Is Manchester Nh a Good Place to Live? Pros & Cons

by Rentals Editorial Team | Published: Jul 20, 2023

Welcome to Manchester, NH! Located in the heart of New Hampshire, Manchester is a city that offers a wide range of attractions and activities for everyone to enjoy. Whether you’re a nature enthusiast, history buff, art lover, or simply looking for family fun, this city has something for you. From beautiful parks and trails to historic sites and museums, there are endless opportunities to explore and stay active outdoors. Manchester’s rich history is reflected in its industrial heritage and architectural gems. The city also has a vibrant cultural scene with art galleries, theaters, and music venues that showcase local talent. With its strong job market and affordable cost of living, Manchester provides ample opportunities for residents to thrive. Whether you’re planning on moving here, retiring, or just visiting, we’re sure you’ll find Manchester NH to be a welcoming and exciting place to be!

Nature and outdoor activities in Manchester, NH

Located in the heart of New Hampshire, Manchester offers a variety of nature and outdoor activities that can cater to all interests. The city is blessed with numerous parks and trails that provide ample opportunities for hiking, biking, and picnicking. One popular destination is Livingston Park, known for its beautiful gardens, sports fields, and scenic walking paths.

For those seeking more adventurous activities, Lake Massabesic is just a short drive away. Here, visitors can enjoy boating, fishing, and birdwatching amidst the serene natural surroundings. Additionally, the nearby mountains provide opportunities for skiing and snowboarding during the winter months.

Overall, Manchester’s abundance of green spaces and proximity to outdoor recreational areas make it an ideal place for nature enthusiasts and those who love to stay active outdoors.

City’s history in Manchester, NH

Manchester has a rich history that dates back to its founding in 1751. Originally known as Derryfield, the city was later renamed Manchester in honor of the industrial boom experienced by its namesake city in England during the 19th century.

The Amoskeag Millyard played a vital role in shaping Manchester’s history as it became the largest cotton textile manufacturing center in the world by the early 20th century. Today, visitors can explore this historic area by taking a guided tour or visiting the Millyard Museum to learn about Manchester’s industrial past.

In addition to its industrial heritage, Manchester is also home to several architectural gems that reflect its historical significance. Buildings such as the City Hall Plaza and Palace Theatre showcase stunning architectural designs from different eras.

Culture and arts in Manchester, NH

Manchester embraces a vibrant cultural scene with a wide range of arts and entertainment options. The city hosts various art galleries, theaters, and museums that cater to different interests.

The Currier Museum of Art is a must-visit for art enthusiasts, housing an extensive collection of European and American artworks. With rotating exhibitions and educational programs, the museum offers a dynamic cultural experience for visitors of all ages.

Beyond visual arts, Manchester’s music and theater scene is thriving. The Palace Theatre hosts a diverse array of live performances, including Broadway shows, concerts, and comedies. Meanwhile, the New Hampshire Institute of Art showcases the works of talented local artists through its galleries and exhibits.

With its abundance of cultural offerings, Manchester provides residents with ample opportunities to immerse themselves in the arts and explore different facets of culture in a dynamic and engaging way.

City Entertainment

Manchester, NH offers a vibrant and diverse range of entertainment options for residents. Whether you enjoy exploring the local arts scene, indulging in delicious cuisine, or simply enjoying the outdoors, this city has something for everyone.

One of the highlights of Manchester’s entertainment scene is its thriving music and theater culture. The Verizon Wireless Arena hosts big-name concerts and sporting events throughout the year, attracting both local talent and internationally renowned performers. The Palace Theatre is another popular venue for live performances, showcasing a variety of plays, musicals, and comedy shows.

If you’re looking for a night out, downtown Manchester is home to numerous bars, pubs, and clubs offering live music and a lively atmosphere. From cozy jazz lounges to energetic dance floors, there’s always something happening in the city after dark.

Local Sights, Attractions, Events and Things to Do

Manchester offers a range of attractions and activities that cater to different interests and age groups. History buffs can explore the Millyard Museum to learn about the city’s rich industrial past or visit the Zimmerman House designed by renowned architect Frank Lloyd Wright.

