Things To Do In Birmingham
Birmingham is one of the most industrialized cities of England with a cosmopolitan vibe, modern and revitalized for the future. It is full of cultural attractions and lots of historical and commercial points of interest. Birmingham's urban center is for the most part a business area with a couple of attractions nestled underneath the high rise skyline of the city. To truly catch the city's quintessence, you'll need to visit four important areas – the vibrant Five Points that stands close to the University of Alabama; the offbeat Lakeview where most prominent bars are located; the enchanting Homewood, an elegant shopping place with highly pedestrian roads; and lastly, the Civil Rights District, the place with a remarkable gathering of tourist spots situated within the premises of the downtown center.
When To Go:
Birmingham's atmosphere is best portrayed as a calm oceanic atmosphere, which is described by moderate temperatures and not arriving at extremes. The mid-year months of June-August (summer), encounters an ascent in mercury levels, generally joined by high temperature waves. An intermittent tornado is the hidden threat of summer season as well. However it doesn't torment Birmingham regularly. The summer season is not an advisable time to tour the city
The winter season months from December-February, are additionally known to experience mellow atmosphere, with temperatures seldom arriving at sub zero. Nonetheless, snowfall is more visible during the months of day January and February, which is also the coldest time of the year. In the event that you are pondering about monsoonal showers, its best to be arranged at all times as the climate tends to get unpredictable.
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The best time to come and visit the city is to consider the season of spring during the months of April through October, (spare July and August) for your holiday excursion. The purpose behind barring July and August is backed by two contentions; these months are the most sweltering time of the year, turning your trek less charming by the hour. The second contention essentially relates to the group of travelers that the city needs to manage, transforming these months into the peak season to visit the wonderful city.
These places and activities are the popular things to do in Birmingham City…
Birmingham Symphony Hall
One of the great things to do here is to watch a concert of the world class Birmingham Symphony Orchestra at the Birmingham Symphony Hall, the experience is totally awesome. The orchestra is very well run and the location is really nice and easily accessible from downtown center.
Despite having to purchase the ticket at the last minute, you can still get a great seat at an affordable price. The students get 50 % discount and the kids have no entrance fee. The acoustics of the venue is perfect and to witness a live performance of the symphony orchestra is indescribable. The beauty of the place and the music is totally enchanting. From start to finish it is a must see!
Birmingham Back to Backs
The Birmingham Back to Backs is a well-made guided tour through the decades of a working-class neighborhood. There are many interesting facts told and you will learn so much about the city in an exciting way. The time reconstruction exhibits are very impressive. However, a visit to this site must be booked in advance because only a limited number of people (groups of 8 people) are allowed to get inside some of the cramped spaces.
The gift shops and candy stores are both worth the visit. The guides are very enthusiastic here on this small museum that recreates life in the industrial suburbs of the end of the eighteenth century to the 1950s. hey will accompany you to view the buildings of the really well preserved ones. The visit is fun to do and provides many interesting tidbits of information about Birmingham’s history.
Winterbourne House and Garden
The Winterbourne House and Garden is a perfect place to relax and enjoy nature. The variety of plants is contagious. You can also make a stop at the Café, and of course you cannot leave the place without knowing the history of its ancient inhabitants. The Winterbourne House and Garden is tucked away in the vicinity of the Selly Oak district, about 15-20 minutes by bus from the city center. From the outside, it looks a bit plain but when you get inside, you will be really surprised at the interior.
The garden is beautiful and offers many interesting features. There are several greenhouses and also the outdoor area itself has the place that is ideal for strolling. It is so lovingly created you will feel like you are almost thrown in a magic land. The visit to the main house is also great. Each room can be visited and you can find information about the owner and their life and times while taking care of this house. Everything is still preserved and very nicely decorated! In the restaurant you can still get a typical English lunch. The terrace side also offers a great view of the premises. Do not bypass this attraction when you are in Birmingham City.
Birmingham Museum and Art Garden
The Birmingham Museum and Art Garden is definitely a great museum in which there are works of all kinds including some Modigliani. If anything, it is one of the few museums in the city that is worth seeing. Free entry as most of the major British museums but also usually a small donation is always appreciated. The museum is housed in a stately mansion which is also the best looking structure in town!
The art museum is a beautiful experience that successfully unite the past with the present. It's free to know all about the history of Birmingham, its immigrants, custom and the whole culture in a cozy and well-maintained building in the heart of the city.
Library of Birmingham
The Library of Birmingham is an unconventional attraction, but quite interesting. It may not be a typical tourist spot but if you have read a lot about the design of this building, it is a must to walk and browse over a few titles in this amazing library. On their website or upon entrance to the building you can read a leaflet which lists the recommended route and how the sections of the library are properly segregated.
If you come here to study or just read, you can borrow books, some modern, rare and more classic but all titles are amazing. There are two terraces from which you can see the whole city and its channels, and where you can sit and observe the surroundings.
This recent building works beautifully in the heart of the city and offers several books in an almost infinite culture and available for everyone, with or without a library card, you can go there to stay or to spend the afternoon or the day reading or relaxing in one of their numerous chairs.
The Pen Museum is a surprising off the beaten path adventure that you will not regret seeing in Birmingham. It is an unforgettable experience where you will meet an endearing guide who will tour you to one of the most peculiar museums you would ever see. The impressive collection of pens, the order of exhibit displays and the love shown for this place by the staff are awesome. There is a session where you can be able to create your own pen using machines that are over a hundred years old and engrave your name in Braille.
The workshop for children is amazing because they are left to become creative by using stamps, pens, and old typewriters. Make sure to check this exciting place that is designed for both kids and adults to enjoy. You will like learning about the pens before and to practice writing with the “feather of truth” pen. It is an ideal day out for families with children. It is truly a calligrapher’s heaven.
