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Attractions in Birmingham
Come and be amazed by the number of attractions in Birmingham. We've got world-class museums and galleries to explore and rewarding culture and heritage to discover.
How about a visit to our own chocolate factory, Cadbury World , where the world-famous chocolate is made, a thrilling adventure in a Land Rover off-road driving experience or a visit to the Black Country Living Museum , one of the filming locations for Birmingham based Peaky Blinders - can you pack it all in?
Find ideas for family days out, free things to do in Birmingham , unique experiences you can only do in Birmingham and more...
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Welcome to Birmingham’s ONLY city centre karting circuit and it is epic!
Race some of the UK’s fastest indoor karts on a challenging indoor karting circuit. Choose from a variety of incredible karting formats for adults and children.
From world-renowned classical, rock and pop artists to award-winning comedians, you’ll find hundreds of performances to entertain and inspire you.
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Adventure awaits! Experience eleven epic activities at The Bear Grylls Adventure. Escape the ordinary, experience the awesome and try something new.
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The Museum of the Jewellery Quarter is built around a perfectly preserved jewellery workshop offering a unique glimpse of working life in Birmingham's famous Jewellery Quarter.
Discover Birmingham’s Canals and its Industrial Heritage on one of Sherborne Wharf’s luxury passenger narrowboats.
Birmingham Museum & Art Gallery is currently closed for essential infrastructure works. BMAG is planned to re-open to visitors in 2024 – the exact date is to be confirmed.
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Situated in the South Birmingham suburb of Kings Heath, the Hare & Hounds has been around since 1820, but has stood in its present form since 1907. This is a major contributing factor to its current Grade II listed status, along with the beautiful…
The Alexandra , Birmingham, is an exquisite Edwardian auditorium staging a rich mix of drama, musicals, concerts and comedy. One of the country’s favourite venues for touring companies.
Thinktank, Birmingham's award winning science museum, offers an enlightening and fun packed day out for the family.
Villa Park is one of the oldest and most famous stadiums in Europe.
"There are football grounds and football grounds. Then there is Villa Park." - Simon Inglis It is no stranger to major events, either, having hosted matches at both the 1966…
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Aston Hall is a magnificent seventeenth century red-brick mansion situated in a picturesque public park on the north side of Birmingham.
As the cultural beating heart of the city, the Birmingham Hippodrome reaches over one million people a year through on and off-stage programmes of work, digital presence, and performances in Birmingham and beyond.
Sarehole Mill is a 250 year old working watermill famous for its association with author J.R.R Tolkien.
Join Walking Tours in Birmingham every day at 10:30am for a walking tour with a local.
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Discover the amazing world of Cadbury at Cadbury World, a fascinating, fun-packed day out for all the family located on the site of the original Cadbury factory in Bournville.
A regular host of major domestic and international cricket, Edgbaston Stadium is known across the globe for world-class cricket.
Birmingham Rep is the oldest building-based theatre company in the UK, and the forerunner of both the RSC and the National Theatre. The Rep has an unparalleled pioneering history and is the only producing theatre in the UK’s Second City. It has been…
Visit one of the only unchanged early 18th century formal Gardens in the UK, Castle Bromwich Historic Gardens.
Situated conveniently on the edge of the city, the 10-acre grade II* listed walled garden transports you back to the Dutch and French…
Blakesley Hall is a Grade II listed Elizabethan house set amidst idyllic grounds with fine period interiors.
Experience sights, sounds, smells, and tastes of the Black Country as you explore shops, houses and industrial workshops rebuilt in our canalside village.
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- 10 Beautiful Places To Visit In Birmingham For A Joyous Holiday In England In 2023
23 Mar 2023
The city of Birmingham in England beckons travelers with its rich culture and heritage. The vast amount of history associated with the city of Birmingham coupled with the city’s contemporary recreational activities makes it a favorite among tourists and from all across the globe. With a tourist footfall of more than forty million per year, there’s no doubt as to why Birmingham is one of the most visit-worthy tourist hotspots in England. Considering the innumerable places of interest that Birmingham is home to, it might often prove to be challenging to figure out the important places to visit. To make the task easier, here is a list of important places to visit in Birmingham that should be in your itinerary when you visit.
10 Outstanding Places To Visit In Birmingham
Take a peek at all these wonderful places to visit in Birmingham that will add a pinch of excitement to your holiday in England.
1. Victoria Square And Birmingham City Centre 2. Birmingham Museum And Art Gallery 3. Birmingham Botanical Gardens 4. ThinkTank, Birmingham Science Museum 5. National Sea Life Centre 6. Jewellery Quarter 7. St. Philip’s Cathedral 8. Barber Institute Of Fine Arts 9. Cadbury World 10. Black Country Living Museum
1. Victoria Square And Birmingham City Centre
The Victoria Square is the heart of the city and can be explored through the Birmingham City Centre Path. One can visit the beautiful Town Hall which is an epitome of Victorian architecture made of Anglesey Marble. Mistry’s fountain, The River is the biggest sculptural piece in the square. The Symphony Hall has excellent acoustics and a stunning auditorium in which top-rated artists perform regularly. There are two memorials in the same area, one dedicated to Queen Victoria, which was made by Thomas Brock in 1901 but recasted in bronze by William Bloye, and the other one dedicated to James Watt, and they’re both some of the best places to visit in Birmingham. The famous “Big Brum” clock on the Renaissance-style Council House is also located in the same area.
Location: Birmingham B1 1BD, England Timings: 7 AM – 4 PM (Sunday Closed)
Must Read: 10 Best Day Trips From London To Explore This Extravagant Capital City In England!
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2. Birmingham Museum And Art Gallery
Opened in 1885, the Birmingham Museum and Art Gallery is considered to be one of the finest museums. It houses pre-Raphaelite works as well as artwork by painters from the 17th to 19th centuries. The museum also has interesting displays relating to the history of the city and archaeological finds dating back to the Stone Age. The assortment of relics incorporates coins from old occasions through to the Middle Ages, antiquities from Ancient India and Central Asia, Ancient Cyprus and Ancient Egypt. The Pinto collection has more than six thousand toys made of wood and the Edwardian Tearooms make for an excellent high-tea experience. The Ikon Gallery is a contemporary art museum that piques the interest of contemporary art lovers among all the other places to see in Birmingham.
Location: 3 Congreve Passage Chamberlain Square, Birmingham B3 3DA, England Timings: 10 AM – 5 PM
Suggested Read: Cricket Stadiums In England: 10 Architectural Masterpieces
3. Birmingham Botanical Gardens
The nineteenth-century Birmingham gardens that are spread across 15 acres are home to innumerable species. The gardens are well known for their beautiful collection of bonsai trees and tropical birds. The gardens contain more than 7,000 distinct plants and house The British National Bonsai Collection. Probably the most established example is the “Omiya tree”, a 250-year-old Juniperus Chinensis in the casual upstanding style, displayed to the assortment in 1995 by the then city of Omiya, Japan. There are numerous abnormal and eminent plants in the nurseries including two fine Himalayan Cedars near the fountain. There is likewise a sensory nursery that highlights explicit plants that improve the senses.
Location: Westbourne Road, Edgbaston, Birmingham B15 3TR, England Timings: 10 AM – 5 PM Entry fee: INR 707
Suggested Read: Gateshead Millennium Bridge: A Handy Guide To Know About This Charming Gem In England
4. ThinkTank, Birmingham Science Museum
For all those who are interested in science, the Birmingham Science Museum is a must-visit place. ThinkTank houses numerous science exhibits, most of which are hands-on and interactive. This is what makes it a major attraction for science enthusiasts and children as well. From Aircrafts, locomotives, cars and tractors to steam engines, Trams and to the famous chocolate packaging machine, also to Woolrich Generator, the world’s first heavy electrical machine, this museum has it all. The Birmingham Science Museum is also home to the authentic aircraft that dates back to the Second World War-era, the Science Garden, the human-sized hamster wheel and the ThinkTank Planetarium. For all the science-buffs, this is another of the educational tourist places to visit in Birmingham.
Location: Curzon Street, Millennium Point, Birmingham B4 7XG, England Timings: 10 AM – 5 PM Entry fee: INR 830 – 1290
Suggested Read: 10 Best Day Trips From London To Explore This Extravagant Capital City In England!
