Backpax Magazine – The UK’s only pocket-sized backpacker guide as well as a great website too.
Independent Hostels Guide – A huge range of over 300 independent UK hostels.
Go Around Europe – Go Around Europe is a network of 120 hostels in 55 cities in 17 countries. For just €5 a Go Around Europe membership card will give you 10% discount in all of the hostels in the network when you make a direct booking.
Hostelz.com – Hostelz.com is the worlds largest online directory of hostel.
Great British Trips – A leading tour operator specialising in tailormade trips in the UK and Ireland to suit any budget.
RedRaw – The UK’s specialist adventure tour company and budget transportation.
Spaceships UK Campervan Hire – The Swiss Army Knife of Campers.
Redraw (above) also offer a budget shuttle bus service.
If you get really stuck there’s Megabus. There’s no link here as they’re not really our “friends” – they’re part of Stagecoach, who eat small transport businesses for breakfast. But they’re cheap, so we felt duty-bound to tell you.
Places to stay
Just a few of our favourite backpacker hostels. What’s your favourite? Let us know and maybe we’ll add it on..
Hatters Hostels, – Manchester & Liverpool
Embassie Hostel, Liverpool
Kendal Hostel, Kendal, Cumbria (for the Lake District National Park).
The Bunkroom, Chester
Ace Hostel, York
Birmingham Central Backpackers, Birmingham
Hatters Hostel, Birmingham
The Dictionary Hostel, London
St Christopher’s Inns, London
Clink 78, London
Canal & River Trust – The fantastic charity that take care of the UK’s 2200 miles of Canals & Rivers.
Cool Canals – A great guide to walking, cycling or boating on the UK’s canal network.
Boat District – A directory of boat trips including: Public boat trips, charter or hire, holidays, sightseeing, wildlife watching, fishing, ferry, diving, sailing, narrowboat, etc.
Float by Boat – Unique meditative hosted short breaks on-board a sister boat to Wandering Duck.
Oxfordshire Narrowboats – Fantastic young fleet of self-hire narrowboats on the Oxford Canal.
Shire Cruisers – Another great hire boat company perfectly situated for a boating holiday around Yorkshire and The North.
Star Narrowboat Holidays – 2 beautifully finished self-hire narrowboats based close to the centre of Manchester. 50ft Queenie sleeps 2 and 57ft Gloria sleeps 2-4. Flexible hire terms and a great way to explore the waterways around Manchester or venture off across the rest of the canal network.
Manchester Guided Tours – An incredible range of niche subjects are covered. Check out the Underground Tour or learn more about the Peterloo Massacre.
Manchester Taxi Tours – Join a taxi tour of Manchester’s sights and the surrounding countryside with John Consterdine, Manchester’s only accredited Green Badge Taxi Guide. John is an incredibly knowledgeable man and he loves all things Manchester!
Manchester Music Tours – Walking tours of the landmarks synonymous with the Manchester music scene. Tours are run by Craig Gill, Drummer of the Manchester band “Inspiral Carpets”.
Just outside Manchester
Jodrell Bank – Visit the giant Lovell Telescope and the Space Pavillion. Occasional live music venue too.
Styal Mill – A fantastic heritage site to visit if you’re interested in learning more about the Industrial Revolution.