12 Best Things To Do in Birmingham UK (Local’s Guide)

Looking for the best things to do in Birmingham, UK? Birmingham sits in the heart of England in the Midland region. I live a few minutes away from the centre of Birmingham. I guess it would be ideal to suggest some places to visit and the best things to do in Birmingham thru this blog post.

I first knew Birmingham as a lyric to a famous song, I would have never thought that this would become my second home. Birmingham is the second largest in the UK. Birmingham is also the birthplace of heavy metal music, pioneered and created by the local Birmingham band – Black Sabbath.

Unlike London, the city has no castles and palaces because of its industrial roots. I made another blog post about London vs Birmingham: Detailed City Comparison Guide to discuss with you the difference between the two cities.

Read More: The Best Day Trips from Birmingham (UK)

Here are the best things to do in Birmingham, UK

Cadbury World

AddressThe Cadbury World, Linden Rd, Bournville, Birmingham B30 1JR

Cadbury World: 10 Best Things To Do in Birmingham UK (Local's Guide)
Best things to do in Birmingham: Visit the Cadbury World

Birmingham is the home of the world-renowned and most loved chocolate – Cadbury chocolate.

One of the best things to do in the city is a day out in Cadbury World is one of the most popular things to do with kids in Birmingham. The chocolate factory also has a museum that displays the history and heritage of cocoa farming and chocolate making from the humble beginnings of Cadbury up to what it is now today.

Of course, there is no better place to buy your Cadbury chocolate than here at a discounted price. What else can you ask for perfect days out in Birmingham! Just a note, there is no Umpa Lumpa in this chocolate factory!

Read More: Best UK Travel Itinerary for 2 Weeks

The Think tank museum

Address: Think Tank Museum, Millennium Point, Curzon St, Birmingham B4 7XG

Days out in Birmingham: Think Tank Museum
Best things to do in Birmingham: Visit the Think Tank Museum | By Amandachan1106 (Own work), via Wikimedia Commons

Another one of the great things to do with kids and days out in Birmingham, as well as for those young at heart who loves science, this is the place to go!

Think tank museum is an award-winning museum in the city that features everything about robotics and science. It will surely it will be a great day out for the family.

Sea Life Centre

Address: National Sea Life Centre, The Water’s Edge, 3 Brindley place, Birmingham B1 2HL

Sealife centre birmingham
Best things to do in Birmingham: Visit the Sea Life Centre | By Gp258 (Own work)

Another fantastic Birmingham attraction is the Sea Life Centre. If you love marine animals, this is one of the places to go in Birmingham.

Sea Life Centres are dotted around the UK, you can also get some discount vouchers e.g. 2 for 1 entry and other combo ticket promotion in other Merlin attractions.

Birmingham German Market (Seasonal)

Address: Birmingham City Centre High Street

Birmingham Attractions: German Christmas Market in Birmingham
Best things to do in Birmingham: Visit the German Market during the holidays

One of the most visited Christmas markets outside of Germany. The start of the Birmingham German Market kick starts the festive season here in the Midlands.

The Birmingham city centre high street will light up and be filled with log cabins full of delicious deli and drinks from Germany.

Mulled Wine in German Market
Mulled wine and hot chocolate drink at the German Market in Birmingham, UK

If you are looking for free things to do in Birmingham during the festive season, I highly recommend you to visit the German Market.

Have a lovely mulled wine and eat bratwurst, pretzels, strudel and much more!

JRR Tolkien Trail

Sarehole Mill: Best things to do in Birmingham
Best things to do in Birmingham: Visit the Sare Hole Mill

Are you a Lord of the Rings fan? The Tolkien Trail is one of Birmingham’s points of interest.

John Ronal Reuel Tolkien (JRR Tolkien) grew up in Birmingham. The inspirations of his masterpiece “The Lord of the Rings” can all be found in Birmingham and its surrounding area.

Once you follow the trail, you’ll get to see the inspiration of the iconic hobbit circular door at the Sarehole mill where JRR Tolkien spent most of his childhood playing in this area.

Tolkien Twin Towers
Edgbaston Waterworks Tower | By R J Higginson (Own work)

The two towers of inspiration are also from two famous landmarks in Birmingham, the Perrott’s Folley and the Edgbaston Waterworks Tower.

In the Lord of the Rings book, you’ll probably know this as the Minas Morgul and the Minas Tirith, the Two Towers of Gondor. So welcome to Middle Earth and don’t worry there are no orcs around this area!

Download The JRR Tolkien Trail Here!

The Bullring

For all the shopaholics, no questions necessary on what to do in Birmingham but to visit The Bullring Shopping Centre.

Bullring Shopping Centre Birmingham
Best things to do in Birmingham: Visit the Bullring

The Bullring has been the centre of the retail and commercial industries in Birmingham.

You can pretty much find all the high street and luxury brands you could ever want in this area. You can’t miss the beautiful St. Martin’s church in the middle of the shopping complex.

The commercial history of the Bullring began in the middle ages where people came to trade their cattle and corn. The area was known as the Corn Market in commemoration of the corn trading that began in this area. The name “Bullring” came from the green within the Corn Cheaping which was used for bull-baiting and the ring was an iron hoop in Corn Cheaping that was used to tie the bulls before slaughter.