5. National Sea Life Centre
The National Sea Life Centre in Birmingham is among the most-visited tourist attractions of the city which is home to more than sixty exhibits related to marine life. Lodging more than 2,000 animals from around the globe, the inside portrays itself as a spot that ‘transports guests into a submerged universe of revelation’. The massive tank with a capacity of a million liters steals the show. The tourists have access to a beautiful underwater tunnel through which they can witness life under the sea, ranging from reefs to giant turtles. The Penguin Ice Adventure habitat allows visitors to watch the adorable penguins and the Penguin feeding program adds on to the fun and frolic. A 4D informational cinema is also available. The visitors can also watch different species such as red pandas, lemurs and meerkats at the Birmingham Wildlife Conservation Park.
Location: 3 Brindley Place, The Waters Edge, Birmingham B1 2HL, England Timings: 10 AM – 4 PM Entry fee: £ 16.24
Suggested Read: 7 Best Villas In London For An Ultimate Holiday In This Stunning England City
6. Jewellery Quarter
Around forty percent of Britain’s jewelry is produced in this region by more than 200 jewelers’ workshops and silversmiths. The top sightseeing spot in this area is the Museum of the Jewellery Quarter, which allows the visitors to take an insiders’ look at the trade. The other important places of interest in this area are Hall of Memory, which was erected to commemorate the people who lost their lives in the Second World War, St. Paul’s Square, and the famous Pen Museum showing the rich history of how pens were made using nineteenth-century techniques. The zone was home to many plunge pen makers who assumed an indispensable job in the pen exchange of the city. During the main portion of the twentieth century, Swan Pens opened an enormous gold pen production line in the city, exploiting the gifted gold laborers of the Jewelry Quarter.
Location: Vyse St, Jewellery Quarter, Hockley Birmingham, England Timings: 24/7 Entry fee: Nil
Suggested Read: A Tour Around The Windsor Castle In England Will Show You How To Live Life Queen Size!
7. St. Philip’s Cathedral
The St. Philip’s Cathedral is rich in history. The cathedral was built in 1715 as a parish church and it was raised to the current status in 1905. The cathedral was subjected to the bombing in 1940. The St. Martin’s church dating from the 13th century is another place of religious interest in the same area. The church is a Grade I recorded structure. St Philip’s is the third smallest basilica in England, with Derby and Chelmsford being the first and second respectively. It’s among the best places to visit in Birmingham for couples and families.
Location: Colmore Row, Birmingham B3 2QB, England Timings: 7:30 AM – 6:30 PM Entry fee: Nil
Suggested Read: 20 Popular Food Festivals Around The World For Your Unconditional Love For Food
8. Barber Institute Of Fine Arts
The Barber Institute of Fine Arts is close to Birmingham University and houses famous artworks from the Renaissance period till the twentieth century. The beautiful institute houses work of brilliant artists such as Bellini, Tintoretto, Rembrandt, Watteau, Manet, Monet, Gainsborough, Degas, Constable, Botticelli and the like. The excellent statues, classic lunchtimes, and evening concerts are other interesting things to do in the same year. The Grade II recorded Art Deco building was made by Robert Atkinson in the 1930s and was opened in 1939 by Queen Mary.
Location: University of Birmingham, Edgbaston, Birmingham B15 2TS, England Timings: 10 AM – 5 PM Entry fee: Nil
Suggested Read: Top 14 Things To Do In London On Your Next Vacation
9. Cadbury World
The visitors here get to learn about the history of chocolates and Cadbury in a fun way and enjoy learning the manufacturing process of Cadbury, one of the world’s largest confectioners. There is also a theme-park-like attraction that proves to be a favorite among families visiting the Cadbury World. The visitors also get to shop at the world’s largest Cadbury sweet shop, making it one of the best places to visit in Birmingham for family. Cadbury World as of now includes 14 zones which recount to the narrative of chocolate and the Cadbury business through different static sets, animatronics, video introductions, multi-tactile film, intuitive presentations and exercises, and staff exhibits.
Location: 84 Linden Road, Bournville, Birmingham B30 1LA, England Timings: 10 AM – 3 PM Entry fee: £17.50 (adults) | £12.85 (children)
Suggested Read: 31 Festivals In Europe That Will Up The Fun Factor Of Your Euro Tour
10. Black Country Living Museum
This 26-acre museum, located just 9 miles away from the city of Birmingham, provides a rich insight into the history of mining. It consists of an old mine shaft and about fifty authentic buildings that can be explored. There are costumed guides who explain to the visitors the type of life that was led by the people back in time. It is one of the best open-air museums in England. It is a favorite among those who want to explore the history of industrialization but in a fun way.
Location: Tipton Road, Dudley DY1 4SQ, England Timings: 10 AM – 4 PM Entry fee: £18.45 (adults); free for children
Further Read: 10 Exquisite Places To Party On New Year In London And Welcome With A Bash!
We bet you didn’t know about all these amazing places to visit in Birmingham. But now that you do, what are you still waiting for? Pack your bags and book your vacation in England soon. The lovely city of Birmingham is calling out to you!
Frequently Asked Questions About Places To Visit In Birmingham
Where can tourists go for a day out in Birmingham?
While in Birmingham, one can choose to visit Cadbury World, Ikon Gallery, the Black Country Living Museum, Birmingham Library, Lapworth Museum of Geology, Sandwell Valley Country Park, Dudley Zoological Gardens, Stratford-upon-Avon, Barber Institute of Fine Arts, Jewellery Quarter, National Sea Life Centre, and the like.
What can you do in Birmingham for free?
There are a number of free things to do in Birmingham, such as: 1. Reading books in the Library of Birmingham 2. Indulging in free live music 3. Walking the Tolkien Trail at Moseley Bog 4. Visiting Birmingham Museum and Art Gallery 5. Street art shopping in Digbeth 6. Walking along the canals 7. Relaxing in the beautiful parks of Birmingham 8. Taking part in Parkrun 9. Walking along the beautiful canals 10. Exploring the views for Lickey Hills
How many tourists visit Birmingham every year?
Birmingham receives more than forty million tourists every year. The rich history and variety of activities available contribute immensely to the booming tourist industry of Birmingham.
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15 Top-Rated Tourist Attractions in Birmingham, AL
Written by Lana Law and Lura Seavey Updated Mar 7, 2023 We may earn a commission from affiliate links ( )
Birmingham was once an industrial center fueled by the steel industry, but today it is a lively cultural center full of rich history. It is home to several important Civil Rights landmarks, which saw pivotal moments in the movement, as well as the Birmingham Civil Rights Institute , which provides deeper insight into the numerous barriers that African Americans faced in the past and continue to struggle with today.
Birmingham is full of things to see and do, from art museums and botanical gardens to great family attractions like the McWane Science Center and the Birmingham Zoo . Birmingham is also home to several lovely parks, including the urban oasis of Railroad Park ; Ruffner Mountain Nature Center ; and Red Mountain Park , home to the city's iconic statue of Vulcan and excellent views over the city.
Find the best places to visit in the city with our list of the top attractions and things to do in Birmingham.
1. Tour the Sixteenth Street Baptist Church and the Birmingham Civil Rights District
2. learn more at the birmingham civil rights institute, 3. explore the world at the mcwane science center, 4. visit the birmingham museum of art, 5. barber vintage motorsports museum, 6. stroll the birmingham botanical gardens, 7. explore birmingham's railroad park, 8. birmingham zoo, 9. sloss furnaces national historic landmark, 10. enjoy the outdoors at the ruffner mountain nature center, 11. vulcan park and museum, 12. southern museum of flight, 13. kelly ingram park, 14. pepper place saturday market, 15. go to the theater, map of attractions & things to do in birmingham, al, birmingham, al - climate chart.
On Sunday September 15, 1963, the Sixteenth Street Baptist Church in Birmingham, Alabama, was bombed by the Ku Klux Klan. The bombing resulted in the death of four girls. This act brought a nation together and played a big part in ensuring the passage of the 1964 Civil Rights Act. The church was restored and reopened in 1964 with the help of donations from around the world. Today, it is a major tourist attraction as part of Birmingham's extensive Civil Rights story.
Birmingham's Civil Rights District is one of its most visited areas, and a guided tour of Birmingham's Civil Rights landmarks is the best way to see the major sites while learning about the important role that Birmingham played in the fight for desegregation and equality. Among the many sites visited on this small-group tour are the Sixteenth Street Church , Kelly Ingram Park , Boutwell Auditorium , and the sight of the attack on the Freedom Riders. Transportation is provided via an air-conditioned bus, and the knowledgeable guide will help add context to the city's Civil Rights story.
Address: 1530 Sixteenth Avenue North, Birmingham, Alabama
Located at the junction of Sixth Avenue North and Sixteenth Street, the Civil Rights Institute forms the cornerstone of the Civil Rights District . Its mission is to promote civil and human rights worldwide through education, and it contains exhibits pertaining to the Birmingham Civil Rights Movement of the 1960s and human rights struggles through to the present day.
