Things to do in Halifax

Kristy Stott, Theatre Editor

Once the heart of the English wool trade, the charming Yorkshire town of Halifax is home to some of the best-preserved Georgian and Victorian buildings in the North. A historic market, mill and minster town, the fascinating story of Halifax is revealed through its remarkable architecture, arts and culture. Making somewhat of a comeback in recent years, Halifax is a destination for foodies, music-lovers and culture-seekers; the picturesque town has even provided the backdrop for award-winning BBC TV shows. There are so many things to do, see and shout about in Halifax.

The impressive Piece Hall – a magnificent Grade I listed Georgian masterpiece and the oldest remaining cloth hall in Europe – has recently undergone a period of restoration. Its huge open-air courtyard and eclectic mix of galleries, independent retailers, eateries and bars, and the adjoining Square Chapel Arts Centre, make it a must-see heritage and cultural destination. Westgate Arcade, housing independent retailers and boutiques, and Halifax Borough Market, with its sprawling collection of stalls, offer wonderfully distinct shopping experiences.

Just a short distance away is Eureka! The National Children’s Museum. Families can explore over 400 interactive activities over eight different zones. Unique, interesting and fun – with a changing exhibition programme – there’s always something new to experience every time you visit. Nearby you’ll also find Holdsworth House Hotel, the filming destination for BAFTA-winning TV series Last Tango in Halifax, and the beautiful Shibden Hall as featured in BBC period drama Gentleman Jack, which tells the story of the Hall’s most notable resident, Anne Lister.

Sitting on the edge of the town centre, Dean Clough, which was once the largest carpet factory in the world, is now a thriving community of arts venues and businesses. You’ll find The Viaduct Theatre (home to the Northern Broadsides) and IOU Theatre’s HQ here too. Whether you’re looking for a bustling town centre or inspiring natural landscape, Halifax is in easy proximity of everything. This is the beauty of the area. Just a short drive out will take you to the big hills, rugged trails and panoramic views of Calderdale.

Our top picks

Pollino

Pollino, WARLEY ROAD,, HALIFAX,, HX1 3SU - Visit now

Situated in the heart of Halifax, Pollino offers an authentic Italian al la carte menu paired with an extensive wine list from Italy’s diverse regions. The large, welcoming hospitality team are a friendly, hand-picked crew of passionate people to recreate the genuine essence of Italy.

Courtesy of Pollino

Revo Records

Revo Records, 26 Westgate, Halifax, West Yorkshire, HX1 1DJ - Visit now

 Based in Westgate Arcade, Halifax, Revo records is an  iconic shop that prides itself on stocking an eclectic selection of vinyl records,  CDs, DVDs as well as vinyl album covers; the latest new releases alongside second-hand vinyl. Revo Records is certainly holding up the baton for music and flying the flag for indie record shops in Halifax.

Revo Records, Halifax
Image courtesy of Revo Records

Lightcliffe Tea Rooms

Lightcliffe Tea Rooms, 101 Wakefield Road, Halifax, HX3 8SH - Visit now

 Lightcliffe Tea rooms is a firm favourite for an afternoon tea, washed down with a pot of freshly brewed, or if you’re in the mood a glass of chilled fizz. The stripped wooden floors and vintage style wooden furniture creates a homely feel and it’s set up so that a party or larger family can be as easily accommodated as a table of two.

Courtesy of Lightcliffe Tea Rooms

The Book Corner

The Book Corner, Piece Hall, Halifax, West Yorkshire, HX1 1RE - Visit now

Nestled neatly in the northwest corner of The Piece Hall The book corner ,is an independent and contemporary bookshop stocking a variety of handpicked works of fiction and non-fiction pieces for book lovers of all ages. The book corner is also often host to a variety of events including poetry readings, book signings and children’s story time sessions.

The Book Corner
The Book Corner

Pride & Provenance

Pride & Provenance, Piece Mill, 25 to 27 Horton St, Halifax, West Yorkshire, HX1 1QE

During your jaunt to the marvellous Piece Hall, why not step over the road and into Pride & Provenance, a superb cafe and wine bar offering a range of delicious charcuterie and award winning local cheese.

Pride & Provenance
Pride & Provenance

The Lantern

The Lantern, 13-15 Alexandra Street, Halifax, HX1 1BS - Visit now

This urban, independent live music venue with a great little pub attached, has been a big player in Halifax’s burgeoning music scene hosting some incredible acts since it opened in November 2017 such as Martha Reeves & The Vandellas, Baxter Dury, The Wedding Present, , The Virginmarys, John Bramwell and many other acts.

