Day trips from Leeds
Day trips from Leeds
Here are some ideas for day trips from Leeds.
You’ll be back in time for dinner and a show!
Surround yourself in Yorkshire’s literary history at the idyllic village of Haworth, famously known as the home of the Brontë’s. A trip to this charming village surrounded by rough, brooding moorland is sure to leave you inspired.
Haworth is also becoming a haven for independent businesses, and has plenty of art galleries and an array of places to eat and drink. While you are there, don’t miss the Brontë Parsonage Museum and the Keighley Worth Valley Railway, must see attractions whilst in Haworth. You can even hop on the Brontë Bus B3 between Keighley, Haworth and Hebden Bridge, and see the landscape that inspired Charlotte, Emily and Anne.
HOW TO GET THERE: Take the train from Leeds Train Station to Keighley. These run frequently and take around 25 minutes. Then, hop on the Keighley Worth Valley Railway steam train from Keighley to Haworth for a memorable experience. Be sure to check their timetable on the website.
Otley Chevin Forest
Hike or cycle through the Otley Chevin Forest for stunning Wharfedale vistas from the 282-metre Surprise View summit. Be sure to visit Otley too, a quaint market town in a picturesque setting. Take a wander around through the cobbled streets and browse independent shops selling antiques, unique gifts, art and jewellery. Discover the town’s rich history, home of the country’s first interior designer Thomas Chippendale, the Wharfedale Press that revolutionised the printing industry, and quarries that helped build the very foundations of our democracy at the Palace of Westminster.
HOW TO GET THERE: Take the X84 bus from Leeds Bus Station in the city centre. The X84 bus service connects Leeds to Otley which takes 45 minutes and passes along the lower slopes of the Otley Chevin Forest Park. Please check the X84 timetable on the WYMetro website.
Set out on a scenic walk on the famous Ilkley Moor (“bar t’at”) and find the Cow and Calf; a large rock formation consisting of an outcrop and boulder, also known as Hangingstone Rocks. Once you’ve worked up an appetite, call into the famous Bettys Tea Room for some quintessentially English refreshments and explore the town. Ilkley has a street market three times a week, a monthly Farmers’ Market, a wide range of specialist shops and award-winning bakeries and butchers – so you can sample some of Yorkshire’s favourite culinary specialties.
HOW TO GET THERE: take the train from Leeds Station to Ilkley. These run frequently and take 25 minutes. If you’d prefer to take the bus, it is the bus X84 and takes approximately 1 hour. Please check the X84 timetable on the WYMetro website.
SUNNY BANK MILLS
Recently featured on the BBC’s Sewing Bee and former filming location of Yorkshire TV’s Emmerdale and Heartbeat, Sunny Bank Mills in Farsley, Pudsey – yes, the birthplace of Pudsey the Bear – is a must-see for every visitor to Leeds.
The former textile mill offers an eclectic mix of heritage, leisure, and arts and culture, with its very own gallery and in-house tearoom – both of which are dog-friendly – serving freshly ground coffee, pots of tea and delicious homemade cake.
HOW TO GET THERE: Take the Northern Rail train to New Pudsey, then walk 1 mile to the mill. Alternatively, take the 508 bus from City Square directly to Sunny Bank.
A short bus journey will take you out of the city, where you’ll find rolling hills of roaming cows, horses and sheep, and country parks with quaint trickling streams cherished by locals. One of which, Oakwell Hall and Country Park, sits on the edge of Leeds by the Kirklees village of Birstall.
Frequented by Emily Bronte, and the filming location of many a period drama, Oakwell Hall is widely adored by dog-walkers and nature-lovers alike. The restored gardens and 17th century are are well worth a wander to bring your romantic film dreams to life. And after a leisurely walk, stop by the The Oaktree Café for refreshments.
HOW TO GET THERE: Take the 254 or 255 bus to Gomersal from Leeds City Centre, or the 200 or 299 bus to Birstall, then walk for a half a mile until you have reached your destination!
Bolton Abbey lies in the heart of the Yorkshire Dales near Skipton. The Yorkshire estate of the Duke of Devonshire offers a fun family day out. At the heart of Bolton Abbey Estate lies the Priory Church and Ruins of an Augustinian Priory in its beautiful riverside setting. With seating both in and around the church, it’s the perfect location to sit back and admire the view.
Synonymous with Bolton Abbey, the stepping stones were the crossing point for the lay workers at the Priory. The 60 stepping stones offer a fun and challenging experience for today’s visitor. For those who do not wish to cross via the stepping stones there is a bridge offering a safe and dry passage. North of the stepping stones is a large beach area popular with visiting families. This is the perfect spot to enjoy a picnic, build sandcastles have a little paddle in the river or simply relax and take in the view of the Priory.
