15 Best Things To Do In West Yorkshire, England

15 Best Things To Do In West Yorkshire, England

By will

Ah, West Yorkshire—a part of England that captures the spirit of the country.

From the rolling hills of the Yorkshire Dales to the bustling city of Leeds, this area has something for everyone.

Whether you’re looking for a relaxing countryside break or an exciting adventure, there’s plenty to do in West Yorkshire.

Here are 15 of the best things to do in this delightful part of England.

From visiting historic sites to exploring nature reserves, you’ll find something to suit every taste.

So, let’s get started and explore the best of West Yorkshire!

Visit the City of Bradford

City Hall
Photo by Roger Templeman

If you’re looking for a unique experience in West Yorkshire, England, then you must check out the City of Bradford – it’s definitely worth a visit!

Located in the heart of West Yorkshire, Bradford is a vibrant and bustling city with plenty of things to do and explore.

From the iconic City Hall, to the modern shopping centres, the award-winning National Science and Media Museum, and the picturesque City Park, Bradford has something to offer everyone.

Whether you’re looking for a day trip or a weekend away, there’s something here for you.

The city has a great selection of restaurants, pubs, and cafes, as well as plenty of cultural attractions to explore.

Take a guided tour of the city, or spend some time in the local parks and gardens.

There’s no shortage of activities to choose from, so you can be sure that you’ll have a great time in the cultural and historical heart of West Yorkshire.

Explore Leeds Castle

Leeds Castle, Kent
Photo by Christine Matthews

Experience the majesty of Leeds Castle, situated in the heart of Kent, and explore the 900-year history that has shaped its stunning grounds.

The castle is renowned for its unique and impressive architecture, consisting of a large keep and several towers that date back to the Medieval period.

Inside, you’ll find stunningly decorated rooms, a grand hall, and an incredible collection of art and artifacts.

Outside, you can wander the lush gardens and admire the beautiful lake, or take a boat ride around the castle.

Leeds Castle is also home to a number of events throughout the year, such as concerts, plays, and even a special outdoor cinema.

There’s something for everyone to enjoy at Leeds Castle, whether you’re looking for a romantic getaway or a fun family day out!

Take a Hike in the Yorkshire Dales

Yorkshire Dales, River Wharfe
Photo by David Dixon

Take a walk through the stunning Yorkshire Dales and explore its picturesque rolling hills, lush meadows, and ancient villages.

From the vibrant and bustling city of Leeds, the Yorkshire Dales offer a unique opportunity to immerse yourself in the beauty of nature.

Hiking is the best way to really take in the sights and sounds of the region, as the old-fashioned cobblestones, rolling hills, and crystal-clear rivers provide an ideal backdrop for a leisurely stroll.

You can explore the numerous trails that traverse the Yorkshire Dales, including the popular Ribblehead Viaduct and the Malham Tarn Trail.

Along the way, you’ll get to experience spectacular views of the surrounding area, and you can even stop to have a picnic in one of the many meadows.

Not only will you get to enjoy the natural beauty of the area, but you’ll also get to learn about the history of the area, as many of the villages in the Dales are centuries old.

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A hike in the Yorkshire Dales is a must-do for anyone wanting to explore the region and take in its beauty.

Tour Harewood House

Immerse yourself in history and culture at the majestic Harewood House, a stunning 18th-century estate nestled in the rolling hills of West Yorkshire, England.

Built in 1759 by Edwin Lascelles, the first Baron of Harewood, the estate has been home to the Lascelles family for over 250 years.

Today, visitors can explore the house and gardens, which are packed with a variety of attractions, including the beautiful Bird Garden, the family art collection, and the interactive Laser Quest.

The estate also hosts a number of special events, such as the annual Summer Festival, which features an exciting array of live music, performances, and activities.

Step back in time and enjoy a traditional afternoon tea in the Orangery, or explore the extensive grounds and marvel at the stunning views of the surrounding countryside.

Whether you’re looking to learn about the estate’s history or simply soak up its beauty, a tour of Harewood House is a must-see experience in West Yorkshire.

Visit Saltaire Village

Discover the fascinating Victorian industrial village of Saltaire, located in West Yorkshire, England.

Nestled on the banks of the River Aire, the village was created in 1853 by philanthropist Sir Titus Salt, and designed to be a model village for his mill workers.

The village is a perfect snapshot of a bygone era, and it’s easy to get lost in the atmosphere of its cobbled streets, historic buildings, and stunning architecture.