Museum of the Jewellery Quarter
The museum is located in the old quarter. The first master was working here in the fifteenth century, the business flourished and by the middle of the 18th century, the artists gathered to form the Museum of the Jewelery Quarter with hundreds of artists living in the neighborhood where everyone worked and taught upcoming apprentices. The museum has kept the old quarter machines, which create bracelets and chains. The jewelry quarter of Birmingham today stands in a long and narrow street, on both sides of which precious jewelries are traded in gold, silver, platinum, and diamonds.
On two floors of the building for the quarter, there is an interesting exhibition and a lot of background information provided, but the centerpiece is certainly the old workshop. For the admission price of 4 pounds you also get a 45-minute guided tour through the old factory with great explanations and demonstrations of old machines and tools used to create a masterpiece. Particularly appealing is the museum, there really are all originals and no replicas are seen.
St. Martin in the Bull Ring
The church of St. Martin in the Bull Ring is located just near the commercial shopping center called the Bull Ring. It is a very small church but at the same time imposing in which there is also a food court for the faithful who wish to stay inside. It provides an interesting contrast between faith and commerce, and between old and new. The church despite being very old is in a modern business area in which you can find every kind of shop and sometimes it’s not cheap. The details of the facade with the aluminum discs is eye-catching. It is a beautiful church that is incorporated in the nearby modern shopping center. The concept of modern technology has also entered the premises of the church. During the holy mass, there are 2 large flatscreen monitors on either side of the nave showing the words of the hymns of the faithful.
If you want to eat something you can find several dining areas that suits one’s budget. From sushi to Italian pizzeria from Chinese to Thai, this complex of faith and commercialism is an ideal place to spend a few hours in the event that you are overwhelmed by the classic English rain or in case you want to go shopping or spend some quiet time to reflect and pray inside the modern chapel.
National Motorcycle Museum
The National Motorcycle Museum is a must for the avid motorcycle fan. Although the selection is practically limited to English brands, this is probably one of the largest motorcycle museum in the world. In 4 large halls, there are around 1,000 bikes, all perfectly restored. And, admission price is reasonable around 12 € for an adult. Back in 2003, the museum almost got completely burned down and some of the exhibits have been partially destroyed. It is not that huge, but in an hour you can see quite a bit of the interesting collection of two wheeled vehicles in Birmingham.
From the bus station you need to walk about 5 minutes until you reach the imposing building of the Aston Hall. Aston Hall is a very awe-inspiring and beautiful building where you can enjoy a one-hour tour, which is very interesting and learn a lot about the Jacobean era, the architecture, the interior and the lives of the former residents (and Temporary rule) of Aston Hall.
All the staff here are attentive and will look after your needs and questions. If you feel famished after the tour, there are drinks and snacks to eat there in the little cafe that is housed along the converted stables.
Gas Street Basin
Initially you would expect a very modern attraction even more so if you have first visited the Bull Ring shopping center and then find yourself in a part of the city's oldest and unexpected site. In some ways, the Gas Street Basin looks a bit like the gondolas in Venice, but here there are there are long, narrow boats with cabins that are actually real homes. This part of town is very pretty and a must see because it is very characteristic. It has well maintained channels and premises and certainly the most beautiful part of Birmingham City. It's well worth a visit because being hidden; they are unexpected at first sight and really cute. Day or night, it has a very romantic atmosphere with trendy restaurants and taverns from both side.
The canal basin is located directly on the busy Broad Street. Many houseboats are moored there. It was renovated in the 1990s and contains several pubs and restaurants that are busy on weekends. It is great on warm summer evenings (not so often). It is ok during the day, but not so safe at night. It is a walk through the ancient canals of the city that can be done on foot or by boat, and very nice. There are more commercial shops and more authentic restored area and elsewhere, unless reformed. Many people with children rent the boat that takes them right through the channels, but you can stroll and move from one place to another by crossing the bridges. If you schedule your visit on a Sunday, there is a floating market with crafts and lots of fun things about Birmingham.
Cadbury World is a famous chocolate factory that is located near Birmingham City. It is highly recommended to take the path of the history of chocolate (in English) because it is very entertaining. After the tour you end up in the shop full of chocolate. The chocolate is very good, especially the one with the caramel inside! Then you can relax in the small park that has rides for the little ones and ping pong tables.
On a lovely day, there are lots of great fun for kids but also for the biggest sweet tooth. The ticket price is offset by a few bars of chocolate that you can eat while you tour the Cadbury World in Birmingham City. If you plan to visit, book a “purple ticket” in advance from their website for a hassle free tour of the famous chocolate factory.
Thinktank Science Museum
The Thinktank Museum is located inside a campus that includes several floors dedicated to science, art, and technology. At the top is a planetarium, where they usually conduct cognitive demonstration of the sky, and the weather of the current day. The lower floor is devoted mainly to medicine and biology. Below this section is a portion of the museum that is focused on art. On the ground floor is where kids enjoy the most because it is where the model airplanes, motorcycles, cars, and various types of locomotive are all displayed. There are also lots of science booths or stands that attract children with the cognitive information and interactive features. Next to it is the Science Garden where kids learn to be more observant and interact with other kids. The museum is truly ideal for being educational and informative.
If you want a family friendly travel destination for your next holiday where you can bring your kids along, choose the city of Birmingham because it has lots of family friendly attractions aside from learning so much about the city, they will also learn about science, art, important museums about England’s history and culture, and a quick side trip to a tasty chocolate factory. List down Birmingham in your next bucket list of travel destinations to accomplish, you will not regret a day of making the decision to see and explore it.
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