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It's definitely easy to say Leeds is the best city destination, but the results speak for themselves. With a population of 751,500 and growing, those numbers put us third on the list of largest cities..
In the last decade, Leeds has seen a large amount of redevelopment (alongside the other Northern cities of Manchester & Liverpool), with the city centre in particular, seeing the most change, including numerous new build and converted apartment complexes.
Leeds has received several accolades in the field of tourism; including being voted by Conde Nast Traveler magazine Readers' Awards as the "UK's favourite city" in 2004, "Best English city to visit outside London" in 2005, and also "Visitor city of the year" by The Good Britain Guide in 2005. A vibrant city, rich in culture and heritage, and ideally located in the very heart of England, it is supported by an extensive rail, road and air network which makes traveling to Leeds quick and easy.
Leeds Bradford International Airport is one of the fastest growing regional UK airports, with a 75 per cent growth in passenger numbers in the last five years. Over 450 weekly flights connect the city to over 50 major European business and holiday destinations.
Tourism in Leeds is estimated to support over 20,000 full time equivalent jobs, and on average Leeds attracts around 1.4 million people annually who stay overnight, plus a further 18.4 million who visit on day trips. Visitors to the city bring in nearly £735 m into the local economy each year and Leeds' vibrant and cultural scenes are some of the key reasons that visitors from across the UK and Europe come to Leeds.
Major national and regional attractions include the Royal Armouries, the Henry Moore Sculpture Centre, West Yorkshire Playhouse and the award winning Harewood House, which was voted one of the best large visitor attractions in the Excellence in England Awards for Tourism 2003.
Leeds is also only city outside London to have both its own opera and ballet companies - the internationally acclaimed Opera North and Northern Ballet Theatre.