Language course in Liverpool: ESL Liverpool tips

Find out what’s going on with Bido Lito, Seven Streets and The Skinny

ESL - ESL Liverpool tips
These local magazines and websites stand out if you want to find out what’s going on around town.

Bido Lito (bidolito.co.uk) is dedicated to Liverpool’s thriving music scene. Their website also has in-depth live music listings.

Independent Liverpool (independent-liverpool.co.uk) is a popular local culture website with articles on what to see and do and where to eat and drink. Another excellent Liverpool website is called The Guide Liverpool (theguideliverpool.com) which is great if you are new in the city.

Scotland’s number one cultural magazine The Skinny (theskinny.co.uk) launched in Liverpool and Manchester in 2013. You will find free copies in nice venues and shops all over town.  

Scouse

ESL - ESL Liverpool tips
Scouse is a local stew consisting of meat (lamb or beef), potatoes and vegetables… but every family has their own special ingredients! The name comes from “lobscouse”, which is a stew popular with sailors throughout Northern Europe. You can find it on the menu in many pubs and cafes. Maggie May’s café on Bold Street is a great place to try a bowl of scouse.

Scouse is so closely associated with the city that Liverpudlians are often referred to as "Scousers" and the local accent is called “scouse”. 

Liverpool University’s language exchange programme

If you are in Liverpool during the university’s term time and will be staying in the city for a while, you can take advantage of a free language exchange programme (liv.ac.uk). The programme is really designed for university students, but if you have time to spare and would like to meet local people, this is a great way to do it. You arrange meetings where you share the time speaking your own language and then the language you want to learn.

Cheap Train tickets

ESL - ESL Liverpool tips
In Liverpool, like everywhere in the UK, the trick to getting cheap tickets is to buy them in advance. For example, if you book well before you want to travel, you can easily get a one-way ticket to London for under £15 (see virgintrains.co.uk). If you wanted to buy a ticket for the same train on the day of the journey, you could pay over £140.

Even if you can’t book far in advance, you will save money by purchasing your tickets online before arriving at the station.

If you want to use the local Merseyrail network, “day saver” tickets are available that offer unlimited travel on the local train and metro network after 9:30am. Watch out though... Merseyrail is the only train operator in the UK that fines passengers for putting their feet up on the seats! 

To watch, read, listen

ESL - ESL Liverpool tips
Watch
Nowhere Boy (2009) Director: Sam Taylor-Wood
Let it Be (1970) Director: Michael Lindsay-Hogg
Shirley Valentine (1989) Director: Lewis Gilbert

Liverpool cinemas
A 14-screen Odeon cinema at the Liverpool One development is the city’s major cinema and can be found in the city centre. This is the place to go for the latest blockbusters. Several other multi-screen complexes can be found on the outskirts of the city, in Bootle, Croxteth and Stanley. For a change from the multiplexes, Picturehouse at FACT (picturehouses.co.uk) and Plaza Community Centre (plazacinema.org.uk) are worth checking out. The glorious Philharmonic Hall on Hope Street (see Liverpool attractions) sometimes shows movies too.

Read
Master Georgie by Beryl Bainbridge
Educating Rita by Willy Russell
The Dressmaker by Beryl Bainbridge

Listen
The Beatles Anthology by The Beatles*
Welcome to the Pleasuredome by Frankie Goes to Hollywood
Ocean Rain by Echo and the Bunnymen

*or Abbey Road, The White Album, Revolver, Sgt Pepper’s Lonely Hearts Club Band, Let it Be...
ESL - ESL Liverpool tips
Music venues
Liverpool’s nightlife is legendary. The popularity of Mathew Street (mathew.st) was kick-started when the Beatles began their residency at the Cavern Club: a venue inspired by the Jazz district in Paris, where the original owner had visited a number of clubs in cellars. Nowadays, the bars along the street are popular with students. For brash, busy bars and rowdy nightclubs, Concert Square in the city centre is the place to go. The most famous nightclub in town is probably Garlands (garlandsonline.com).

Larger music venues in the city include the O2 Academy Liverpool (o2academyliverpool.co.uk), the Echo Arena (echoarena.com) and the beautiful Philharmonic Hall (liverpoolphil.com). To find out what’s going on in the live music scene, check out Bido Lito’s gig guide (www.bidolito.co.uk/content/gig-guide).
Image credit: David Sim (CC BY 2.0)

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