The best things to do in Birmingham

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10. Step back in time at the Black Country Living Museum

This region built its name and wealth on industrial might, and a stroll around the Black Country Living Museum brings a mesmerising 19th-century landscape back to life. Just 20 minutes from Birmingham, this immersive open-air museum of rebuilt historic buildings features gaslit streets flanked by over 50 shops and houses across a 26-acre village with costumed characters explaining the hardships of Victorian life. Keep an eye out for the actual canal yard used in the popular BBC crime drama Peaky Blinders.

Address: Tipton Road, Dudley DY1 4SQ
Website: bclm.com
Price: £19.95

How can I spend a day in Birmingham?

Morning

Start with a canalside breakfast at easy-going Juju’s Cafe. The relaxed family-run atmosphere means a warm welcome, while their moreish Porky Hash will set you up for the rest of the day. Cross over the bridge and head to Roundhouse Birmingham, where you can get a window into the city’s industrial past followed by a kayak tour of Birmingham’s canal network.

Birmingham canals Getty Images

Afternoon

Head back into the city and grab some generously-filled Japanese-style sandwiches for lunch at Gupshup, before perusing the quirky boutiques of the Victorian Great Western Arcade. Browse the unique and locally focused exhibitions at Birmingham Museum and Art Gallery followed by a pint of cask ale at beer institution The Wellington.

Evening

Meander down vibrant Bennett’s Hill and sample Birmingham’s superb south Asian cuisine at The Indian Streatery. Share as much as possible, before wandering south to Digbeth’s smorgasbord of entertainment options. Pick your poison between neon putting at Golf Fang, shooting space invaders at NQ64 or sitting down to one of 500+ board games at Chance and Counters. But if all of that is too active, then either relax with organic wine at Wine Freedom or sit outside with a couple of obscure Belgian beers from Roberto’s Bar and Tasting Club.

Is there a beach in Birmingham?

Birmingham isn’t close to any beaches, so you’re looking at a couple of hours drive to reach the nearest one. On a more positive note, however, is that Birmingham’s central location means there’s a wide variety of beach destinations to choose from in all directions.

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