsandi and Lou Conran.
The Velio Village presents a programme of day and nighttime immersive entertainment. This open-air village will play host to an eclectic mix of brass bands, DJs, cabaret & burlesque, a late-night jazz cafe, film screenings, karaoke, kids entertainment, chill out areas and much more.
Communal feasting will be at the heart of the festival with The Great Village Feast, with award-winning restaurant Volta collaborating to produce the banquets at the festival.
Foodies will enjoy long table communal feasts championing the finest local produce, while speciality bars serve up a variety of tempting tipples ranging from wine and gin to craft beers and cocktails.
Included in all tickets is standard camping for 3 days and 3 nights with access to a spacious campsite, toilets and showers. Motorhomes and campervans are welcomed, and you can also arrive to pre-erected tents.
For an enhanced camping experience, the boutique village offers a range of Bell, Lotus or Mahal tents for 2 to 8 people. All feature memory foam mattresses, premium bedding, bedside lights and tables as standard, with optional upgrades of electricity, toiletries, mirrors, and towels available.
Boutique village campers also enjoy exclusive access to speciality food vendors and bars in the area, along with VIP toilets and showers.
The onsite secure and insured bike storage system will negate any concerns about storing your pride and joy, while the bike cleaning and maintenance stations will make sure your ride is looking tip-top and podium ready.
If you don’t have a bike or don’t want to bring your own, a bike rental service is available on site. There are also physios and coaches on hand to offer tips and advice and make sure you’re fully geared up for some cycling fun and frolics. .
Add in yoga and meditation in the Cholmondeley gardens, plus wood-fired hot tubs, and you’ve got a unique and unforgettable festival experience.
Ed Norris, curator said: “We’re on a mission to get more people into cycling and bring it’s wholehearted culture to the world.
“Now more than ever we need the ability to switch off, connect with others and live a balanced lifestyle, at Velio we’re here to help celebrate the good times, indulge your senses and embrace the cycling culture.
“Whoever you are, wherever you’re from, our community is open.”
In addition to being the first immersive cycling festival, Velio is proud to be the first ‘Flexi-Distanced’ festival. All the measures and teams are in place to run the event socially distanced or non socially distanced, whichever the guidelines dictate, so you can book in confidence.
The comprehensive programme of activities and entertainment ensures there is something for all ages and disciplines at Velio, whether you’re a late-night dancer, an early morning meditator, a weekend feaster or a mid-week rider.
Pioneering a community spirit is also paramount, so we’re calling for you to get out the bike, get out of the city and gear up for an unforgettable weekend of cycle fuelled fun with family and friends, both old and new.
Tickets went on sale on Wednesday April 14th, with prices starting from just £150 (with the 25% discount code) for the entire three days and nights including camping.
Grab your tickets here, with 25% off available until Sunday April 18th.