There are so many reasons to explore Leicester – from ancient architecture to out of this world attractions, we reveal the iconic landmarks that put the city on the map, as well as some of its best-kept secrets that will leave you wanting more.

1. Bring history to life

Uncover the greatest lost-and-found story

How can the grave site of an anointed King of England be lost? More to the point, after more than 500 years, how can it be found again? Uncover this incredible story at the King Richard III Visitor Centre, where you can learn about the fascinating story of his life, death, and discovery.

Discover 2,000 years of history

Follow the story of Leicester – from Roman times, through the Middle Ages, the city’s manufacturing, engineering and transport history, the Victorian era and beyond – as you seek out the city's heritage information panels, located on and around iconic landmarks. Or visit Leicester’s Newarke Houses Museum, which feature exhibitions telling the social history of our city.

2. Experience a diverse world of food

A taste of all things Leicester

Discover all that Leicester’s foodie scene has to offer – from Asian street food, Neapolitan pizzas, and tastes of South America to mouth-watering vegetarian and 100% vegan cuisine. And in amongst the variety of diverse restaurants and cafes, you’ll find some pretty unique places to eat. Once an elegant Edwardian bank, Middletons Steakhouse & Grill now serves sizzling steaks in this iconic building, 1573 Bar & Grill is housed in one of the oldest school houses in England and Wygston’s House Bar & Restaurant resides in Leicester's oldest standing dwelling.

Curry capital

Home to the second highest number of Indian restaurants per capita in the world – outside of India, of course – Leicester is renowned for its true Indian flavours and cuisine, and curry-lovers will be spoilt for choice with a variety of restaurants serving dishes from across the Indian sub-continent.

3. Unearth captivating attractions

Discover Leicester’s Space Centre

An out of this world experience awaits at the multi-award-winning National Space Centre, where visitors can explore six galleries crammed full of rockets, satellites, and meteorites, take in a show at the UK’s largest domed planetarium, and ascend the iconic 42-metre-high rocket tower.

Leicester in bloom

Hidden away within 16-acres, Leicester’s botanic garden features plant collections from around the world, making it one of the most diverse gardens in the region. The formal planting centres around a restored Edwardian garden with an arboretum displaying native trees in the sequence they arrived in the country. Discover stunning gardens, desert house and tropical glasshouse as you wander this inner-city oasis.

4. Enjoy top-quality shopping

Independent retail

Tread the winding cobbled streets of Leicester’s Lanes, where you’ll find quirky vintage and boutique stores selling everything from one-off wardrobe pieces to statement home furnishings. It’s the ideal place to pick up a unique gift you won’t find anywhere else.

Shop the Highcross

Leicester’s biggest shopping centre brings together over 100 brands under one roof. Head to Highcross Leicester where you’ll find all your favourite high street stores and designer names, as well as a host of restaurants and eateries.

5. Discover world-class art

Showcasing the greats

Immerse yourself in old masters, be transported to ancient Egypt, and discover a Jurassic world as you explore 15 galleries of prized historical collections for free at the Leicester Museum & Art Gallery. And all this summer take a trip back to the 80s with their temporary upstairs exhibition.

A city renowned for its art

In recent years Leicester’s streets have become a homage to the city’s rich, artistic heritage, with urban street art emerging around every corner thanks to Bring the Paint Street Art Festival; the biggest street art festival in the UK. Bring the Paint has drastically changed the visual landscape of the city, creating a free open-air gallery revealing the benefits of large-scale public artwork. From 3D floor art to augmented reality murals that are best viewed through your phone, the festival is helping Leicester to realise its ambition to become visual arts capital of the UK. Seek out key sites in the city street art guide.

6. Be enriched by local culture

All that glitters is gold

A stone’s throw from the city centre you’ll find Leicester’s Golden Mile – more Indian bazaar than urban street, jewellery shops take centre stage, hence the name. Incense drifts from the doorways of shops full of intricate gifts, jewellery, household goods and much more. It’s also home to Indian fashion stores boasting the latest trends and even a boutique that has made costumes for Bollywood epics. And if you’re around the area during Diwali you’ll witness the famous city celebrations, the biggest outside of India.

Sit back and enjoy the show

Take advantage of Leicester’s cultural offering and book tickets from a diverse programme of musicals, plays, new work, dance, and opera at The Curve Theatre. Alternatively, head to the Phoenix, an independent cinema and cultural arts centre, showing everything from micro-budget independent films to the latest Hollywood blockbusters.

7. Take in the city’s architecture

Explore the Newarke

The oldest part of the city, the Newarke formed part of the Leicester Castle precinct and covers off more than 2000 years of history. The Newarke’s story includes Romans, Saxons, Kings, playwrights, Cavaliers and Roundheads. It was where Geoffrey Chaucer was married, Henry VI was knighted, where the first English Parliament was held and where King Richard III’s body laid after his death at Bosworth Field.

Walk Leicester’s Old Town

Stroll the ancient streets of Leicester’s Old Town to discover some of the city’s historic and cultural gems, like the timber-framed Guildhall built in 1390, said to be the most haunted building in the City, and the stunning Leicester Cathedral, currently being refurbished, but still stunning, and look up and you might see the Peregrine Falcons who have made their home in the Cathedral tower!

8. Drink in the music scene

Live music

Home to Kasabian, Mahalia and the Leicester Symphony Orchestra, Leicester has all musical bases covered. With the O2 Academy and De Montfort Hall attracting top names, and venues like The Soundhouse, The Donkey and Firebug showcasing up-and-coming local talent, Leicester’s live music scene has never been more vibrant.

Music festivals

And the music doesn’t stop there. World-class DJ Aba Shanti-I is a fixture of the Caribbean Carnival, and classical chamber music is the star of Leicester International Music Festival. The city even has its own version of Glastonbury – Glastonbudget – an annual three-day music festival that celebrates the best in tribute bands! For those looking for something a little alternative, step into a weekend of music, art, and nature at Leicestershire's Timber Festival, or enjoy four days of community and creativity at Noisily Festival.

9. Score a piece of sporting history

Experience sporting miracles at LCFC

Home to Leicester City Football Club since 2002, the King Power Stadium brilliantly celebrates the history of one of the oldest clubs in English football. Go behind-the-scenes on a stadium tour and learn more about the incredible journey from tier three to Premier League and FA Cup glory, in one of the greatest underdog stories in sporting history.

Take a tour with Tigers!

Discover the history behind one of world rugby’s most iconic stadiums with a fully guided tour of current Premiership Champions Leicester Tigers’ Mattioli Woods Welford Road. Learn about the club’s founding years, walk the walk out onto the famous turf, see the overflowing trophy display, visit the changing rooms and sit on the same benches as the likes of Deano, Johnno, Youngs and co.

10. Get lost in the great outdoors

Green spaces

Abbey Park is one of the city’s top outdoor spots – divided in two by the River Soar and complete with historic locks, striking murals, boating lake, miniature railway and ancient abbey ruins, it’s the perfect space to relax and admire Leicester’s riverside scenery. If you don’t want to stray too far from the centre, visit one of Leicester’s local parks – with 130 in the city to choose from, there’s sure to be one close by.

Winding waterways

Leicester may be landlocked, but it isn’t short of water, with eight rivers and over 70 miles of waterways. Once an important route for industrial barges, today, Leicester’s rivers and canals offer the perfect natural haven to be explored by foot, bike, or boat.

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  1. Smick
    You forgot the Leicester Riders!!!! Oldest and greatest team in the UK who started the country's basketball league and a great night out!

    Also your website doesn't allow for sideways scrolling and doesn't fit on the screen of a modern phone

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