It used to be famous for its coal industry, which has now disappeared. Barnsley Council are pioneering a scheme called Remaking Barnsley, including the building of a new £23m transport interchange and a halo of light around the city.
In the last 10 years or so, the fortunes of Barnsley have been on the upturn, with commerce and industry building their premises on the sites of the old coal mines. The town is becoming more popular due to the low cost of living compared to nearby Sheffield and Leeds, with some people living in Barnsley but commuting to work in one of these cities. There is still a strong sense of community in the town.
Barnsley Football Club is one of the main talking points for sports fans, and is something that many Barnsley folk take great pride in.
All the above are within 2 hours drive of Barnsley. Manchester has the most connections and airlines, but the budget and charter airlines tend to use the other airports.
The M1 motorway is the main route into Barnsley as it runs down the side of the town.
The Transport Interchange doubles as a bus station, and also has regular services.
This is not currently possible. The Dearne and Dove Canal  runs through Barnsley, but is mostly derelict today. However, the Barnsley, Dearne and Dove Canals Trust  is trying to restore the canal to full working order.
A fairly adventurous person could walk around Barnsley, but there are also many bus stops around the town and countryside.
The Trans Pennine Trail  may be a more fitting route for cyclists or horseriders, but be very safety conscious when alone and beware of illegal motorbikes.
Barnsley is famous for it's nightlife, as evidenced by the number of pubs, bars and clubs in the town centre. If that's not your scene, then head to the suburbs of town where you'll find quiet restaurants, a number of friendly local pubs, and more family-friendly places.
The (indoor and outdoor) Barnsley Market is famous - a great place to meet local people. It can be found near to the Transport Interchange. The markets are generally open every Wednesday and Saturday.
The shops are open from around 9am-5pm most days apart from Sundays. The Arcade is a covered area found off Market Hill that offers a more upmarket arena with designer boutiques such as Frank Bird's menswear, and Market Hill's Pollyanna is a famously expensive shop and café owned by Rita Britain.
If you don't want to brave the elements then The Alhambra shopping centre is on offer with a pleasant array of shops and a café.
However, it is also worth checking out the Meadowhall Retail Park  about 20 minutes away from town, which stays open till 9pm on weekdays, along with fast-food, restaurants and entertainment areas staying open till 10pm. This is easily reachable by train or bus.
During the Christmas holidays all the shops stay open very late and on Sundays and there is a special German Christmas Market. During this season there is usually a variety of brass bands playing.
The coffee shop in Pollyanna (top of Market Hill) serves delightfully indulgent snacks and light meals. It's a great retreat from the bustling shops and markets. The coffee shop is right at the back of the store.
In the many restaurants around Barnsley, you may see the Barnsley Chop or Barnsley Double on the menu. This is a cut of lamb that is famous as a local Barnsley delicacy.
There are various hotels further afield, a few miles from the town centre. There are also a small number of guest houses. These can be found (and booked) through the Tourist Information office in Barnsley Central Library, or online through the Yorkshire Tourist Board.