With the festive season upon us, the streets of Leeds city centre are set for their busiest time of the year.
But fear not- here are seven quirky and cosy places you can duck in and take a break from the Christmas rush.
The German Market (image credit Carl Milner Photography)
The market’s a busy place, but step inside the Alp Chalet, Kuh Stall and Ski Hutte bar and you can escape the crowds and enjoy some traditional German food and drink and authentic evening entertainment.
Leeds City Museum
The free museum has galleries to browse filled with animals and archaeological treasures as well as a very comfy café. The popular Etsy Made Local market will also be back on November 30-Dec 1 if you do still need to pick up a present.
Leeds Art Gallery’s Slow Painting
Not only is the gallery free to enter, it’s currently hosting and exhibition called Slow Painting, which is full of relaxing images by 19 different artists which encourage people to pause and contemplate. There’s also the stunning Tiled Hall café to enjoy.
The Owl at Kirkgate Market (image Credit Chapter 81)
The first pub to ever open its door inside the historic market, gastro pub The Owl, can be found on Fish and Game Row. Northern Monk beers are available and the venue includes a 44-seater taproom and dining room, masterminded by HOME fine dining stars Liz Cottam and Mark Owens.
Leeds Town Hall’s lunchtime organ recitals (image credit Natalia Maciejuk)
Taking place every Monday lunchtime, the town hall’s free Lunchtime Organ Recitals are one of the city’s best kept secrets. With performances on the historic building’s 160 year-old organ by organists from all over the world, the recitals are a great way to switch off and soak up some culture.
The popular Viking-style experience can be found just outside Leeds Art Gallery on The Headrow. With a pop-up bar decked out with wooden tables and benches and a fire pit and local draft ales, mulled wine and hot cider, it’s a good spot to warm up.
Leeds Central Library’s Hansel and Gretel
If you’ve got little ones in tow, pop into Leeds Central Library’s Room 700, where there’ll be a brand new Christmas show of Hansel and Gretel from December 7 until January 5. Follow a trail of breadcrumbs round the library followed by a performance and meet and greet sessions with the cast.