A Visitor’s Guide To Birmingham

Note: This is a guest post.

In the heart of the Midlands, Birmingham holds a historically and geographically important position in the cultural heritage of the United Kingdom. As the second most populous city after London, it is currently home to around 2,738,100 people and has become a major international commercial centre.

Due to its central location, it has become a major transport hub for those moving throughout the country via motor vehicles, trains, coaches and even canal barges.

Early history

Birmingham began life as a moderately sized market town in medieval times but really blossomed during the Industrial Revolution of the 18th century. During this period, Birmingham became the first ever manufacturing town in the world and laid the foundations for Britain to become a global economic superpower.

Its revolutionary economic situation also meant that it exerted a huge amount of influence over the political situation of the time, with the city being credited as the home of much of the thinking that shaped the development of British democracy.

Today it plays an important part in the world economy and is ranked as a beta – world city by the Globalization and World Cities Research Network.

Getting there

Visitors to the area can access the city in a variety of ways, with the M5, M6, M40 and M42 motorways all servicing the area, extensive local bus networks, fantastic rail connections and the nearby Birmingham Airport all available for use.

Those flying to visit the area may want to think about whether they want to book a hotel near Birmingham airport or would rather stay in the centre of the city. If you fancy something a little different, the canal system is still a great way to travel; with the city actually having more miles of canal than Venice.

photo credit: Birmingham

Local attractions

Birmingham has a diverse range of cultural events and displays, as well as an enjoyable nightlife scene. The pioneering Birmingham Repertory Theatre is a fantastic venue and has launched the careers of many famous actors, including Laurence Olivier, Ralph Richardson and Peggy Ashcroft.

Music is enjoyed throughout the city and the National Indoor Arena, as well as a number of smaller venues, provides the perfect stage for musicians and artists. The city is notable for the number of influential artists it has produced in the past and this makes music a key attraction.

Finally, the Birmingham Museum & Art Gallery boasts an awe-inspiring range of artworks, most notably its pre-Raphaelite collection.

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