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Sheffield is the heart of South Yorkshire, nestled below Leeds and Manchester at the edge of the Peak District. A friendly city, and a good base from which to explore the surrounding countryside, Sheffield has a few attractions that merit a visit in its own right.
Most of the tourist attractions are found in the city centre. Neglected and rundown just 10 years ago, a massive redevelopment called Heart of the City has revitalised old buildings like the Victorian Town Hall and created some excellent open spaces like the Peace Garden.
The Peak District National Park was Britain's first National Park, and takes in more than 1,400 kilometres square of varied landscape, including the southern end of the Pennine mountain range as well as some scenic farm land. Check out the Peak District National Park website for details.
The Town Hall is an impressive building built in the Victorian age. The front of the building has some nice bas relief carvings of miners, steel workers as well as academics, in honour of the working class, industrial heritage of Sheffield. Beside the town hall is the Peace Garden, a green space with fountains dedicated to world peace. The garden is popular with families on hot days, when children run through the fountain to cool off.
The Winter Garden, one of the largest temperate glasshouses in the UK has more than 2,500 plants from around the world. It is connected directly to the Millennium Galleries (home to permanent Ruskin and metalwork collections and touring collections) and the open space of Millennium Square.
From the Town Hall, a walk down Fargate, a pedestrian shopping street, you will find the Sheffield Cathedral, formally the Cathedral Church of St Peter and St Paul, parts of which date back to the 13th century, with different pieces being built right up until the modern day.
Sheffield Ski Village is the largest artificial outdoor ski run in Europe. Boasting a half-pipe and one-third of a mile of artificial alpine slopes, the ski village offers the opportunity to ski year-round.
With one of the larger stadium in the United Kingdom in addition to City Hall and the Sheffield Arena, there are a number of concerts that take place in Sheffield every year.
For more activities, check out Creative Sheffield.
The World Snooker Championship is held annually at the Crucible Theatre in late April and early May, when snooker players from around the globe compete for the most prestigious prize in the snooker world. Tickets are £17 per session and available on-line.
Sports in Sheffield include two football teams with Sheffield Wednesday and Sheffield United, two rugby teams with the Sheffield Eagles and Sheffield Tigers rugby union and even a basketball team in the Sheffield Sharks basketball the 2009 champion Sheffield Steelers ice hockey team.
For other events, check out the Event Sheffield website.
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The British climate can be unpredictable and changeable even within one day. Summer temperatures (June to August) very rarely climb higher than 35 °C, but winter temperatures (November to March) are rarely below freezing. Average summer temperatures are 20 °C, and winter averages are about 10 °C. The weather can sometimes be grey and foggy, particularly in November to March. Check out weather at the BBC website.
There are six airports within 65 miles (over 100 kilometres) of Sheffield, the closest being Robin Hood Doncaster Sheffield Airport. Other airports that can provide transport to Sheffield include Manchester International Airport (connected direct by train), East Midlands, Leeds Bradford International, Humberside International and Liverpool John Lennon Airport (connected direct by train).
Sheffield Midlands station is within the city centre, and has services to London, Manchester, Liverpool, Edinburgh, Doncaster and Leeds among many other destinations, with services provided by East Midlands Trains, Cross Country, TransPennine Express, and Northern Rail.
The M1 and the M18 motorways both pass close to Sheffield.
The free of charge FreeBee service links popular city centre locations from Sheffield Interchange to the main city centre shopping areas, Sheffield Hallam University and Paternoster Row for the Sheffield Rail Station. The FreeBee bus service operates every seven minutes from 7:00am to 7:00pm weekdays and 8:00am to 7:00pm on Saturdays. Route information can be found at Travel South Yorkshire website.
There is a tram system called the Sheffield Supertram. Tickets are priced based on distance travelled, and purchased onboard from a conductor, who can provide change. If you are taking more than one ride in a day, it is often a good deal to purchase a Dayrider ticket for £3.00.
A number of bus operators run different routes in Sheffield. Check out the Travel South Yorkshire journey planner to find the best route.
There are a number of places to eat in the city centre, many with excellent deals catering to the student population that lives in the city centre. The Devonshire Cat on Wellington Street has an excellent selection of burgers and a wide variety of beers and spirits.
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Sheffield is a university town, so there are lots of places for good drinks. There are a number of bars along West Street and Division Street in the city centre. West Street Live, on West Street has nightly music from local bands, often for free, and a good selection of beer, wine and liquor.
|The Harley Hotel||334 Glossop Road||Hotel||75|
|Russell Scott Hostels||28, Brandreth Road Sheffield||Hostel||70|
|Novotel Sheffield Centre Hotel||50 Arundel Gate S1 2PR SHEFFIELD||Hotel||-|
|Hilton Hotel and Resort||Victoria Quays Furnival Road||Hotel||-|
|Primrose Cottages||170-172, Queens Road, Beighton||HOSTEL||-|
Internet cafés can be found in many cities and towns. All UK public libraries provide access, often branded as "People's Network", usually at no or little charge, though there is usually a time limit. Some hotels/hostels also offer internet access, including wifi, but most times at a cost. Using the internet on your personal phone can become expensive very quickly, with carriers charging 100's of times the local rate for data. To avoid these expensive roaming charges, you can hunt for wifi at a local cafe or hotel, or rent a mobile hotspot via several providers including DATAPiXY, and XCOM Global.
See also: International Telephone Calls
The country calling code to the United Kingdom is: 44. To make an international call from the United Kingdom, the code is: 00
In case of emergency, call 999 or 112 from any phone. Such calls are free and will be answered by an emergency services operator who will ask you for your location, and the service(s) you need (police, fire, ambulance, coastguard or mountain rescue). You can call this number from any mobile telephone as well, even if you do not have roaming.
Although the number is declining, you can still find payphones in many public areas, especially stations, airports etc. You can usually pay with cash and sometimes by creditcard or, for international calls, special phonecards are still available.
Mobile phones are heavily used. The main networks are T-Mobile, Vodafone, Orange and O2. 3G data services are available, usually priced per megabyte and coverage is usually very good in the UK, however it may lack in rural areas. Roaming on your personal phone plan can be expensive. To manage costs, consider purchasing a local UK SIM card for your phone. Several companies offer local SIM cards including Telestial, and CellularAbroad.
The Royal Mail provides postal services in the United Kingdom. The Royal Mail's store fronts are called Post Office and offer services ranging from sending letters and packages to foreign currency exchange. Use the branch locator to find the nearest Post Office branch. There will be at least one post office in any town/city and there are quite often post offices in larger villages. It's common for a post office to be incorporated into a grocery store, where there will be a small counter located at the back of the store for dealing with post related matters. All post offices are marked with signs that say 'post office' in red lettering. Post boxes can be found at any post office and standalone large red post boxes on the streets or red boxes in the sides of public buildings.
For sending packages overseas, it might be a good idea to check prices and services with international companies like TNT, UPS or DHL.
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