Burley is a thriving hub, just minutes from the city centre, but have you discovered everything it has to offer?
Just beyond the city centre awaits a suburb that’s full of surprises, not least of all the fact that it’s bagged all the best bits of Kirkstall Road – that’s right, Cardigan Fields and the lovely independents that surround it are actually in Burley. Names can be deceiving. But we digress, so let’s get back to the fact that this cool, quirky little suburb us full of exquisite eateries, unique cultural hubs and must-try activities. Check it out!
Smak! The Polish Kitchen
For authentic Polish street food, head to the small but welcoming Smak! on Kirkstall Road. It’s their fully-fledged restaurant after its humble street food beginnings became a huge success. Here you can snaffle their staple kiełbasa sausages or go for pierogis, a type of traditional Polish dumpling. All this can be enjoyed in a contemporary yet rustic setting with a nod to the owners’ Polish heritage.
Smak! The Polish Kitchen, 372 Kirkstall Road, Leeds, West Yorkshire, LS4 1HQ.
Oxygen Freejumping is one of the UK’s best trampoline parks and you can find one here in Burley. They have over 100 interconnected trampolines plastered all over the floor and walls, which can be enjoyed by all ages. You can take the little ones to the toddler mornings, join their fitness classes or head to one of their club night sessions. They even have a giant airbag for you to sink into and an obstacle course for you to tackle.
Oxygen Freejumping, Cardigan Field Leisure Park, Kirkstall Road, Leeds, West Yorkshire, LS4 2DG.
The Corner Cafe
Simplicity is key at Corner Cafe, which has served great tasting curries in a welcoming atmosphere since 1976. They know how to compile an exquisite Indian feed. Try their chicken bhuna or if you wanna go veggie, their dahl and potato massala. Want to wash it down with an ale? They stock local brews only, so you can choose from favourites from Saltaire Brewery and Ilkley Brewery. And to finish off, take your pick of over 30 different kulfi ice-cream flavours.
The Corner Cafe, 104 Burley Road, Leeds, West Yorkshire, LS3 1JP.
Temple Coffee and Donuts
Temple Coffee and Donuts is a no-brainer if you’ve a hankering for an absolutely massive donut. From pastel-coloured glazing to intriguing triangle shapes, they’re the most Insta-worthy in the city and require a big appetite. But it’s not just donuts – they love their coffee too and it looks just as good as it tastes. Try the Sabbath latte, which uses charcoal to create a visually striking black coffee that you need to try.
Temple Coffee and Donuts, Burley Court, Leeds, West Yorkshire, LS4 2AR.
If you’re looking for a quality tapas fix, Viva Cuba is the place to go. It’s a restaurant that boasts a jam-packed menu of Spanish and South American eats. Tuck into classics like Calamari with Aioli, Chorizo al Vino and Albondigas Cubanas, as well as Cuban favourites like Pisto de Frijoles, an aromatic bean stew. You can even match your dishes to their very own sherry counterparts in a unique pairing option or try one of their rare Cuban beers.
Viva Cuba, 342 Kirkstall Road, Leeds, West Yorkshire, LS4 2DS.
Established in 1949, Woodrup Cycles have been kitting out local cyclists for years. It’s a bike shop that stocks two-wheelers from a huge selection of brands like Bianchi and Cervelo across two floors. You can even get accessories, clothing and spare parts. Whether you’re an eager road cyclist or a mountain biking enthusiast, you can pick the brains of the experienced staff who are on hand to help with any queries.
Woodrup Cycles, 345-347 Kirkstall Road, Leeds, West Yorkshire, LS4 2HD.
The charming Cafe Enzo makes for a great little brunch spot. They serve up everything from Eggs Benedict to bagels, so you’re guaranteed a decent feed. Prefer something heartier? You can dive into a range of popular pasta dishes too, like carbonara and lasagne. They have a mixture of tables and comfy sofas for you to settle down in, so it’s perfect for both a cuppa or a full lunch.
Cafe Enzo, 396 Kirkstall Road, Leeds, West Yorkshire, LS4 2HQ.