The center features permanent exhibitions, guiding visitors through various events and experiences with multi-media presentations. Galleries focus on four main topics, including the broader scope of human rights, the Civil Rights Movement of the 20th century, confrontations, and segregation. The museum also contains galleries dedicated to special temporary exhibitions.
Address: 520 16th Street North, Birmingham, Alabama
Official site: www.bcri.org
McWane Science Center in Birmingham allows visitors to experience the world through science adventures and interactive exhibits, and it is a top family attraction for both locals and tourists alike. A wide variety of topics are explored, from dinosaurs to space exploration. Hands-on displays feature motion, energy, light and sound, and kids young and old will find many exciting things to see and do.
The center's top level is home to traveling exhibits from other museums, special events, and an exhibit about the relationship between art and technology. The lower level offers an interactive aquarium exhibit, which features habitat tanks of aquatic creatures. Visitors can make waves on an eroding shoreline, check out salt marsh creatures, and explore the story of water and what it means to us.
The science center is also home to an IMAX theater, which presents a variety of films daily.
Address: 200 19th Street North, Birmingham, Alabama
Official site: www.mcwane.org
The Birmingham Museum of Art is home to more than 20,000 works, from ancient to contemporary and originating from all parts of the globe. The largest of the museum's collections, in fact nearly half of the items, are European decorative arts.
The American decorative arts collection contains more than 2,000 pieces, and together these collections include a wide variety of items, such as porcelain; vases and vessels; and metalwork like fine silver, furniture, and textiles. The museum's Asian art collection is also impressive, consisting of more than 4,000 examples, which range from ancient earthenware and bronzes to works on paper and in multimedia.
The African art gallery houses nearly 2,000 pieces, consisting of detailed beadwork, headdresses, vessels, furniture, and figures. The collections also include an array of European art, with notable artists like Dali, van Rijn, and Pissarro, as well as both American and contemporary art.
On the museum grounds is the Charles W Ireland Sculpture Garden, a multi-level area that features the Red Mountain Garden, Lower Gallery, and the Upper Plaza.
Address: 2000 Rev Abraham Woods, Jr. Boulevard, Birmingham, Alabama
Official site: www.artsbma.org
Founded by race driver George Barber, the Vintage Motorsports Museum is a result of his passion for cars and motorcycles. First opened in 1995 with an assortment of vintage motorcycles, the collection soon gained notoriety after several vehicles were lent to the Guggenheim Museum for a major exhibit, "The Art of the Motorcycle," which also toured to Chicago and Bilbao in Spain.
Barber continued to grow his collection as he developed a large complex that is now home to a 2.38-mile racetrack and a proving ground. The facilities, in the midst of the beautiful 930-acre park, are regularly employed by major auto manufacturers including Mercedes Benz and Porsche, used for testing, product reveals, and commercials. The facilities area is also open to the public, where you will find the Porsche Driving School, demonstrations, and other activities.
The museum itself has an impressive collection of motorcycles, totaling more than 1,400 in all, and about half of them are on display at any given time. They span a wide range of both time and origin, representing more than 200 manufacturers and nearly two dozen countries. There is also a car collection which includes several Lotus and rare race cars.
Address: 6030 Barber Motorsports Parkway, Birmingham, Alabama
Official site: www.barbermuseum.org
The Birmingham Botanical Gardens adorn a 67-acre park, which is also a center for horticultural education. Visitors will first see the impressive glass conservatory when arriving through the Queen's Gates, as it sits behind the stunning Formal Garden.
The majority of gardens here are categorized by plant type, referred to as the Gardens of Collections, and among these, you will find two dedicated to rhododendrons; one formal rose garden; and others containing varieties of lily, iris, hosta, and more.
The Gardens of Nature focus on native local plants, and the Gardens of Culture are home to a wide variety of flora, each representing various design styles. Among these you will find a Japanese garden, a herb garden, and many other themes.
Address: 2612 Lane Park Road, Birmingham, Alabama
Official site: www.bbgardens.org
In the middle of downtown Birmingham, the Railroad Park is an oasis of green space and water features, offering a retreat from the bustle and heat of the city. It covers 19 acres, laid out to include plenty of lawn space, trees for shade, flowers, and a variety of streams and ponds. The park is also home to a small lake and offers several trails for walking or running, with the three-quarter-mile Rail Trail offering excellent views of the city.
For younger kids, there are two playgrounds, and active teens will be excited about the three skate bowls. The park also hosts various cultural events, family activities, and concerts, and is monitored 24/7 by security cameras and rangers. Restrooms and dining facilities are also available on-site.
Location: At the western end of 1st Avenue South, Between 14th and 18th Streets, Birmingham Alabama
Birmingham Zoo is a popular attraction for families and kids of all ages, home to a wide variety of birds, reptiles, and mammals from around the world. Of the zoo's 950 residents, there are numerous endangered species represented. Throughout the day, visitors can enjoy a variety of shows and events including the sea lion show, sea lion training session, and reptile feeding.
For a small fee, kids can take a ride on the animal-themed carousel or ride the Red Diamond Express, and even get the chance to meet a giraffe up close. Those who want to see the inner workings of the zoo and meet some of its residents can also purchase an animal encounter, available for sea lions, Komodo dragons, rhinos, and American black bears.
The botanical exhibit features hundreds of butterflies from more than 20 species, all of which are native to Alabama. Within the Birmingham Zoo is the Hugh Kaul Children's Zoo , dedicated to the urban and rural animals of Alabama. One of the newer additions to the zoo is the Dino Discovery exhibit.
Address: 2630 Cahaba Road, Birmingham, Alabama
Official site: www.birminghamzoo.com
The Sloss Furnaces began producing pig iron in 1882 and continued for almost 90 years. Today, the Sloss Furnaces in Birmingham operate as a museum of industry with the massive furnaces, a web of pipes, and tall smokestacks still standing. The blast furnaces and buildings of Sloss Furnaces Historic Landmark highlight the history and industry of the area.
Tourists will want to begin at the visitor center, where you can pick up a self-guided tour brochure and learn about the site's history from its short film and exhibits. There are guided tours available on the weekend or by request. This is also the site of many excellent photo-ops, however those using professional photography equipment will need to obtain permission prior to shooting.
Address: 20 32nd Street North, Birmingham, Alabama
Official site: www.slossfurnaces.com
Ruffner Mountain Nature Center offers opportunities for hiking, bird-watching, and for outdoor enthusiasts to explore and learn. The wildlife sanctuary is home to raptors, snakes, turtles, frogs, salamanders, and mammals. Mining sites, quarries, and mining equipment remain on Ruffner Mountain from the many iron ore mines that dotted the landscape from the 1880s to the 1950s.
Another mining site-turned-park is Red Mountain Park , which has several historic iron ore mining sites and a system of 15 miles of trails. This is an excellent place to go hiking in Birmingham, with several trails leading to breathtaking overlooks of the city below.
Mountain biking is allowed on all of the trails as well, and there are two miles of flat walking trails, which are ideal for strollers and wheelchairs. Red Mountain Park also offers those with mobility issues a chance to explore the full range of trails thanks to a pair of off-road wheelchairs, which can be reserved in advance.
Address: 1214 81st Street South, Birmingham, Alabama
Official site: http://ruffnermountain.org/
This 56-foot statue of Vulcan, Roman god of fire, was originally built in Birmingham for an exhibit at the Palace of Mines and Metallurgy at the 1904 St. Louis World's Fair. Made of 100,000 pounds of iron, it is the largest cast iron statue in the world. Today, it stands watch over the city of Birmingham from the top of Red Mountain , an enduring reminder of the city's early industrial roots.
Tourists can enjoy amazing views of the city from the observation deck, and on-site there is also a good history museum, which features interactive exhibits about the city and the statue's history. In addition to the views, visitors to Vulcan Park can enjoy a picnic on the grounds, view an art exhibit at the Linn Henley Gallery , and enjoy a panoramic view of Birmingham's skyline.
Address: 1701 Valley View Drive, Birmingham, Alabama
Official site: http://visitvulcan.com/
The Southern Museum of Flight is home to a variety of exhibits and historic aircraft. The indoor section of the museum uses life-size dioramas to illustrate various topics, many of which relate to the history of aviation in the military. The Korean War Jets exhibit features the two most infamous fighter jets of the era, the MiG-15 and F-86 Sabre.
