City tour

Three people chatting as they walk through a shopping arcade with Victorian architecture

Leeds is a lively but compact city and the University campus is just a 10-minute walk from the city centre.

 Here are our top picks of places to explore, all located within walking distance of our campus.

Millennium Square

Two people sat on a wall, chatting in a city centre park surrounded by plants and shrubs

Situated in the heart of the Civic Quarter, Millennium Square is surrounded by some of Leeds’ most iconic buildings, including Leeds City Museum, the Central Library and Leeds Town Hall.

It’s part of the city’s cultural hub - the Carriageworks Theatre hosts some of Leeds’ best art and culture events such as Leeds Literature Festival and Leeds Young Film Festival, and Leeds Art Gallery and the Henry Moore Institute are just around the corner. 

Merrion Street and Northern Quarter

A group of people sitting in a rooftop bar and laughing

Merrion Street and the Northern Quarter have some of the best independent restaurants and bars in Leeds.

Whether you’re looking for food from around the world or for a fun night out at a traditional pub or cocktail bar, the Northern Quarter has something to suit everybody.

Victoria Quarter

Shoppers walking through an ornate shopping arcade

For a vibrant shopping scene with stunning architecture, look no further than the historic Victoria Quarter and its modern neighbour Victoria Gate.

Originally designed in 1898 by the renowned architect Frank Matcham, the beautiful Victoria Quarter shopping arcades feature Britain’s largest stained glass roof covering.

Kirkgate Market

Three people sat at a picnic bench in an indoor market sharing food

Kirkgate Market is Europe’s largest covered market and is a key part of the independent shopping and food scene in Leeds. The market opened in 1857 and is home to the first ever Marks & Spencer.

It’s a traditional market with businesses that have been there for generations and it also has an international street food market and hosts events such as record fairs, food and drink festivals and music concerts.

Kirkgate is next to the bus station and is a short distance from the Leeds Playhouse, one of the largest producing theatres in the north.

Leeds Corn Exchange

Inside the Leeds Corn Exchange with brightly coloured shop doors

Leeds Corn Exchange is a grade I listed building  with an impressive domed roof. Built in 1864, this former corn exchange now houses independent and specialist shops and cafes.

Leeds Dock

A small group of people sat on a yellow boat in a city centre, chatting and laughing dock

Leeds Dock has a great waterfront setting with lots of cafés and bars and it’s a hub for the tech, media and creative industries, including Sky’s Digital offices.  

The Royal Armouries Museum holds an amazing collection of arms and armour including swords dating back to the Middle Ages and the world’s only suit of armour for an elephant.

A great way to travel there is by catching a water taxi from Leeds Station. You can also begin the Waterfront Art Trail from here to explore some of the city’s street art

The Calls

An old brick building with a mural painted on the side, with ornate domed roofs of other buildings in the background

Leeds is a welcoming and inclusive city with a reputation for great nightlife. Call Lane in the heart of the city centre is one of the most popular nightspots in the city, it’s a great place to try one of Leeds’ many independent bars and cafes.

Trinity Leeds shopping centre

People walking in the Trinity centre. A neon sign says Trinity Kitchen

Trinity Leeds is Leeds’ largest shopping centre. It’s the perfect spot for some retail therapy with over 120 shops, cafes and restaurants including an Everyman Cinema. Trinity Kitchen offers a diverse range of international street food so you can explore different flavours under one roof.

City Square

A large statue of a man on a horse and a building in the background

City Square is right next to Leeds train station and the location for Channel 4’s national headquarters.

Leeds has great transport connections, you can travel by train to York, Sheffield and Manchester in less than hour or London in just over 2 hours. You can also explore the region’s tourist attractions such as the Yorkshire Dales and the famous seaside towns of Whitby and Robin Hood’s Bay.

Headingley and Hyde Park

Three people walking through a residential street on a sunny day

Just a two-mile bus ride from the city centre and close to campus, Headingley and Hyde Park are at the heart of Leeds’ large student community.

The area is home to two historic cinemas, Cottage Road Cinema and Hyde Park Picture House, and independent music venue, the Brudenell Social Club.

You’ll also find plenty of green spaces, sport and outdoor venues such as Headingley Rugby Stadium, the University’s Brownlee Centre and Cycle Circuit and Hyde Park skatepark.