WHAT TO DO IN LEEDS: Where to go at half-term with the family

Days OutEverything

Throughout the half-term holidays, there is plenty to do in Leeds, the new home of Channel 4.

There’s so much to do at the city’s museums and attractions.  So keep reading to find out what to do at Abbey House Museum, Leeds Art Gallery, Leeds City Museum, Leeds Industrial Museum, Thwaite Watermill, Lotherton, Leeds Discovery Centre, Kirkstall Abbey and more…

  • Abbey House Museum

Vile Victorians

19-22 February

Expect rats, chimney sweeps and a trail through the Victorian streets (19 & 22 Feb, 10am-12pm & 2-4pm).

There’s silly science experiments inspired by vile Victorian villains (20 Feb, 10am-12pm & 2-4pm) and shock horror… Mr Chop the butcher has been tripped by a string of his own sausages! Can you crack the clues to help us solve the case of this morbid murder mystery? Come along to find out on 21 Feb (10am-12pm & 2-4pm).

Teen Tours with the Vintage Youth Group

16 & 20 February, 12-2pm

If you’re aged 13+ and fancy learning all about the changing face of fashion then join the Vintage Youth Group on a tour of their new co-curated exhibition. Discover how a local designer uses ethical processes to develop their range and how independent stores provide gender and non-gendered clothing for their customers. The display features accessories, outfits and photographic memorabilia from the Victorian era to the present day.

Advance booking is required by calling 0113 378 4079.

  • Leeds Art Gallery

Curiosity Makes Things Happen

19-23 February, 11am-4pm

Artspace is on during the half term holidays for artist inspired activities aimed at every age group. Drop-in, experiment, visualise, innovate and surprise.

  • Leeds City Museum

Day at the Museum: Step into the Stories

19 February

Step into the stories at Leeds City Museum, with family friendly activities inspired by the Michael Morpurgo exhibition. Join in at their drop-in sessions and bring the characters from the stories to life by crafting colourful kites, imaginary friends and animal masks (10am-12pm & 1-3pm). If you’re feeling extra creative then join in with a puppet making workshop (10.15am, 11.15am, 1pm & 2pm, booking on the day is required).

Make your own string puppet inspired by the exhibition, learn how to use it with help from our professional puppeteer and take it home to carry on the fun at home (suitable for age 5+). Poetry writing workshops are also on offer for young people aged 11+. Explore the thoughts and feelings of animals through poetry, taking inspiration from our natural history collection and the exhibition (10am-12pm & 1-3pm, booking on the day is required).

  • Leeds Industrial Museum

Mystery Matinees

Every day in school holidays, 2pm

Watch a classic film in our atmospheric 1920s cinema. Tucked away inside the museum we have the amazing Palace Picture House, one of the UK’s smallest cinemas, seating up to 24 people. Join us for intimate screenings of family favourites and vintage classics. Film screenings are included within the admission charge and running every single day in school holidays. Where else can a family of five go to the cinema for £9? Contact us to hire the cinema for events or arrange group screenings.

From the Vaults

19, 20 & 21 February, 12.30-3.30pm

We’ve raided the archives to bring you a very special pop-up display of items handpicked and unwrapped from the depths of our collection. Have a laid-back chat with our curators and get practical with objects from our printing collections.  The workshops might get messy some come prepared!

  • Thwaite Watermill

February Half Term

16-24 February, 10am-5pm


Come rain or shine Thwaite has you covered during the half term holidays with indoor activities in the shape of make and play. Explore the beauty behind stained glass at Creative Tuesdays and use materials to craft your own colourful creation (Feb 19, 1-3pm). If you fancy exploring your scientific side then why not try out Experimental Thursdays? Make and paint a new fossil friend and take it home to join your family (Feb 21, 1-3pm).

  • Lotherton

Love Birds

16 February-3 March

Celebrate spring with the annual Love Birds event. Keep the family entertained with Wildlife World themed crafts, the Love Birds trail and keeper talks. There’s daily feeds at 11.30am and 3pm with our penguin pals.

For more feathered fun become a bird boffin on our natural science day on 20 Feb, and make your very own nest box on 19 & 21 Feb.

  • Temple Newsam

Here be Dragons

16-24 February

Head over to Temple Newsam this half term as we gear up for some beastly activities! Experience dragon themed family fun with dressing up, crafts and storytelling. All activities will be themed around our Fantastical Beasts exhibition coming up in March, celebrating the creatures hidden in the most unlikely places of the house.

For more half term activities join in at the Stow House on Wednesday 20 February from 1-3pm. Plant your sunflower seeds and take them away to watch your very own creation grow at home.

Tours at Temple Newsam

Various dates

Temple Newsam House is full of hidden histories and tales of curious characters who lived and worked on the estate. Join us on the Hidden Temple Newsam tour and take a journey under the house to learn how the servants got around unseen (suitable for all guests aged over 7). Alternatively our popular Discovery Tour will take you on a 45 minute trip through the house, taking in some of the highlights as chosen by our friendly and informative tour guides.

  • Kirkstall Abbey

Little Lovebirds

19 February, 10-11am

Their Tuesday under 5’s session gets a feathery makeover to celebrate St Valentines day. Expect lots of feathers and glue as well as the usual toys and instruments. Older siblings are welcome to come along and get involved.

Abbey Crafts

21 February, 1.30-3pm

 Join in with some free family fun during the half term holidays. They’ll be crafting bird feeders using natural materials to help out our feathered friends who might be struggling at this time of year. Be prepared to get messy and have some fun whilst doing a god deed for our nesting neighbours.

  • Leeds Discovery Centre

Behind the Scenes Tour

21 February, 11am & 2pm

A Leeds hidden gem, our artefact store is filled with over one million objects from across the world and millennia. Join our knowledgeable guides for a free tour to see everything from fabulous costume to vacuum cleaners, African masks and taxidermy. Don’t forget to look up and see the giant squid hanging from the ceiling as you enter!

Visit leeds.gov.uk/behindthescenes

Slime! Discover the Mysterious World of Molluscs

20 February, 10am-12pm

They are more dangerous than the great white shark and older than the dinosaurs. They range in size from the Giant Squid at over 10 metres long to animals so small they can only be seen through a microscope! Come and discover the amazing molluscs in the museum collection in our family craft workshop.

Book in advance by calling 0113 378 2100 or email [email protected]


If like us you rely on public transport, WY Metro has this deal :  A money-saving Family DayRover ticket to enjoy off-peak bus and train travel throughout the county for just £13.

Family DayRovers can be used by up to two adults and up to three under-19s to travel on buses and trains, between 9.30am and 4pm and after 6.30pm Monday to Friday, as well as all day at weekends and Bank Holidays.


Tags: , , , , , , , , ,

You May Also Like

YORKSHIRE SCHOOL HOLIDAYS: What to do, where to go this half-term – the ultimate guide
Half term at Fountains Abbey and Studley Royal means Wild Wood Adventures PLUS WIN A FAMILY PASS 


Must Read

No results found.