City Golf Leeds
The 9-hole golf course at City Golf Leeds can be enjoyed by golfers of all ages and abilities. Its relaxed, dress code-free setup is suitable for families, with adult and children’s golfing equipment available to hire if you don’t have your own clubs. There’s no need to pay a membership fee either, as you can pay per session. Feeling peckish? Head to the on-site cafe to grab a bite to eat ahead of your tee time.
City Golf Leeds, Redcote Lane, Leeds, West Yorkshire, LS2 2AW.
This American diner has taken the UK by storm, and you can get your mitts on Five Guys’ famous burgers and fries right here in Burley. They champion a DIY menu, where you can load up your juicy beef patties with grilled onions, jalapeños and pickles. Prefer a bacon cheese hot dog? They do those too. And for those with a sweet tooth, you have to try their peanut butter milkshakes.
Five Guys, Cardigan Fields, Kirkstall Road, Leeds, West Yorkshire, LS4 2DG.
The Cardigan Arms
The Cardigan Arms is a legendary Victorian pub owned by Kirkstall Brewery. Expect a cosy setup with dark wood and brass detailing, where you can enjoy Kirkstall’s own brews, alongside a host of other top local breweries. They also do a mean Sunday roast that truly seals the deal. It’s made with quality cuts of meat with a huge Yorkshire pudding, bigger than your head, and topped with lashings of gravy.
The Cardigan Arms, 364 Kirkstall Road, Leeds, West Yorkshire, LS4 2HQ.
Blueberry Hill Studios
Tucked away in Kirkstall Industrial Park, Blueberry Hill Studios is a well-equipped music facility and live music venue. It’s home to six soundproofed rehearsal studios and a live stage area, all of which are frequently used by local musicians. It also makes for a great night out, with regular house, techno and garage nights on the go, as well as live bands.
Blueberry Hill Studios, Unit 11, Kirkstall Industrial Park, Leeds, West Yorkshire, LS4 2AZ.
The multi-award-winning Sheesh Mahal has been a mainstay in Burley. It’s a bustling hub filled with delicious smells. You can tuck into a heaving menu of balti, madras and bhuna dishes, coupled with classic sides like naan or rice. Prefer something a little different? Cast your eye over the Home Style Cooking section, which offers slow-cooked lamb on the bone and their kofta meatballs cooked with herbs and spices.
Sheesh Mahal, 346-348 Kirkstall Road, Leeds, West Yorkshire, LS4 2DS.
The Climbing Lab
The Climbing Lab is a bouldering warehouse that covers a wide spectrum of climbing levels. But what makes it different is its ‘top out’ experience, where you have to climb up and over the boulder itself. That’s when you’ve really finished the job. The space is laid out in a way that encourages socialising, complete with its own cafe, so it’s a sure-fire way to meet like-minded climbers, whether you’re a newbie or a long-time enthusiast.
The Climbing Lab, Kirkstall Industrial Park, Leeds, West Yorkshire, LS4 2AZ.
Open Source Arts
Open Source Arts is Burley’s leading cultural hub for the local community and offers a wide range of services for local creatives. They help out with all kinds of projects, from artistic workshops to large-scale events, thanks to their wealth of facilities and experienced staff. Be sure to keep an eye out for their public events too, which cover immersive performances, club nights and street food takeovers.
Open Source Arts, Kirkstall Road, Leeds, West Yorkshire, LS3 1JL.
Bengal Brasserie is one of the best Indian restaurants in Leeds and specialises in a mean selection of Bengali cuisine. You can dive into everything from tikka to pakoras to start, before you move onto a selection of jalfrezi, dhansak or tandoori dishes. Fancy a tipple? It has a fully licensed bar, so you can couple your curry will a pint or two.
Bengal Brasserie, 65 Haddon Road, Leeds, West Yorkshire, LS4 2JE.
Grove Cafe is an intimate cafe-style restaurant that has been a staple on Cardigan Road for over 20 years. It boasts an extensive menu that serves up every kind of pizza you can imagine, alongside a tasty array of Indian eats. But what makes them stand out from the rest is their impressive selection of vegan junk food. You can tuck into vegan grilled burgers or vegan curries alongside their standard meaty fare.