Other military exhibits include the WWII era with the Tuskegee Airmen exhibit and the recovered Lake Murray B-25, as well as the Vietnam War Helicopters exhibit. The Little Pilots Playroom is perfect for entertaining the smallest visitors, and older kids will love the Experimental Aviation Association Classroom where aspiring engineers can try out their ideas using Legos, Mega Blox, and Kinex.
For kids ages 12 and up, including the kids-at-heart, there are fully functional flight simulators, staffed with real flight instructors. Outdoors, visitors can walk among the planes, including an early-model commercial plane once used by Delta Air Lines, an A-12 Blackbird, and a Stealth bomber. The Alabama Aviation Hall of Fame is also located here, with aviation art, photographs, and murals.
Address: 4343 73rd Street North, Birmingham, Alabama
Official site: www.southernmuseumofflight.org
Formerly known as West Park, this site marks an important landmark in Civil Rights History. This was the site of an event that brought international attention to the American Civil Rights movement in May of 1963 when police assaulted peaceful protesters with fire hoses and police dogs.
Throughout the park, there are statues depicting scenes of that day, including attacks on children. Visitors can use the park's free cellphone-based guided tour in order to get descriptions and background on the events that inspired each piece of art. The events in this park spurred change, contributing a great deal to the passing of the Civil Rights Act of 1964.
Address: Fifth Avenue N & 16th Street, Birmingham, Alabama
Every Saturday morning from 7am to noon, over a hundred vendors gather at Pepper Place to offer their best produce and local food products. The market also offers several vendors selling handmade local goods, from jewelry to artwork and crafts.
Visitors will find a variety of in-season produce and animal products, as well as baked goods, preserves, and specialty foods like chocolate. During winter and inclement weather, the market is held indoors, and each week, the market hosts a live podcast.
Address: 2829 2nd Ave S, Birmingham, Alabama
Official site: www.pepperplacemarket.com
There are several excellent venues in Birmingham that feature live performances, and one of the best is the Alabama Theater on Third Avenue North. Built in 1927 as a movie house, it has hosted several major events, including the Miss Alabama Pageant and Mickey Mouse Club.
Recently restored to its original beauty, it is the home stage for the Alabama Theater for the Performing Arts and hosts a variety of shows, including classic films, theatrical and dance performances, and live music. The building is listed on the National Register for Historic Places.
Another great spot to catch a live show is the Virginia Samford Theatre at Caldwell Park on 26 th Street South. This theater hosts a variety of musical, theatrical, and dance performances throughout the year, featuring local professionals. The theater itself is a well-preserved Art Deco venue, which was built in 1927 to host community performances.
Families and tourists traveling with children will want to check the lineup at the Birmingham Children's Theatre. Performances are held at the Birmingham-Jefferson Convention Complex , and a range of live performances are held throughout the year for young audiences.
More Related Articles on PlanetWare.com
Civil Rights History : Tourists interested in visiting additional important landmarks related to the Civil Rights Movement will find nearby Montgomery, just an hour and a half from Birmingham by car, full of historic spots. Among Montgomery's numerous places to visit , the city is home to a striking Civil Rights Memorial, as well as the new National Memorial for Peace and Justice. Among the significant Civil Rights museums are the Dexter Parsonage Museum, the Rosa Parks Library and Museum, and the Freedom Rides Museum.
The Gulf Coast : Tourists enjoying an Alabama vacation will find plenty to do in the state's coastal region, an area full of history and charm. The city of Mobile is known for its broad variety of tourist attractions , many of which highlight the city's historic significance. Among the top attractions are the USS Alabama Battleship Memorial Park, Fort Conde, and several period museum homes.
Alternatively, tourists can head to one of the excellent resorts in Gulf Shores for a beach vacation on the Gulf of Mexico. There is something to do for everyone in the Gulf Shores , from sedate dolphin-watching to thrilling zipline rides, popular with teenagers.
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Why we love Birmingham
Britain’s second largest city, Birmingham is an industrial hub with a vibrant, creative heart. There’s a whole host of quirky adventures waiting to be discovered in the city – from cultural festivals to unique street art tours. Find a funky scene at the Custard Factory, home to up-and-coming designers, artists and independent cafes and bars. Or satisfy your fashion fever at the Bullring, Mailbox Malls and the achingly cool Grand Central complex.
From cruising down the city’s forgotten underground canals with an expert guide to checking out the home of the infamous Peaky Blinders, or celebrating the city’s eclectic cuisine with an unforgettable meal on the Balti Triangle, Birmingham’s blindingly brilliant!
Step back in time at the Black Country Living Museum to discover the inspiration behind the hit TV series Peaky Blinders. Follow in the footsteps Thomas Shelby as you uncover a world of gangs and crime.
Boasting the most Michelin -starred restaurants outside of London, Birmingham brings the foodie game to the West Midlands. From decadent local eats to top-class fine dining, you’ll find the city bursting with places to tuck into delicious delights.
Discover dance tents, fabulous cabaret shows and dramatic drag queen performances at Birmingham Pride . See the city’s streets awash with rainbow flags, celebrating unity, equality and love in the West Midlands.
Things to do in Birmingham
Black country living museum.
Known as the ‘Black Country’ for the soot produced by its iron foundries, this open-air museum brings local history to life.
From Michelin’s Best Young Chef 2021 to street food and Instagrammable cocktails, Digbeth is full of culinary delights.
Experience the sights and sounds of the UK’s biggest South Asian music festival, held every summer.
Bullring & Grand Central
Visit Bullring & Grand Central for top-notch shopping and dining, with leading fashion brands and restaurants galore.
Featuring contemporary art from all over the world, this internationally-acclaimed venue focuses on works by indigenous and migrant creatives.
Bustling Birmingham Kayak Tour – Roundhouse
Did you know that Birmingham has more canals than Venice? Take a closer look on this adventure…
Roxy Ball Room
With bowling, American pool, beer pong and more, this adults-only playground is full of competitive fun.
You’ll swing, leap and climb through the trees, braving wobbly rope bridges and thrilling zip wires.
From Shakespearean plays to stand-up comedy, live interviews and classical ballet, this venue has it all.
This art gallery, music venue and events space celebrates the vibrant cultures of Central and Eastern Europe.
This striking building features a theatre space, observation deck and peaceful wildlife gardens.
Calling all chocoholics! Every inch of this Bourneville museum is dedicated to our favourite treat.
Hot, spicy and utterly moreish, the balti is a dish unique to Birmingham – and this area is the best place to try it.
With chef Aktar Islam at the helm, this was the first Indian restaurant outside London to receive a Michelin star.
Peaky Blinders Tour - Birmingham
Led by expert historians, these tours reveal the stories of Birmingham’s real-life Victorian ganglands.
With A-list performers, glittering cabaret and a vibrant parade, this is always an incredible show.
Also known as Gay Village, this city-centre area is famous for its LGBTQIA+ scene – with clubs, pubs and bars galore.
From gospel singers to famous rock legends, this magnificent venue hosts live music of all descriptions.
Frankfurt Christmas Market, Birmingham
With street food, craft stalls, twinkling lights and live music, this is a little slice of festive Frankfurt.
Birmingham Comedy Festival
From big-name stars to hot new talents, this line-up features stand-up, slapstick, musicals and more.
Birmingham Botanical Gardens
This horticultural haven features four glasshouses, filled with plants and trees from all over the globe.
Gas Street Basin
This isn’t only the heart of Birmingham’s canal network: it is a historic hotspot for drinking and dining.
Fishing, sailing, rowing, bird-watching: this forest-fringed wetland is full of outdoor adventures.
Dudley Canal and Caverns
Cruise through underground tunnels to discover fossils, wildlife and relics of the Industrial Revolution.
The Floating Spa
This city retreat offers state-of-the-art floatation tanks, to ease away the stresses of everyday life.
This extensive spa hotel features 12 biothermal rooms, a swimming pool, beauty salon and more.
Sherborne Wharf canal tours
For sightseeing tours, dinner cruises and private waterway charters, you’ve come to the right place.
The Mailbox, Birmingham
Alongside top designer and high-street shops, this mall features festivals, movies and great dining too.
Great Western Arcade
Independent boutiques rub shoulders with cocktail bars, beauty salons, artisan bakeries and more.
Secret Birmingham - cycling tours
Follow a self-guided bike trail at your own pace, and enjoy insightful history snippets on video, too.
Postiviely Birmingham walking tour
Delve deeper into the city’s most fascinating and culturally-enriching corners, on these expert-led walking tours.
It’s 100% vegan, but this restaurant’s menu is enough to tempt even the most dedicated meat-eater…
Great cocktails, street food and ball games: is there a better combination for a winning night out?
