Leeds is one of the largest cities in the UK, with a compact city centre, brimming with culture, entertainment and nightlife. 2013 has seen millions of pounds ploughed into re-developing central Leeds, with a huge shopping centre and the opening of the much anticipated First Direct Arena. The city attracts visitors from all over the UK, and is especially popular with students. Over the past century, Leeds has developed from a provincial industrial town into a major centre for finance, culture, media and sport. A number of museums, music venues and independent galleries are dotted throughout the city.
As Leeds is a relatively compact city, an economy will be perfect for nipping round its city centre’s one-way system.
Driving in Leeds Bradford
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Important things to note
Leeds’ one way system can be frustrating to first time visitors, so make sure you plan your route and use a sat-nav whenever possible.
Leeds is very well connected to all surrounding motorways, so you can reach nearby towns and attractions very easily.
The Inner Ring Road, which runs around the northern part of the city centre, is notorious for its heavy rush hour traffic. Avoid if you can on mornings.
Highlights & Hotspots
Shopaholics are spoilt for choice in Leeds, with Harvey Nichols being the crown jewel of Briggate High Street. Victoria Quarter is where to head for high end products, with the likes of Vivienne Westwood and Jo Malone present. Try the Corn Exchange for hip, independent stores.
The impressive new shopping centre, Leeds Trinity, is the place to go for most big high street brands and the ground breaking food court offers street food from countries such as Vietnam, Mexico and the U.S.
Leeds nightlife attracts people from all over the UK and is a popular choice for students. Head to trendy Call Lane for a cocktail or two, or for somewhere a little more picturesque and chilled out, head to the rapidly expanding Granary Wharf area. Clubbers might want to check out Mint Club. Small and intimate with a great vibe, it hosts some big names from the DJ world.
Leeds has some fantastic restaurants to suit all pallets. The Town Hall Tavern offers delicious gastro pub grub that won’t break the bank, their signature flat iron steak is a best seller. Sukhothai on South Parade offers delicious Thai cuisine in a sumptuous setting, and lovers of Italian food should not miss San Carlo, located on the same street.
The 13,500 capacity First Direct Arena has hosted sell out shows for the likes of Bruce Springsteen, Elton John and Andre Rieu, with Robbie Williams, Strictly Come Dancing and X-Factor all pencilled into their 2014 calendar.
Leeds Bradford Airport is relatively small, not usually congested and is conveniently located near to both city centres near the commuter town of Yeadon.
The airport is close to the A658 Victoria Avenue, which takes you south towards the outer ring road. To get to Leeds, you must take the A65 New Road Side, as it goes through the northern suburbs towards the city centre.