The Bullring is iconic Brum – a shopping and leisure complex emblematic of the city’s spectacular regeneration. With more than 160 shops featuring massive brands in technology, fashion and sports – as well as a few independent beauties – the Bullring is the perfect place to lose some hours (and some cash!) on a city break. There’s a whole street of proper restaurants, plus dozens of cafes, bars and smaller eateries. Bang in the middle of the city, the Bullring is composed of independently built stores and purpose-built centres surrounded by the historic Bull Ring market area. Even if you don’t go inside, you have to visit the Selfridges building: a modern masterpiece that looks like an insect’s eye!
Home of balti, the Bullring and one of the most revitalised city centres in the UK, Birmingham has come a long way since the dark days following the Second World War. Once reputed to be one of the worst-planned towns in the country, Birmingham is now a byword for urban regeneration and enjoys a nightlife and cultural attractions to rival any other destination in Britain.
Great places to visit in Birmingham!
There’s still plenty of interesting architecture, a reminder of the 1960s rebuild of a bombed-out centre – and the famous network of major motorways converging on the city at Spaghetti Junction has to be seen to be believed. Visit Birmingham (or “Brum” as the locals call it) now, and you’ll find a thriving metropolis packed with galleries, swanky eateries and some outstanding new buildings. This isn’t the sooty heart of the Midlands anymore. It’s a brand new ball game, and you’re invited to come and play.
Cadbury World, Birmingham (there’s another one in New Zealand) is a self-guided visitor attraction sited in Bournville – the worker’s complex and village built by Richard and George Cadbury to house their employees. The attraction continues the legacy of its founding fathers by offering an educational programme alongside its visitor experience. Cadbury World is divided into fourteen “zones”, which take the visitor on a tour of the company’s history using a range of innovative exhibits and sets. Essence, one of the most popular zones, gives visitors a hands-on chocolate making experience – create your own fabulous concoction using liquid choccy and a cornucopia of crazy ingredients!
Thinktank is Brum personified – innovative, eclectic and full of hands-on surprises. It’s a “science museum with a difference”, situated at Millennium Point on Curzon Street. Inside, you’ll find the UK’s first digital planetarium, a cinema (with one of the largest screens in the country), and a Science Garden – plus all the usual experiments and interactive exhibits you’d expect. Thinktank’s museum is split into 10 themed galleries which host exhibitions ranging from squelchy explorations of the human body to mindblowing examples of new technology. There’s plenty for kids and more than enough to keep adults fascinated too. Ideal as a day out, with lunch in the café.