Being an iconic gem of South Yorkshire, Sheffield has no shortage of sights to see and things to try. Did you know that Sheffield welcomes around 17.2 million tourists a year?
Want to know where to grab a bite, what to do with the kids and what’s happening at Christmas in the Steel City? We’ve got it all covered in this handy guide. We’ve rounded up everything from the must-have locations and a few underrated gems that will make your visit stand out.
Ready to start? Click on any of the sections below to jump straight to them.
Shopping in Sheffield
Whether you want to indulge in some retail therapy, or are on the hunt for some one-of-a-kind pieces for yourself, Sheffield has some of the best shopping spots in South Yorkshire. Have a look at our top picks:
1) Meadowhall Shopping Centre
Let’s be honest – we all need a retail fix every once in a while. Meadowhall is Sheffield’s main retail complex, and is only a short drive from the city centre. Made up of nearly 300 stores and food & drink spots, it is definitely worth taking a trip if you want to get your shop on and want somewhere to eat, all under one roof.
2) Antiques Quarter
If you’re looking for a shopping experience that is a bit out of the ordinary, take a trip to Sheffield’s Antiques Quarter.
Located just south of the city centre, you’ll find a range of independent shops that sell quirky and eclectic wares for your home, such as vintage, retro and antique pieces. It’s a great place to get some interior inspiration for your pad, so be sure to stop by if you’re ever in town.
Honorable mentions: if you’re into your nineties vintage wear, Sheffield has plenty of shops with a huge vintage clothing offering. Check out COW, Vulgar Vintage and Freshmans to name just a few.
Things to Do When It’s Raining in Sheffield
There’s no escaping British weather at times, so it’s good to know that Sheffield actually has things to do when the weather isn’t cooperating. If you’re visiting, chances are you haven’t just come to sit in a cafe all day. Check out what we are loving when it’s raining in Sheffield below:
3) Winter Gardens
There’s nothing worse than when the rain dampens your spirits, and your plans. The good news is that the Winter Garden brings a slice of nature to the indoors, complete with tropical plants, and a cafe you will genuinely want to spend time in. With stunning views like this, you can literally spend hours here.
4) Escape Rooms
There are a bunch of Escape Rooms dotted around the city centre for you to try. Each room is made up of puzzles, which you’ll need to solve to get out. The Great Escape currently takes the top spot for the most 5 star reviews on TripAdvisor – try the Homicide and Abduction rooms and you’ll forget all about the rain.
5) Kelham Island Museum
Love a bit of history? Then you’ll also love Kelham Island Museum. Time your visit right, and you can witness the River Don steam engine being fired up. For the history lovers out there, this is a massive 12,000 horsepower engine that was used to roll armour plate for the ships used at the biggest naval battle of World War I in 1916.
With Sheffield playing a huge role in Britain’s steel industry, this place pays homage to the past and is a great place to take children, too (children under 16 can get free admission!)
Sheffield’s art galleries are also a great way of taking in the culture without getting caught out in the rain.
Check out Millennium Gallery, which is situated just next beside the Winter Garden to get a dose of art whilst you are there.
Weston Park Museum is also great for history and culture enthusiasts.
If you want to seek sanctuary from the rain, the Tropical Butterfly House and Falconry Centre in North Anston, South Yorkshire is the place to go, and is another activity to keep the kids occupied.
Outdoor Activities in Sheffield
So, you have managed to pick a time to visit Sheffield when the weather is on your side. You’ll be spoilt for choice with various green spaces for you to have a stroll and picnic on:
6) Peak District
If you are ever in or around the Yorkshire area, the Peak District is worth the trip and is pretty straightforward to get to, with buses, trains, and coaches that run regularly. Apart from boasting some pretty breathtaking views, they have endeavored to make the Peak District as accessible as possible – for example, they have routes for children and those less mobile.
7) Botanical Gardens
Sheffield’s grade II botanical gardens first came to bloom nearly 200 years ago and is conveniently located in the centre of the city, making it a great place to get a slice of nature if you fancy staying close by. It also holds events regularly, like this terrarium workshop happening at the end of August, as well as theatres so it’s worth having a look to see what is going on.
