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The Beginner’s Guide to the Otley Run

· Joseph Sheerin · Food and Drink

Get the lowdown on the famous Otley Run, a mammoth 16 venue pub crawl through Leeds.

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If you’re yet to tick The Otley Run off your Leeds bucket list, we have all the info you need to make it a pub crawl you’ll never forget.

You can’t come to Leeds for an extended period of time and not do The Otley Run. The famous pub crawl stretches all the way from Woodies in Far Headingley to The Dry Dock at the edge of the city centre – there are sixteen bars in total and you’re supposed to have a drink in every one. Just add the amazing fancy dress costumes and the friends you’ll make along the way, for a memorable day out you can only do here in Leeds.

Woodies Craft Ale House

Woodie's Ale House

Woodies is the only place to kick off The Otley Run – a proper Yorkshire pub in Far Headingley, it buzzes with anticipation as folk gather to start the pub crawl into Leeds. It has a huge range of craft beers, real ales and spirits that should get the ball rolling nicely. While you’re there, you’ll no doubt end up comparing who’s got the best or most ridiculous outfits, and if the sun’s out, it’s got a cracking beer garden around the back too.

Woodies Craft Ale House, 107 Otley Road, Headingley, Leeds, West Yorkshire, LS16 5JG.

The Three Horseshoes

The Three Horseshoes, The Otley Run

The Three Horseshoes is one of Headingley’s oldest pubs and an integral part of The Otley Run. It’s got a cosy, local feel to it, but when the throngs of fancy dressed groups arrive, you can expect a lively venue. There are plenty of quality local ales behind the bar, including a host of Leeds Brewery’s finest, or you can choose from an extensive selection of lager, wine and spirits if you’d prefer.

The Three Horseshoes, 98 Otley Road, Headingley, Leeds, West Yorkshire, LS16 5JG.

The New Inn

The New Inn, The Otley Run

Stop three is The New Inn, just a few doors down. It’s by no means massive – in fact, those over 6-foot might want to duck – but this old school favourite manages to build up quite an atmosphere when all The Otley Run groups bound in. You can get a decent pub grub feed in here, should you need a fill, but if it gets busy, head straight to the bar which is chock full of quality local ales. Want to mix it up? They’ve got a vast spirits collection too.

The New Inn, 68 Otley Road, Headingley, Leeds, West Yorkshire, LS6 4BA.

The Headingley Taps

The Headingley Taps. The Otley Run

You’ll have a bit of a walk to the fourth stop, but The Headingley Taps is one of the biggest pubs on your pub crawl and makes for a cracking atmosphere, as it brings together locals and students. Plenty of groups will all end up here at the same time, so it’s the perfect chance to make a few friends, as well as sink a few beers or mixers. Oh, and they have all the sports on, so even when you’re on The Otley Run, you won’t miss the big game.

The Headingley Taps, Bennett Road, Headingley, Leeds, West Yorkshire, LS6 3HN.

Manahatta

Next up, Manahatta is just across the road and it’s a bit different to the other bars on The Otley Run. This is a cool venue that brings a taste of New York to Headingley. Creative cocktails are their speciality, so you can definitely mix up what you’re drinking, but don’t worry, there’s plenty of craft beer on tap too. While you’re here, you can challenge your mates in the shuffleboard zone or watch the big game on one of their 14 HD screens.

Manahatta, 19 Ash Road, Headingley, Leeds, West Yorkshire, LS6 3JJ.

The Box

The Box Sports Bars in Leeds

You’ll head back to Otley Road to enter The Box. This is a popular spot, especially with younger crowds as it blends a quality food menu, pizzas are a particular highlight, with a cracking sound system that comes into its own of a nighttime. It also has full size pool tables and Sky Sports to go with your lagers, spirits or fruity cocktails, so whoever’s in your group, there’s something for everyone.

The Box, 8 Otley Road, Headingley, Leeds, West Yorkshire, LS6 2AD.

The Skyrack

The Skyrack, The Otley Run

It’s one of the most famous pubs in Headingley, and The Skyrack is a cornerstone of The Otley Run. The venue is nicely spread out, so those on the pub crawl can revel while other folk make the most of the pub’s grub. It creates a welcoming setting for everyone as you’re making inroads towards Leeds city centre. Oh, and you won’t be stuck for your drink of choice, whether it’s a lager, ale, spirits or even wine if you want to push the boat out.

The Skyrack, 2-4 St Michael’s Road, Headingley, Leeds, West Yorkshire, LS6 3AW.

The Original Oak

The Original Oak, headingley

The Original Oak is another of Headingley’s famous drinking spots, which is largely down to its humungous beer garden that’s always packed out when the sun’s shining, and even more so when there’s folk on The Otley Run. Regardless of the weather, The Oak is a cracking spot for a pint or a mixer at the best of times, and if you haven’t managed to line your stomach properly yet, take your pick from a menu of British pub classics.

