Why would anyone visit Leicester, I hear you ask. This medium-sized city in the East Midlands, sandwiched between Birmingham and Nottingham. What could it possibly have to offer?
Well, how long have you got? Leicester is vibrant and growing, with new attractions opening all the time. From our bars and restaurants to city centre bowling, mini golf and Ninja Warrior, via historical attractions, Highcross shopping centre and independent stores in the Lanes, Leicester has it all.
Did you know that Leicester has over 2,000 years of history? The city has been continuously inhabited since Roman times, and is home to Jewry Wall, the tallest free-standing Roman ruins in England. Leicester’s historic guildhall - the oldest building in the city - can still be visited. Dare you enter its dungeon?
Our museums are overflowing with amazing exhibits including dinosaurs and ancient Egyptian artefacts, while the city is home to Europe’s largest covered outdoor market, which has stood on the same site for 800 years. Four for a pound, did you say?
We’ve all heard of the King in the carpark - King Richard III’s discovery in a council carpark in 2012 made headline news around the world, as did his reinterment at Leicester Cathedral three years later. But did you know you can still visit the archeological site where Richard was found, which has been preserved as part of the fascinating King Richard III visitor Centre? It’s well worth a visit, and is right next to Richard’s final resting place at the Cathedral.
Richard III was of course the last English monarch to die on the field of battle, an event which changed the course of our history: the Plantagenet dynasty that had ruled England for over 300 years made way for the Tudor age.
From the Tudor age to the space age: a must for any visit to the city is the National Space Centre, which is now part of Space Park Leicester, a centre of excellence for space research and development. The National Space Centre is home to some amazing exhibits and attractions, including six interactive galleries and the UK’s largest planetarium.
Leicester is at its heart a multicultural city, and an enormous melting pot where ideas and influences manifest in amazing ways. This is perhaps most true of our cuisine. In Leicester, you really can sample a whole world of food. From the Golden Mile, with its huge array of South Asian flavours, to newly opened Thai, Turkish and Japanese restaurants in the city centre, to traditional English fare, Leicester really does have it all!
And don’t forget the Black Iron Social - The Gresham Aparthotel’s restaurant partner, offering luxury fine dining to aparthotel guests and walk-ins alike. This stylish bar and restaurant is set in extraordinary surroundings, with every detail curated to provide the ultimate dining experience.
After dark, Leicester buzzes with amazing nightlife. The choice of bars is truly mind-boggling, and there is something for everyone, from traditional real ale to cutting edge cocktail mixology. Whether you’re heading to High Street, Belvoir Street or St Martins Square, you’re sure to find the perfect watering hole to make it a night to remember.
Leicester is a sporting city. The Fearless Foxes’ title win in 2016, against odds of 5,000/1, shook the world. Leicester City FC continue to challenge the elite of the Premier League, with two 5th-place finishes in the past two seasons. Why not head to the King Power Stadium to cheer on the boys in blue - or perhaps their opponents?
As well as football, Leicester is famous for Rugby: Leicester Tigers are England’s most successful club, with a record ten English championship titles. Their Welford Road Stadium, right in the heart of the city, is the biggest pure-rugby club stadium in England, and generates an amazing atmosphere on matchdays. A trip to roar on the Tigers is a must for rugby lovers visiting Leicester.
Leicester is also home to two sporting trailblazers - the Leicester Riders and Leicester City Hockey Club are the UK’s oldest basketball and hockey clubs respectively. Both continue to play at elite level and offer exciting sport for all the family at an affordable price.
With all this to see and do, you’re going to need somewhere to stay. The Gresham Aparthotel offers unrivalled luxury in the heart of the city. This grade-II listed Victorian building has been lovingly renovated to the highest of standards, with many original features restored to their former glory. With packages and offers specifically tailored to guests visiting Leicester for its many attractions, The Gresham is the perfect place to stay in the city. For full details of our packages and offers, please visit thegreshamaparthotel.com/packagesandoffers