Britain’s unlikely rising star! Is Birmingham Britain’s next top travel destination? Brum is on the rise with a huge increase in overseas visitors. So what’s all the hype about and what’s drawing the crowds out of London and into Birmingham?
Birmingham is our biggest city outside of the capital with just over a million Brummies. Last year 940,000 overseas tourists made a visit to the city, ranking fourth behind London, Edinburgh and Manchester. That’s a lovely 32% increase from the previous year. If this West Midlands city keeps going at that pace, it’ll overtake Manchester in visitor numbers from foreign countries!
The man in charge of getting visitors to book flights to Birmingham is Neil Rami, chief exec of Marketing Birmingham. He explains why Birmingham is the best place outside of London,
“We have retail, shopping, arts and culture. Birmingham is at the edge of the Shakespeare country and has a rich industrial heritage. We want to make Birmingham the alternative gateway to Britain – a place outside London where visitors can start their trip.”
“The great battle in tourism is not just volume, it’s value – to get visitors to spend more and to stay longer. The only way you can do that is by giving them alternatives to London. While the capital has a fantastic visitor offer, arguably one of the best in the world, if visitors are given choices beyond they will stay longer and spend more money.”
So, what’s on offer for visitors to Birmingham? Let’s take a look!
Top 10 attractions in Birmingham
- Cadbury World – the chocolatey adventure of a lifetime
- National SEA LIFE Centre – with a 1 million litre ocean tank with giant sea turtles and sharks!
- Warwick Castle – history buffs won’t be disappointed by this one
- Back to Back Housing – offers a peek inside working people’s homes over four periods from 1840 to 1977
- Thinktank Birmingham Science Museum – ten themed galleries for all the science freaks
- BBC Birmingham – give TV presenting a try and record yourself reading the weather forecast
- Go Ape – a forest adventure with zip lines, Tarzan swings and high ropes courses
- Jewellery Quarter – visit the museum and shop from 100+ jewellery shops
- Stoneleigh Abbey – experience more than 800 years of history in this Cistercian abbey
- Bullring – among the largest shopping centres in Britain, shop from 160 stores including Selfridges
Are you from Birmingham? What do you recommend visitors see?