If you’re interested in outdoor activities, Manchester has several beautiful parks where you can enjoy a leisurely stroll or have a picnic with family and friends. Livingston Park is particularly popular with its scenic trails and serene lake views.

The city also hosts various annual events that bring together locals and visitors alike. The Merrimack Balloon Festival is a highlight each summer where colorful hot air balloons fill the sky. The New Hampshire Renaissance Faire is another crowd-pleaser featuring jousting tournaments, medieval music performances, and artisan vendors selling unique crafts.

Job Opportunities & Overall Economy

Job Opportunities:

Manchester’s economy offers a range of job opportunities across various industries. Some of the biggest employers in the area include Elliot Hospital, Southern New Hampshire University, and Catholic Medical Center.

Other major employers are located in the technology and manufacturing sectors, such as Dyn (an Internet performance management company) and DEKA Research & Development Corporation (known for its innovative engineering solutions).

Overall Economy:

The overall economy of Manchester is robust, with a mix of industries contributing to its stability. The city’s average household income is above the national average, providing residents with a decent standard of living.

In terms of unemployment rate, Manchester generally fares better than the national average. The presence of diverse industries ensures a certain level of job security for individuals seeking employment in the area.

State taxes and local taxes

When it comes to taxes, living in Manchester, NH can offer some advantages. New Hampshire has no sales tax or state income tax, which means residents of Manchester benefit from not having to pay these additional expenses. This can be a significant savings compared to other states where these taxes can consume a portion of a person’s income. However, it is important to note that while the absence of state income tax is a perk, property taxes in New Hampshire are relatively high compared to the national average.

Education system (include list of local and nearby colleges and universities)

Manchester, NH is home to several reputable educational institutions. The city has a strong public school system with ample opportunities for students to excel academically. In addition to its public schools, Manchester offers various private schools that provide alternative educational options for families.

For those pursuing higher education, there are several colleges and universities in and around Manchester:

  • University of New Hampshire at Manchester
  • Southern New Hampshire University
  • New England College
  • Hesser College
  • Nashua Community College (located nearby)

City’s public transportation and traffic, including local airports

In terms of public transportation, Manchester offers various options for residents and visitors alike. The city operates an extensive bus system known as the Manchester Transit Authority (MTA). The MTA provides convenient transportation throughout the city with several bus routes covering different areas.

If you prefer air travel or need access to airports, Manchester-Boston Regional Airport is conveniently located close by. This airport offers numerous domestic flights providing easy access to major cities across the United States.

Neighborhoods in Manchester

Manchester is a diverse city with a range of unique neighborhoods. Here are some notable neighborhoods in the city:

  • Downtown: The heart of Manchester, downtown offers a mix of residential, commercial, and cultural attractions. It is known for its historic buildings, restaurants, and entertainment options.
  • The North End: A residential neighborhood characterized by well-maintained homes and tree-lined streets.
  • West Side: This neighborhood offers a suburban feel with abundant green spaces and parks. It is ideal for families looking for a peaceful area to live.
  • South End: A vibrant neighborhood known for its diverse community and proximity to popular recreational areas such as Crystal Lake.
  • The Hollow: This neighborhood has undergone revitalization efforts in recent years and now offers a mix of housing options.

Each neighborhood in Manchester has its own distinct charm and appeal, catering to various lifestyles and preferences. Whether you prefer the hustle and bustle of downtown or the tranquility of suburban living, Manchester has something to offer everyone.

Family Fun in Manchester NH

Manchester NH is a great place for families to live. With its strong sense of community and numerous family-friendly activities, it offers a welcoming environment for people of all ages.

There are several parks and playgrounds scattered throughout the city, providing plenty of outdoor recreational opportunities for kids. Families can enjoy picnics, sports activities, or simply relax and soak up the sun.

