Birmingham City Walking Tour
Birmingham is a vibrant city full of contrasts! Once the richest city in the world due to its iron industry, Birmingham is now the UK’s second city next to London. Visit sights from old Victorian buildings to futuristic landmark institutions, including Grade 11 listed buildings through to Birmingham’s new Library.
The Birmingham City Walking Tour can incorporate various points of interest. Well worth a visit is the cities ‘Eastside’, the cultural hub of the city, which also has some of the oldest examples of Victorian architecture to include the famous ‘back to back’ houses. Ran by The National Trust, this 19th century courtyard throws visitors back in time to get a real insight into the lives of ordinary people.
Birmingham Hippodrome Theatre
In stark contrast to Back-To-Backs, and under a minute away, is the Birmingham Hippodrome Theatre. With an average of 500,000 visitors per year, the Hippodrome has been acknowledged as the single most popular theatre in the UK. Also showcasing Birmingham as a ‘Green’ city the Birmingham Hippodrome was the first theatre in the UK to be registered with an international standard for Environmental Management Systems, which Is now the most widely awarded EMS certification in the world.
Black Country Living Museum
The Award Winning Black Country Living Museum can be fully enjoyed come rain or shine and is suitable for all ages. With the opportunity to explore over 26 acres, visitors gain amazing insight into how life used to be in the late 1800’s. Visitors can engage in all kinds of activity to include going underground for a mining experience, riding vintage transport, attending the silent cinema and observing costumed staff work in their shops and undergo their daily activities, all of which make it a truly unforgettable experience.
This is one of the UK’s best kept castles, dating back over 1,100 years, much of it built in 1068 by William the Conqueror. Since then, it has been a headquarters for political actions and conspirators, and hosting royal tea parties with the Earl of Warwick playing a central role in the history of England. The castle is full of surprises with costumed characters, live medieval shows, scary dungeons and magnificent grounds.
Birmingham has more canals than Venice and the city’s economic growth in the 19th century was much down to its ability to transport goods across the UK by the extensive canal network. Many of the canals have been lovingly and carefully restored, offering wonderful waterside spaces lined with cafes, bars and iconic new architectural buildings.
Precious metals such as silver have been worked in Birmingham since the 14th century and our city has been the centre of UK jewellery making for over 200 years. A proposed World Heritage Site, the Jewellery Quarter is a stunning step back in time, with over 200 listed buildings dating back over 200 years. It is a maze of streets and home to Birmingham’s last Georgian Square, which also has some fantastic real-ale houses.
Birmingham Museum & Art Gallery
Housed in a Grade II listed city centre landmark building, there are over 40 galleries to explore that display art, applied art, social history, archaeology and ethnography. The Museum is centred upon the history of Birmingham and the West Midlands, from the earliest known settlers during Roman times, through to modern day. The Art Gallery is famous for its Pre-Raphaelite paintings, which are part of the largest public Pre-Raphaelite collection in the world. Modern exhibitions combined with traditional works ensure this is a collection perfect for all art lovers.
Tour of Stratford Upon Avon
One of the most historically rich in the UK, no visit the Midlands would be complete without a trip to Stratford Upon Avon. In the summer months this beautiful, ambient town is alive with street entertainment, chic cafes and activity on the canals. Featuring William Shakespeare’s birthplace, for millions of Shakespeare enthusiasts worldwide, the house is a shrine. Here you will discover the world that shaped the man and find out what other famous writers thought when they visited here. Follow in the footsteps of not only Shakespeare, but other well-known visitors such as Charles Dickens, John Keats, Walter Scott and Thomas Hardy. Stratford is also home of course to the Royal Shakespeare Company theatre (RCS) so if scheduling allows why not catch a show!?
The Land Rover Experience
For adventurous types visiting Birmingham, just 15 minutes away from the Hilton Birmingham Metropole, is the Land Rover Experience in Solihull. Test out the true power of Land Rover by going for a spin over 14 miles of varied terrain to include the notorious Jungle Track. Tours are also offered of the latest high-tech manufacturing facilities showcasing British Manufacturing at it’s best.
Less than 90 minutes away from Birmingham is a magical place full of excitement and adventure, rivalled only to Euro Disney. Alton Towers is a theme park resort with over 19 world famous roller coaster rides and activities. Rides such as ‘Air’, which creates a sense of flying to ‘Rita Queen of Speed’ that propels delegates from 0km to 100km in 2 seconds, will all be on the menu! Or maybe you would prefer Nemesis, which creates a stronger G Force than the Space Shuttle?
Bicester Village is a shoppers dream. Located just over one hour from Birmingham is the UK’s premium shopping outlet mall, offering discounts of over 60% compared to that found in the high street. Shoppers come from all over the world to Bicester Village with a hope of finding that unbeatable bargain!
Heritage Motor Centre
Keeping the memory of the British Motor industry alive, and telling the historical journey from early 20th century through to today, The Heritage Motor Centre can be discovered just 45 minutes from Birmingham. Home to the world’s largest collection of British cars in the world, it is a museum with a difference. The Heritage Motor Centre is a ‘must’ for all car enthusiasts!