Read more: 8 Best Things to Do in Warwickshire, UK

The Beacon Hill (Lickey hills)

Located on the outskirts of Birmingham and just at the edge of Worcestershire is Beacon Hill. At the top of Beacon Hill, you can see the beautiful landscape of Birmingham and Worcestershire.

I made a drone video of it!  Go and watch it!

Birmingham Canals

Birmingham Canals
Best things to do in Birmingham: Roam around by the canals | By Bob Hall (Own work) , via Flickr

The Birmingham Canal is 100 miles of intricate networks of canals within the city. Birmingham has more canals than Venice!

The Canal network was the bloodline of the city in Victorian times where the narrow boats were used to transport coal and other goods going in all directions within the UK. Nowadays, the Birmingham Canal network is popular with boat enthusiasts and holidaymakers.

Jewellery Quarter

Jewellery Quarter
Best things to do in Birmingham: Visit the Jewellery Quarter | By James Stringer (Own work) , via Flickr

The clue is in the name; Jewellery Quarter has been the heart of the jewellery production for hundreds of years since the 18th century.

Almost half of the British jewellery here in England comes from the highly skilled jewellers of the Jewellery Quarter. Truly this area of the city is the pride and gem of Britain.

Aston Villa  (Villa Park)

Address: Villa Park, Trinity Rd, Birmingham B6 6HE

Aston Villa Birmingham
Best things to do in Birmingham: Visit the Villa Park | By Elliott Brown , via Wikimedia Commons

If you’re into sports, don’t miss a chance to visit Villa Park. The home of the famous Aston Villa Football Club since 1897. Villa Park has hosted prestigious football games throughout its history. One of the clubs most famous fans is Prince William!

Digbeth Dining Club

Address: Lower Trinity St, Deritend, Birmingham B9 4AG

Digbeth Dining Club in Birmingham
Best things to do in Birmingham: Dine in Digbeth Dining Club

If you are a food lover, a visit to Digbeth Dining Club (DDC) is a must! One of the best things to do in Birmingham is to go on a food trip to the hip area of Birmingham.  Tucked in the old warehouses in Digbeth (just at the back of the Bullring shopping centre near the bus station) is a nice food haven.

You can find various food cart vendors from your favourite kebabs to the sweetest honeycomb brownies. Quench your thirst with the refreshing tropical cocktails or your bog-standard G&T. They are open on Thursday and Friday (4 pm – late) and Weekends (1 pm – late).

Birmingham Botanical Gardens

Address: Westbourne Rd, Birmingham B15 3TR

Birmingham Botanical Gardens
Best things to do in Birmingham: Visit the Birmingham Botanical Gardens

The Birmingham Botanical Gardens is one of the relaxing places to visit in Birmingham. Located in the Edgbaston area of Birmingham, you will find a little oasis in the middle of the urban settings. Founded in 1892, the Birmingham Botanical Gardens has been the home of various exotic and native plants. It has charming victorian glasshouses, butterfly houses, an aviary and beautifully landscaped gardens.

The Glasshouses are one of the main highlights of the botanical garden. It displays various tropical, arid and sub-tropical plants.

Recommended Activities in Birmingham, UK

On your visit to the Midlands,  you can also visit these coffee shops around the Birmingham area.

I hope you’ll include Birmingham on your list of places to visit in England.
So go on and explore The Heart of England, here in the Midlands.

Have you been to Birmingham?
Share your experience in the comment box below.

Best things to do in Birmingham for couples and with kids

ABOUT THE AUTHOR

Ryazan Tristram EverythingZany Author Bio

Ryazan Tristram

Travel Writer & Photographer

Ryazan has a Bachelor’s Degree in Tourism and Hotel Management. She also has more than 10 years of work experience gained from working in the hotel and travel sectors in Asia and Europe. Her work has been featured and published on Huffington Post, Reader’s Digest, Discovery Channel, World Travel Guide, MSN, CNBC, GMA, Daily Mail UK, Lonely Planet and many more. She is currently living in the UK as a dual citizen (British – Filipina). Join her in travelling around the UK and beyond with a mission to promote sustainable tourism and share travel guides, travel tips, foodies, history and culture.

7 thoughts on “12 Best Things To Do in Birmingham UK (Local’s Guide)”

  1. We have been to Birmingham twice on very short trips during which time we visited the Jewellery Quarter, the Sea Life aquarium and Bullring. A visit to Cadbury World is pending. Hopefully on our next trip!

    Reply
  2. Birmingham is an ideal destination for a short weekend break – good mix of historical buildings in the city and wonderful hilltop scenery in the outskirts such as Clent Hills and Lickey Hills – 30minutes drive from Stratford upon Avon and the beautiful Cotswold.

    Reply
  3. I never knew anything about it never considered taking a trip down but you have me interested now! Thanks for sharing! 🙂

    Reply
  4. Amazing blog, really interesting I loved reading it, please keep on writing blogs like this in future as well.

    Reply

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