June 17 2021
Leeds, located in the heart of Yorkshire, England, seamlessly blends its rich history with a modern, cosmopolitan vibe. From stunning Victorian architecture to bustling shopping centres and a thriving cultural scene, Leeds has something for everyone. Whether interested in exploring its historical landmarks, indulging in delicious cuisine, or immersing yourself in its vibrant nightlife, Leeds will leave you captivated. In this blog, we’ll take you through the best things to do in Leeds to make the most of your visit to this city.
- Take a journey through history
- Retail therapy at its finest
- Experience the culture and nightlife
- Enjoy the outdoors
- Indulge in a culinary experience
- Are you moving to Leeds? Simplify your storage with us.
Take a journey through history
Royal Armouries Museum
Step back in time and explore the fascinating military history world at the Royal Armouries Museum. The museum is located close to the city centre. It houses extensive weaponry and armour from medieval times to today. The Hall of Steel is where countless swords and suits of armour are on display, showcasing the evolution of warfare throughout the ages. In the museum’s arena, you could also witness live-action re-enactments of famous battles and duels.
Temple Newsam House
Stroll back in time and experience the wonder of Temple Newsam House, an impressive Tudor-Jacobean mansion surrounded by lush greenery. Inside the Grade I-listed building, you can explore the ornate rooms and a unique art collection featuring works from various eras. The house also has a bird garden and farm, making it a perfect destination for a family outing. Walking through the beautifully landscaped gardens, you’ll be surrounded by vibrant rhododendrons and captivating herb arrangements. Temple Newsam House offers a fascinating delve into history and lets you appreciate the beauty of the surrounding landscape.
To explore the city’s rich history, you should visit Kirkstall Abbey. It is located along the River Aire and was built during the medieval period by Cistercian monks. The abbey’s ruins offer a peaceful and serene setting where you can wander around and imagine what life was like during its heyday. Take a relaxing stroll along the riverbanks and explore the nearby area with beautiful walking trails and stunning views. You can even enjoy watching live Shakespeare plays performed in the atmospheric ruins during summer. Kirkstall Abbey is a testament to Leeds’ historical heritage and offers a peaceful escape from the city’s hustle and bustle.
Retail Therapy at Its Finest in Leeds
Leeds Victoria Quarter
If you’re looking for a unique shopping experience, visit Leeds Victoria Quarter, sometimes called ‘the Knightsbridge of the North.‘ This historic shopping arcade is a symbol of Leeds’ greatness. It is home to high-end retailers such as Harvey Nichols, Vivienne Westwood, and Louis Vuitton. If you’re not planning to buy anything, you should still visit Victoria Quarter for its impressive wrought iron and marble structure. Take a break, dine at one of the restaurants or cafes within the arcade, and soak up the cosmopolitan atmosphere. If you’re feeling lucky, the Victoria Gate Casino is just a short walk away.
Leeds Corn Exchange
Leeds Corn Exchange is one of the few remaining exchanges in the UK that still function as shopping centres. This masterpiece of architecture houses a world of independent stores offering a range of products, from fashion and homeware to musical instruments. Explore the shops and support local businesses while enjoying the vibrant atmosphere.
Leeds Kirkgate Market
Leeds Kirkgate Market is a lively marketplace that offers a traditional shopping experience with a contemporary twist. There are hundreds of stalls selling a diverse range of items, from fresh produce to jewellery, electronics, and fishmongers. The scale of this market is impressive, and its mix of products caters to all tastes. It’s the perfect place to pick up unique souvenirs.
Experience the culture, entertainment and nightlife
Millennium Square, the city’s cultural heart, is a lively square surrounded by iconic landmarks such as the Town Hall, Leeds City Museum, and Leeds Civic Hall. You can indulge in a coffee at one of the many cosy cafes nearby and immerse yourself in the vibrant atmosphere. The square hosts various events and attractions throughout the year, including a Christmas Market, concerts, and outdoor ice skating. Experience the stunning architecture and vibrant energy of this central hub.
Emmerdale Studio Experience
This is for you if you’re a popular ITV soap opera Emmerdale fan. Step into the former set of the fictional Yorkshire village and take an 80-minute guided tour that explores the indoor sets, including the iconic Woolpack pub. You can even see the behind-the-scenes magic of television production and understand the skills in creating the series. If you’re a die-hard Emmerdale fan, you can also visit the outdoor set on the Harewood Estate, just a short distance from the studio.
Festivals & Live Music
Leeds is known for its lively music scene and hosts several music festivals throughout the year. One of the largest music festivals in the UK, the Leeds Festival, takes place at Bramham Park during the August bank holiday and features your favourite bands and artists. But the festivals are not limited to just one weekend. Live at Leeds and Slam Dunk Festival, located in the city centre, showcase diverse musical genres. There is a festival for every music lover featuring classical, 80s, modern rock, and pop.
Experience Leeds’ Vibrant Nightlife
Leeds is a city that comes alive at night, with a vibrant nightlife scene that can rival that of any other city in the UK. To kick off your evening, you can visit Belgrave Music Hall and Canteen, a multi-story hangout offering a wide range of street food, craft beer, and live music. After that, you can proceed to The Alchemist, a famous cocktail bar for its innovative and visually stunning drinks. If you’re looking for an entertainment-filled evening, visit the Leeds Grand Theatre, where you can catch a show by local troupes Opera North and Northern Ballet. Round off your night at one of Leeds’s bars or clubs and dance the night away, immersing yourself in the city’s vibrant atmosphere.
Enjoy the Great Outdoors
If you want to escape the noise and chaos of the city, then indulge in the natural beauty of Roundhay Park. This vast park spans over 700 acres, offering a serene haven for those seeking peace and tranquillity or outdoor enthusiasts looking to jog, picnic, or explore nature. Take a leisurely stroll around the park’s two clear lakes, wander through the winding woodland trails, or simply lounge and bask in the sun. Roundhay Park is also home to Tropical World, where you can see a fascinating range of exotic animals and plants. Make sure you take a scenic ride on the train. In November, you can also witness Leeds’s biggest bonfire and fireworks display on Guy Fawkes Night.
Indulge in a culinary experience
Leeds offers diverse cuisines, from trendy cafes, gastropubs, and fine dining restaurants to street food markets. Here are a few we love and recommend trying:
- The Man Behind the Curtain
- The Reliance
- Stalls at The Corn Exchange
- The Ox Club
- Livin’ Italy
Are you moving to Leeds? Simplify your storage with us.
If you’re moving to Leeds, our earlier blog covers essential information, from transport to the best schools and property prices. Whether you need storage while settling in or decorating your home, our self storage units are tailored to your needs. Conveniently located, we offer flexible storage solutions and excellent customer service at all our three locations.
Contact us for more details or our team to learn how we can help you store your belongings.