Leeds Attractions for Children
(Leeds, West Yorkshire, England, UK)
When you visit Leeds with young children, you can certainly choose between a number of appealing attractions, particularly if you are prepared to travel a little. Roughly an hour away and close to Ripon is the Lightwater Valley Theme Park, which first opened in 1969 and now enjoys more than 300,000 visitors every year. Covering a whopping 175 acres / 71 hectares, Lightwater Valley is currently called home by the longest rollercoaster in the whole of Europe.
At Roundhay Park, the Tropical World boasts a host of exotic flora and fauna, and is easy to find, being sited particularly close to the Leeds Golf Course. Further attractions come in the form of tenpin bowling at the Hollywood Bowl (off the Kirkstall Road / A65) and the monthly Sunday Funday family event.
Address: Canal Gardens, Roundhay Park, Leeds, LS8 1DF, England
Tel: +44 (0)113 266 1850
The Tropical World, in the Alwoodley area, is situated to the north of Leeds city centre. This popular tourist attraction features one of the largest collections of tropical and exotic plants in the United Kingdom, together with a large collection of animals and birds from all over the world. Popular with both children and adults is the Coronation House - a vast glasshouse filled with impressive plants and a pond with some enormous koi carp. There are also large aquarium exhibits housing many enormous fish, a butterfly house, an Amazon / South American house - featuring parrots and Golden Lion Tamarins from Brazil
, a Nocturnal Zone with fruit bats and small monkeys, a Desert House - filled with birds and small animals found in particularly arid areas, an Insect Zone - with many insects, lizards and snakes, cafés, picnic areas and a gift shop.
Open hours: daily - 10:00 to dusk
Admission: charge, discounts available for children and seniors, children eight years old and under are free
Address: 3 Cardigan Fields, Kirkstall, Leeds, LS4 2DG, England
Tel: +44 (0)113 279 9111
Hollywood Bowl is the largest tenpin bowling complex in Leeds and is situated in the Kirkstall area, right next to the city centre and therefore easy to reach. Part of a vast entertainment complex, comprising a multiscreen cinema, restaurants, night clubs and bars, Hollywood Bowl is understandably a popular attraction for children and families. Inside there is a large amusement arcade, a café and over 30 state-of-the-art bowling alleys.
Open hours: daily - 10:00 to midnight
Admission: charge, discounts available for children
Lightwater Valley Theme Park
Address: North Stainley, Ripon, HG4 3HT, England
Tel: +44 (0)1765 635 321
Located relatively close by, in the nearby Yorkshire Dales, the Lightwater Valley Country Theme Park is a must if you are visiting the area with young children and thrillseekers. Featuring an exciting rollercoaster, numerous fast, thrilling rides a boating pond, seasonal events, a large maze, a classic-car collection, a shopping village, a children's zoo, cafés, picnic areas and much more besides, the Lightwater Valley Theme Park is a particularly family orientated theme park. The park is located some 55 km / 35 miles from central Leeds and being mainly outdoors, is best saved for a sunny day. Plenty of snack bars and eateries are based onsite, if you are in need of a bite to eat or simply an ice cream.
Open hours: April to October - 10:00 to 16:30 (hours and days vary)
Admission: charge, discounts available for children and seniors, young children are free
Address: Granary Wharf, The Canal Basin, Leeds, LS1 4BR, England
Tel: +44 (0)113 244 9304
Sunday Funday is a popular event for children in Leeds city centre and takes place on the first Sunday each month, from late spring to early summer, at the Granary Wharf. With entertainers, puppet shows, face painting, music and theatrical shows, Sunday Funday is always busy and attracts large family crowds. Plenty of shops and restaurants are nearby, for afterwards.
Open hours: March to June - 11:45 to 16:30