Spectacular shows and attractions, spellbinding storytelling and exhilarating experiences make Warwick Castle one for bringing history alive.
Featured things to do
Get your adrenaline pumping
Take to the high ropes, dive deep with the sharks or try your hand at axe throwing at The Bear Grylls Adventure. Tackle the climbing wall to free fall like a parachutist.
Go for a paddle
Test your balancing skills with stand-up paddle boarding on the picturesque Edgbaston Reservoir – escape the hustle and bustle of the city and discover the surrounding woodlands and wildlife.
Have a right laugh
Get ready for some big laughs in Birmingham – with 40 shows in different venues around the city and some big comedy names this festival will certainly put a smile on your face.
A Christmas in Birmingham
Marvel at a performance of The Nutcracker from Birmingham’s Royal Ballet, to getting a taste of Germany at the annual Birmingham Frankfurt Christmas Market.
Places to stay in Birmingham
Here you’ll find streets buzzing with nightclubs, bistros, cocktail bars and Birmingham’s brilliant Gay Village. You’ll also find Chinatown and Cadbury World here. And for those who fancy something more laid-back, there’s The National Sea Life Centre and plenty of parks and woodlands.
From the heart of this industrial centre into what’s transformed into the city’s cultural epicentre for arts and indie sellers. It’s a vibrant and happy place where you’ll find vintage to vegan, music to breweries all around budget-friendly stays.
A 200-year-old stylish part of the city that’s home to more than 500 jewellery shops, lots of small galleries, bars and swish restaurants. It also houses some decent budget and mid-budget gems - all very close to the city centre.
The birthplace of 2-Tone music, and home to a bohemian village and a showy modern cathedral.
Birthplace of the great bard, William Shakespeare, fall in love with this hopelessly romantic 16th century town.
Steeped in legends that surround Robin Hood to literary greats, discover what this city has to offer.
An unmissable destination for travellers, London is a melting pot of history, culture and green spaces.
Getting to Birmingham
With two major stations – Birmingham New Street and Birmingham International – it’s easy to reach the city by train from destinations across Britain. Chiltern Railways serve Birmingham Moor Street station from London Marylebone.
Located just outside of the city, Birmingham International Airport flies to many European and international destinations. Hop on a West Midlands Train direct to the city centre.
An extensive bus, tram and train network means it’s easy to travel around Birmingham 24/7. If you’re a keen cyclist, there’s many traffic free bicycle routes – Birmingham’s beautiful when explored by bike.
Find the best fares and discounts for train travel around Birmingham and the region at West Midlands Railway .
Fancy sightseeing as a cyclist? Check out the city’s best cycling routes and all the bike hire options at PushBikes .
Want to travel by tram or bus? Visit Swift and discover the easiest way to pay as you go for single, return and day travel tickets.
Want to know more?
Get top tips on places to visit and things to do from those in the know at Visit Birmingham.
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The 26 best things to do in Birmingham
From winding canal walks to some of the country’s finest restaurants, these are the best things to do in Birmingham
Given how big and sprawling it is, it remains somewhat perplexing that Birmingham manages to maintain such a modest rep. Having long shed its neglected post-industrial image, England’s second city is now one of the country’s most exciting and diverse travel destinations. Among its miles of gorgeous canals and awesome greenery, you’ll find characterful pubs, fascinating museums and some of the best restaurants in the country.
Home to heavy metal music, a nationally adored chocolate company, the world’s biggest collection of pre-Raphaelite paintings, several high-flying football teams and around three million legendarily hospitable Brummies, Birmingham doesn’t just have a bit of everything – it has a lot of everything. Ready to get out there and explore? Here are the best things to do in Birmingham right now.
RECOMMENDED: 😋 The best restaurants in Birmingham 🍻 The most charming pubs in Birmingham 🛏 The best hotels in Birmingham
This guide was recently updated by James March , a travel writer from Birmingham . At Time Out, all of our travel guides are written by local writers who know their cities inside out. For more about how we curate, see our editorial guidelines .
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Top things to do in Birmingham
1. Explore Brindleyplace and the canal quarter
What is it? Birmingham’s vibrant canal quarter is home to some of the city’s best bars and restaurants, the National Sea Life Centre and the Ikon Gallery .
Why go? The oft-quoted ‘more canals than Venice’ claim is a bit misleading – Birmingham is much, much bigger – but that doesn’t mean you should miss out on a walk around the canal quarter. It’s a real Cinderella part of town, having been hugely redeveloped and crammed full of restaurants and bars.
Don’t miss: Use the historic Roundhouse building as a base from which to explore by boat, bike or foot.
2. Mooch around the Jewellery Quarter
What is it? Pack a full day – and night – of fun in this increasingly popular part of town, where you’ll find everything from exhibitions to nightclubs.
Why go? With more than 200 listed buildings and more than 250 years of history, Birmingham’s Jewellery Quarter should be on any Brum itinerary. According to English Heritage, Europe’s largest cluster of jewellery businesses is a ‘national treasure’. Museum nerds will love the Museum of the Jewellery Quarter , the Pen Museum and Newman Brothers Coffin Works . And with all the pubs, restaurants, galleries and independent boutiques here, there’s something for everybody else too.
Don’t miss: If you’re making a night of it, check in to BLOC , close to the ever-popular JQ nightclub. Try Jam House , or if you have something even later and livelier in mind, Brum’s up-for-it generation descend upon the Actress & Bishop from about 1am, with no intention of making it a quiet one.
3. Soak up the views from Orelle
What is it? A French fusion restaurant with some extraordinary views across the UK’s Second City.
Why go? Perched on the 24th floor of the imposing 103 Colmore Row, Birmingham simply doesn’t have anywhere else like Orelle . Huge floor-to-ceiling windows mean the city fans out below in all directions, while at night its twinkling lights look even more evocative. The food isn’t cheap but it’s well made and beautifully presented, but really, you’ve come here for the views, so drink them in.
Don’t miss: If you don’t want to eat, there are a few seats at the well-stocked bar available but bear in mind they’re first come first serve, and obviously busier at weekends.
4. Find tropical plants, birds and butterflies at the Botanical Gardens
What is it? Fifteen acres of ornamental gardens, glasshouses and exotic birds in indoor and outdoor aviaries.
Why go? The Botanical Gardens ’ exotic world of tropical plantlife makes for an excellent family day out. The glasshouses are filled with all manner of strange flora, while the lawns and shrubbery outside are perfect for a stroll during the sunnier months.
Don’t miss: The butterfly house full of tropical insects from as far as the Philippines, Central America and tropical parts of Africa.
5. Discover city secrets on a walking tour
What is it? If the weather holds out, there is no better way to see Birmingham than on foot.
Why go? There are some excellent guided walking tours, from Positively Birmingham ’s Edward Burne-Jones pre-Raphaelite art tour to Get Your Guide ’s Discovering Birmingham Walking tour through the historic Jewellery Quarter.
6. … or, for the energetic, a running tour
What is it? Founded by an air steward with a passion for running in cities all over the world, Run of a Kind offers those with a bit of energy a great alternative way to get to know the city.
Why go? With runs between 5km and 11km for beginners and those a bit more confident, the team sprint across Birmingham on a whistlestop tour of landmarks and hidden gems, including legendary LGBTQ+ venues, notable architecture and eye-popping street art.
7. Fill up in style at the city’s Michelin-starred restaurants
What is it? Birmingham has more Michelin-starred restaurants than any other city outside the capital.
Why go? Purnell’s , Simpsons , Adam’s , Carters , Opheem and – if you’re prepared to head just outside the city – Peel’s , will all bamboozle you with their culinary delights. And with more high-end independents opening all the time, you could get in before the Michelin inspectors do. A quiet food revolution has been rumbling through Brum – now’s your time to sample it.
8. Sample sours and stouts on the Stirchley Beer Mile
What is it? A journey through the creative craft beer joints dotting the Stirchley neighbourhood.
Why go? Stirchley might look like ordinary suburbia at first glance, but it hides a plethora of taprooms serving an eyewatering amount of styles. Enjoy waterside pints at Glasshouse and Birmingham Brewing , while Attic Brew Co’s spacious site is good for large groups and Cork and Cage do a fine line in lambics and gueuzes. Newcomers Deadbeat bring a low-key dive bar vibe.
Don’t miss: If you’re hungry, then Eat Vietnam’s wonderfully rich noodles, curries and small plates are the perfect way to soak up all that beer.
9. Lend an ear to the city’s homegrown musical talent
What is it? While London and Manchester will always get more attention when it comes to music, Birmingham has given the world its fair share of talent, including UB40, Duran Duran and Black Sabbath – and it’s still bubbling up at the present with a thriving local music scene.