The Lantern, Halifax
Image courtesy of The Lantern, Halifax.

Halifax Borough Market

Halifax Borough Market, 31-32 Market Stall,, Halifax, HX1 1DZ - Visit now

With a whopping 179 stalls and 47 external retailers, you’ll find family butchers and fruit and veg traders alongside stalls offering exotic produce and foreign delights within the grand and historic Halifax Borough Market. A real treasure trove of produce – whether you’re looking for brandy snaps or black pudding – you’ll find a broad selection of goods all under one roof.

Halifax Borough market
Bruce Fitzgerald

The Piece Hall

The Piece Hall, The Piece Hall, Blackledge, Halifax, West Yorkshire, HX1 1RE - Visit now

One of the most extraordinary pieces of arctitecture in Britain, this monumental building embodies Halifax’s impressive Georgian heritage, and played a pivotal role at the centre of the world’s booming woollen trade in the late eighteenth and early nineteenth century. The Piece Hall also boasts a world-class events programme of music, dance, film, and visual art for up to 7500 people at a time.

The Piece Hall

Eureka! The National Children’s Museum

Eureka! The National Children’s Museum, Discovery Road, Halifax, HX1 2NE - Visit now

Eureka! offers visitors more of an immersive and hands-on experience than a traditional museum. Explore digital exhibitions and learn more about the latest interactive technology in the Spark Gallery. With a regularly changing exhibition programme – there something different to experience every time you visit.

Eureka!
Eureka

More West Yorkshire events

MusicHalifax
Pixies at The Piece Hall

Legendary American rock band Pixies are bringing their unmistakable and era-defining sound to The Piece Hall.

from £47.50
Ian Humphreys
LiteratureWest Yorkshire
Poetry at the Dusty Miller

Poetry at the Dusty Miller is a brand-new night with invited readers, organised by Carcanet-published Carola Luther and Judith Willson in the Coiners’ Room in the Mytholmroyd pub.

free entry

Where to go in West Yorkshire

Huddersfield Art Gallery courtesy of Kirklees Council
Huddersfield
Gallery
Huddersfield Art Gallery

Based in the town centre and easily accessible, Huddersfield Art Gallery is home to an extensive and stunning collection of paintings, drawings and sculptures.

West Yorkshire
Museum
Bankfield Museum

Situated in the beautiful gardens of Akroyd Park, Bankfield Museum is a grand Victorian villa with permanent exhibitions of textiles and costume, as well as varying temporary exhibitions also.

West Yorkshire
Gallery
Open Gallery

A beautiful and varied collection of contemporary art from across the UK. Their regular exhibitions are both seasonal and thematic and always worth visiting…

Huddersfield
Gallery
AC Gallery

What was once, in the 1950s, a family ran art shop, has since evolved through the generations into a successful series of galleries across the north.

Wakefield
Music venue
Jock’s Cavern

High quality cocktails and vibrant live music is what makes Jocks Cavern so popular. This underground bar offers an intimate and effervescent atmosphere to indulge in their well-stocked bar.

Wakefield
Bar or Pub
Now Serving

In the heart of Wakefield this basement bar, ‘high end, low brow’ by their own description, remains a popular watering hole.

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Waterton Park Hotel
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Shot down Huddersfield Narrow Canal
Walks in Huddersfield

Surrounded by the Yorkshire countryside, Huddersfield is steeped in history and holds its own when it comes to arts and culture. Our Walks in Huddersfield Guide takes in many of the sites plus some glorious green spaces and parks.

Walks in Wakefield

A round-up of the best walks in Wakefield, including the town centre, official tours and the surrounding area by Creative Tourist.

Walks in Halifax.
Walks in Halifax

A round-up of the best walks in Halifax – including the cultural sites, parks and surrounding countryside by Creative Tourist.

Hebden Bridge
Walks in Hebden Bridge

A round-up of the best walks in Hebden Bridge, including the town centre, official tours and the surrounding area by Creative Tourist.

Byrom Arcade
Shopping in West Yorkshire

Our guide to the best shops in West Yorkshire, including independents and markets in Hebden Bridge, Huddersfield, Halifax and Wakefield.

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Make the most of the sun in one of Manchester's many top-notch beer gardens.

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