Slap bang in the middle of the city centre sits on oasis of calm in the grand shape of Manchester's main art gallery, housing its superb collection alongside temporary exhibitions.
And what a collection it is. Nearly 13,000 paintings, drawings, sculptures, photographs and other art forms, plus a similar number in the craft and design collection, all making for one genuinely world class gallery. You could easily spend a good few hours wandering the rooms before heading for a coffee and scone in the appropriately tasteful café.
Of particular note are the wonderful Pre-Raphaelite pieces, a fascinating look at LS Lowry and his teacher Adolphe Valette, and individual works by Waterhouse and Millais. A stunning vase by Grayson Perry is the pick from an impressive contemporary gallery. The hands-on space for families is particularly worthwhile for those accompanied by young ones.
A modern extension connects to the main building via a glass walkway and atrium, the architecture reflecting the old and the new that you can find within the artwork - the best collection the city has to offer.