There are a ton of historic Liverpool Pubs and bars that are more than just places to have a drink—they are living relics that encapsulate the city’s rich tapestry of stories, struggles, and triumphs. From the elegant grandeur of The Philharmonic Dining Rooms to the artistic haven of Ye Cracke, each establishment weaves a unique narrative that contributes to Liverpool’s identity. As you wander through these hallowed halls, take a moment to savour the connection between past and present, raising a glass to the generations who have sought solace, camaraderie, and a taste of history within these beloved establishments. There are tons more places rich with history in and around the city, however, below features our top 5 in the city centre.
So, whether you’re a local seeking a familiar haunt or a traveller eager to immerse yourself in Liverpool’s cultural heritage, these historic Liverpool pubs and bars are waiting to welcome you with open arms and a frothy pint.
Find 5 of the best historic Liverpool pubs and bars below
The Philharmonic Dining Rooms
Step into The Philharmonic Dining Rooms, and you’re immediately transported to a bygone era of opulence and elegance. Affectionately known as “The Phil,” this Grade II-listed pub was built in 1898 and showcases stunning Edwardian architecture that leaves patrons in awe. The ornate woodwork, stained glass windows, and marble decor create an atmosphere reminiscent of a grand theatre. A visit to The Phil is incomplete without a trip to its pristine Gentlemen’s toilets, which are known for their luxurious design and historic significance.
Tucked away on Mathew Street, The Grapes stands as a testament to Liverpool’s maritime past. This charming pub, established in 1800, has welcomed sailors, traders, and locals for over two centuries. Its cosy interior and nautical-themed decor pay homage to the city’s seafaring history, and it’s rumoured that even Charles Dickens frequented this establishment during his visits to Liverpool. The Grapes is a living relic, preserving the stories and experiences of generations that have passed through its doors.
If walls could talk, The Dispensary would have tales of Liverpool’s working-class struggles and the fight for social justice. This pub, founded in the 19th century, has deep roots in the city’s labour movement and serves as a reminder of the activism that has shaped Liverpool’s history. The pub’s name pays tribute to its location, which was once near a dispensary providing medical care to the less fortunate. Today, The Dispensary remains a symbol of community solidarity and continues to embrace its heritage by offering a warm welcome to all.
Ye Cracke, a quintessential Liverpool pub, has been a hub for artists, writers, and intellectuals for decades. Situated on Rice Street, this pub’s legacy dates back to the 19th century and boasts a literary heritage that is nothing short of impressive. They are also located to another dated venue called The Pilgrim! The pub was a favourite haunt of the celebrated poet and artist John Lennon and his friends, who affectionately referred to it as “the Crack.” Today, Ye Cracke continues to be a creative hub, hosting poetry readings, live music, and fostering an atmosphere that encourages free thought and expression.
Ship & Mitre
For beer enthusiasts seeking a taste of history, The Ship & Mitre is a must-visit destination. Established in 1925, this pub offers an extensive selection of real ales, ciders, and craft beers from around the world. The Ship & Mitre is a paradise for those who appreciate a good pint and a lively atmosphere. Its traditional architecture and warm ambiance make it a perfect spot to relax and enjoy the company of fellow patrons, while the carefully curated beer offerings pay homage to Liverpool’s longstanding brewing heritage. This is one of our historic Liverpool pubs!
Liverpool, a city rich in maritime heritage and cultural diversity, has more to offer than just the Beatles and football. These historic Liverpool pubs are Nestled within its cobblestone streets and vibrant neighbourhoods and have witnessed centuries of laughter, camaraderie, and even a touch of rebellion. These establishments serve as time capsules, preserving the city’s colourful past while providing a cosy haven for both locals and visitors. Join us as we raise a glass and delve into the fascinating history of some of Liverpool’s most iconic pubs and bars.
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