Grove Cafe, Cardigan Road, Leeds, West Yorkshire, LS6 1LJ.
Vue Kirkstall is one of Leeds’ flagship cinemas, found at the Cardigan Fields shopping complex. You can catch the latest films on one of their 10 screens, which includes an IMAX 3D screen, all in a luxurious theatre setting. Keep an eye out for their special Big Screen Events, which include exclusive screenings of the best opera, theatre, concerts and sport from all over the world.
Vue Kirkstall, Cardigan Fields, Kirkstall Road, Leeds, West Yorkshire, LS4 2DG.
Goals are the UK’s biggest providers of 5-a-side football leagues and you can find one right in the heart of Burley. They have 17 different pitches for you to play on, which include 5-a-side, 7-a-side and 8-a-side sizes. So, whether you’re booking a game for your mates or playing for a 5-a-side league, there’s something for everyone. You can even enjoy a post-game drink in the bar and watch the pros play on Sky Sports.
Goals, Redcote Lane, Leeds, West Yorkshire, LS4 2AW.
At Jump Arena you can make the most of 50-interconnected trampolines across their 20,000 square foot hall. Why not shoot some hoops? You’ll find balls and basketball nets along the edge. It’s not just trampolines either, as they have foam pits for you to dive into as well as dodgeball courts, which make for a great game with your mates. Be sure to keep an eye out for their fun-filled party nights too, where you can bounce and rave simultaneously.
Jump Arena, Redcote Lane, Leeds West Yorkshire, LS4 2AL.
Head to Laser Zone where you can hunt down your mates in a 3,500 square foot galactic labyrinth, brought to life with smoke, flashing lights and alien sounds. Navigate the multi-level arena and score points by shooting your rivals. Who will come out top? The huge arena fits up to 33 players at once, so it’s a great way to unleash your competitive side, even if you’re a grown-up.
Laser Zone, Cardigan Fields Leisure Park, Kirkstall Road, Leeds, West Yorkshire, LS4 2DG.
Jamaican eatery and takeaway Ryan’s Kitchen dish up a spectacular array of Caribbean cuisine. You can dive into traditional dishes like their slow-cooked Curried Goat served on the bone and Jerk Chicken, which is smothered in their trademark honey jerk gravy. They have an extensive vegan selection too, which includes a Coconut Lentil Curry and Jerk Jackfruit.
Ryan’s Kitchen, 329 Kirkstall Road, Leeds, West Yorkshire, LS4 2HD.
Revive Leeds own two spectacular re-use charity shops, with one just off Kirkstall Road. Their mission is to reduce landfill by encouraging second-hand sales that contribute to local charities. You can drop off donations to be sorted in the warehouse or go exclusively to browse their jam-packed shop. You’ll find hoards of clothes, quality furniture and even small electrical items, so it’s perfect for kitting out your place or your wardrobe with one-off gems.
Revive Leeds, Evanston Avenue, Leeds, West Yorkshire, LS4 2HR.
Authentic Italian takeaway El Faro pride themselves on serving up stone-baked pizzas from scratch. You can expect toppings like Garlic Sausage, Quattro Stagione and Prosciutto Funghi, which are served on either a deep or normal pizza base. Can’t decide? Go for the 50/50, which combines two different toppings in one.
El Faro, Stanmore Hill, Leeds, West Yorkshire, LS4 2PW.
CrossFit is a high-intensity fitness session that has taken the nation by storm. Each time you go, you’ll cover a range of functional exercises drawn from gymnastics, weightlifting and athletics. From deadlifts and pull-ups to rope climbs and sit-ups, it’s not for the faint-hearted, but you’ll soon see the benefits. You can attend their standard CrossFit or Open Gym sessions alongside barbell, endurance and hill sprint classes.
CrossFit Leeds, The Forge, Unit 8 Kirkstall Industrial Park, Leeds, West Yorkshire, LS4 2AZ.Cover image credit: Temple Coffee and Donuts