If you want more green spaces to venture, be sure to visit the Peace Gardens, Graves Park (which has a farm animal area) and Endcliffe Park.
For all the history enthusiasts out there, pencil in a trip to the Abbeydale Industrial Hamlet.
Things to do at Night in Sheffield
8) Live Music & Entertainment at The Leadmill
Sheffield is just as exciting when the sun goes down as it is during the day.
According to one Redditor, The Leadmill’s Comedy Club is worth the trip, and happens on the first Wednesday of every month. Street Food Chef provides the food, so visiting The Leadmill will sort you out for a night of laughs, whilst catering for fellow foodies, too. It’s also a great venue for live music – being one of the first places to host Arctic Monkeys.
Alternatively, Peddlers Night Market, which happens on the first Friday and Saturday of every month also offers a similar vibe, with live music offerings and a variety of great street food for you to tuck into.
9) Pubs, Clubs and Bars
Sheffield has a lot to offer in terms of nightlife, so check out the Kelham Island ale trail for some of the best pubs in the area. Head to West Street Live, where there’s an abundance of live music and DJ nights. A whole host of bars can be found on West Street if you are after cocktails and the like.
Places to Eat & Drink in Sheffield
If you are the type of person that likes to base their trips around where to eat, then Sheffield certainly won’t disappoint. There are plenty of fantastic places to eat in Sheffield, so feast your eyes on the spots we have picked out:
10) Ecclesall Road
To those that aren’t native to Sheffield, Ecclesall road may seem like just a long stretch of road that goes on for nearly four miles. But “Eccy” Road is so much more than that – Ecclesall Road is home to tons of independent restaurants that are perfect for when you want to try something different, and for when something from McDonalds just won’t do.
There are plenty of cuisines for you to take your pick from, so you’ll always have options. If you’re heading to any of the theatres in Sheffield, some restaurants here offer pre-theatre deals, too.
If you are on the hunt for something that is a bit more upmarket and sticks to the street food vibe, check out Kommune in Sheffield city centre. It is a food hall that is laid out like a canteen, and has everything from craft beers, food stalls, and an impressive cocktail offering.
The idea of this place is in the name – it’s a communal experience that aims to bring people together all in the name of delicious food and drink – what more could you ask for?
Christmas in Sheffield
We know it might be something of a taboo to start Christmas-related discussions already, but it always helps to know what is going in advance. From markets to orchestras, carry on reading to get some festive inspiration about what to do around Christmas in Sheffield:
12) Sheffield Christmas Markets
Nothing will get you into the festive spirit more than walking around the market stalls with a cup of hot chocolate in your hand (with all the whipped cream, of course) and taking in all of the fresh produce on offer.
Ticking off the Christmas markets from your list is a must, so make sure you get down from Thursday 14th November till Christmas Eve. We won’t judge you if you find yourself making multiple trips to sample the cheese and German bratwurst – we promise!
As well as the main markets, there are also a number of smaller ones for you to consider checking out:
– Try the Christmas Makers Market on December 6th from 3 to 8pm for a whole host of unique homewares, gifts and much more over at Portland Works on Randall Street.
– If you’re a fan of the Farmers’ Market which runs four times a year, you’ll be pleased to hear that they will be back in time for Christmas – The Nether Edge Farmers’ Market will be on from December 1st, lasting from 11 till 3pm. If you’re looking for a family day out, then there will also be children’s activities to keep them busy.
– The Victorian Christmas Market in Kelham Island Museum is also another one well worth visiting. It’s two days of local sellers and food vendors setting up camp from 10-7pm on Saturday 30th November, then 10-5pm on Sunday 1st December.
13) Love Actually: Live in Concert
No matter what you think of it, Love Actually is a quintessential Christmas film. But have you ever wondered what it would be like to watch the film whilst a full live orchestra performs the score? Wonder no more – watch out for this event, which happens on December 13th at City Hall – find out more here.
With tons of attractions bringing in visitors and business into the city, we reckon it’s a great place to rent out your short-term let properties. If you are looking for a property management service in Sheffield that takes care of everything for you, we’ve got you covered. Call us on 0121 271 0273, 0114 3310273, or email us at [email protected]