May 9-10: Leeds and around

Trying to catch up! Hang on now, this is going to be a long one.

Monday morning (May 9) I said goodbye to my gracious host Elizabeth, took a quick trip to the post office to mail some stuff home, and then went back to the flat to pack up the rest of my stuff. Walked over to the train station with my pack, bought a ticket to Leeds, and got one with perfect timing. Ah, rail travel is nice. I arrived at Leeds station an hour later, took a cab to the hotel (Ibis; nice room for pretty cheap) and was able to check in. I dumped my stuff and headed out to explore!

The hotel is a bit outside the city centre, outside the ring road. Although the walk into the city centre isn’t terribly interesting, it isn’t very long or taxing either. The buildings were quite pretty. It did get gloomy and then super duper rainy, I managed to get stuck without my umbrella so I had to buy another one!

leeds town hall


Leeds, like Manchester, has quite a compact city centre and it’s easy to walk around. I got a nice map from the hotel and that helped a lot. Most of the shopping is in a pedestrian area and various covered arcades. Really beautiful inside, with lots of high end shops.

victoria quarter

shopping areas

Pretty much just walked all around that day. I hadn’t been planning on it, but I did end up walking along the river to the Royal Armoury and had about 15 minutes inside before they closed for the day. After that I took a bus back into the city centre (I had been doing so much walking!), had dinner at Wagamama and then went to the cinema to watch a film – Hanna. (I enjoyed it, though there are a few things that I had problems with.)

Royal Armoury

Royal Armoury

On Tuesday I had a meetup with a knitter who lives just outside Leeds, Kate! We were hooked up via the knitter’s network (aka ibecks in Manchester). Kate took me to lots of places I probably wouldn’t have ventured to on my own. First up was Baa Ram Ewe! Cute shop that sells British yarns and products. I just picked up some Harris Tweed covered buttons.

Baa Ram Ewe

Baa Ram Ewe

Then we headed back down to the train station and hopped a train to Ilkley, about half an hour away. The main attraction? Bettys tea room! We were definitely the youngest ladies in there (aside from some babies); the food was posh and absolutely delicious. We split a frittata and fried pea and mint risotto cakes. Yum! I even finished up with a puff pastry with whipped cream and strawberries, because why not do it up right?

betty's tea house

betty's tea house

We wandered around a bit to the local yarn shop and button shop before catching yet another train to Saltaire, a world heritage village near Shipley. It consists of a gigantic textile mill and village that were built by Titus Salt. Nowadays the mill has been refashioned with spaces for galleries, shops and cafes. It’s really quite lovely to walk around in, and the textile history is everywhere. There was even a small Yorkshire fashion exhibit on.

salts mill


yorkshire fashion

Doesn’t this dress look perfectly contemporary?

yorkshire fashion

After saying goodbye to Kate (and thanking her for showing me such a lovely time) I headed back to Leeds, grabbed some dinner from M&S and spent the evening in my room, stressing out about booking places to stay in Ireland. It’s all sorted now, including the flights, and though my trip isn’t quite halfway over I’m starting to feel like it’s going by quickly!

(I’m a bit homesick though so I kind of wish it was going faster.)



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8 responses to “May 9-10: Leeds and around”

  1. Erin Kate Avatar

    Beautiful! Thanks for sharing!

  2. Leanne Avatar

    Wow! It’s so good to see what others think of places I’ve spent so much time in – especially Leeds (I’m a Yorkshire girl) which noone seems to visit!!!

    Also, not sure if anyone’s told you but I’m getting malware alerts from here.

    Have heaps of fun in Ireland

  3. YuLian Avatar

    Omgosh, I love that last dress! I wish I could see all the other ones closely too.

  4. Alice Avatar

    Humm sound nice! The yarn shop mama mia! For a french it’s really tempting to see what’s inside the anglo-saxon yarn shop because it’s full of real wool, alpaca, ext…
    In france most of the yarn brands are maybe cheaper for the price but with the natural fibers too! There is so few real 100% wool in their product and that’s a real shame, if you want a 100% wool yarn you can still go on the web shopping but you will find maybe more overseas yarn brands than french one. That terribly a shame!!
    Anyway i would definitely had took more than buttons in this shop!!

    And the dress at the end is really gorgeous!

  5. Firstmute Avatar

    That last dress looks like a more colorful version of my Ikea curtains!

  6. melissa Avatar

    I’m really enjoying your lovely pictures, taking a cathartic vacation! Do you know what that pattern is of the cream shawl/scarf in your pic of the cabinet at Baa Ram Ewe? Beautiful!

  7. alisa Avatar

    Looks like you are having a fantastic time! I love the pictures!

  8. iBecks Avatar

    I’m so glad you managed to meet up with my knitting buddy and particularly happy to see that you had a trip to Ilkley – that’s where Kate and I were both living when she ‘picked me up’ on Ravelry!

    Hope you continue to have a great holiday.

    PS: please can I have the butter tarts recipe!!! :)

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