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Cocktails in The Refuge | © The Refuge
Cocktails in The Refuge | © The Refuge
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12 Unusual Date Ideas to Try in Manchester

Picture of Emma Lavelle
Updated: 12 October 2017
Bored of going out for a meal with a stranger or fancy spicing up your dates by opting for something a little bit different? We’ve pulled together a list of 12 fun, unusual and downright strange date ideas in and around Manchester.
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Junk Yard Golf

Recently relocated to First Street, Junk Yard Golf is the perfect option for couples who are bored with typical dates. The hip indoor crazy golf course has three themed rooms to choose between, boasting bars and snack vendors along the way to complete the experience.

Junk Yard Golf, 1, First St, Manchester

SKULL INFESTED GLITTER PYRAMIDS YA THING?! Book to play Pablo from 4pm 🌴🌴🌴

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Ping Pong at Twenty Twenty Two

If you’re the competitive type, take your date to Twenty Twenty Two in the Northern Quarter to challenge them to a couple of rounds of ping pong. Every Monday the tables are free and it costs just £5 per half hour the rest of the week.

Twenty Twenty Two, 20 Dale St, Manchester, + 44 161 237 9360

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Dog Bowl

Another option for anyone who likes to be active on their dates, Dog Bowl is the city’s coolest bowling alley, located in an arch beneath Oxford Road railway station. Order a couple of cocktails and discover which one of you is the most competitive.

Dog Bowl, Whitworth St W, Manchester, +44 161 228 2888

when you're desperate for a wee but have to stop and take a photo of the bar because it's just so flawless

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Ginger’s Comfort Emporium

Located on the top floor of Affleck’s you’ll find this exquisite ice cream parlour boasting some of the most unusual and delicious flavours you’ll ever experience. Perfect for those who love 1950s nostalgia, share an ice-cream sundae and flick whipped cream at each other.

Ginger’s Comfort Emporium, Afflecks, Church St, Manchester, +44 7980 628868

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Chill Factore

Escape the city and pretend you’ve jetted off to the French Alps at Chill Factore. Teach each other to ski or snowboard or just enjoy pushing each other over in the snow as you attempt to climb off the ski lift at this impressive indoor ski slope.

Chill Factore, Trafford Quays Leisure Village, Trafford Way, Stretford, Manchester, +44 161 749 2222

Trying to get Euro carves down 🏂🏂

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Whistle Punks Urban Axe Throwing

Looking for something completely different to any date you’ve ever been on before? New to Great Northern, Whistle Punks Urban Axe Throwing is exactly what it says on the tin. The hour and a half experience involves safety tips and training before you’re unleashed for a tournament.

Whistle Punks Urban Axe Throwing, Unit 20, Atrium level, Great Northern Warehouse, 235 Deansgate, Manchester

Boom! Bulls-eye. 📷: @lollytattoo

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Chocolate themed afternoon tea at Cocoa Cabana

If your date has a sweet tooth, they’ll definitely appreciate a chocolate-themed afternoon tea experience at Cocoa Cabana in West Didsbury. Conveniently located right next to Burton Road tram stop, this chocolate boutique offers everything from steaming cups of hot chocolate to mouth-watering chocolate tarts.

Cocoa Cabana, Burton Rd, Manchester, +44 161 282 5700

Afternoon Tea ☕️🍰😍

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Cocktails in the Refuge’s winter garden

If you’re looking to impress your date with a dramatic location, you can’t do much better than the Refuge’s indoor winter garden. There’s nothing more romantic than sipping a delicious cocktail surrounded by trees draped in fairy lights. If you’re feeling flush, book a table in the restaurant and treat them to dinner.

The Refuge, Oxford St, Manchester, +44 161 233 5151

The Spice Club cookery class

Offering pop-up supper clubs all across Manchester, The Spice Club also run a series of Indian cookery classes where you can learn how to make their delicious dishes yourself. Held in a private kitchen in north Manchester, the classes take you through cooking a complete Indian meal from scratch. Following the class, the obvious second date would be to cook for each other at home.

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Visit the cat café

Does your date love cats? If so, we’re pretty sure they’ll be in their element at the Manchester cat café where you can both enjoy a refreshing drink and slice of cake in the presence of an array of friendly felines. Walk-ins cost £1 for every five minutes including unlimited drinks, so be prepared that it could get a bit expensive if you fall in love with the cats!

Manchester Cat Cafe, 103 High St, Manchester, +44 161 222 4960

Birthday weekend in a nutshell #viedechat #catsofinstagram #catcafemanchester #georginathecat #fluff

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Take to the skies

If you really want to impress your date (and they have a head for heights), book a lesson at Mainair Microlight Centre in Eccles. Choose from a half hour flight or take a series of lessons to learn to fly yourself, admiring the views of Manchester from above as you soar over the city.

Mainair Microlight Centre, Liverpool Rd, Eccles, Manchester, +44 161 787 9033

Looking for inspiration for dates that will cost less than £10 in Manchester? Read our guide to 10 Free and Cheap Date Ideas to Try in Manchester.