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The ultimate guide to the most Instagrammable cafes in Manchester’s Northern Quarter

Avo for the toast, coffee for the soul


The Northern Quarter in Manchester is a creative space – home to many alternative cafes and bars, and is mostly flooding with students. But which cafes are the best to get your Instagram aesthetic on point? We have scouted for Manchester's finest student spots within the NQ for a great place to study, grab a coffee and go, or even for those first dates. Here's your ultimate guide to getting your Instagram aesthetic on point with some sweet 'scran from the NQ.

Fig & Sparrow

Located on Oldham Street, Fig & Sparrow is a unique space in the company of many other alternative surrounding locations such as a vintage store. When you first enter the space, there is a section at the front dedicated to selling cards, bags, candles and art prints. Further on is the cafe area which is a mix of modern and rustic wooden interior. It's a pretty aesthetically pleasing place. Whether you would like a cold latte or a hot chocolate mocha, Fig & Sparrow have a wide variety of teas & coffees to choose from.

Affordability: 4/5

Atmosphere: 3/5 (a nice space to do group work, but I would avoid coming in the afternoon if you want a quiet space as it does tend to fill up quickly)

Instagram-worthy: 3/5

Ezra & Gil

With Ezra meaning 'helper' and Gil defining as 'happiness', it is no wonder that the location is a welcoming and relaxed space which offers the very best coffee in the area. Ezra & Gil is the perfect place to find "urban coffee, cafe culture and general provisions". Adding to the NQs selection of quirky independent cafe spots, the early opening hours and easily accessible location makes this space a workers and students favourite. From coffee to cakes, there is plenty on offer for all kind of requirements such as vegan alternatives to make sure everyone is satisfied.

Affordability: 3/5

Atmosphere: 4/5 (if you enjoy a fast-paced environment, but maybe a 2.5/5 if you need to get your head down)

Instagram-worthy: 4/5 (the perfect opportunity to snap-up a picture of your avo-on-toast)


A Scandinavian inspired artisan coffee house, serving some of Iceland’s finest roasted and drip coffees. A location of warmth, cosiness and comfort which explains the many happy faces who have become regulars to the spot. Home is where the WiFi is right? Well, Takk has that and more: an array of Scandinavian artwork, travel and design books. If you’re looking for somewhere different, why not come to one of many intimate gigs that Takk offers. It can be a bit steep in price depending on what hot drink you choose, but still does not break the bank, so leave your student overdraft card at home. It is safe to say that there is something for everyone here.

Affordability: 3/5

Atmosphere: 4/5

Instagram-worthy: 4/5

Home Sweet Home

A Manchester student favourite, Home Sweet Home has become a local success. Whether breakfast, lunch or dinner, Home Sweet Home has it all. With an American themed menu of classic dishes (including cake – YES LOTS OF CAKE). Popular for milkshakes, in fact there are very few tables without one being ordered. It is the perfect location for a first date, maybe even a chance to share that milkshake of yours. Also providing cocktails and spirits for those who fancy something a bit stronger – the staff behind the bar are always willing to make anything you wish.

Affordability: 3/5

Atmosphere: 4/5 (not a place for work, but a place for socialising and good grub)

Instagram-worthy: 3.5/5