The city also offers a variety of cultural and educational attractions that cater to families. The SEE Science Center is a popular destination with interactive exhibits that engage children in science and technology. The Millyard Museum provides a glimpse into the city’s industrial history, making learning fun for kids.

Furthermore, Manchester NH has an excellent school system with both public and private schools, ensuring that children receive a quality education. The city also hosts various family-oriented events throughout the year, such as parades, festivals, and holiday celebrations.

Tourism in Manchester NH

Manchester NH may not be as well-known as some other cities in New England but it has its fair share of tourist attractions. Whether you’re a history buff or enjoy exploring the outdoors, there’s something for everyone here.

If you’re interested in history, a visit to the Currier Museum of Art should be on your list. It houses an impressive collection of American art from different periods. Additionally, you can explore the Zimmerman House, designed by Frank Lloyd Wright.

Nature enthusiasts will appreciate the abundance of parks and trails in Manchester NH. Livingston Park offers beautiful scenery with its ponds and walking paths. Lake Massabesic is perfect for fishing or boating activities.

The Palace Theatre is another highlight of the city’s tourism scene. This historic theater hosts various performances including Broadway shows, concerts, and local productions. It’s a must-visit for those who appreciate the arts.

Moving to Manchester NH

If you’re considering moving to Manchester NH, you’ll find a welcoming community with a range of amenities and opportunities.

The city offers a diverse housing market, with options ranging from historic homes in charming neighborhoods to modern apartments in bustling downtown areas. The cost of living in Manchester NH is relatively affordable compared to other cities in New England.

The job market in Manchester NH is also thriving, with opportunities in various industries such as healthcare, education, and technology. The city has a strong business sector and is home to several major companies.

Manchester NH provides easy access to outdoor activities throughout the year. From hiking trails in the nearby mountains to skiing resorts during winter, outdoor enthusiasts will find plenty of options for recreation.

Overall, moving to Manchester NH can be an excellent choice for individuals or families seeking a vibrant community with ample opportunities for both work and leisure.

Retiring in Manchester, NH

Manchester, NH is a great city to retire in. With its vibrant culture, affordable cost of living, and variety of recreational activities, retirees can enjoy a fulfilling and comfortable lifestyle.

Pros and Cons of Living in Manchester, NH


  • Thriving Arts Scene: Manchester offers a rich arts and cultural scene with numerous galleries, theaters, and music venues.
  • Affordable Cost of Living: Compared to other New England cities, the cost of living in Manchester is relatively low.
  • Natural Beauty: Surrounded by beautiful landscapes and parks such as Lake Massabesic and the Merrimack River, outdoor enthusiasts can enjoy hiking, fishing, and boating.
  • Educational Opportunities: Home to several esteemed universities and colleges like Southern New Hampshire University and Saint Anselm College.


  • Harsh Winters: The city experiences cold winters with significant snowfall. This may not be suitable for individuals who dislike cold weather.
  • Traffic Congestion: During peak hours, some areas of Manchester can experience traffic congestion.
  • Limited Public Transportation: While there is public transportation available in the city, it may not be as extensive or convenient as in larger metropolitan areas.

Frequently Asked Questions about Manchester, NH

1. What is the population of Manchester?

The population of Manchester is approximately 112,000 people according to recent estimates.

2. Is there a lot to do in Manchester?

Absolutely! Manchester offers a range of activities including museums, art galleries, shopping centers, parks, and a vibrant nightlife.

3. What are the best neighborhoods to live in Manchester?

Some popular neighborhoods in Manchester include North End, Bakersville, and Southside. Each has its own unique character and amenities.

4. How is the healthcare system in Manchester?

Manchester boasts a robust healthcare system with several hospitals including Elliot Hospital and Catholic Medical Center.

5. Are there good educational opportunities in Manchester?

Yes, Manchester is home to a number of excellent schools at both the primary and secondary level. There are also several reputable colleges and universities.

6. What is the weather like in Manchester?

The climate in Manchester features warm summers with an average temperature of around 80°F (27°C) and cold winters with an average temperature of 28°F (-2°C).

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