The village is home to a variety of attractions, including the 1853 Grade I listed Salts Mill, a shopping complex, and the Salts Diner, a traditional tearoom.

Visitors can also take a tour of the Saltaire United Reformed Church or explore the Robert’s Park, which offers stunning views of the River Aire.

History buffs can examine the many artifacts and memorabilia relating to the village’s past, or take a guided tour of the village.

Saltaire also hosts a variety of events throughout the year, from exhibitions to outdoor concerts.

Whether you’re a history buff or just looking for a pleasant day out, Saltaire Village is sure to provide a memorable experience for all.

Ride the Keighley & Worth Valley Railway

Experience the nostalgia of a bygone era aboard the Keighley & Worth Valley Railway, an historic railway line that runs through the village of Saltaire.

This 5-mile long railway line began operating in 1867, and it’s still running to this day. Passengers can ride in a 1950s-style train carriage, with the vintage look and feel of the train being a big part of the experience.

The route passes through several stations including Oakworth, Haworth, and Oxenhope, and it offers stunning views of the Yorkshire countryside.

The railway provides a unique opportunity to soak up the atmosphere of a bygone era, with its vintage locomotives and carriages.

The nostalgia of a journey on the Keighley & Worth Valley Railway will stay with you long after your trip is over.

Enjoy a Relaxing Afternoon at Lotherton Hall

For a peaceful day out, visitors can’t go wrong with a trip to Lotherton Hall in Leeds.

Situated in the rolling hills of West Yorkshire, this Edwardian estate offers plenty of activities for the whole family.

Stroll through the picturesque grounds, explore the Hall, and take in the stunning views of the surrounding countryside.

The Hall itself is a mix of traditional and modern, with Art Deco and Arts & Crafts influences evident throughout the building.

Inside, visitors can find a variety of galleries and exhibitions, including a permanent collection of artwork and furniture.

There’s also a café and a shop, as well as a play area for younger visitors.

Other attractions include a bird aviary, a walled garden, and a Victorian farm.

The Hall is open all year round, so visitors can enjoy the grounds regardless of the season.

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Visit the Bronte Parsonage Museum

Leaving the beautiful, relaxing atmosphere of Lotherton Hall, I decided to explore the West Yorkshire area further and visited the Bronte Parsonage Museum.

This museum is dedicated to the three Bronte sisters, Charlotte, Emily, and Anne, and their father, Patrick Bronte. It is a beautiful structure with a classic Georgian architecture, built in the late 18th century.

When I entered the museum, I was amazed by the original furniture, books, artworks, and personal possessions of the Bronte family. It was a unique experience to explore the living quarters of the famous sisters.

I also had the chance to explore the museum grounds and gardens, which are beautifully maintained. It was a great way to learn more about the Bronte family and their literary works.

Enjoy a Day at the National Coal Mining Museum

After a fascinating visit to the Bronte Parsonage Museum, I decided to discover more of the area’s history and headed to the National Coal Mining Museum.

Located in the village of Overton near Wakefield, this museum is a great place to explore the area’s coal mining heritage.

Upon arriving, I was taken aback by the sheer size of the museum. I was further impressed by the 30-acre site, which included a former colliery shaft and the preserved remains of an old mine.

Once I went inside, I was amazed by the vast array of exhibits and interactive displays.

I could learn about the history of coal mining, from the first colliery in the area to the modern day machinery used in the mines.

I was also able to take a trip 140 metres underground in a specially constructed lift, to experience what it was like to work in a mine.

After my visit, I had a much better understanding of the history of the region and the importance of coal mining in West Yorkshire.

Visit the Royal Armouries Museum

After a day learning the fascinating history of coal mining, my next stop was the Royal Armouries Museum in West Yorkshire, England. Just a short drive from the National Coal Mining Museum, the Royal Armouries Museum is the United Kingdom’s national museum of arms and armour.

I was eager to explore the museum’s collection of over 75,000 objects, which span over 2,000 years of history.

As soon as I entered the museum, I was in awe of the sheer size and scope of the collection. The museum is divided into five galleries, each of which is home to a different collection of weapons and armour.

I was particularly interested in the ‘War Gallery’ which houses a variety of arms and armour from the late-Middle Ages and Renaissance period. There were also a variety of interactive displays and activities, which made the visit even more interesting.

After spending a few hours exploring the exhibits, I left feeling inspired by the museum’s collection and the history it showcases.