The Original Oak, 2 Otley Road, Headingley, Leeds, West Yorkshire, LS6 2DG.

The Hyde Park

Hyde Park Pub

You’ve got a bit of a walk now – it’s straight down Headingley Lane to The Hyde Park, which stands proudly at the corner that shares its name. Marking the halfway point, it’s often here that day turns to night and you might start feeling the eight bars already behind you. It’s also where the party atmosphere kicks in – pick from the usual fare of ale, lager and spirits at a decent price, and hustle one of the pool tables for a few games before you move on.

The Hyde Park, 2 Headingley Lane, Headingley, Leeds, West Yorkshire, LS6 2AS.

The Library

The Library

It’s another five-minute walk down from Hyde Park Corner to The Library, and if you’ve not grabbed a bite to eat yet, there’s plenty of places around here to do just that from takeaways to Chinese restaurants. The Library is at the southern tip of Woodhouse Moor, in an eye-catching building. It’s a Scream bar, so you can expect a decent selection of alcohol that covers all bases, as well as an impressive menu of burgers. If you’re doing the pub crawl at the weekend, by the time you reach The Library, they’ll usually have a DJ or karaoke going too, so get your dancing shoes on.

The Library, 229 Woodhouse Lane, Leeds, West Yorkshire, LS2 3AP.

The Packhorse

The Packhorse, The Otley Run

Just over the road from The Library is another iconic pub on The Otley Run. The Packhorse is known for its dedication to Leeds’ DIY music scene, but your visit will be to enjoy their bar which is full of a diverse range of local ales in one of the more traditional pub settings that’s chock full of old-school charm. They keep an eye out for rowdy groups though, so you won’t be admitted if you’re acting the goat – keep your wits about you.

The Packhorse, 208 Woodhouse Lane, Leeds, West Yorkshire, LS2 9DX.

The Eldon

The Eldon, The Otley Run

The Eldon is next and it’s just a few doors down. You might notice numbers dwindling by this point as people split up or go home after overdoing it. But that doesn’t stop The Eldon from being a great stop off on your way into Leeds – they truly embrace The Otley Run and all its eccentricities. Expect a welcome with open arms and loads of decent value booze, from ales to ciders, lagers and spirits.

The Eldon, 190 Woodhouse Lane, Leeds, West Yorkshire, LS2 9DX.

LUU

Old Bar at Leeds University Union, The Otley Run

It’s a bit of a detour but there are two bars for you to pick from at Leeds University on The Otley Run, as long as you’re taking it on during term-time. It’s well worth a visit for those who are students at the university as you’ll get an extra discount. Regardless, The Old Bar is a long time favourite, and ale fans will want to visit as its a Black Sheep Brewery venue. The Terrace is more modern, and during the school year it’s always a lively place for a pint.

Leeds University Union, Lifton Place, Leeds, West Yorkshire, LS2 9JZ.

The Fenton

The Fenton

Back on the well-trodden path, The Fenton is a traditional pub with a centrepiece bar that wraps around the middle of the venue. You’ll find a wide range of local ales and craft ciders behind the bar and they won’t cost the earth, which is why it’s equally popular with locals and students. Take your pick and then head into one of their many different rooms, each one is full of character and decorated with classic mahogany furniture and old beer mirrors.

The Fenton, 161-165 Woodhouse Lane, Leeds, West Yorkshire, LS2 3ED.

Strawbs

Named after The Beatles’ ‘Strawberry Fields Forever’, Strawbs is right next door to The Fenton and it’s a long-time student favourite. It’s not your most traditional looking bar, with its unusual layout and 3D strawberries on the walls, it always offers a warm welcome. You can mix it up since they specialise in cocktails that start at just £3.99, but they also have lager and cider too. They also pride themselves on being part of The Otley Run and urge folk to use it as a meeting place if groups get split up.

Strawbs, 159 Woodhouse Lane, Leeds, West Yorkshire, LS2 3ED.

The Dry Dock

Dry Dock Beer Garden Leeds

What better way to end The Otley Run than by reaching its pinnacle at the world-famous (ish) Dry Dock pub? It’s a pub that makes its home on a boat that’s been plonked at the start of Woodhouse Lane, and if you’ve never been before, it might just blow your mind. Grab a beer or a mixer, and head up to the top deck if the weather’s nice, or stay on the bottom deck and finish up with a few games of pool – either way, you deserve it, because you managed to get to the end of this mammoth pub crawl. We’ll drink to that!

The Dry Dock, Woodhouse Lane, Leeds, West Yorkshire, LS2 3AX.