Altrincham is in The Metropolitan Borough of Trafford in Greater Manchester.It lies within The Historic County Boundaries of Cheshire.
Altrincham is served by the Metrolink tram system from Manchester's major stations and other destinations in Greater Manchester. If coming from Manchester Piccadilly it is slightly quicker and cheaper (and often far, far quieter) to take the train, though it will only leave every hour as opposed to every six minutes. Metrolink tickets are purchased from machines on the platform, train tickets either on the train or at the station. Buses from Manchester are also available, though invariably take longer.
There is also a commuter rail line from Chester which passes through the countryside and various Cheshire towns and villages. It is good value for money, though not particularly luxurious.
Manchester International Airport is only a few miles away. Buses are available to Altrincham, as are taxis.
The nearest motorway is the M56, which passes within a few miles of the town. One can either get off at Junction 8 or Junction 7 and use the historic A56 (which was once the Roman road from Chester to Manchester) or get off at Junction 6 and use Hale Road. Both these will take you right up to Altrincham town centre.
The historic house and grounds of Dunham Massey are a short distance from the town and it is perfectly possible to walk to them. The grounds contain a large amount of open space and deer, and the house is often open to visitors, as is the historic windmill.
Tatton Park is a similar place, though it contains a petting zoo with farm animals and a Children's play area in addition.
Altrincham FC play a short distance from the town centre at the Moss Lane ground. The ground still has terracing which can be stood on, and looks more historical than many other similar grounds. Admission is £13 for an adult to stand, £8 for a concession, £5 for a 12-16 and £2 for an under 12.
The local shops are good. Visit the market in the town centre, open on Tuesdays, Fridays and Saturdays, where local produce, amongst other things, can be bought.
Once a major retail centre hosting higher-end retailers and indepenents, the retail scene in Altrincham Town Centre has deteriorated in recent years and now charity (or empty) shops seem to dominate. Whatever is to blame for this (some say the pension funds who set the rent so high; others the council for selling off parking; others the revival of Manchester City Centre and the construction of the nearby Trafford Centre shopping mall), if travelling simply to engage in retail therapy, the experience is likely to be a disappointing, if not totally derisory one. That said, neighbouring Hale offers a good crop of independent stores and the usual high street favourites can be found in Altrincham (Marks and Spencer, Waterstones, Next)
There are two good Belgian bars, Le Trappiste and Mort Subite, both on Greenwood Street.
The Old Market Tavern, on Old Market Street just past the outdoor stalls, is worth a look; a selection of local cask ales and there are live bands (not always very good) on Thursdays and Fridays.
For a cheap pint, the Cheshire Midland on Ashley Road in nearby Hale is the place to go; although avoid in the summer and Christmas season as it's extremely busy due to the influx of students and the atmosphere often becomes somewhat ugly.
Try the Thai Chilli Club on Ashley Road, which has excellent lunchtime offers.
The Greenhouse Vegetarian Restaurant on Oxford Road is the only vegetarian restaurant in Altrincham. It serves fresh, made-daily salads and hot meals. £5.25 salad plate, £6.15 hot meal.
Taste Buds on Lloyd Street is the place to go for a cheap, quality doner kebab or a chicken burger after a night out.
Try the Altrincham Fish Bar for a traditional fish and chip shop, with formica tables in the dining room, maritime kitsch and some quite curt service!