Bradford Claire Harbeck 5

Facts about my host city

Claire – Exchange to University of Bradford, United Kingdom

Semester 2, 2016

Bradford Claire Harbeck 6Bradford, my host city, is very interesting! I have been living here for just over a month now and it feels like I am learning something new each day.

Bradford is located in West Yorkshire and is nearly smack bang in the middle of England. I really enjoy this because it takes around the same time to travel to London and Edinburgh as well as travelling East and West.  It is the fourth largest city in Britain and thus is no surprise (it is still surprising to me however) that it contains over two hundred Asian restaurants. I want to try and eat at as many restaurants as I can before I leave in February. Bradford has also recently broken the record of claiming the Curry Capital of Britain the most amount of times – it has won six times in a row and is the curry-ent holders of the prize this year… pun intended.Bradford Claire Harbeck 8

There is an ice rink inside a student accommodation complex about two or three floors up from ground level. I have been using this rink with my University ice hockey team and friends regularly as it is in such a prime spot and cheap!

Across from the accommodation and rink is the National Media Museum. The museum holds seven floors of free galleries. I highly recommend if anyone is in the area to visit this museum as it is very insightful and interesting. The National Media Museum is also the most visited museum outside of London! It holds the first IMAX theatre in the United Kingdom as well as two other cinemas. When in doubt of what to do in Bradford just see a movie!

From the sixth to ninth of October this year, Bradford’s City Park (a centre piece of Bradford with a lovely water feature (the largest of its kind in the United Kingdom) of over one hundred fountains (one fountain which can shoot water over thirty metres high), laser lights, and other effects  evolved into a night garden called Forest of Light. This popular event happens every year with thousands attending each night. Giant structures of light illuminate the night with peaceful music and festive rides gaining the attention of many. It is truly beautiful and pictures will not do it justice.

Within the Bradford District is the Ilkley Moor. It is a wide space of upland which can be used for walking, hiking, cycling, shooting, etc. Many archaeological sites are hidden around the Moor including a set of stones presented like Stonehenge (but smaller) and is actu  ally older than Stonehenge itself! Poem boxes are situated in specific locations where one can sit down, write a poem, and then exchange it for another poem someone wrote. I will be defiantly exploring the Ilkley Moor once again sometime soon.

Bradford Claire Harbeck 7Amongst the amazing things to do in this city, Bradford also has a rich history. It was once the wool capital of the world where two thirds of wool production in the United Kingdom was undertaken in Bradford.  This consequently led to a significant increase of business in the area and thus a rapid city expansion. Victorian style buildings can be seen around the city today. Bradford is now known for its engineering, packaging, financial, and exporting expertise.

My host city, Bradford, is filled with a rich diverse of restaurants, activities, history, and events. Hopefully one day you can visit and experience what Bradford holds as well!