In the 1960s, Liverpool enjoyed a moment when it was the centre of the music world. Bands like the Beatles pioneered the Merseybeat sound which spearheaded the British Invasion of America, setting up a music scene in the city that still thrives today. Follow the Beatles Trail to see where John, Paul, George and Ringo grew up. Have your photo taken in front of the famous Penny Lane sign, descend into the Cavern Nightclub and take the Magical Mystery Tour to Strawberry Fields. Music lovers can also check out regular events like the town's International Music Festival which is held in August, or the lively Psych-Fest in late September which carries on the tradition of showcasing inventive, free-spirited artists.
For centuries, Liverpool was the hub of the British Empire, with one of the world's busiest ports and docks that handled cargoes from every corner of the globe (including slaves on occasion). Nowadays, it's easy to find out about the city's international history, with the Merseyside Maritime Museum which includes exhibits linked to the American Civil War. Almost next door, visitors can learn about the darker side of the British Empire by entering the International Slavery Museum, which deals with the horrors of the slave trade and the inspiring tale of how it was destroyed. After that, the Albert Docks provide one of the finest places for a riverfront stroll with art galleries, restaurants and music venues dotted along the quays.
For many people, Liverpool is associated with football just as much as pop music. For decades, Liverpool FC were the greatest side in England, and still remain one of the country's best teams to watch. During the football season (August to May), football fans can head to Anfield or Goodison Park to watch Liverpool or Everton battle it out. Even if there isn't a fixture, you can book an enthralling tour of Anfield, from the manager's dugout to the dressing rooms. You can even book tours hosted by ex-professional players - a must for anyone who appreciates the 'Beautiful Game'.
There are plenty of things to do in Liverpool for culture lovers. At the heart of the city's art scene is the Tate Liverpool, which hosts regular modern art exhibitions as well as the city's Biennial Festival. But there is more than just the Tate. Delve back into the history of art at the fabulous Walker Gallery which hosts everything from Dutch masters to Hockney paintings. The Bluecoat Gallery in the city centre blends art with dance and theatre, while the Lady Lever Gallery has a spectacular collection of Pre-Raphaelite works to wander around. It's also located in the fascinating community of Port Sunlight, which was built as a utopian suburb for employees of Lever in the 19th century.