Why go? Whether it’s house at The Mill , indie at The Sunflower Lounge , the Night Owl ’s northern soul or jazz at The Jam House , you’ll find something interesting within walking distance of the high street.
10. See the inspiration for ‘Lord of the Rings’ at Moseley Bog
What is it? A green idyll on the fringes of the city on the site of an old millpond.
Why go? Wander around this nature reserve full of plants, animals and insects, gnarled old trees and gorgeous carpets of bluebells each spring. The site is also of great archaeological interest, having two burnt mounds, the remains of an old mill dam and the foundations of Victorian greenhouses.
Don’t miss: Book a JRR Tolkien-themed tour at Sarehole Mill , on the fringes of the bog: the ‘Lord of the Rings’ author grew up around Moseley Bog in the 1890s, and it’s said to be the inspiration for hobbit hangout The Shire.
11. Satisfy your sweet tooth at Cadbury World
What is it? England’s number-one chocolate-focused attraction.
Why go? For the best views of Brum’s chocolate factory, arrive by train (13 minutes from New Street) and take a deep breath – a sweet haze envelopes the red-brick, olde-worlde Bournville village, which was designed and built for the workers of England’s flagship chocolate brand. Cadbury World is the public bit of the factory: tours include a deep dive into the history of cocoa, a 4D cinema and a ride in the self-styled ‘Beanmobile’.
Don’t miss: Have your Wonka experience in the demonstration area (yes, molten chocolate is involved; yes, you get to drink it). The world’s biggest Cadbury store also awaits, boasting concoctions unavailable anywhere else.
12. Tour the hallowed grounds of Villa Park
What is it? Take a tour of Aston Villa’s hallowed ground, or even catch a game.
Why go? There aren’t many football grounds in the world like Villa Park. The 42,000-capacity stadium has been home to the Villa since 1897, and it has an aura that few sporting institutions can match, especially when the Holte End is packed out and chanting along. Sign up for a behind-the-scenes tour or catch the boys in claret and blue play a Premier League game.
Don’t miss: Fancy a real treat? You can watch the match in comfort at Eighty Two , the plush centre of football hospitality at Villa Park.
13. Meet the city’s creatives at the Custard Factory
- Things to do
- Event spaces
What is it? A restored Victorian factory, now a hub for creatives and independent businesses.
Why go? Alfred Bird invented custard powder in Birmingham in 1837, but these days, the old Custard Factory is a studio complex at the heart of Birmingham’s creative community. It’s home to many artists and is full of galleries, independent shops, cafés, restaurants, bars and the Mockingbird Cinema . With its graffiti-strewn walls and regular arts events, the whole area is well worth a few hours of mooching.
Don’t miss: Look out for regular open studio events to meet the designer-makers who make this place so special.
14. Go behind-the-scenes at Edgbaston cricket ground
What is it? The home of Warwickshire County Cricket Club, plus numerous England fixtures.
Why go? There’s nothing as quintessentially English as a game of cricket, and Birmingham boasts one of the very best places to watch one. Edgbaston is renowned as one of the country’s most atmospheric international test grounds.
Don’t miss: Take a tour of the stadium to get a behind-the-scenes look at the Warwickshire and England changing room, the field, the media centre and more.
15. Sink a pint in grand Victorian pub The Bartons Arms
What is it? A grand Victorian pub with original stained glass, engraved mirrors and snob screens.
Why go? The Bartons Arms is a rare treasure among the mean streets of Newtown. Established in 1901 as a Victorian gin palace, it’s still beautifully ornate with original features such as Minton tiles, a grand horseshoe bar and a stunning wrought iron staircase climbed by the likes of Laurel & Hardy and Charlie Chaplin.
Don’t miss: Book a tour or choose a pint from its fine range of Oakham ales and something spicy from the Thai menu.
16. Time travel at the Birmingham Back to Backs
What is it? A quirky window into the living conditions of ordinary Brummies over the last 200 years.
Why go? Flanked by the colourful Hippodrome Theatre on one side and the lively LGBTQ+ bars of Hurst Street on the other, the Birmingham Back to Backs are in an unlikely location for a heritage site. But this communal courtyard with back-to-back houses is where ordinary folk once lived and guided tours take visitors on a journey from 1840 to 1970, to see how homelife evolved long before Nextflix and smartphones.
Don’t miss Not only does Court 15 Books have some fine second hand books for sales, there’s also regular free exhibitions upstairs.
17. Fill your bags at one of the city’s iconic shopping destinations
What is it? A marketplace since the twelfth century, Birmingham is still a city for shoppers.
Why go? The Bullring is now a giant mall incorporating the iconic Selfridges building (looking like a part-amorphous blob, part-crash-landed UFO). Across town, the Mailbox is a classier joint with the likes of Harvey Nichols and Emporio Armani.
Don’t miss: Most interesting are the independents, which you’ll find scattered all over town and in places like the splendid Great Western Arcade .
18. Wine and dine at the Grand Hotel
What is it? A Grade II-listed Victorian hotel in the city centre
Why go? The legendary Grand Hotel reopened in the summer of 2020 following an 18-year closure and a painstaking multi-million-pound restoration. The building has hosted a plethora of historical figures, from Winston Churchill to Malcolm X, and now you can explore its striking Victorian and art deco interiors, including the jaw-dropping Grosvenor Ballroom and a new rooftop garden terrace.
Don’t miss: The brand new outdoor terrace in the central courtyard.
19. Discover the treasures of Birmingham Museum and Art Gallery
Note: This venue is temporarily closed and will reopen in 2024. Check back for updates!
What is it? BMAG is full of treasures – from Anglo-Saxon gold to more contemporary pieces.
Why go? Housing the largest collection of pre-Raphaelite paintings in the world and occupying one of the city’s finest buildings, the Birmingham Museum and Art Gallery is not to be missed. Head up to the third level for a detailed, hands-on history of Birmingham and its people.
Don’t miss: The domed Round Room is often the location for free musical performances. Make time for a slice of cake at the refurbished Edwardian Tea Room.
20. See world-class theatre at the Rep
What is it? The Rep is the jewel in the crown of Brum’s theatre scene; it’s a lively venue with an emphasis on diverse programming.
Why go? A production house for well over a century, it’s got more decades under its belt than the National Theatre in London or its West Midlands neighbours the RSC. And with major-league director Sean Foley in charge, it shows no sign of slowing down.
Don’t miss: While there’s edgier programming the rest of the year, its annual production of ‘The Snowman’ is a delightful seasonal cuddle.
21. Fill up on thalis at Raja Monkey
What is it? A South Indian restaurant with a canteen vibe.
Why go? If you really want to dine like a Brummie, then a trip to a curry house is mandatory. The Balti Triangle – located south of the city centre – is famed for its long-established restaurants, but we suggest you head to Raja Monkey. This Hall Green spot serves thalis and street-food snacks like dosa and uttapam with cheerful informality.
Don’t miss: Try the thalis for a taste of what's on offer.
22. Marvel at the Birmingham Royal Ballet
What is it? One of the five major ballet companies in the UK producing jaw-dropping shows.
Why go? The tenure of Carlos Acosta as artistic director is a major coup for Birmingham Royal Ballet. The company has an illustrious history, but the celebrated Cuban dancer has implemented bold plans to re-energise it. Expect plenty of risks and surprises, plus a mix of classic revivals and ambitious partnerships.
Don’t miss: A single second of the action. No, seriously.
23. Treat your ears to a concert at Symphony Hall
What is it? Opulent concert hall that is home to the City of Birmingham Symphony Orchestra .
Why go? This grandiose venue was opened in 1991 and has delivered a rich programme of gigs and concerts ever since. Fun fact: it was recently voted as having the seventh-best concert-hall acoustics in the entire world.
Don’t miss: If you don’t know your Schubert from your Haydn, ease yourself in by visiting during the festive December programme. The Hall looks even better for candlelit carols.
24. See the largest collection of British motorcycles at the National Motorcycle Museum
What is it? The world’s largest collection of British motorcycles.
Why go? A must-see for all petrolheads, this Bickenhill museum has more than 1,000 different motorcycles, dating back to an 1898 Beeston Humber Tricycle. There are also plenty of pretty serious modern superbikes.
Don’t miss: Book a guided highlights tour with an experienced guide to get a behind-the-scenes look.
25. Follow in the footsteps of Birmingham’s baddest gang on the ‘Peaky Blinders’ tour
What is it? Stalk the very same streets as the real Peaky Blinders on these dedicated tours .
