The summer holidays are an undeniably good time. Warm weather, long days, and the alluring prospect of weeks without a single piece of work to turn in or deadlines to meet. Blissful, right? Occasionally, however, there does come a point where you get a little restless. And when those moments hit, you can look to this handy list of great places to entertain both you and your family.
Just off Roundhay Road sits Jackrabbits Pottery Studio – the perfect place to spend a few hours learning a new craft, and have an absolute blast while doing it. Ideal for families, friends, and special occasions, the Jackrabbits crew have over 130 pieces of pre-made pottery that are ready and waiting to be spruced up by your trustworthy hands. Paint them with whatever designs you feel like – big and bold, or calm and creative. The choice is in your hands! Once you book in with them, you get a two-hour session to create your masterpiece, and then you can leave it with them to get the finishing touches done. They’ll get back in touch when it’s complete, and you can take home your very own creation, destined for the front-and-centre position on your shelves.
Welcome to the future, where playgrounds don’t have to just be swings and slides. At The Park Playground in Leeds, virtual reality makes anything possible. You can immerse yourself in a horror story, creep through the pyramids of ancient Egypt, or do battle in a futuristic arena – all within the same building. They’ve got courses for adults and children alike, so it really is an experience that anyone and everyone can enjoy. Just put on the headsets and let the professionals at The Park Playground take you to a whole new world. Plus, if more than four of you are going, they offer 15% off the final price! You can find them on Walter Street in Burley.
LEEDS 2023 BEAR HUNT
We’re sure anyone who’s been strolling through the city has probably seen the fun-looking bears that are dotted around. Up until the 9th of September, these vibrant creations can be found all over Leeds, next to a variety of iconic spots, hidden gems, and local parks. The art installation aims to raise awareness and money for the Leeds Hospitals Charity – an organisation dedicated to supporting sick children in the local area – so if you fancy heading into the Trinity Shopping Centre to pick up a map and try your hand at locating all 35 magical bears, you can also donate to their cause at the same time. It’s the perfect activity to do with the kids, helping them to blow off some steam as they search through the city for all the wonderful designs. And you never know – maybe you’ll discover some great new spots in Leeds while you’re at it!
HYDE PARK PICTURE HOUSE
It’s back and better than ever – Hyde Park Picture House returns to Brudenell Road, lighting up the city with the hottest films from around the world. Having first opened its doors in 1914, Hyde Park Picture House is one of the oldest cinemas in the UK, and a treasured piece of Leeds’s history. Easily accessible, family-friendly, and run by a team of lovely volunteers, you’ll have everything you need for a good time once you’re there – they even serve beers in the café, so you can deliver that post-film analysis to your mates once you’re out of the screen room. What more could you want? Whether it’s a blockbuster hit like Barbie or Oppenheimer, or an indie documentary all about the local area, head to Hyde Park Picture House and browse their current listings for whatever it may be that takes your fancy.
Escape to a landscape like no other at Tropical World in Roundhay. Perfect for curious kids, this is a place chock-full of unique creatures and unique experiences that they’ll remember forever. There are all sorts of things going on, especially during the summer period, and you can learn all about what kinds of animals roam around in rainforests, deserts, savannas and caves. For kids who may be squeamish about creepy crawlies, it can be a great way to show them how wonderful and harmless they are. No more screaming every time they see a little baby spider – especially not when you take them to the tarantula exhibition and show them how big they can really get! This is a guaranteed fun day out, and it also has the added benefit of being a great educational experience for all involved. You’re bound to come out of there knowing a little bit more than you did when you started, no matter what age you are.
LEEDS ART GALLERY
It’s central, it’s free, and most importantly, it’s an amazing experience. Leeds Art Gallery has it all. This is an institution built on creativity, and their goal is to extend that to as many people as possible, offering up a whole host of classes, events and, of course, art. Take up the tango classes with your partner or bring your little ones to the August art activities, run every weekday. Wander through the immersive, moving Sonia Boyce exhibition. Witness the magic of surrealist art. Whatever your passion, you can find it here – even if you don’t know what it is yet. And once you’re finished with the art, why not head down to their Tiled Hall Café for a coffee and a bite to eat? After all: there’s no better way to digest culture than by digesting a wonderful cake alongside it!
Images- @leedsartgallery, @tropicalworldleeds, @jackrabbitspottery