Where Is Birmingham? (8 Interesting Facts)

Birmingham in the West Midlands is the United Kingdom’s largest metropolitan borough and the second largest city in Great Britain. Besides its usual attractions, Birmingham is also set to host the Commonwealth Games 2022, making it the perfect excuse to visit the city!

If you are wondering – “where is Birmingham?”, we got you covered! We’ll also explore 8 super interesting facts about this magnificent city to help you plan your travel itinerary and get to know Birmingham better. 

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Taking a fun day trip to Birmingham? Check out these 20 Best Attractions in Birmingham.

Plan your trip in advance – here’s how you can get from London to Birmingham

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Where Is Birmingham Located? (All Your Queries Answered!)

Birmingham is a major city located in the West Midlands region of the United Kingdom. On the map of England, it has a very central location and is situated at the crossing points of the national railway and motorway systems.

Birmingham is also the second largest city in the United Kingdom, right after London, and is located just 100 miles away from the latter.

Let’s take a closer look at this gorgeous city:

1. What County Is Birmingham In?

Birmingham is situated in the ceremonial county of the West Midlands, and the historic county of Warwickshire. 

2. Where Is Birmingham In West Midlands?

Birmingham is roughly centrally located from the southern, northern, eastern, and western extremities of the West Midlands.

3. Which Are The Nearest Towns To Birmingham?

Birmingham is surrounded by several beautiful, small towns along its border. Some of these include Smethwick, West Bromwich, Oldbury, Blackheath, Rowley Regis, Royal Sutton Coldfield, Solihull, and Tipton. 

4. What Are The Nearest Cities To Birmingham?

Birmingham is surrounded by a large variety of different cities. Some of them include Wolverhampton, Lichfield, Coventry, Worcester, Derby, Stoke-on-Trent, Hereford, and the vibrant city of Nottingham. 

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8 Interesting Facts About Birmingham

Birmingham is full of surprises. The city has gone through years of industrialization and changing social structures, and has emerged as a cultural centre in the country. In fact, it’s still sometimes referred to as “The city of 1,001 different trades”. 

So whether you’re looking to spend a day in Birmingham or stay for the long run, it has something to offer for everyone. 

Let’s look at some interesting facts about Birmingham:

  1. Birmingham Will Host The 2022 Commonwealth Games
  2. It Has The Largest Public Library In Europe
  3. The World’s Oldest Steam Engine Was Built Here
  4. Birmingham Has More Canals Than Venice, Italy!
  5. The City Is Home To The Largest Producer Of Jewellery In The UK
  6. Birmingham Has More Green Space Than Paris!
  7. It Is The Home Of Many Iconic Brands And Public Figures
  8. It Has A Very Desirable, Central Location In The UK

1. Birmingham Will Host The 2022 Commonwealth Games

The Commonwealth games 2022 will take place in Birmingham during 28 July – 8 Aug 2022. The event will see population from all over the country visit the historic city for the period of the game. 

The majority of the games will take place in the Alexander Stadium venue in Birmingham while others will be conducted in the National Exhibition Center, the University of Birmingham, and Victoria Square. There are a few locations outside the Birmingham plateau as well.

2. It Has The Largest Public Library In Europe

For all the bibliophiles and bookworms, the Library of Birmingham is the place to be! 

Built for over £189 Million, the Library of Birmingham is also the largest public cultural space in all of Europe and the largest regional library in Europe. 

3. The World’s Oldest Steam Engine Was Built Here

Birmingham UK is widely popular for its thriving manufacturing and automobile industry. In fact, Arthur Young (the writer and commentator on British economic life) described Birmingham as “the first manufacturing town in the world” in 1791. 

The city is home to the world’s oldest steam engine – the Smethwick engine. Built in 1775, the engine is kept in the Thinktank part of Birmingham Museum, England.

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4. Birmingham Has More Canals Than Venice, Italy!

Birmingham city is known for its beautiful, scenic canals. But did you know that the Birmingham Canal Navigations has over 100 miles of canals stretched across the city?

Although these canals were busy waterways transporting coal, iron, and heavy goods to the black country, they can now be enjoyed by cyclists, walkers, and small boat owners alike. A perfect opportunity for social media worthy pictures! 

Read more: Interested in exploring Birmingham’s canals? Check out these Outdoor Dining Restaurants with beautiful views of the canals!

5. The City Is Home To The Largest Producer Of Jewellery In The UK

Jewellery Quarter in Birmingham UK is the largest industrial hub in the metropolitan area of the city. For over 200 years, the region has hosted some of the most skilled craftsmen and jewellery makers in the world. 

