Interactive museums are so much more fun for kids and the live displays of jousting and falconry at Leeds Royal Armouries are sure to capture their attentions. The impressive collection of armour and weapons from all around the globe will delight anyone with an interest in history and younger kids will get swept up in the character talks that bring the stories to life.
Royal Armouries, Armouries Dr, Leeds, +44 113 220 1808
Leeds City Museum
Another great option for a rainy day is the Leeds City Museum with its varied exhibits and interactive displays. During the holidays there is always a full programme of activities tailored towards children and there’s even weekly craft sessions, musical workshops and multi-sensory mornings for families with babies and toddlers. Older kids will love exploring exhibits about the Ancient Egyptians, fairy tales and skeletons.
Leeds City Museum, Millennium Square, Leeds, +44 113 224 3732
Curious about Leeds
If you want to get your family excited about getting out and about and exploring Leeds, the Curious about Leeds duo of self-guided walks is a great place to start. Each booklet comes with detailed instructions, maps and stories to learn along the route and require around two hours to complete. The first walk starts at the art gallery and takes you through the Victorian Arcades and Kirkgate Market before ending up at the waterfront, while the second option starts by the River Aire and guides you through the City Square to finish at St Paul’s House.
Leeds Treasure Hunt Trail
Another option for exploring the city streets, the Leeds Treasure Hunt Trail is great fun for all the family. The perfect way to get your children interested in walking around the city streets, the trail leads you on a quest for buried treasure through a downloadable map that’s packed full of clues. The trail starts at the train station and takes in a variety of parks, squares and interesting landmarks along the way.
Meanwood Valley Urban Farm
Anyone with kids who love animals should make a beeline to Meanwood Valley Urban Farm, a 24-acre conservation site close to the city centre. The diverse range of animals on the farm include alpaca, donkeys, rabbits, goats and sheep with opportunities for petting and holding some of the animals. There’s also a programme of seasonal events to keep your eyes peeled for.
Meanwood Valley Urban Farm, 39 Sugar Well Rd, Leeds, +44 113 262 9759
The Rainbow Factory
Kids under 10 will be in their element at the Rainbow Factory, a unique venue that focuses on storytelling through theatre, imaginative play and creative arts. Activities vary throughout the year but include performances in their Enchanted Theatre, craft workshops, science experiments, creative games and much more. There’s something for every child here, whether they want to learn to be a superhero or have a go at magic tricks.
Another great choice for creative children (and their parents) is to spend a day creating your own pottery. At Jackrabbits studio in Oakwood, both adults and children can choose their favourite ceramic pot, mug or bowl to paint. Once you’ve finished your creation, hand it in and pay and return a week later to collect it once it’s been fired and glazed. You could even get the whole family involved to create your very own dinnerware collection!
Jackrabbits, 633A Roundhay Road, Leeds, +44 113 318 9315