Birmingham Attractions

Birmingham offers visitors a choice of local attractions both in the city of Birmingham and in the surrounding areas. The city includes a choice of attractions including museums, galleries, historic buildings, theatre, concerts, events and its location means the countryside and country parks are close by, with plenty of things to see and do in the local area.

We have outlined a number of interesting attractions and places to visit for visitors to Birmingham, these include:

Aston Hall is a Grade I listed building located in the 50 acre Aston Park to the north of the city centre. Aston Hall was built between 1618 and 1635 for Sir Thomas Holte, in 1643 the house became damaged in an attack by Parliamentary troops, the scars left by the cannon-shot can still be viewed on its Great Stairs. The house is now displayed as a series of period rooms containing paintings, textiles, furniture and metal work from the collections of Birmingham Museum & Art Gallery. Aston Hall by Candlelight is a bi-annual event which takes place on the mansion. Here over 500 candles light the building each night with actors recreating the 17th Century Christmas festivities.

Birmingham Museum and Art Gallery is located in the city centre, it has been established for over 100 years, over the years the museum and art gallery has gained a fine reputation and displays artworks and artefacts that are considered world class. There is a huge collection here to admire containing everything from Renaissance era masterpieces to Middle-Eastern treasures 1,000s of years old. The Museum is most admired for its Pre-Raphaelite paintings and drawings; the museum boasts one of the largest collections in the world.

Visitors will also find Bronze Buddha’s and Egyptian Mummies in this diverse place. The collections include fine art from the 14th century, ceramics, metalwork and historic collections, including local archaeology. There is also the wonderful Edwardian Tea Room and its sumptuous cakes and a year-round programme of activities and temporary exhibitions.

Thinktank is Birmingham's science museum and is made up of ten themed galleries of interactive and informative exhibits. The museum is located in the city centre providing a place where visitors can investigate locomotives to aircraft to taste buds; it combines science and entertainment and has something for just about everyone. Kids City is Thinktank's most popular gallery; it provides a place where families with children can learn and play. It now features a Health Centre where children can role-play at being doctors or play in the baby clinic among others.

The Medicine Matters Gallery showcases the medical advances in which the city of Birmingham has played a major role. Displays here include showing how TV programs are checked to make sure they will not cause seizures, how doctors can predict if you will develop cancer and how scientists can work out how your brain functions. Thinktank also has a Planetarium for visitors to see.

For chocoholics you can enjoy the taste of Cadbury's chocolate whilst discovering its history and origins at Cadbury World, located in Bournville, a few miles south of Birmingham city centre. The venue is packed with chocolate information and fun, for an event everyone will remember. Visitors can learn about the story of chocolate right from its discovery by the Aztecs in South America to how it is currently made. You can watch a copy of the production line and chocolate fans will be pleased to know you can taste the end product too! There is also a massive chocolate shop and refreshments. It can get extremely busy during the school holidays so it is recommended that pre-booking is done to avoid disappointment.

Birmingham's Sea Life Centre is located at Brindleyplace in Birmingham. The centre takes visitors on an inspiring undersea voyage, it has over 60 displays of freshwater and marine life, creating a great exhibit for visitors of all ages. There is also a huge one million litre ocean tank. Visitors can walk through the 360 degree transparent tubular underwater tunnel and marvel at the giant green sea turtles, reef sharks and tropical reef fish. The many exhibits teach you everything you wanted to know about marine life and the oceans.

Birmingham Botanical Gardens & Glasshouses are located in Edgbaston in Birmingham on a 15 acre site. The history of the site dates back to the 19th century, visitors will find the gardens a haven of peace and tranquillity offering a place to enjoy a day out for the whole family in scenic surroundings. There are a number of different gardens to explore at the site including the Pleasure gardens and Japanese and Bonsai gardens. There are several glasshouses on site including the Tropical House that contains a varied collection of trees, ferns and water plants. The Arid House includes a number of plants from places where the climate is dry with irregular rainfall. The gardens host a number of events including fairs, demonstrations and a musical programme with jazz and brass bands.

The Weoley Castle ruins are more than 700 years old and are the remains of the manor house that once stood proudly here. The castle is located to the south west of Birmingham city centre. Excavations have shown the castle’s occupants would have been wealthy, with various finds from the house have included glass from Syria and kitchen equipment. The site has been inhabited from the 12th century; the site is a Scheduled Ancient Monument of national importance, meaning it is now protected from further damage and development. There is a viewing area with information panels that is open to the public at weekends. Visitors can take a tour of the ruins and learn more about this fascinating and historic house.

It is recommended that prior to coming to Birmingham; visitors do their research and ensure any sights and attractions they plan on visiting are actually open on the days you intend on coming. The transport is also worth checking as maintenance and engineering works can mean a restricted service on public transport.

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