Discovering Yorkshire: Historical Attractions of York and Leeds

Known for its varied landscapes, vibrant history and multicultural cities, the UK provides plenty of choice for the average traveller. Historical attractions can be found along the length and breadth of the country but the county of Yorkshire has more than its fair share – and here’s a look at some of the best sites.


When thinking of Yorkshire a few cities instantly spring to mind – and Leeds is most certainly one of them. Found in the west of the county, the history of this delightful city can be traced as far back as the 5th century and there is evidence of the area’s past to be found on virtually every corner.

Top attractions for visitors have to include impressive churches such as Leeds Minister and Leeds Cathedral. The Civic Hall is another great attraction for fans of spectacularly beautiful architectural design as the building’s twin spires are decorated with exquisite gold owls. There are plenty of natural attractions too – Park Square, Victoria Gardens and Millennium Square are always worth a visit.

For those interested in the history of Leeds itself, the Leeds City Museum is always a good place to visit. Here you’ll get an overview of the city and its development from an area of forest known as “Loidis” in the 5th century Kingdom of Elmet to the present day thriving industrial city. Of course, you’ll need to book your Leeds train tickets first but there are plenty of affordable options available so you needn’t worry about your trip putting too much strain on your wallet!


Located in the north of the county, York is another big city with an even bigger reputation. Historical landmarks are certainly plentiful here and with East Coast Rail servicing routes across this area of the UK it is easy for you to continue your journey from Leeds to visit this beautiful location.

In terms of actual attractions, York Minister is probably the most well known but this walled city has seen plenty of political and historical change over the years. In fact, York has such a strong history that it has been the capital of numerous movements and occupations. A few to note include being the capital of a Roman province and capital of the kingdoms of Jorvik and Northumbria.

Railway related industries have been a strong feature of York since the 19th century and this means there is plenty of history to explore surrounding this area of development. This is a great addition to the city’s historical catalogue and means that those planning a visit here have plenty to keep them occupied.

So, whether it’s York, Leeds or any other area of Yorkshire on your holiday agenda, make sure you take the time to investigate the historical attractions – you won’t be disappointed!

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