Ilkley Library.

Things to do in Ilkley

Polly Checkland Harding

Ilkely in West Yorkshire has been a settlement since the Roman era. Close to both Bradford and Saltaire, the picturesque spa town gives you easy access to the moors for walking, but its vibrant cultural life is not to be underestimated. The area is particularly well known for the annual Ilkley Literature Festival, which attracts crowds from all over the UK and big hitters on the literary scene. Dive into the local activities such as Ilkley Lido, a Grade II listed outdoor pool that’s one of the most scenic swims you can find in Yorkshire, or try the small but perfectly formed tapas plates at La Casita, which make a delicious lunch or dinner.

Alternatively, head for one of Ilkey’s double Michelin Star offerings, The Box Tree. This exceptional restaurant has been serving acclaimed food since the 1960s, and yet continues to keep things exciting and fresh in the present day. For more of our top things to do in Ilkley, read on.

Discover our top picks

Activity 26 September–17 October 2021, from £150

Pattern drafting (The Stitch Society at Salts Mill)

Consolidate your sewing skills this Autumn, with a pattern matching workshop from the Stitch Society at the textiles heritage site Salts Mill.

Bradford District Guides

Bradford Cathedral

Walks in Bradford

A round-up of the best walks in Bradford, including the city centre, its parks, and around key attractions by Creative Tourist.

Walks in Ilkley

Walks in Ilkley

Our top picks of walks in Ilkley, be it a tame stroll in-and-out of the cultural hot-spots or a well-performed hike.

Salts Mill

Things to do in Saltaire

There are plenty of things to do in the village of Saltaire, so we’ve rounded up some of our favourites in this guide.

The Alhambra

Theatres in Bradford

As the birthplace of J.B. Priestly and the home of the Alhambra, the city’s longstanding thespian tradition ensures there are no lack of theatres in Bradford.


Music Venues in Bradford

Bradford has a reputation for intimate gigs and rowdy rock nights, we’ve rounded up the best places to see both in our guide of music venues in Bradford.

Science and Media Museum

Museums in Bradford

As a northern city with a culturally rich past, Take some time to explore the weird, wonderful and wacky variety of museums in Bradford.