Student guide to Leeds shows off city diversity

MUSIC MAGIC: Brudenell Social Club has built an impressive reputation and attracts top acts from around the world.
MUSIC MAGIC: Brudenell Social Club has built an impressive reputation and attracts top acts from around the world.
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This is the ultimate student’s guide to Leeds: where to go out, best cheap eats, coffee shops, arts and entertainment destinations and places to unwind.

Leeds is served by no less than three universities. As you prepare to embark on the best three-year journey of your life, you can rest assured you’ll be sharing your new home with plenty of like-minded individuals. Here are some tips on what Leeds has to offer.

Drink: best student-friendly bars and clubs

The Otley Run: the Otley Road, which runs directly through Headingley and Hyde Park and on towards the city centre, plays host to a famous pub crawl consisting of 19 pubs. The Dry Dock (Woodhouse Lane, LS2 3AX) is a docked boat which hasn’t changed all that much since it was at sea – they’ve just stuck a bar in, it’s also the final destination of the Otley Run.

Call Lane: From there you’re within walking distance of the countless bars and clubs Leeds has to offer. Call Lane can be pricey but when you need to stick to your student budget, head to The Faversham (Springfield Mount, LS2 9NG) which has themed club nights and all day bank holiday garden parties.

The warehouse: ravers amongst you will enjoy Sticky Feet at The Warehouse (Somers Street, LS1 2RG) on Fridays. This is one the most popular club nights in Leeds, as is the indie-based Propaganda Saturdays at the O2 Academy (Cookridge Street LS2 3AW).

Food: eateries that won’t take a chunk out of your loan

Red’s True Barbecue: If you’re a meat lover then you must visit Red’s True BBQ, which describes itself as the ‘church of true barbecue’ (Cloth Hall Street LS1 2HD) and also one in Headingley (Otley Road LS6 2AA).

Jinos Thai Café: The chefs at Jinos Thai Café (Otley Road LS6 2AL) dish up delectable Thai food and even let you bring in your own alcohol.

Nation of Shopkeepers: (Cookridge Street LS2 3AG) has an uber-cool ambiance, not to mention indescribably good chips. Head here on a Tuesday for 2-4-1 burgers.

Coffee Breaks: relax and unwind

Trinity Leeds: In 2013, Trinity Leeds was unveiled – an impressive £350m development - there’s lots to choose from, offering second hand, restored and modified vintage items.

Music: gigs and venues

Leeds first direct arena: In your spare time be sure to get down to one of the city’s live music venues. There are many to choose from, including the 13,500 capacity First Direct Arena (Clay Pit Lane LS2 8BY)

O2 Academy: (Cookridge Street LS2 3AW). See website for listings.

Brudenell Social Club: (Queen’s Road LS6 1NY), where you can find burgeoning new music from the local area and beyond.

Escape: Places to relax/Visit

Cottage Road Cinema: Together with Hyde Park Cinema, this is one of the oldest independent cinemas in the country and still has its old reels. It shows a good mix of films from the latest box office hits to classics and niche films.

Christkindelmarkt: This annual German Christmas Market sets up shop in Millennium Square (LS2 3AD) in November and has a large beer tent.

brimham rocks: Head out of the city for fabulous views and climbing.

Roundhay park: 600 acres of nature.

For the full guide, head over to

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