Why go? Because you love the show and now want to follow in the footsteps of Birmingham’s most infamous criminal gang. Take a Peaky Tour in Digbeth and visit the lock-up at Steelhouse Lane police station where some of the gang were incarcerated.
Don’t miss: Further afield at the wonderful open-air Black Country Living Museum , you can see the TV show’s sets for yourself.
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Places to visit in Birmingham
Find the best things to do in Birmingham throughout the year with our guide to England’s second biggest city. Packed to the brim with museums, mega arenas and fashionable shops, the city is ideal for a romantic weekend break or a getaway with the kids. Take a boat trips on the canals, treat yourself to the finest Michelin-starred restaurants that the city can offer. Visit the world-famous Cadbury's World and indulge your sweet tooth, then head to the city centre for a shopping session at the Bullring.
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Top things to do on a city break in Birmingham
From panoramic hotel views to pinball-themed bars, find the best places to visit in England’s second-largest city.
Visit Europe's largest library
The Library of Birmingham houses a million printed volumes, the largest number held by any public library in the UK.
Location: Birmingham, West Midlands
Discover green Birmingham
Birmingham has more than 8,000 acres of award-winning green spaces and parks – more than any other European city.
Uncover hidden treasures in the historic Jewellery Quarter
Explore this creative industrial hub in Birmingham and admire Georgian and Victorian architecture.
Rainy Day Activities: Watch films in style at The Electric Birmingham
Lounge on a sofa with a drink in hand and watch the latest blockbusters at the UK's oldest working cinema.
A shopping weekend in Birmingham
Enjoy great shopping and cutting edge art on a break to this buzzing city.
Go chocolate crazy at Cadbury World
A must-visit destination for chocoholics of all ages, Cadbury World in Bourneville near Birmingham is full of fun indoor activities and things to do when it rains.
October events: Laugh out loud at Birmingham Comedy Festival
Watch stand-up performances from some of the world’s top comedians, then learn the tricks of the trade for yourself.
Step into the magical world of JRR Tolkien
Celebrate this great literary mind by exploring his childhood haunts, the inspiration for literary classics Lord of the Rings and The Hobbit.
Enjoy a 360-degree Champagne view of Birmingham
Luxury and fizz, at the top an icon of Birmingham's exciting modernity.
Boat through the history of a worldwide treasure
Enjoy a trip through the heart of Birmingham via its watery wonders.
December events: Visit Birmingham's famous Christmas market
Have a Teutonic shopping experience, all washed down with a cup or two of Glühwein!
Discover where the 18th century’s greatest minds would meet
This lavish Georgian house in Birmingham was once the home of the industrialist and entrepreneur Matthew Boulton, leading member of the Lunar Society.
Fall in love (all over again) at Malmaison Birmingham
Topping the list as England’s fastest growing Valentine’s Day destination, where better to rekindle a romance than in Birmingham?
Get clued up on healthy cooking at Harborne Food School
Learn how to cook healthy, sustainable food at Birmingham’s newest food school.
Experience an on-stage extravaganza at the Birmingham Hippodrome
Plan a theatre trip to Birmingham and enjoy classic performances by the famous Birmingham Royal Ballet, comedy, drama, opera and fun-filled musicals.
Visit world-renowned artefacts on a budget break in Birmingham
Being on a budget break in Birmingham isn't a problem at all as there’s so much to see and do for free.
Birmingham's Bullring, books and boutiques
Enjoy contemporary architectural and cultural gems as well as its shopping and nightlife.
Enjoy a weekend of free outdoor arts across Birmingham
Head to the Birmingham Weekender this September, where the city centre will be bought to life with music, dance, theatre, art, literature, food and fashion.
Make it a Resorts World romantic break
Romantic breaks should be about luxury, indulgence and relaxation, so it’s a good job Birmingham has all of these in abundance.
Meet the new arrivals in Birmingham
There are bundles of new baby animals to make the acquaintance of from all corners of the globe at Sea Life UK Birmingham and Dudley Zoological Gardens.
Head to Birmingham for a summer of festivals
This summer the streets, parks, bars and squares of Birmingham will be filled with melody as the city plays host to some fantastic music festivals.
More cities to visit.
One of England’s premier cities, Manchester offers a great shopping experience, an unbeatable nightlife, with restaurants, theatres and bars to accommodate all tastes. Discover the best things to do in Manchester.
Grand listed buildings, riverside panoramas – and a city bursting with both pop and culture. Trips to this Merseyside city start at Liverpool Pier to snap the trio of iconic buildings.
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Things To Do In Birmingham
Top hotel collections.
Near Samford University
Hotels in City Centre
Near Birmingham Zoo
Near University of Alabama at Birmingham
- Filter (28)
- Garden & Park (4)
- Shopping (2)
- Monument (1)
1. Birmingham Hippodrome
268 km from city center 1 out of 28 Things To Do in Birmingham
Best known for featuring Birmingham Royal Ballet, Birmingham Hippodrome is a grand theatre located in Birmingham, England. The theatre showcases a large variety of performances from numerous ballet and opera companies, touring West End theatrical shows such as The Lion King, Grease, and Matilda, drama, and pantomime. Being the United Kingdom’s busiest single theatre, Birmingham Hippodrome houses more than 500,000 people annually and also is the busiest venue outside London with regards to dance.
2. Cadbury World
268 km from city center 2 out of 28 Things To Do in Birmingham
Operated by the Cadbury Company, Cadbury World is one of the biggest leisure attractions of Birmingham, United Kingdom. This place features a self-guided tour and promises its visitors a relaxing and enjoyable day filled with several fun rides for children, Chocolate making sessions with the experts and a variety of other leisure activities that will make their day a memorable one.
3. Library of Birmingham
266 km from city center 3 out of 28 Things To Do in Birmingham
The Library of Birmingham is a public library in Birmingham’s Centenary Square. The ten-storey library forms the cultural hub of the city, with an extensive collection of millions of books (that would stretch from Birmingham to Edinburgh if laid end-to-end) on every conceivable topic and a dedicated arts hub. The Library of Birmingham is perfect for book lovers, connoisseurs of art and architecture and anyone looking for a moment of quiet in the city.
4. Birmingham Museum
266 km from city center 4 out of 28 Things To Do in Birmingham
Located at Chamberlain Square in Birmingham, Birmingham Museum & Art Gallery is a huge complex showcasing a multiplicity of permanent galleries, collections and changing exhibitions throughout the year. The museum has over 40 galleries famous for its Pre-Raphaelite paintings displaying a wide range of applied art, display art, archaeology, ethnography and social history. The collection provides the visitors with a glimpse into the life, culture and history and the people of Birmingham.
5. Black Country Living Museum
278 km from city center 5 out of 28 Things To Do in Birmingham
The Black Country Living Museum is an open-air museum dedicated to the history of Black Country, located near Dudley, Birmingham. The quirky museum concept depicts life in Black Country as it was two hundred years ago, and allows visitors to step into history through costumed performers, impeccably maintained buildings, and demonstrations. Perfect for tourists of all ages and history buffs curious about the UK during the Industrial Revolution, the Black Country Living Museum offers a slice of English life during the most momentous time of European history.
6. Cannon Hill Park
266 km from city center 6 out of 28 Things To Do in Birmingham
Cannon Hill Park is a premier public park located next to Edgbaston Cricket Ground in South Birmingham, England. Spanning over an area of 250 acres, this gem of a park also comprises of conservation area and 5 acres of woodland plantation called 'RSPB Centenary Plantation'. The major highlights of Canon Hill Park is its surreal lush surroundings, play area for kids, lake-boating, a fun mini golf course, Birmingham Wildlife Conservation Centre and MAC.
Top Hotels In Birmingham
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7. Birmingham Jewellery Quarter
267 km from city center 7 out of 28 Things To Do in Birmingham
The Jewellery Quarter is a heritage area in central Birmingham, northwest of Birmingham City Centre, which is famous for its jewellery manufacturing industry. This urban village boasts of a unique connection to the Industrial Revolution and now houses some of the most popular and celebrated jewellers of England. With great bars, restaurants, boutiques and jewellery stores, the Jewellery Quarter area is a great stop for history buffs, artists, and jewellery lovers.
8. Thinktank Birmingham Science Museum
265 km from city center 8 out of 28 Things To Do in Birmingham
Thinktank Birmingham Science Museum is an interactive science and discovery museum situated within Millennium Point Complex on Curzon Street, Birmingham, England. Spanning over four floors, the museum is a must-visit spot for those with an eye for science. With lots of new things to explore and see, right from a chocolate-wrapping machinery to a skeleton of a Jurassic crocodile, the eccentric museum is intriguing to every visitor. Apart from a number of galleries displaying over 200 hands-on exhibits, Thinktank Birmingham Science Museum features a Science Garden and a stunning 4K Planetarium too.
