15 Things To Do In Leeds City Centre For An Amazing Expedition

Activities To Do In Leeds City Centre

Visit Leeds City Museum, Admire the modern art at Leeds City Art Gallery, Take a Tour at Town Hall, Go For a Waterfront Walk along the Leeds Liverpool Canal, Learn the art at Burlesque, Admire Some Armour at Royal Armouries Museum, Stop at Leeds Central Library, Explore The Henry Moore Institute, Take a Leeds Kirkgate Market Heritage Tour & many more.

Leeds City Centre, situated in West Yorkshire, England will make you go crazy over “what’s next”. It is a flourishing cultural hub full of top-notch galleries, dramatic arts and thriving theatres. It is considered to be one of the feelings of pride in the north, it has an impressive display of Victorian buildings and contemporary architecture which gives travellers a unique and enchanting experience. Moreover, Leeds is home to the Royal Armouries, which has an array of the UK’s national collections of arms and armour.

There are many more things to do in Leeds city centre from exploring splendid galleries to indulging your taste buds in authentic food. Dive into vibrant cocktail bars and dance your heart out in bustling pubs. Leeds is indeed a shopper’s paradise. Shop your favourite brands and quirky finds from Trinity Leeds Mall or The Light and enjoy a cinema on a rainy afternoon. There are several things to do in Leeds city centre which would give you an experience of a lifetime.

Here are some of the things to do in Leeds city centre:

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Visit Leeds City Museum

Located in the heart of the city, Lead City Museum consists of six exciting galleries and interactive games to keep you excited throughout the day with your family. It is a treasure trove of incredible ancient collections including Leeds Tiger, Nesyamun and 3,000-year-old Egyptian Mummy.

Explore the vibrant world in the Life on Earth gallery and discover the history of Leeds, listen to the stories of various magnificent inventions and very first archaeological finds in Leeds Story Gallery. Spot the Ancient Worlds Gallery on the top floor which tells you the story of ancient civilisations including Egypt, Greece and Rome.

Opening hours: 
Tuesday to Friday (10.00 – 17.00), Saturday and Sunday (11.00 – 17.00), Monday (closed all day)

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Admire The modern Art At Leeds City Art Gallery

The contemporary art at Leed City Art Gallery would make you go wow. Discover the collection of 20th-century British Art, which is recognized as a collection of national importance by the British Government. It also includes 19th-century and even earlier artworks. Witnessing the temporary exhibitions and discovering the modern sculptures is one of the best things to do in Leeds city centre.

The gallery also treats us with a dynamic exhibition programme. Get to enjoy the Artspace by spending time with your family and get your hands on maps and newspapers to draw, interact and play to make a paper boat with the guidance of artist Karen Babyan. Make sure to admire the beauty of the Victorian Tiled Hall café as well.

Opening hours : Monday (closed all day), Tuesday – Saturday (10.00 – 17.00), Sunday (11.00 – 15.00)

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Take A Tour At Town Hall

Leeds Town Hall was opened by Queen Victoria and is listed as a Grade I building. On your tour to Town Hall, get to see the Bridewell Prison which is where the criminal Charlie Peace was held. Climb up to the top of the clock tower to witness the panoramic view of Leeds.

Leeds Town hall presents the best live film screenings, music, comedy and other city’s celebrated arts and cultural events, including the Leeds International piano competition, Leeds International Film festival, and Leeds International Concert Season. The building has three attractive manual organs, the largest of its kind in Europe.

The building is currently closed to the public as it is undergoing refurbishment.

Know More: Places To Visit In Leeds

Go For A Waterfront Walk Along The Leeds Liverpool Canal

The Leeds Liverpool Canal is the longest single canal built by a single company. Enjoy a stroll along the longest Leeds Liverpool Canal Towpath whilst looking at those pretty locks, eye-catching view of the river Aire and the lovely Yorkshire countryside.

The walk begins at Leeds station and takes you through the local landmarks such as Kirkstall Abbey, Kirkstall valley nature reserve and Bramley Hall Park.  As you cross the Pennines, take a look at the charming villages in Yorkshire Dales and pass through East Lancashire before you reach Liverpool. The picturesque view of the Calverley Woods and Buck Wood would calm your soul as you walk along the Leeds Liverpool canal.

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Learn The Art At Burlesque

Learning the art of Burlesque will help to add to your confidence and beauty. If you are enthusiastic about creating a WOW factor, then this is the right place for you. Learn to move your body like a Burlesque star, and explore your femininity in a secure and welcoming space. Discover yourself by learning the burlesque alter ego and get introduced to using the character to express yourself.

Get your hands on the four-week beginner course and become a confident and elegant burlesque star. This interactive course would amaze you in several ways and it is taught by well-respected industry professionals.


Admire Some Armour At Royal Armouries Museum

Royal Armouries Museum is the present-day home to the United Kingdom’s national collection of arms and armour and it is free of charge to visitors. Learn about how the arms and armour have shaped art, culture and society through the ages. Explore the five floors of galleries with 4,500 objects on display in the Royal Armouries Museum.

