Things to do in Leeds

Carmel Smickersgill, Tours & Activities Editor

There’s plenty of things to do in Leeds, a hub of northern creativity, the metropolis of Yorkshire and one of the greenest cities in the UK. With a population of over 750,000 and ambitious regeneration plans, the city is one of the largest and most rapidly developing in the country. Tech companies are formed, record labels are created and arts organisations promote social change. No wonder then, that this climate produces countless celebrations of the city’s cuisine, culture and history. There’s lots of things to do in Leeds too with a packed calendar of events means that the city centre has a constant buzz of activity. Home to Opera North and the West Yorkshire Playhouse (and the mighty Leeds United!) you can be sure to find plenty to do. Leeds prides itself on its rich cultural diversity and history, playing host to the decades-old West Indian carnival. The nightlife has an unmistakably northern vibe; whether you choose to have a chilled one in a boutique bar owned by the local brewery, or dance till the AM at one of the DIY club nights showcasing the city’s vibrant live music scene.

Discover our top picks

Kannan Arunasalam: The Tent at The Tetley
Exhibitions 16 February–2 June 2019, FREE

Kannan Arunasalam: The Tent at The Tetley

‘Kannan Arunasalam: The Tent’ at The Tetley explores the lasting impact of the civil war that raged in Sri Lanka for over 25 years, claiming the lives of an estimated 80,000-100,000 people and leading to the forced disappearance of more than 20,000 Tamils.

Music 20 March 2019, from £30

Ólafur Arnalds at Leeds Town Hall

Currently touring his acclaimed album ‘re:member’, BAFTA-winning artist Ólafur Arnalds will perform at Leeds Town Hall on the 20 March.

Childrens 2–12 May 2019, from £00.00

Leeds International Festival 2019

Leeds International Festival, the UK’s leading metropolitan festival of new ideas and innovation, is back for its second year, this time featuring more than 50 events and 40 speakers over 15 days.

Holly Hendry / Taus Makhacheva at The Tetley, Liverpool Biennial 2019 touring programme
Exhibitions 22 June 2019–3 May 2020, FREE

Holly Hendry / Taus Makhacheva at The Tetley

As part of the Liverpool Biennial touring programme, The Tetley is hosting works by artists Holly Hendry and Taus Makhacheva.

Things to do right now

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Activity 1 December 2018–30 March 2019, from £12

The Runaway Brewery – Tour & Tasting

Education 9–30 March 2019, FREE

Playfield at Mayfield

Zig Zag Atelier Bebop at Common Bar, Manchester
Exhibitions 28 February–31 July 2019, FREE

Zig Zag Atelier Bebop at Common Bar

Manchester Jewish Museum - Daily Tours
Activity 21 February–31 May 2019, FREE

Manchester Jewish Museum – Daily Tours