Liverpool. The very name conjures up images of a glorious maritime history, world-beating musical heritage, two of the Premiership’s biggest football teams and not one, but two majestically different Cathedrals.
Liverpool is a UNESCO World Heritage Site, like the Great Wall of China and the Pyramids of Giza in Egypt. The city won the status in 2004 because of its impressive waterfront which, according to UNESCO, represents a ‘supreme example of a commercial port at the time of Britain’s greatest global significance’.
The World Heritage Site officially stretches from Albert Dock, which alone has the largest collection of Grade I listed buildings in the UK, along The Pier Head and up to Stanley Dock.
These icons of Liverpool heritage made Liverpool one of the centres of world trade in the 18th and 19th centuries and meant it played an important role in the growth of the British Empire and the industrial revolution beyond.
Liverpool is famous for its music, but if you think Liverpool, most people think the Beatles. The city is officially the World Capital of Pop, and the Fab Four are, of course, its most famous offspring.
Non-negotiable for Liverpool music fans is a trip to The Beatles Story at Albert Dock, a brilliant tour through the Beatles’ lives, with fascinating Fab Four memorabilia and insights from friends and family.
You should also pop into the Cavern Club on Mathew Street, where the Beatles began, for a lunchtime beer or some live music in the evening; or visit the childhood homes of John Lennon and Sir Paul McCartney, Mendips and 20 Forthlin Road in Allerton, both of which are now National Trust properties.
The Liverpool music scene also includes the world-class Echo Arena Liverpool too, which has attracted such massive names as Bob Dylan, Beyonce and Dame Shirley Bassey in the past.
Liverpool shopping is world class, which is only fitting for a city that can shop till it drops. Shoppers are spoilt for choice between gleaming new city-centre shopping centres to boutique arcades, bohemian streets and farmers markets.
Liverpool ONE, right in the heart of the city, is the shiny new designer Liverpool shopping centre that is home to more than 160 famous high street names.