9. National SEA LIFE Centre
267 km from city center 9 out of 28 Things To Do in Birmingham
The National SEA LIFE Centre is an aquarium with over sixty displays of freshwater and marine life located alongside the Birmingham Canal Navigations Main Line Canal in Brindleyplace, Birmingham. This huge facility is the UK’s only aquarium with a transparent 360-degree underwater ocean tunnel and is home to huge sea turtles, sharks, penguins, and native rays. One of Birmingham’s most visited tourist locations, this Centre is thronged by both natives and tourists looking to uncover the mysteries of the ocean.
10. Custard Factory Birmingham
265 km from city center 10 out of 28 Things To Do in Birmingham
The Custard Facory is a shopping destination that replaced the erstwhile Bird's Custard factory found in the Deritend region of Birmingham. The entire factory is home to a number of thriving business establishments including stat ups, stand alone retail shops, mega brand outlets, cafes and bars. The Custard Factory area is also noted for hosting events with musical soirees, poetry reading sessions and multiple cultural happenings.
11. Pen Museum Birmingham
267 km from city center 11 out of 28 Things To Do in Birmingham
Located on Frederick Street in Birmingham’s Jewellery Quarter, Pen Museum is a fascinating site which makes its visitors experience the legacy of Birmingham’s pen trade and gives them an opportunity to experience writing using the reeds, steel nibs and feather quills. The visitors also get a chance to form their own nibs from scratch with the use of traditional methods along with enjoying the hands-on activities like using ancient typewriters, Braille machines and writing with varied types of pens.
12. Winterbourne Garden
268 km from city center 12 out of 28 Things To Do in Birmingham
Located in Edgbaston, Winterbourne House and Garden, nestled in the University of Birmingham, is an 20th-century Edwardian period inspired garden open for the public to be explored. The villa garden provides opportunities for learning about nature with its more than 6000 plant species and green lush along with loads of enjoyment at the garden and Maples Day Nursery. Winterbourne Garden comprises of exhibition rooms which educate the visitors about the house owners. It is an ideal place for a picnic on a sunny day.
13. St Philip's Cathedral Birmingham
266 km from city center 13 out of 28 Things To Do in Birmingham
The St Phillip's Cathedral is the Church of England cathedral and the seat of the Bishop of Birmingham located at the Colmore Row of Birmingham. Also known as Cathedral Church of Saint Philip, it is the third smallest one across England. Its stained glass windows designed by Edward Burne-Jones remains a feature that evokes wonder to date.
14. Mary Arden's Farm
259 km from city center 14 out of 28 Things To Do in Birmingham
Mary Arden's Farm, also known as Mary Arden's House, is a 16th century home and farmland that had been occupied by Mary Arden, the mother of the noted playwright William Shakespeare. Located at Station Road, Wilmcote, a mere 3 miles away from the ton of Stratford-upon-Avon, the farm and 4 adjoining properties are owned and run by Shakespeare Birthplace Trust at present. The visitors can experience a day in the life of a farmer who lived here during the bygone Tudor era.
15. Blakesley Hall
260 km from city center 15 out of 28 Things To Do in Birmingham
Blakesley Hall is one of the oldest Tudor Halls converted into a museum located in Birmingham, England. This tourist attraction is famous for its Tudor architecture that dates back to the 16th century. Since it was built, Blakesley Hall was privately owned until the early 20th century, when it was converted into a museum to display the history and the architecture of the medieval mansions of Birmingham. Guided tours are available here. Entry into Blakesley Hall without registering for a guided tour is not permitted.
16. The Coffin Works
266 km from city center 16 out of 28 Things To Do in Birmingham
The Coffin Works is a unique museum in Birmingham displaying different coffins, how they are made and stories of funeral stories of famous people in history. It exhibits a collection of coffin furniture and relevant artefacts like nameplates, handles, ornaments, crucifixes, funerary gowns, coffin cushions and linings. The place only allows guided tours, so, educational groups from schools/ college, tourist groups and families can book a day out at the Coffin Works for a unique experience.
267 km from city center 17 out of 28 Things To Do in Birmingham
Brindleyplace is a canal-side area in Birmingham with tree-lined squares brimming with restaurants, pubs, shops and clubs. It is a famous tourist attraction and one of the most visited areas in Birmingham. At Brindleyplace, visitors also get to see a variety of buildings representing the late-20th century architecture of England.
18. Woodgate Valley Country Park
273 km from city center 18 out of 28 Things To Do in Birmingham
Woodgate Valley Country Park is the third-largest country park in Birmingham, England. The country park is a well-maintained property ideal for long walks, nature and wildlife exploration and picnics. The natural surroundings of Woodgate Valley Country Park are also home to several plants, animal and bird species. Nature walks, birdwatching, horse riding are some more activities visitors can go for.
19. Barber Institute of Fine Arts
508 km from city center 19 out of 28 Things To Do in Birmingham
Barber Institute of Fine Arts is a popular concert hall and art gallery Birmingham. It is an early-20th century building situated in the premises of the University of Birmingham in England. Although this attraction is a part of the university, visitors are welcome to explore the exhibits during open hours. Barber Institute of Fine Arts has a large collection of paintings that represent European art
20. Shakespeare Express
5,659 km from city center 20 out of 28 Things To Do in Birmingham
Shakespeare Express, from Birmingham, offers an unforgettable experience showcasing the panoramic views of the West Midlands countryside's natural beauty and graceful landscapes between Birmingham and Stratford-upon-Avon. It pays homage to the literary legend William Shakespeare.
21. Great Western Arcade
16,805 km from city center 21 out of 28 Things To Do in Birmingham
Great Western Arcade is located in the center of Birmingham district and is a popular landmark and shopping mall in the city. The shopping mall has a plethora of shops, boutiques, cafes and restaurants, and is a hub for shopping and trying out the best traditional English delicacies.
22. Wildlife Conservation Park
18,914 km from city center 22 out of 28 Things To Do in Birmingham
Birmingham Wildlife Conservation Park is a sprawling nature reserve and park Its extensive network of trails and pathways offers an opportunity for a leisurely stroll, invigorating jog, or an exhilarating cycling adventure or a picnic. It has several picnic areas and play grounds.
23. National Motorcycle Museum
9,849 km from city center 23 out of 28 Things To Do in Birmingham
The National Motorcycle Museum located directly on the J6 island of the M42 motorway, in Birmingham, offers insights into the rich heritage and engineering evolution of motorcycle industry. The museum's sleek and modern design showcases the comprehensive evolution in elegance and style in the motorcycle industry.
24. Sheldon Country Park
6,570 km from city center 24 out of 28 Things To Do in Birmingham
The Sheldon Country Park with a stretch of about 300 acres is Birmingham's one of the largest urban parks. One can enjoy scenic views enjoying the grassland, serene lake, wetlands, hedgerows and mature woodlands. The farm has several animals like Jersey cattle, pigs, goats, geese and ponies.
25. Aston Hall
6,638 km from city center 25 out of 28 Things To Do in Birmingham
Aston Hall museum offers a deep insight into ancient art through its enthralling collection of artworks. It is the oldest public hall in which was once home to James Watt Jr son of famous industrial pioneer James Watt. Visitors can go through a journey of time at this grandeur museum.
26. Birmingham Botanical Gardens
8,057 km from city center 26 out of 28 Things To Do in Birmingham
The Birmingham Botanical Gardens, in Birmingham, is a natural paradise featuring a vast collection of plants and animals worldwide. The garden boasts a diverse range of themed sections, such as the alpine garden and tropical greenhouse, which showcase a variety of plant species.
27. Baddesley Clinton
254 km from city center 27 out of 28 Things To Do in Birmingham
Baddesley Clinton, located in the rising lane of Baddesley Clinton Village, Warwickshire, is a moated manor, a perfect place to escape the hustle and bustle of the busy city and whose beauty will fascinate you. It's the perfect epitome of the Elizabethan age surrounded by a beautiful garden and lake.
28. Take a Stroll on Gas Street Basin
267 km from city center 28 out of 28 Things To Do in Birmingham
Gas Street Basin, located in the city center of Birmingham, is a place where two canals, Worcester and Birmingham Canal meets the Birmingham Canal network. The basin is mostly famous for comfortable and traffic-free walking, cycling, and jogging on towpaths also alongside the canals.
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