A popular and laidback suburb of Leeds, Headingley is a top choice for students and young professionals, alongside others who enjoy the young and fresh vibe of the area.
As well as being an escape from the city, regardless of age, you’ll never grow bored living in Headingley or Far Headingley thanks to a wide selection of local entertainment options — whatever your interests. From cinema to sports, ten pin bowling to historical buildings or art galleries — Headingley has something for everyone.
Movies in Headingley
Headingley is home to one of the oldest cinemas in the UK — Cottage Road Cinema, which is also sadly one of the last surviving suburban cinemas in Leeds. This one-screen cinema has been showing films since 1912 and is still open daily, showing the latest blockbusters and the occassional classic at a really fair price. The cinema is delightfully old-fashioned inside, and there is an interval between the trailers and the film where the curtains are drawn on the screen and you can buy ice cream and other sweet treats from the ushers.
If you are more a fan of arthouse and independent cinema, then you want to head to the nearby Hyde Park Picture House instead. Housed in a beautiful Grade II listed building, this cinema enjoys many of its original features, including gas lighting and an external ticket booth.
Sports in Headingley
If you’re a sporting fan, particularly of cricket or rugby league, you may already have noticed the imposing Headingley Carnegie Stadium – home to both the Leeds Rhinos and Yorkshire County Cricket Club. The English cricket team are regulars here, and crowds are always friendly.
If you’re more interested in playing sport than watching it, there are plenty of options for you in Headingley too. Choose from the Brownlees Centre to start your triathlon training, the Weetwood sports park for excellent outdoor sports facilities, and various parks and nature reserves for a run, walk or jog. We recently wrote a guide to keeping fit in Headingley, so check that out for more information on sports and fitness in this area of Leeds.
Activities in Headingley
If you’re looking for something else to do in or near Headingley that isn’t watching a film, playing sport or watching sport, then you won’t be disappointed. Kirkstall is located just one mile away from Headingley, and here you will find all manner of fun — from LaserZone, to bouldering at The Climbing Lab, and ten pin bowling at Hollywood Bowl.
If you prefer calmer or more artistic activities, a visit to The Bowery could be just what you need — a gorgeous art gallery featuring a coffee shop, which also hosts creative classes on evenings and selected weekends. On the other hand, if you enjoy meeting farm animals, or you have young children, you might enjoy a trip to the nearby Meanwood Valley Urban Farm instead.
If you’re interested in history, you’ll want to see the old bear pit on Cardigan Road. Back in 1840, Leeds Zoological and Botanical Garden opened to the public, however it only lasted eight years and closed its doors in 1848, with the land being sold off for housing. The bear pit, however, remains to this day and is now a listed building. It has been said that when the zoo was open, visitors could feed the brown bear bananas from the top of the turret.
In Leeds city centre, just a stone’s throw away from Headingley, you’ll find an additional wealth of things to do — shops, museums, escape rooms, and lots more.