- For a great Leeds Museums and Galleries experience, get interactive learning about everything from fashion, to Egyptian Mummies and more.
- Dig up some fossils or take a walk with the Egyptians in one of many of the interactive galleries at the museum.
- Get down to the museum on weekends and holidays, just full of fun with one of the many enjoyable clubs and activities the museum has to offer.
- Join Rory the Leeds City Museum tiger every Saturday for museum themed craft activities. The Tiny Tigers sessions mean younger children can get creative too.
If you're looking for things to do in Leeds, then you should consider making a trip to Leeds City Museum, one of the major museums in Leeds City Centre. This Leeds Art Gallery presents the City's Designated collections of diverse local history, fascinating world cultures, archaeology, natural history, along with fine and decorative arts plus a varied programme of special exhibitions, so you'll be able to experience something new every time you visit.
Leeds City Museum opened originally to the public in 1821, actually established by the Leeds Philosophical and Literary Society two years before its opening. It then re-opened in 2008, moving to the historic Leeds Institute on Millennium Square and is one of the many great free things to do in Leeds that is very popular among families, and those looking to explore a Yorkshire Museum. Explore Leeds Museum for free and visit the four floors of interactive and exciting galleries.
Leeds Museum is a favourite among families, offering a thrilling, fun and interactive day out for all to enjoy. With six galleries for you to visit, there's plenty of discover and many a hidden gem for your children to uncover. Come and find the Leeds Tiger, which lives in the Life on Earth Gallery, your little ones will love getting interactive and camouflaging themselves. On your visit to the Life on Earth gallery, your little ones can come face-to-face with the Leeds Tiger, as they explore the history of Leeds in The Leeds Story gallery and visit our latest special exhibition on the top floor or dig for fossils in the 'Life on Earth' gallery. The museum is home to over one million artefacts and objects, all collected since 1819, that give insights into the ever-changing and evolving natural world, along with the way human history and culture adapt, change and are represented.
Step back into ancient times and visit the mummy of Nesyammun in the Ancient Worlds Gallery - a must-see, then be sure to try a game of Greek Gods and Goddesses Top Trumps when you're done, it's great fun! In the Ancient Worlds gallery your younger children will have a blast finding out how the Egyptians, Romans and Greeks all lived their lives back in the day, they'll learn how these ancient cultures have paved the way for the world as we know it! Visiting the final resting place of Nesyamun is always a hoot, as this 3000-year-old Leeds Mummy is fascinating, capturing the attention of all who visit as it is the only known mummy known to hail from the 20th Dynasty. Here your kids will love discovering clues to the past in architecture, art, objects in the earth, ancient writing and burials and more. For more ancient historical days out in and around Leeds, check out Kirkstall Abbey one of England's best-preserved Cistercian monasteries, offering great family activities.
Your kids can get the lowdown of Leeds' history in the Leeds Story Gallery, as it traces the first archaeological finds to altering community displays that reflect people's lives in the city today. Watch as they become investigators, inspecting the varied collections of Leeds Galleries and Museums in the Collectors Cabinet Gallery and Ancient Worlds galleries. The history of Leeds is diverse and interesting, both grown-ups and little ones will revel in exploring the history of the area in the Leeds Story Gallery where you can find out more about the rich world cultures that are displayed in the World View Gallery, with a newer theme, the Voices of Asia.
For fashion enthusiasts, make a trip to see the Fast x Slow Fashion, where you'll be able to explore the relationship that exists between clothes, people, and shopping habits in Leeds, all the way from 1720 to the present day as it traces this history through time and the development and consumer habits. The exhibit presents how clothes and shops have changed, but also takes time to highlight how people have searched for different and alternative ways to consume, buy and experience fashion.
Leeds City Museum has an ever-changing schedule of family-friendly exhibitions, so every time you'll go you'll have something new and wondrous to experience. Leeds, a city of stories, has fascinating and surprising feats to uncover, from inventions to sporting accolades and its incredible textile heritage. It is home to some of the first great archaeological finds, among changing displays that reflect the lives of the people who inhabit the city today. Introduce your kids to Leeds, and find out how the city has shaped, and been shaped by, its landscape and people.
Don't miss out on the fun events this city museum, Leeds, holds, with events such as The Joy of Small Things. Here your little ones can follow a simple scavenger hunt to spot the joy in the teeny, tiny and tiddly things that hide and exist in the museum, and across the galleries.
To discover more about the history of Leeds, check out Abbey House Museum to explore Victorian life in Leeds through child-friendly events and exhibitions, authentic streets, toys and more.
What to know before you go
- Leeds City Museum opening times are Tuesday – Friday: 11am – 5pm, Saturday & Sunday: 12 – 5pm.
- There is an on-site Cafe serving cakes, coffee, sandwiches and more, making it a wonderful stop for a spot for lunch. Plus, there is a museum shop that includes locally made products, jewellery, books and specially commissioned pieces and these all complement the exhibitions, making it great for memorabilia.
- There are toilets, baby changing facilities and accessible toilets on site.
- The museum is accessible, it has four floors which are all accessed by stairs or a lift, so it is navigable for those in a wheelchair and those using pushchairs.
- Assistance guide dogs are welcome, and a bowl and water are available from the reception desk.
- Leeds City Museum is located in Leeds.
- If travelling via public transport, Leeds Railway Station is 10 minutes’ walk away. Leeds City Museum is well served by several bus routes stopping on Woodhouse Lane and The Headrow, both of which are less than five minutes away from the Museum.
- If travelling via car, from Leeds centre, you can get to Leeds Museum via Great George St and Woodhouse lane.
- On-street parking is available on Cookridge Street and Rossington Street.
- Secure car parking is available in Woodhouse Lane, The Light, Merrion Centre and Rose Bowl car parks. The nearest accessible on-street parking bays are located on the corner of Cookridge and Rossington Street. Alternatively, look here for NCP parking nearby.