Today, the Jewellery Quarter is a bustling hub for creative businesses, restaurants, pubs, cafes, and more. It still hosts over 700 jewellers in the metropolitan area and is also home to the world’s largest Assay Office

Explore Jewellery Quarter’s proud past through its two museums – the Museum of the Jewellery Quarter and the Pen Museum

6. Birmingham Has More Green Space Than Paris!

Birmingham city is believed to be one of the greenest cities in all of Great Britain. And rightly so! 

The city has over 8000 acres of green space and boasts over 571 parks perfect for any visitor. In contrast, Paris has about 480 parks and gardens. 

So if you are a person who loves outdoors, you can revel in the green lungs here in Birmingham! 

Moreover, Birmingham’s stunning gardens are sure to take your breath away. Some of these must-visit parks include: 

  • Sutton Coldfield Park
  • Lickey Hills Birmingham
  • Aston Villa and Park 
  • Cannon Hill Park
  • The Birmingham Botanical Gardens
  • Winterbourne House & Garden

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7. It Is The Home Of Many Iconic Brands And Public Figures

It’s no secret that the population of Birmingham England gave the world some of its finest creators and inventors, including the “Lord of the Rings” author JRR Tolkien. But did you know the extent of its popularity? 

Here’s a hint: 

Iconic and globally-acclaimed brands like Cadbury Chocolate, Birds Custard, Bournville Drinking Chocolate, HP Sauce and Typhoo Tea all started in Birmingham! 

The city is also home to famous musicians like Duran Duran, The Streets, UB40, Wizzard, and Laura Mvula and personalities like Joseph Priestley, Denise Lewis Obe, Sir Edward Burne-Jones, Lee Child, and Dame Julie Walters.

But that’s not all! 

It was Birmingham chemist, Joseph Priestley, who first discovered oxygen in 1774. Birmingham is also the birthplace of famous scientists Matthew Boulton, James Watt and William Murdoch – earning it the title “The First Manufacturing Town in the World”. 

8. It Has A Very Desirable, Central Location In The UK

Birmingham city remains to be the most inland city in all of Great Britain. So it is this centralised location on the map that makes Birmingham ideal for travelling to the rest of the UK.

For instance, one can travel to almost 90% of the cities in the United Kingdom in under 4 hours from the Birmingham plateau. London is a mere 1.5 hours away from Birmingham and the city’s airport also has direct flights from New York and other major cities making it incredibly accessible for travellers.

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12 Exciting Places To Visit In And Around Birmingham

Birmingham is full of unique locations and fun activities for families as well as solo travellers. Here are some of them:

  1. Legoland Discovery Centre: Legoland Discovery Centre is an indoor LEGO® play experience for families with kids aged 3-10 years old. 
  1. Bullring & Grand Central: Grand Central is the perfect location for some retail therapy or budget-friendly dining.
  1. Birmingham Botanical Gardens: A prime landmark in the city, Birmingham Botanical Gardens are perfect for a quiet date night or a cultural tour of Birmingham England. 
  1. Birmingham Museum & Art Gallery: An indoor collection of the finest art pieces from the West Midlands region with free entry. 
  1. Birmingham Hippodrome: Home to the Birmingham resident Royal Ballet, the Birmingham Hippodrome is a free theatre situated 3 minutes away from Birmingham New Street station. 
  1. Cadbury World: A self-guided tour outlining the history of the Cadbury World and the company’s evolution – suitable for all ages!
  1. Aston Hall: Aston Hall (or Aston Villa) is a magnificent 17th-century Jacobean mansion and one of the most treasured tourist attractions in the Birmingham Metropolitan Borough. Ideal for day tours and history enthusiasts, and a 30-min train ride from the Birmingham New Street station.
  1. Birmingham Wildlife Conservation Park: An adventurous day-long attraction with guided tours of the Birmingham Zoo. Children below the age of three get a free ticket. 
  1. Ticket Factory: The Ticket Factory in Birmingham is your getaway to book some of the most popular events happening in the city, including Diana Ross gigs, Duran Duran concerts, and the Snoop Dog tour. Tickets can be paid for on your mobile device using the Ticket Factory wallet app. 
  1. Sutton Coldfield Park: An outdoor national reserve sanctuary with free visitor entry for families with children or couples to spend a quiet, blissful day. 
  1. Black Country Living Museum: Just 30 minutes away from the city, the Black Country Living Museum is known for the popular TV series Peaky Blinders, and for various historic artefacts from the West Midlands Conurbation.
  1. West Bromwich Manor House Museum & Art Gallery: An indoor art gallery exhibition with a grand hall venue for guided tours.