What to do and see in Leeds, United Kingdom (UK): The Best Places and Tips

April 9, 2018 Layne Dawes

Leeds, a city in West Yorkshire, England, was one of the leading centers of industry in Victorian England. The Leeds City Museum is a great place to brush up on local history, and many TripAdvisor travelers say no visit to town is complete without exploring the Royal Armouries. You’ll also find lovely parks and a lively restaurant scene, with many eateries specializing in international cuisine.
Restaurants in Leeds

1. Roundhay Park

Roundhay Road | Roundhay, Leeds LS8 4AR, England +44 113 266 1850
Excellent
66%
Good
28%
Satisfactory
4%
Poor
1%
Terrible
1%
Overall Ratings

4.5 based on 2 reviews

Roundhay Park

Reviewed By francescaitaly2018 - Liverpool, United Kingdom

This - huge - park is phenomenal. Very beautiful. It has a nice lake, two lovely cafes, trees, Gardens. Very peaceful and well kept. I took a bus from Leeds city centre, it is too far to walk.

2. Royal Armouries Museum

Armouries Drive, Leeds LS10 1LT, England +44 113 220 1999
Excellent
65%
Good
27%
Satisfactory
6%
Poor
1%
Terrible
1%
Overall Ratings

4.5 based on 3 reviews

Royal Armouries Museum

Home for the national collection of arms and armour that features five theme-galleries: War, Tournament, Self-Defense, Hunting, and arms and armour of the Orient.

Reviewed By 413phil47 - York, United Kingdom

There is so much to see here that it will most of day Taking u back in time is very interesting to see wot people did

3. Abbey House Museum

Abbey Walk | Kirkstall, Leeds LS5 3EH, England +44 113 378 4079
Excellent
68%
Good
25%
Satisfactory
5%
Poor
1%
Terrible
1%
Overall Ratings

4.5 based on 322 reviews

Abbey House Museum

Step back in time and wander through the enchanting streets, shops and houses and experience life as a Victorian. As a fun, family-friendly and interactive museum, Abbey House Museum is a great day out for all the family. Come to one of our many family sessions as advertised on our website or pop in with friends for a trip down memory lane.On the ground floor visit Stephen Harding Gate, the 19th century equivalent of a modern high street, for some old fashioned retail therapy. In the back streets, see the home of the window washer woman or pop into the Sunday-School. On the first floor, see our Childhood and Community Galleries along with the changing programme of Exhibitions. Abbey House Museum is situated directly across the road from the historical site of Kirkstall Abbey, set in wonderful parkland along the banks of the River Aire.

Reviewed By Caroline0901 - Leeds, United Kingdom

My family & I really enjoy visiting this museum. The Victorian Street is fantastic, really interesting & our daughter really enjoys dressing up in the various outfits provided. It's especially good in the school holidays when extra activities are put on for children.

4. City Varieties Music Hall

Swan Street, Leeds LS1 6LW, England +44 845 644 1881
Excellent
74%
Good
21%
Satisfactory
3%
Poor
1%
Terrible
1%
Overall Ratings

4.5 based on 335 reviews

City Varieties Music Hall

Built in 1865 above the White Swan public house in Swan Street Leeds. Most famous for hosting BBC's The Good Old Days for 30 years. The City Varieties Music Hall has a varied programme of Comedy, Music, Variety, Family shows and Pantomime

Reviewed By patricia f - York, United Kingdom

We were treated to an evening with Foster & Alan at the theatre,wonderful evening,brilliant show.
The city varieties has had a recent upgrade,sympathetically done as befits a building of this age.
There is now quite a large lift installed,a great improvement,especially if you are seated in the circle or upper circle,speaking as a disabled person it was a great advantage to me.
There is a large bar for refreshments at the interval or before the show starts,the toilets are also on this floor(2),there is a disabled loo within the toilets,if I had one small gripe it would be no toilet facilities on upper circle.
I must mention the lovely lady Val who showed us to our seats,even escorting us in the lift,she was a gem,been there 25yrs & she told us she loves her job & it showed.
Would certainly go back to another show but would go for the circle ,stalls or even a box excellent view of the stage from most seats.
We are so lucky in Leeds to have a theatre of the City Varieties callibre.

5. Temple Newsam

Temple Newsam Park | Off Selby Road, Leeds LS15 0AE, England +44 113 336 7461
Excellent
59%
Good
34%
Satisfactory
5%
Poor
1%
Terrible
1%
Overall Ratings

4.5 based on 922 reviews

Temple Newsam

One of the great country houses of England set within a Capability Brown landscape surrounded by beautiful parkland which includes a working rare breeds farm, Temple Newsam has so much to offer visitors.Famous as the birth place of Lord Darnley, notorious husband of Mary Queen of Scots, Temple Newsam House is a truly impressive Tudor-Jacobean mansion. Described as the Hampton Court of the North with over 40 lovingly restored rooms to view, it is now home to one of the most important collections of decorative arts. Explore the treasures of silver, ceramics, fine art, Chippendale furniture, and wallpaper all housed within the Tudor Jacobean Mansion. Discover the stories of the people who lived at Temple Newsam by joining one of our regular weekly tours or picking up the FREE audio guide. Look out for holiday activities and craft fun for all ages and the changing programme of talks, Concerts and theatre. Visit our special, changing programme of Exhibitions. Take time to visit the gift shop offering a range of products inspired by the collections within the House followed by lunch or tea in the Stables Tea room. Explore the lakeside walks and Gardens of delphiniums, rhododendrons, flocks and asters. See a variety of rare breed animals in Home Farm. Enjoy some leisure time and book our football pitches, enjoy a round of golf, walk in the woods and discover the folly or explore the bridle paths.

