The A6181 forms the majority of the Bradford Central Ring Road, with the A650 to the east completing the circle.
The road starts at a signalised junction to the north of the city centre where the A6037 Canal Road turns into the A650 Shipley Airedale Road. The A6181 heads south along part of Canal Road before bearing right at traffic lights into Hamm Strasse (named after Bradford's German twin town). We head west through a retail park and climb over the railway line immediately north of Forster Square station. The A650 to the north turns right at traffic lights then we meet another set of lights at the top of the hill. Right is the B6144 whilst the A6181 TOTSOs left.
The road, which has been D2 up to this point, now becomes S4 and we head into the city centre surrounded by grand Victorian buildings with two major exceptions - a modern Morrisons on the left and a brutalist office block on the right. Soon afterwards we reach a gyratory and descend to the opposite corner, where the road, Godwin Street, becomes dual once more. We continue to descend and meet the B6145 at traffic lights. On the far side we level out and pass Bradford Park on the left and the derelict former Odeon on the right. We bear left past the National Media Museum and reach a roundabout where the A641 heads south.
We now head northeastwards and now pass the town hall, which was visible earlier across Bradford Park. After going across traffic lights the road bears round to the right to pass to the south of the Westfield development as an S2 road. Just to the right is all that remains of the former Exchange station. The road soon becomes dual once more and we climb away from the city centre to end at traffic lights back on the A650 Shipley Airedale Road. The road ahead is the A647.