Five best scenic drives near Leeds: Best Yorkshire driving routes near Leeds

Driving is an amazing way to explore a country and the UK is home to fantastic scenery. Leeds is a vibrant and exciting metropolis but sometimes escaping outside the city is just what the doctor ordered. Where are the best scenic drives in Yorkshire near Leeds?

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Top five scenic drives near Leeds

Knaresborough

Driving time from Leeds: 35mins to 1hr

This Yorkshire market town dates right back to the fifth century and is steeped in history.

The town centre is perched on the cliffs above the River Nidd making for a beautifully dramatic setting.

The iconic viaduct is well worth a peek as are the castle ruins.

Knaresborough’s market pops up on Wednesday where you can buy food, plants and more.

Skipton

Driving time from Leeds: 50mins to 1hr 20mins

For a more preserved castle then head to the charming market town of Skipton.

Here, the castle is 900 years old and in excellent shape. In fact, it’s arguably the most complete medieval castle in England.

Skipton is at the gateway to the Yorkshire dales making is an ideal base for touring the region.

Saltaire

Driving time from Leeds: 30mins to 1hr

Something a little different, Saltaire was built as a model village in 1853 by the industrialist and philanthropist Titus Salt for his employees.

In 2001 it was designated a UNESCO World Heritage Site.

At Salts Mill, you can ogle one of the largest art collections of David Hockney.

There are also plenty of independent and unique shops to poke around and a number of tempting restaurants and cafes.

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Marsden

Driving time from Leeds: 40mins to 1hr

Visitors to Marsden can enjoy its waterways – there’s the River Colne, which is nice to enjoy a pint next to, plus the Huddersfield Narrow Canal.

Here, canal boats that once carried coal now ferry holidaymakers.

Check out the Standedge Tunnel – the longest, highest and deepest canal tunnel in Britain.

Ilkley

Driving time from Leeds: 40mins to 1hr 15min

Ilkley is a spa town just outside the Dales and is well known for its moor.

Be sure to stride out on this fantastic countryside – there’s a walking route for everyone.

There’s also an open-air lido – one of England’s remaining 127 lidos.

There are a number of events through the year in Ilkley such as Ilkley Literature Festival, Ilkley Summer Festival and Real Food Ilkley Markets.

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