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Birmingham

Introduction

Birmingham is the second largest city in the UK and is in the West Midlands region of England around 100 miles north of London. Birminghmam is a great place for a UK city break. Birmingham has more canals than Venice and has a largely industrial heritage. The city is now re-inventing itself after a long period of post industrial decline and a visit is well worth the time and effort.



Getting there

Air: Birmingham International Airport is located east of the city beside the NEC. There are a limited range of long haul flights but many flights to European destinations. Train or bus will take you into the city centre.

For flights to Birmingham visit Expedia.co.uk for great flight deals.

Rail: Birmingham New Street is a strange station which sits below the CBD. It is located on the West Coast main line and as such offers easy connections to both London in the south and Manchester, Liverpool and Glasgow in the north.

Road: Birmingham is at the centre of the UK motorway network. The M5 and M6 pass through the city. Spaghetti Junction is the point where the M6 meets the A38M to the CBD and is a notorious bottleneck. Try and avoid peak hour when travelling by road.

Accommodation

Birmingham has a wide range of hotels to suit all budgets as you would expect from a city break destination. To search for Hotels in Birmingham click Expedia.co.uk

What to See and Do

Birmingham's numerous atttractions include the following:

Cadbury World: A delight for chocoholics! This is a museum at the sprawling Cadbury factory south of the CBD. A quick look at the production facilities is also included in the tour. There is, of course, the opportunity to buy some of the chocolate itself.

National Sea Life Centre: This sea life centre may be far from the coast but it gives the visitor an array of sea life to look at and admire, including exotic sea horses and pirhanas.

Aston Hall: This restored Jacobean Mansion was built between 1618 and 1635. It contains many period rooms and artworks making it a worthwhile stop for the art enthusiast.

National Exhibition Centre: The NEC is located on the eastern outskirts of the city and is a mass of halls and venues. It is used for major concerts and exhibitions. It is adjacent to both the airport and Birmingham International Station.

Getting Around

Buses: There are extensive and frequent bus services within the Birmingham area. Travel West Midlands is the main operator.

Trams: There is one tram line in the city from the CBD to Wolverhampton. There are plans to expand the network.

Train: There is a regional train network covering the city and other towns in the West Midlands such as Lichfield, Stratford-upon-Avon and Leamington Spa.