Exam season is among us. If you are lucky enough you may have already finished for the summer but for others there is still a bit of a wait until you can have that feeling of freedom and a sigh of relief. Whether you are still revising or wanting to catch up with some friends before going home for the summer, these coffee shops and cafes offer the perfect setting for revising, chilling out or just getting a good cuppa.
LS6 Cafe is located near the University of Leeds campus, near the back of Hyde Park and near Hyde Park Pub. It has a lovely and cosy vibe to it, offering an array of coffees, drinks and food. I recently had brunch there with my house mates for next year and I was really impressed with the options they offered. I had the eggs florentine and I decided to try the vegan shake, both delicious. The price is reasonable and the décor inside feels quite rustic but chic at the same time. They also offer wraps and salads and they offer alcoholic drinks. It is a good social spot for the day and night.
- Address: 16 Headingley Ln, Leeds LS6 2AS
- Opening Hours: Mon-Sun: 9am-11pm (Bank Holidays differ)
Temple Coffee & Donuts
Temple Coffee & Donuts is located in an industrial area about 20 minutes away from the University of Leeds campus. It is in quite a random location (not near the town centre itself) but this is what I kind of loved about it. The whole place itself really stood out among all the business and trade shops in the industrial park. Temple has the coolest doughnuts I have ever seen and the most original choice of drinks I have ever seen, offer things such as ‘Iced Golden Milk’. The normal size doughnuts shown below are £3 each. They also sell cool flasks, t-shirts and mugs with some really unique artwork on them. I loved the whole vibe of the place. It’s filled with neon lights and has a really intimate but casual atmosphere. If you ever want to escape campus, this may be the perfect place.
- Address: 3, Burley Pl, Leeds LS4 2AR
- Opening Hours: Mon-Sat: 10am-4pm, Sun: 11am-4pm (closed on Bank Holidays)
IF Coffee Bar
Me and Bryony actually stumbled across this cafe one day and I’m so glad we did. Being tucked away one of the many side roads, we may have easily missed this. If you are looking for an alternative place to revise, I highly recommend IF Coffee Bar. The staff are super friendly and the whole cafe feels so homely not just in the interior décor but by the atmosphere created. Arguably, this cafe does not offer that many ‘unique’ or ‘different’ types of drinks, mostly the generic hot drinks and one or two iced coffee options. However, both me and Bryony had a slice of one of the many cakes they offered and it was so nice. I recommend the brownie. Me and Bryony actually ended up staying here for about 3 hours revising for our English exam together. It was quite empty and we went around 3pm one weekday afternoon, the perfect setting to revise in. They also offer various cocktails and have a cocktail hour.
- Address: Queens Arcade, 7, Leeds LS1 6LF
- Opening Hours: Mon-Thurs: 9am-5pm, Fri: 8am-11pm, Sat: 10am-11pm, Sun: Closed (Bank Holiday hours differ)
Arguably, this is the most ‘instagrammable’ cafe I have been too in Leeds. The inside decoration is simplistic and minimalistic and because of this I love it. Located in Queens Arcade in Leeds town centre, TREAT offers an array of milkshakes, smoothies, ice creams and frozen yoghurts. If you have a sweet tooth, this place is defiently for you. Me and my friend Bryony decided to try out their ‘freakshakes’ (which cost £6 each). I believe I ordered a chocolate and brownie based one and Bryony got the strawberry brownie one. Personally, I think one would have been enough for the two of us. We both didn’t end up finishing our drinks because they were so rich and filling. Bryony also got a fresh fruit smoothie which she really enjoyed. We actually spent a couple hours here revising on afternoon during the week. It was a good place to revise as it was quite quiet and they had charging points. Just a really chill and cool atmosphere. Definitely worth a visit if you are in Leeds.
- Address: Queens Arcade, 7, Leeds LS1 6LF
- Opening Hours: Mon-Fri: 10am-6pm, Sat: 9am-6pm, Sun: 10am-4pm (Bank Holiday hours differ)
Mrs Atha’s was actually one of the first cafes I went to in Leeds which was not a Starbucks or a Costa. Mrs Atha’s defiently has the most cosy and intimate vibe out of the cafes on this list. It is always quite busy and full. The rustic setting and the dim lighting help to create this relaxed and quirky vibe. I would highly recommend trying one of the hot chocolates they offer. I believe they have four different ones and I always go for the darkest flavour. They are beautifully presented and taste divine. The cakes are reasonably priced as well considering the size of a slice of cake. Although personally I would not recommend this cafe for studying as it often does get quite noisy, this is the perfect spot for socialising, catching up with friends and enjoying some cake.
- Address: Central Rd, Leeds LS1 6DE
- Opening Hours: Mon-Sat: 9am-5pm, Sun: 10am-5pm (Bank Holiday hours will differ)
So there you go, my top recommendations of places to go with you want to escape campus for a while or try somewhere different from the regular Starbucks, Costa or Cafe Nero. The question is, which one will you try out first?