Summer in the Midlands: 6 of the Best Places to Visit

As the second most populous city in the UK, it’s little wonder that Birmingham has plenty to keep both residents and visitors entertained. A former manufacturing powerhouse, it is the jewel of the West Midlands, and if you want a guaranteed good day out, it’s a great place to go.  

No matter whether you’re a young family visiting for the first time or a Brummie born and bred, there’s loads to keep you occupied. So, fancy a special day out and in need of some ideas to fill your empty itinerary? Then here are six of the best places to visit in Birmingham this Summer.   

Cadbury World 

Located on Linden Road, Cadbury World is one of Birmingham’s premier attractions, and it’s not hard to understand why. Given that 99% of the population are committed chocoholics, most of us are intrigued to see where one of the nation’s best-loved confectionary companies is based, and this place is where the magic happens. Opened in 1990, the attraction has expanded many times in the last three decades due to its enduring popularity. Although you won’t be able to set foot in the factory itself, you will get the chance to see several exhibitions which chart the history of chocolate and the company throughout the ages. Among these is an amazing recreation of the original Victorian headquarters on Bull Street, which is where John Cadbury first brought his brilliant ideas to life. Even better, you’ll get to take part in a chocolate-making demonstration, as well as getting the chance to pay a visit to the World’s Biggest Cadbury Shop too – the clue is in the name!

Alton Towers

Alton Towers draws visitors from all over the UK, so if you’re lucky enough to be in Birmingham, it’s definitely worth paying it a visit. Sitting slap-bang in the middle of a vast country estate, it is a theme park par excellence, offering visitors the chance to enjoy an array of amazing rollercoasters, along with a waterpark and a selection of specially designed children’s rides. If this wasn’t enough to keep you occupied, Alton Towers has some great restaurants to dine in and loads of activities such as crazy golf, an obstacle course and star gazing. New activities and events are added each year, so even if you’ve been before, there are new experiences awaiting this summer.

West Midland Safari Park

If wild rides aren’t your jam, perhaps wild animals will be. If so, the West Midland Safari Park is the place for you. Home to hundreds of exotic animals, its residents include everything from lions through to tigers, cheetahs, giraffes, elephants, rhinos, and the largest group of hippos in the country. These are kept company by lots of other interesting neighbours from around the world, such as zebras, penguins, lemurs, sea lions, and more. As if all of this wasn’t exciting enough, the park has recently added some slightly more historic exhibitions, so that you can now get a glimpse of animals that are long extinct thanks to Land of the Living Dinosaurs and Ice Age. The latter cost a whopping £1.25 million to create, and has everything from towering volcanoes complete with sound effects, to woolly mammoths, sabre-tooth tigers, and giant ground sloths. You could spend a whole day here and still be discovering extra things to see and do.      

Warwick Castle 

If you have a taste for history, Warwick Castle is a great place to add to your itinerary. It’s been opening its doors to travellers since the 1600s, and has acted as an official tourist attraction since 1978. Welcoming thousands of visitors each year, it knows exactly how to keep you entertained, with plenty going on. Some of its most popular events include its medieval weaponry displays, where you can watch archers in action and even see the castle’s giant trebuchet in use. Between these events, there’s plenty more to occupy you, from the Horrible Histories Maze through to the Castle Dungeon, The Time Tower, The Princess Tower, and over 60 acres of carefully maintained gardens. If you’re lucky enough to visit in summer, you’ll have the added bonus of experiencing live War of the Roses re-enactments, with stunt riding, jousting, and state-of-the-art special effects.     

St Andrew’s

If you’re a football fan, why not go to a match the next time you’re in the city? St Andrew’s is home to The Blues and has stood on its current site since 1906. The facilities and views from the Gil Merrick Stand, where both home and away supporters are typically seated, are top notch, and there’s plenty of great food to enjoy during the game, from Cornish pasties to steak and kidney pie. If you want to check out the latest odds before the game or perhaps place a bet, you can compare free bets and sign up offers online. Alternatively, if it’s a match-specific or event-specific offer you’d prefer, you can access additional special offers. For a pre- or post-match drink, the Cricketers Arms pub is located close by, and is reported to have a friendly atmosphere for football enthusiasts of all leanings.

Black Country Living Museum

If you’re a fan of hit BBC show Peaky Blinders, we have an interesting fact about this next destination: part of the series was filmed here. What sets the Black Country Living Museum apart from your run-of-the-mill historical exhibition is that it’s all outside in the open air. Rather than being confined to a single building, it’s made up of numerous reconstructed historical sites, all set within 26 sprawling acres. Dedicated to recreating the region’s unique past, it has ‘sets’ harking back to the Victorian era, World War One, the 1920s, and the 1930s, covering around three centuries in total. Its attractions include everything from shops to houses, a canal-side village, an underground mine, and an old-fashioned cinema stocked with silent films. If this wasn’t enough to entice history enthusiasts, it even boasts an array of period-appropriate historic vehicles on display. Pay it a visit to feel like you’ve stepped through a portal and into another era entirely. 

So, next time you’re in Birmingham and in need of entertainment, which of these amazing places will you visit first?