Go Shopping in Leeds

Head to Leeds for a shopping adventure! Leeds is the perfect place to find unique souvenirs and gifts. Its vibrant city centre is full of boutique shops and high-street favourites. You’re sure to find something special, from designer boutiques to vintage stores. Leeds boasts a wide array of shops, catering to every budget. Plus, you can take a break from shopping and enjoy some of the city’s fantastic restaurants, bars, and cafes.

So, why not take a day trip to Leeds and treat yourself to an unforgettable shopping experience?

Take a Trip to Haworth

Escape to Haworth for a unique and memorable trip!

Haworth is an enchanting village in West Yorkshire, England, known for its cobblestone streets, charming shops, and beautiful scenery.

Take a walk along the village’s cobbled streets and explore the Haworth Parsonage, the former home of the Bronte sisters, where you can get a glimpse into the lives of the famous literary family.

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The village is surrounded by rolling hills, giving you stunning views of the moors.

Whether you’re looking for a relaxing day out or an exciting adventure, Haworth is the perfect destination.

Enjoy browsing the unique shops, savor a delicious meal in one of the many cafes, or take a hike around the area and explore the breathtaking countryside.

No matter what you do, you’re sure to have a memorable experience in Haworth.

Visit the Yorkshire Sculpture Park

Experience a unique and captivating day out at the Yorkshire Sculpture Park!

This open-air gallery, located near Wakefield, is the perfect place to explore the world of art.

There are over 80 sculptures from some of the most renowned modern and contemporary artists, with works from Henry Moore, Barbara Hepworth, and Ai Weiwei, among others.

Visitors can stroll through the beautiful gardens and discover the impressive sculptures, which are often integrated with the natural environment.

There are also interactive activities and trails that will help you learn more about the artwork.

The Yorkshire Sculpture Park hosts special events throughout the year, so you can get a real insight into the art scene.

And if you’re feeling adventurous, you can even take a hike around the grounds and explore the breathtaking landscapes.

Whether you’re a fan of art, or just looking for an inspiring day out, a trip to the Yorkshire Sculpture Park is sure to be an unforgettable experience.

Go Bird Watching in RSPB Fairburn Ings Nature Reserve

Immerse yourself in the beauty of nature at RSPB Fairburn Ings Nature Reserve! Located just south of Castleford, this nature reserve is the perfect spot for bird watching.

With a wide variety of habitats, including marshland, grassland, and wooded areas, it’s the perfect spot to observe a number of species of waterfowl, wading birds, and other avian species.

Whether you’re a beginner or a seasoned expert, you’ll be sure to spot some fascinating feathered friends.

RSPB Fairburn Ings also offers a great range of activities for visitors, such as guided walks, bird watching courses, and even a bird hide.

The hide is the perfect spot to observe wildlife up close, and you might even be lucky enough to see some of the resident otters!

With so much to explore, RSPB Fairburn Ings is the perfect place to get lost in nature and take in the stunning beauty of the Yorkshire countryside.

Take a Tour of the Bramham Park Estate

After the tranquility of bird watching in RSPB Fairburn Ings Nature Reserve, why not take a trip to the magnificent Bramham Park Estate and explore its grounds?

This grand historic house and estate is located in the scenic village of Bramham in West Yorkshire, England, and offers a great day out for families.

Once you arrive at the estate, you will be able to take a guided tour of the house and grounds. You will learn all about the history of the estate, and even see some of the original paintings and furnishings from the 18th century.

The grounds are also an absolute delight, with many stunning gardens, landscapes, and even a lake with its own flock of swans. On the tour, you will get to learn about the history of the estate and how it has evolved over the years. You will also get to explore the beautiful grounds and discover all of its hidden gems.

At the end of the tour, you can enjoy a lovely afternoon tea in the estate’s tearoom.

This is a great way to experience a piece of England’s history and have a wonderful day out with friends and family. Bramham Park Estate is an amazing place to explore and you won’t regret taking the time to visit!

Conclusion

I’ve had an amazing time exploring West Yorkshire.

From the City of Bradford to the Yorkshire Sculpture Park, there’s something for everyone in this beautiful part of England.

Whether you’re looking for an exciting adventure or a relaxing break, you’ll find plenty of activities to keep you busy.

From exploring Leeds Castle or taking a hike in the Yorkshire Dales to visiting Saltaire Village or Haworth, there’s something for everyone.

So if you’re looking for a great British getaway, West Yorkshire should definitely be on your list!

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About the author

Will is an avid hillwalker and traveler. You may find him surfing in Cornwall or hiking in the Yorkshire Dales.