Get to experience the live combat demonstrations as staff bring to life how ancient arms and armour were used. There are several things to discover in the Royal Armouries Museum from Henry VII’s foot combat armour to the pulse rifle, one of the most iconic weapons of all time.


Stop at Leeds Central Library

Leeds Central Library, situated in the city centre on Calverley Street is a Public Library. The most recommended thing to do in Leeds city centre is to visit the library to discover the books, and admire the art and architecture. Step into the Grade II listed building to see the lovely staircase and colourful tiles all around the building.

It is a must-see to study, admire and relax in Tiled Hall Café while sipping your favourite beverage. The library provides free internet to the public, photocopying facilities and holiday activities for people of all ages. Get help from staff to get a piece of information you need. 

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Explore The Henry Moore Institute

The Henry Moore Institute is well renowned for its Research Libraries, Galleries and Archive and it welcomes you to study and relish sculptures from around the world. It also presents various temporary programmes of modern, historical and contemporary exhibitions and it would make you go more curious about what sculpture is, how the sculpture is made and the artists behind each sculpture.

The present exhibition, Lungiswa Gqunta: Sleep in Witness, would be delightful to watch for the visitors. This exhibition will run until 30 October 2022. The Henry Moore Institute is open all day and is accessible to visitors free of charge.

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Take a Leeds Kirkgate Market Heritage Tour

Kirkgate Market is the largest covered market located in Vicar Cave and George Street in the city centre of Leeds and it is listed as a Grade I building. The Kirkgate market attracts over 100,000 visitors a week with its 800 stalls. Explore this huge market with 170 traders selling a variety of food and goods.

Discover a wide variety of exotic vegetables, fruits, bakeries, fish markets and the meat sector. Taste the delicious foods starting from shawarma, and crepes to the yummy Yorkshire pudding in the Chinese market, a Polish deli. Step into a South Asian bazaar which is opened every Wednesday to buy Indian bracelets and silk sarees.

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Admire The Uk’s Tallest Mural ‘ Athena Rising ‘

Athena Rising is 47 meters high and towers above the city and it is the new giant mural from the street art muralist Nomad Clan. It took over two weeks and hundreds of cans of spray paint to complete the work.Get to see the mesmerising painting of owls which historically signifies intelligence, wealth, learning and knowledge, which is inspired by ancient practices and has been used symbolically by various cultures.

The owl painting on the tower block resonates with people and it is a huge statement piece for Leeds. The history and the detailing behind the painting would amaze you when you gaze at it, this would be one of the most exciting things to do in Leeds city centre.

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Wander Around Victoria Gate

The lively arcades of Victoria Gate full of aspirational goods are said to attract the huge population of wealthy students, local fashion shoppers and the highly affluent of Harrogate, Ilkley and York. Enjoy the capital city of British Columbia as you stroll on the seaside paths admiring flower-filled parks.

Lace up your shoes to enjoy the beauty of Victoria gate as you walk along the beautiful lush tree-lined streets. There are several easy walks in Victoria to make the most of your outdoor time memorable. The walks in Victoria include Songhees West song Walkway, Rockland walk, Dallas Road walk, Beacon Hill Park and much more. 

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Play A Game of Giant Chess

Head to Victoria Garden located in front of the Leeds City Art Gallery to play three giant chess sets whilst having fun with your loved ones. Enjoy the healthy competition between international players, and a battle between Bradford players and a 'Rest of the World' team for the Marsha Singh Trophy.

Hundreds of people gather to watch the engaging giant chess game, be one among them to enjoy it. Discover the curiosity of each player who sets a five-minute time limit to finish the rapid game. You would be surprised to see the chess grandmasters who dealt 20 players at the same time.


Try Leeds Escape Rooms

Experience one of the unique escape games in Leeds Escape room. Each adventurous escape game has been carefully curated to give each individual a thrilling experience. Satisfy your long-time thrilled horror yearning here in Leeds escape rooms.

The escape room is packed with fun, enthusiasm and entertainment where you and your teammates will find the clues, solve the puzzles and encounter challenges within the time limit.Work as a team to leap into new worlds completing ground-breaking missions. The Leeds Escape room game is not something you just sit and watch, it is something you have to put your actions and efforts into to experience real-life adventure.

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Explore Math City

Math City has been built with a vision to excite everyone in an engaging way including the young who are passionate about maths. In the modern world, Maths has influenced and created an impact in every way possible, from helping us describe nature to combat climate change and much more.

Math City offers a unique and innovative experience for the entire family. Dive into the engrossing world of maths exploration as you climb inside a giant kaleidoscope to explore the laser ring of fire in different shapes. Give your brain an interactive activity to solve the puzzle challenges. That is why it is considered to be the most engaging thing to do in Leeds city centre.

