Leicester travel guide

Leicester Tourism | Leicester Guide

You're Going to Love Leicester

Since it was founded in the second century BC, Leicester has been a Saxon stronghold, a Roman garrison, and the city that supplied the coal that fired the Industrial Revolution. Today, it's a top tourist destination known for its sports teams, its friendly locals, and the National Space Centre. Plus, it's the last resting places of one of Britain's most infamous kings.

Top 5 Reasons to Visit Leicester

1. It's a Must for Sports Fans

Leicester City FC is one of the country's most successful soccer teams. If you're not able to get tickets for a game, take a tour of the King Power Stadium instead.

2. Discover Richard III

Learn more about the king that Shakespeare labelled a ruthless opportunist at the King Richard III Visitor Centre or see his new tomb at 11th-century Leicester Cathedral.

3. Great Museums and Galleries

See the largest piece of masonry from Roman times in the UK and discover what the city was like during its days as a garrison town at the Jewry Wall Museum. Or, spend the day at the New Walk Museum and Art Gallery among dinosaur bones, Egyptian mummies, and ceramics by Picasso.

4. The Beautiful Outdoor Spaces

Visit Abbey Park, a leafy space divided in two by the River Soar. Highlights include the ruins of the 12th-century abbey, a boating lake, beautiful gardens, and play areas.

5. It's a Cultural Melting Pot

The part of Belgrave Road known as the Golden Mile celebrates the city's cultural diversity. Visit the city in August for the Belgrave Mela or Leicester Caribbean Carnival.

Where to Eat in Leicester

Head for the Golden Mile area of Belgrave Road for the best curries in the city. For a more upmarket version of the UK's most popular food, try the Maiyango Hotel and Restaurant. A simple lunch will cost from £5-8 while dinner for two with wine at a smart restaurant will be £45 - £70.

When to visit Leicester

Leicester in February
Estimated hotel price
$45
1 night at 3-star hotel
Leicester in February
Estimated hotel price
$45
1 night at 3-star hotel

The best time to visit Leicester is during the summer months from May to September for seasonal attractions like the Carnival and the Mela. Soccer and rugby lovers might prefer to visit during the winter months when the season is well underway.

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Temperatures
Temperatures
Average
Celcius (°C)
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How to Get to Leicester

Plane

The closest airport to Leicester is East Midlands Airport (EMA). Take the Skylink bus from the airport to St. Margaret's Bus Station in the city center or make the journey by taxi for £30 - £40.

Train

The city is on the main route from London to Leeds. The railway station is 10 minutes from the heart of the city and a five-minute walk from St. Margaret's Bus Station.

Car

Leicester is right next to the M1 motorway if you're coming from London and the south. Those traveling from other parts of the Midlands like Coventry or Birmingham can take the M69 and connect to the M1 at Junction 21.

Bus

There are regular services to Leicester from London and other major cities. Operators include National Express and Megabus.

Airports near Leicester

Airlines serving Leicester

United Airlines
Good (2,277 reviews)
Lufthansa
Good (1,001 reviews)
American Airlines
Good (3,737 reviews)
KLM
Good (258 reviews)
Air France
Good (260 reviews)
British Airways
Good (726 reviews)
Delta
Excellent (2,518 reviews)
Turkish Airlines
Good (914 reviews)
Qatar Airways
Good (828 reviews)
SWISS
Excellent (279 reviews)
Iberia
Good (515 reviews)
Air Canada
Good (429 reviews)
Austrian Airlines
Good (143 reviews)
Emirates
Excellent (557 reviews)
TAP AIR PORTUGAL
Good (325 reviews)
Scandinavian Airlines
Good (249 reviews)
Ryanair
Good (990 reviews)
Brussels Airlines
Good (67 reviews)
Finnair
Good (328 reviews)
Alaska Airlines
Excellent (1,567 reviews)
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Where to stay in Leicester

Try the Mercure Leicester Grand Hotel in the city center or pick a designer hotel like the Maiyango Hotel. Budget-friendly alternatives include the Croft Hotel.

Popular neighbourhoods in Leicester

City Center - the city's commercial and retail center. Attractions include Leicester Cathedral, the National Space Centre, and the Curve center for performing arts.

Belgrave - the district to the north of the city center is known for its restaurants, sari stores, and jewelry shops.

Clarendon Park/Knighton - home to the city's two prestigious universities, the University of Leicester and De Montfort University Leicester, plus a large student population.

Where to stay in popular areas of Leicester

Most booked hotels in Leicester

Holiday Inn Leicester
Excellent (8.5, Excellent reviews)
$142+
Holiday Inn Express Leicester City
Good (7.9, Good reviews)
$128+
The Plough Inn Wigston
Excellent (8, Excellent reviews)
$85+
Hilton Leicester Hotel
Good (7.3, Good reviews)
$160+
See all hotels

How to Get Around Leicester

Public Transportation

Local buses cover Leicester and neighboring towns. Arriva buses depart from St. Margaret's Bus Station while First buses can be boarded at stops all over the city center. Day tickets are available but they are not interchangeable.

Taxi

Taxis are readily available in all parts of the town. A typical five-mile journey will cost £8.

Car

Many people choose to rent a car since the city is within driving distance of some of the most beautiful parts of the United Kingdom. Leading brands like Enterprise and Budget can be found at East Midlands Airport.

The Cost of Living in Leicester

Shopping Streets

Visit 700-year-old Leicester Market, the oldest covered market in Europe, for a vast assortment of clothing, foods, and accessories. If you prefer a more upmarket setting, you'll find leading brands and designer names in the Gold Award-winning Highcross shopping mall.

Groceries and Other

Pick up food, toiletries, and other essentials from supermarket chains like Morrison's, Tesco, and Waitrose. You'll pay 75p for a quart of milk and £2.03 for a dozen large eggs.

Cheap meal
$20.22
A pair of jeans
$109.44
Single public transport ticket
$5.05
Cappuccino
$5.04