The Open 2023: Things to do in Liverpool and the Wirral

If you’re at Royal Liverpool this week for the 151st Open then be sure to visit some of our Merseyside “must-sees”.

Today’s Golfer’s 2023 Major coverage is brought to you in association with TaylorMade.

Royal Liverpool Golf Course is situated in the small seaside town of Hoylake on the northwestern tip of the Wirral Peninsula, where the Irish Sea meets the River Dee estuary.

Hoylake itself has a relaxed vibe, full of independent shops, bars, and restaurants, and is renowned for its access to stunning outdoor walking and cycling routes.

At the heart of the Hoylake lies one of the sleeping giants of the links world, set to be shaken back to life when the 151st Open Championship comes rolling back to town, nine years after Rory McIlroy’s victory on the Wirral turf back in 2014.

2023 will be the 13th time that the Claret Jug is contested at Royal Liverpool, a venue where the biggest names shine. Previous to McIlroy, a certain Tiger Woods was victorious when the Open returned to Merseyside in 2006 after a 39-year exodus.

Rainbow over Royal Liverpool, Hoylake

A short ten-minute ferry crossing the River Mersey on the peninsula’s east coast lands you in one of the UK’s most vibrant metropolitan cities, Liverpool, host of the 2023 Eurovision song contest.

A city of culture, synonymous with music and football, Liverpool provides the Ying to Hoylake’s Yang. You’ll find live music pumping out of bars from midday and more restaurants and bars than you can shake a flat-stick at.

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Whether you are golf obsessed, ticking off a sporting bucket list event, tagging along for the ride, or simply find yourself in Hoylake at any time of year, Merseyside has it all and will be sure to make your off-course experience just as memorable as your time on it.

So, ahead of the 151st Open this July, allow us to put forward our top 10 things you cannot afford to miss on any tour to the banks of the Mersey.

Wirral Coastal Path

1. Hike or cycle along the Wirral’s coastline trails

Where better place to start than on your feet (or wheels at least)? If you’re here for golf, then it’s probably safe to assume you love and appreciate fantastic scenery. The numerous beaches and coastal pathways are perfect for those who enjoy the great outdoors. For a full voyage of discovery, why not take in the whole Wirral coastline, and absorb all the history and heritage that the peninsula has to offer? The Wirral Circular Trail is a 35-mile signposted walking and cycling route that can be tackled in full or part throughout your stay.

Hoylake Sunset

2. Catch a famous Wirral sunset

Sitting on the peninsular’s western coast, Hoylake and the beaches just to the south are positioned ideally to catch an amazing sunset. The wide plains of Thurstaston Beach is a prime location for an evening stroll and an opportunity to snap a burnt orange skyline as the tide creeps in. Why not take a bottle of your poison of choice and join the locals for a perfect evening activity?

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Arthur's of Hoylake

3. Relax and enjoy Hoylake’s independent hospitality

Hoylake and the wider Wirral area boast some fantastic pubs, bars, and restaurants, serving up British seasonal produce and award-winning cask ales. Arthur’s of Hoylake (pictured) is the perfect place to relax and enjoy a selection of fine wines, craft beers, signature cocktails, charcuterie, and cheese boards. Other great spots include The Wro in West Kirby, The Jug & Bottle in Heswall, and The Ship in Parkgate.

Mersey Ferry

4. Take a hop-on hop-off ride on the Mersey Ferry

If you’ve ever wondered why Gerry and The Pacemakers decided to sing about a ferry on the Mersey, then this is your chance to find out what all the fuss was about. Mersey Ferries operate a range of crossings from sightseeing cruises, to evening cruises with live music, to hybrid water and land tours. You can choose from a standard hop-on hop-off ticket or a combination ticket that includes entrance to other Liverpool attractions. The most direct crossing is the commuter ferry, operating weekdays all year round between Woodside and Liverpool City Center.

Merseyrail also operates between the Wirral and Liverpool for a faster alternative means of public transport.

The Beatles Story - Liverpool

5. Reacquaint yourself with Liverpool’s fab four

A trip to Liverpool would not be complete without taking some time to walk in the musical footsteps of one of the World’s most iconic bands. The Beatles Story is one option for those looking for an immersive experience dedicated to the quartet, providing you with more information than you could ever wish to know. Alternatively, if you wanted a more leisurely experience, then head down to Mathew Street where you can visit the famous Cavern Club, known as the cradle of British pop music, and grab some selfies with the guys themselves (or the iron versions at least!)

Liverpool City Cathedral

6. Visit Liverpool Cathedrals

In the heart of the city sits Liverpool’s Gothic Cathedral, which happens to be the largest religious building in Britain and the fifth-largest in the World. The Cathedral is open to the public every day of the year allowing you to admire the World’s highest and widest Gothic arches and array of stained-glass windows.

At the other end of Hope Street is Liverpool Metropolitan Cathedral, also the largest of its kind (Catholic) in England. Whether you visit one or both, these two landmark buildings in the city center are the perfect place to take a breather from the hustle and bustle to recharge your batteries.

Liverpool Maritime Museum

7. Soak in Liverpool’s rich maritime history

Based at Albert Dock is the Merseyside Maritime Museum where you can learn about Liverpool’s seafaring past, including the city’s central role in the Titanic story. In fact, for those looking for a hit of history and culture, you’ll be pleasantly surprised to hear that Liverpool is home to the largest number of museums and galleries outside of London. These include the Tate Liverpool, World Museum, and the Walker Art Gallery to name a few.

Anfield home of Liverpool FC

7. Go behind the scenes at Liverpool FC

Allegiances in Merseyside are split between the red and blue of Liverpool and Everton FC, separated by a short walk across Stanley Park. At the risk of upsetting the blue half, Liverpool is one of England’s most decorated clubs, having won 19 league titles, eight FA Cups, and six European Cups. For this reason alone, we suggest considering one of the many Anfield tours to learn about one of the most iconic and historic stadiums in Europe.

Leasowe Bay Beach on the Wirral

8. Chill out on one of the Wirral’s beautiful beaches

If long walks on wild, windswept beaches appeals to you, then the northwest corner of the Wirral (where Hoylake is situated), should meet and exceed all expectations. Leasowe Bay is set at the northern end of the peninsula and is a wide, clean, sandy beach, backed by low-lying sand dunes and a hay meadow. New Brighton Beach in Wallasey provides day-trippers with striking views across the Liverpool skyline, whilst Thurstaston Beach sits on the sandy shoreline of the Dee Estuary looking out to Wales and the mountains of Snowdonia beyond. With excellent water quality and unspoiled natural sands, the Wirral’s beaches promise not to let you down.

Port Sunlight Village Wirral

9. Take a trip to Port Sunlight

Port Sunlight is a picturesque village on the Wirral, just a 20-minute drive from Hoylake, or a short journey via Merseyrail. The entire village is a conservation area, set in stunning parkland. If your looking to escape the crowds on a sunny day, then having a stroll around the manicured lawns of Port Sunlight with an ice cream is a great plan. The village is also home to the magnificent Lady Lever Art Gallery which is well worth a visit.

Liverpool Philharmonic Hall

10. Book a ticket at the Royal Liverpool Philarmonic

Liverpool’s Philharmonic Hall is the city’s main venue for classical orchestral performances and various other genres of music. Even if this is not your typical jam, this is a hugely impressive concert hall where you can at the very least sit back and marvel at the architecture. Plus, with action at Royal Liverpool promising to raise pulses once again, perhaps the dramatic acoustics from the Philharmonic could provide the perfect soundtrack to your Open memories from Merseyside.

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