Reviewed By Bekah H

Enjoyed a visit round the farm and Gardens (lots of great new piglets) and a slightly improvised tour by an enthusiastic security guard (this was off season and a good way of meaning visitors can still see the house. The cafe food was excellent - coronation chicken jacket potato hit the spot! Went with friends for a good day out.

6. Kirkstall Abbey

Abbey Road, Leeds LS5 3EH, England +44 113 378 4079
Excellent
57%
Good
35%
Satisfactory
7%
Poor
1%
Terrible
0%
Overall Ratings

4.5 based on 1 reviews

Kirkstall Abbey

Uncover the history of one of the best preserved medieval Cistercian abbeys in Britain. With its beautiful and iconic ruins, award-winning Park and interactive visitor centre Kirkstall Abbey is a place that visitors of all ages can enjoy. The ruins are a unique example of early Christian architecture. From the majesty of the church to the peace of the cloisters enjoy exploring this iconic Leeds landmark. The story of the abbey and its community is explored in the Visitor Centre. Founded over 800 years ago in 1152 discover more about what life was like for the Cistercian monks who lived here for nearly 400 years. Enjoy the abbey's parkland setting next to the River Aire. Take a walk along the river or enjoy a picnic in our spacious grounds. There is also a small playground near to the car park for the little ones to enjoy. The ruins of the abbey provide a breath-taking background to your wedding photography, blessings, vow renewals and baby naming ceremonies.

Reviewed By Ben H

Kirkstall Abbey is a charming ruin situated just outside of the city centre of Leeds. Many of the major bus lines (33, 33A, Airport Shuttle) will take you along Kirkstall road to the abbey. There are a number of local pubs/restaurants nearby well worth visiting after your walk (The Bridge being my personal favourite).
Despite the large fence around the property Kirkstall Abbey is free to visit (enter via the tourist information building). This is well worth doing as the interior is impressive and has some information plaques for more details. The park itself is small but nice to walk around.
For drivers parking is available across the road (a right hand turn after the abbey if driving from town.
Access to the Leeds/Liverpool canal is possible if you leave via the small footbridge towards the new shopping complex and bridge pub. Cross that larger bridge and take the left hand road through the lights. You'll find a patch of trees next to the next (third bridge), this gives you access to the Canal (just under an hour to town heading left, right off to Rodley and Calverley.

7. County Arcade

Leeds, England +44 113 245 5333
Excellent
56%
Good
41%
Satisfactory
3%
Poor
0%
Terrible
0%
Overall Ratings

4.5 based on 163 reviews

County Arcade

Reviewed By Paulsmithcasty - Malaga, Spain

County arcade is wonderfully preserved. a piece of history in the city centre accessible to all. a glaze arcade with original floor tiling. - lined with some top end retail space.

8. West Yorkshire Playhouse

Playhouse Square | Quarry Hill, Leeds LS2 7UP, England +44 113 213 7700
Excellent
62%
Good
31%
Satisfactory
3%
Poor
1%
Terrible
3%
Overall Ratings

4.5 based on 336 reviews

West Yorkshire Playhouse

Reviewed By 1949etwall - Ashbourne, United Kingdom

First visit to this theatre: to see the play ‘Birdsong’. Excellent production with good actors.
The theatre is well served with plentiful ancillary areas- spacious, light, and varied.
Seats have good leg room, and there are helpful seat number diagrams, and the layout of the aisles allows easy access to them.
The overall effect is most pleasing.

9. Leeds and Liverpool Canal

Leeds, England
Excellent
59%
Good
34%
Satisfactory
5%
Poor
1%
Terrible
1%
Overall Ratings

4.5 based on 412 reviews

Leeds and Liverpool Canal

Reviewed By Caltours - Birmingham, England, United Kingdom

recently took a group on a 2h 30m cruise from foulridge wharf at lunch time. excelent value for money and the meat and potato pie served on the journey was of very tastey.unlike some canal cruises visibility of the surrounding countryside is very good

10. Thackray Medical Museum

141 Beckett Street, Leeds LS9 7LN, England +44 113 244 4343
Excellent
55%
Good
34%
Satisfactory
9%
Poor
1%
Terrible
1%
Overall Ratings

4.5 based on 728 reviews

Thackray Medical Museum

The award winning Thackray Medical Museum is a completely unique visitor attraction. With nine interactive galleries, the fascinating Exhibitions and collections tell a story of health that affects us all. Hear and smell what it was like to walk the grimy streets of Victorian Leeds, find out what it was like to undergo an operation without anaesthetic and explore your body in our jaw-dropping Life Zone gallery. Discover how medicine past and present is changing your future. We are bigger than you think, please allow 2-3 hours for your visit. *Tickets last for 12 months! *FREE weekly family activities and an ever-changing calendar of events and Exhibitions. *Large on-site car park. *Learning cafe serving luches and tasty treats. *Curiosity shop selling a range of unique gifts and souvenirs. We are on Facebook and Twitter

Reviewed By Cleox2

Visited today with my 11 and 13 year old so they could take part in the junior surgeon workshop.
This was really informative with really helpful, friendly and knowledgeable staff.
My daughter is now thinking about becoming a heart surgeon!
The museum is really well laid out and has something for all ages!

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