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Stroll Around Parks Square

Take a break from the hustle and bustle of the city and calm your mind by relaxing on the lawns whilst enjoying the scenic view of Georgian architecture that enhances the square. Explore Leeds Park square which is surrounded by heritage buildings consisting of offices of legal firms.

Munch your favourites from takeaway snacks and sit under a tree to admire the unique flora in the authentic English-style garden beds. Treat yourself to a relaxing walk around the park’s square as you enjoy the calmness of the atmosphere. Grab a seat on the park bench to feel the silence around you amid the buzzing city. 

Do Checkout: Leeds Museums

People Also Ask About Leeds

  1. What are the best places to visit in Leeds City Centre?

    1. Leeds Town Hall: Queen Victoria opened this Cuthbert Brodrick-designed icon and it still has an emblem of royal finery. Discover the endorsing three manual organs which weigh almost 70 tons. Organists travel from different parts of the world to perform on the instrument as they attend the Leeds Lunchtime Organ Music series.

    2. Kirkstall Abbey:
      Located amid vast parkland on the banks of River Aire, this medieval Cistercian Abbey is one of the most attractive and eccentric ruins in the country. It is well known for wildlife and greenery. The place tells you the story of the life of 12th-century monks. Pack a picnic and enjoy your feast as you relax with your family. It is one of the must-visit places to visit in Leeds city centre.

    3. Temple Newsam:
      Located in the heart of Leeds city, a trip to Temple Newsam will keep the entire family entertained. The estate consists of rolling parkland and a Tudor Jacobean mansion house, a working rare breed farm. Enjoy cycling, walking and horsing in the majestic beauty of Temple Newsam. Take your family here in the summertime to spend time in the lakeside garden or have fun in the adventure playground.

    4. Leeds Playhouse:
     If you are a theatre-lover then it is a perfect place to have some fun and it is one of the best places to visit in Leeds city centre. Leeds Playhouse is one of the most important theatres in the country. People gather here to tell and share stories as they engage in world-class theatre. Discover the vision and passion of Leeds Playhouse as they help the best companies and artists to create inspirational theatres.

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  2. Which are the best adventurous activities to do in Leeds?

    1. Quad Biking : Off-road quad biking is one of the best adventure things to do in Leeds city centre. Get your hands on a quad bike to experience the thrilling activity, it is a powerful bike but is easy to handle even for beginners as you ride through the Hazlewood castle. You will be dirty but elated, at the end that’s what matters the most.

    2. Ghost Hunting :
    Yes, the ghost hunting which you probably watched on TV shows and now it’s your time to try it out on your own. Enjoy the real and sensible Ghost hunting event at Armley Mills Industrial Museum, Leeds. Get a real-time experience of becoming a ghost hunter for the evening. Try both traditional and latest tech to make it more interesting.

    3. Hot Air Balloon Rides :
    Get ready to fly on the Leeds hot air balloon for a breath-taking airborne thriller. Enjoy the picturesque view of the Leeds city skyline to the west and marvellous countryside to the east as you fly on a balloon from Lothernton hall. This ride would give you an adorable view across splendid landscapes as you fly high and is one of the amazing things to do in Leeds city centre.

    4. Learn Survival Skills :
    Stay away from the bustling city and step into nature to experience God’s own country. So, if you are an adventurous person who is looking for a peaceful place to learn new things, then why not try your hands at bush crafts? Get to learn how to make a fire and a basic shelter, just in case you got stuck in a deserted place someday. Live for Today hold Bushcraft Sessions at Hazlewood Castle is the best place to visit in Leeds city centre to learn basic life skills.

    Recommended Read: Things To Do In Leeds With Kids
  3. What is so special about Leeds?

    Leeds is well renowned for its historical moments, modern and contemporary architecture and vibrant places. Leeds is the pioneer of X-ray technology and bestselling authors, it looks like the world would not be a better place without the presence of Leeds.

    Leeds is also said to be a rich industrial city. Leeds has one of the most popular parks in Europe, the Roundhay Park. Roundhay Park is one of the amazing places to visit in Leeds city centre. The first-ever film was made in Leeds, which is one of the most remarkable kinds of entertainment in the modern world.

    Suggested Read: Things To Do In Leeds During Christmas
  4. How Far is Leeds from London?

    The distance between London and Leeds is 37 miles, the road distance is 42.5 miles. It takes roughly two hours 15 minutes to reach Leeds from London and the only direct train available is with LNER. The train runs every two hours during peak hours.
  5. What is the best time to visit Leeds?

    The best time to visit Leeds is during summer and spring or from Mid-May to Mid-September or March, April and many as the weather is fairly good for outdoor activities. It is recommended to bring an umbrella, sweater or sweatshirt for evenings or cool days.

    Avoid visiting Leeds during October, November, December and January as the temperature would be extremely cold. Plan your visit accordingly to not miss out on any places to visit in Leeds city centre.

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