10 things to do in Leeds and Yorkshire when it’s raining

Yorkshire can be beautifully sunny, but sometimes the weather can be unpredictable. Thankfully, Leeds has a lot of rain-friendly activities!

Sadly, not every day in Leeds is a beach day. Yorkshire gets its fair share of rain, but luckily, there’s still plenty you can get up to when it isn’t T-shirt weather outside. From arts and culture, to fun drinking games, to mini golf, Leeds has something for every kind of student!

1. Become a master golfer

Junkyard Golf is an 18+ venue located in the city centre which offers mini golf like you’ve never seen it before. Inside are three unique courses, set across jungles and scrapyards. They have multiple bars, all serving up fizzy cocktails, which will have you sticking around for the 19th hole afterwards! If there's one thing this place isn't, it's sub-par. 

2. Catch a film

Finished with your game of golf? Why not swap the putting green for a cinema screen! There is a cinema located in The Light, the same shopping centre as Junkyard Golf, so you won’t even have to risk the weather getting from A to B. Fancy something cosier? Leeds has some beautiful independent cinemas which are well worth your time.

3. Visit a museum

Leeds is host to several wonderful galleries and museums, all of which are mostly inside. Leeds City Museum regularly change their exhibitions, and it’s free to enter, as is the Royal Armouries Museum, where you can learn all about arms and armour throughout history. Or if you want to look at something a bit different, check out the Henry Moore Institute at Leeds Art Gallery, one of the largest sculpture galleries in Europe!

4. Stop by Skipton Castle

If you're a lover of all things history but aren't in the mood for a museum, you'll be glad to know that Yorkshire is brimming with culture and remnants of the past. Head over to Skipton and take a look at this 11th century, Grade I listed castle, and see the medieval history, including a 3-year siege, up close and personal. And don't forget your student card for discount on entry!

5. Check out a show

In the mood for some live entertainment? Then you should definitely visit the fantastic Leeds Grand Theatre, which has been entertaining folk for 400 years. There’s also the City Varieties Music Hall, Northern Ballet, Opera North and Leeds Playhouse, so no matter what kind of performance you’re feeling, you can find yourself a nice warm seat inside and enjoy the show. 

Thorntons Arcade, full of boutique shops and businesses in Leeds City Centre
The Atlas Fountain at Castle Howard in North Yorkshire
Glass roof of Leeds Trinity and the busy shoppers across three floors

6. Work on your fitness

As a student you can get a Leeds Beckett gym membership and escape indoors to work out. We have a gym on each campus to keep your commute short, and by the time you’ve finished, a short walk home in the rain might be quite refreshing. Alternatively, we also have indoor tennis courts which you can book!

7. Shop ‘til you drop

Right in the city centre, Trinity Leeds is a giant shopping centre with a whopping 120 shops and restaurants. Many shops and restaurants offer student discount too, so you can shop and eat for hours, guilt and rain-free! 

Prefer local shops? The Corn Exchange is also inside and thriving with small local businesses. Check it out on our student map of Leeds!

8. Meet some Meerkats

Roundhay Park is one of Leeds’ finest spots on a summer day, but did you know it contains one of the best rainy-day spots too? Tropical World is an all-inside zoo, made up of greenhouses full of tropical plants and animals. The climate inside will warm you up nicely, and you’ll get to see the resident meerkats!

9. Discover Roxy’s

There are a handful of Roxy’s bars in Leeds – both Roxy Lanes and Roxy Ball Room. They’re all slick neon venues offering food, drinks and social ball games. Roxy Lanes have a handful of bowling lanes for you to enjoy, whereas the Roxy Ball Room venues have shuffleboard, ping pong, beer pong and pool. Once you've won a few games, you'll have totally forgotten about the weather outside. 

10. Try an escape Room

Last up is a way to stimulate your brain whilst escaping the rain - escape rooms! Put on your detective cap (or your Yorkshire flat cap), and work together with your friends to beat the clock, solve puzzles and leave victorious. There is a great range of escape rooms in Leeds, and the games they offer range from apocalyptic, to medieval fantasy, to more realistic games. Great way to spend a couple of hours!

Now that your rainy-day itinerary is sorted, why not get ready for some of those sunny days too? Have a look at some of the wonderful beaches and river walks we have near Leeds!

Explore Leeds

We've put together a handy (not-so) little map with all the things that we think are amazing in Leeds. From food and drink, to health, beauty, outdoor spots and more! Head over and see for yourself.
A quiet morning Corn Exchange in Leeds City Centre, showing the dome ceiling and circular interior
Golden owl sculpture and clock on the left Leeds Civic Hall against a blue sky