HOW TO GET THERE: Bolton Abbey lies just off the A59, about an hour-long drive from Leeds City Centre.
The Yorkshire Dales
The Yorkshire Dales has many moods; it can be wild and windswept or quietly tranquil. The area includes some of the finest limestone scenery in the country, from crags and paths to a maze of caves underground. Each dale has its own unique character, set against open heather moorland with quaint stone-built villages and spectacular waterfalls and rock formations. Find out more about the Dales here.
HOW TO GET THERE: Take the famous Leeds-Settle-Carlisle railway, one of the most spectacular train journeys in England, which cuts through the National Park using tunnels and viaducts, including the iconic Ribblehead.
The Yorkshire Coast
The Yorkshire Coast is home to one of the first seaside resorts in the UK, the historic spa town of Scarborough, as well as dreamy Whitby and the golden sands of Filey.
You’ll also find some of the most picturesque villages in the UK, with dramatic landscapes and sea views, the coast makes the perfect escape from the hustle and bustle of everyday life. Each coastal villages offers a variety of places to stay, fabulous places to eat and drink, as well as lots more to explore. From relaxing walks to adrenaline-filled water sports, it’s bound to be a trip to remember.
HOW TO GET THERE: Trains run from Leeds to York, where you can transfer to a Transpennine Express service through to Scarborough. Or, you can enjoy the 3-hour scenic route through the North York Moors on the 843 Coastliner bus from Leeds Bus Station directly to Scarborough.
Saltaire is a UNESCO World Heritage Site, thanks to its preservation as a Victorian industrial village. Mill owner Sir Titus Salt built the village for his workers, and today, Saltaire attracts millions of visitors to its magnificent architecture and visitor attractions.
Salts Mill is a place for art, dining and shopping in one stunning historic building. Parking and entrance is free. Inside you can admire our very big collection of works by David Hockney, be inspired by the very best in independent retail and enjoy our bustling restaurants and cafes. You can also learn about the history of the Mill in our People and Process and Saltaire History exhibitions.
HOW TO GET THERE: Trains run frequently from Leeds Train Station to Saltaire and take approximately 15 minutes.
THE PIECE HALL
The sole survivor of the great eighteenth century northern cloth halls, The Piece Hall in Halifax, Calderdale dates all the way back to 1779. The sprawling secular square now houses history exhibits, boutique shops, bars, and restaurants, with events going on year-round.
So, whether you’re a history buff, a keen shopper, or an avid photographer, this Georgian architectural masterpiece might just surprise you.
HOW TO GET THERE: Take the Northern Rail train from Leeds to Halifax. The Piece Hall is then just a 5 minute walk from the train station.
Hebden Bridge is known for its love of the arts, with festivals and events all year round. Not long ago, it was a small mill town producing wool and woollen goods. During the 70s and 80s the town was repopulated by a motley mixture of hippies, artists, writers, photographers, musicians, alternative practitioners, teachers, green and New Age activists.
Hebden Bridge is the obvious destination for those wanting to escape the cities because life here can be a fine mixture of the urban and rural. The water from the hills powered the first mills of the Industrial Revolution. Yet, ten minutes from the town centre and you can be walking alone by the river in one of the many wooded valleys. And a half an hour’s walk uphill and you can be rambling across heather moorland.
To get the full Hebden Bridge experience head to Gibson Mill, renovated with sustainable energy from the Hebden Water, sun and wood, and now with a cafe.
HOW TO GET THERE: Northern Rail trains frequently run between Leeds and Hebden Bridge.
Skipton offers some of the finest charity shopping around on its winding streets overlooking the canal. Immense history, a rich culture, independent shops, food & drink galore, a famous market, an iconic castle, stunning countryside and, perhaps most of all, friendly, proud and passionate Yorkshire people.
HOW TO GET THERE: Trains run along the scenic route to Skipton from Leeds daily.
Neighbouring Cities and Towns
Leeds is aptly located between London and Edinburgh, making it the perfect place to pause and experience a bit of Yorkshire for yourself. Historic train lines and express bus routes transport visitors between Leeds and its neighbouring towns every single day, so there are plenty of opportunities to see a bit more of Yorkshire, whether that be Bradford (the UK City of Culture 2025), Huddersfield, York or Sheffield.
Head to Our Neighbours page to find out where your visit could take you.
Explore the beauty of the surrounding countryside and coast with a private tour from BOBH – Day Tours of Yorkshire. Picking up from a location of your choosing in Leeds, choose a tour of the Yorkshire Dales, North York Moors, Haworth or Whitby. These tours are dog friendly too!