Macclesfield is an ancient market town steeped in industrial history. It's characterised by a blend of rural and urban, and its mills - which have given Britain Hovis bread, and were once the source of much of the country's silk products - still loom large over the town. Modern Macclesfield is more than just mills, however. It's home to a burgeoning restaurant scene, great shopping and vibrant nightlife. And it's all just a few miles from one of the UK's best-loved national parks.
First things first - you can't come to Macclesfield and not take the three-mile trip east to the Peak District. One of the most beautiful landscapes in the country, the National Park - which is just 10 minutes from Macclesfield Station by bus - is a favourite with hikers, mountain bikers and climbers. It offers pretty country villages, windswept moors, quiet woodland, and even a few caves to explore.
Not the nature-loving type? Not to worry, there's plenty more on offer. Macclesfield is home to some of Cheshire's finest restaurants. From modern fusion cuisine to traditional gastro-pub fare, the town serves up an embarrassment of riches for the discerning foodie. And if you need to work up an appetite first, head straight for the Grosvenor Shopping Centre in the heart of the busy town centre. It's a roll-call of well-known high-street shops.
Finally, no trip to Macclesfield is complete without discovering how the 'Silk Town' came to be. The Silk Museum, on Park Lane, charts Macclesfield's rise from a sleepy market town to an industrial powerhouse - all thanks to the silk mills, many of which still stand proudly around the town.
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