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Inspiring visits for students in Birmingham
With a local offering of culture, sport, history and art, there is plenty of opportunity to expand education beyond the classroom in Birmingham’s schools. Visit Birmingham hand pick some of the best and most popular attractions and venues to visit.
Birmingham has become one of the UK’s leading visitor destinations with an eclectic mix of things to do. From food and shopping to culture and sport – Birmingham is a diverse city boasting a rich heritage and history. The city oozes style, culture and charm, attracting over 38 million visitors in 2015.
There are a fantastic range of vibrant attractions to suit all ages, so much so that the city was named third in a list of 30 best destinations in the world to go with kids by Rough Guides. With a compelling arts scene and a wide variety of venues, there is so much to explore.
Whether it is for primary, secondary, or higher education, the city can provide an unforgettable learning experience for its visitors. Here are 17 venues in Birmingham that are perfect for school trips:
National SEA LIFE Centre
National SEA LIFE Centre, The Waters Edge, 3 Brindleyplace,
Birmingham, B1 2HL
Accredited by the Council for Learning Outside the Classroom, Birmingham’s National SEA LIFE Centre is a popular attraction for school visits with more than 2,000 creatures to see including sea turtles, sharks and penguins. With a wide range of talks and demonstrations throughout the day and interesting facts about marine habitats, the SEA LIFE Centre is a fantastic place to visit.
Linden Road, Bournville B30 1JR
Discover the magic of chocolate and the history of the cocoa bean at Cadbury’s World. With more than 2,000 groups attending each year, it has become a hotspot for school visits. Learn about the vast history of Cadbury’s products and packaging and take a tour to see chocolate making at its best. With a 4D chocolate adventure cinema experience, there is sure to be something for everyone from KS3 to KS5.
Thinktank, Birmingham Science Museum
Millennium Point, Curzon Street, Birmingham, B4 7XG
Thinktank has an incredible variety of exhibitions and galleries for those interested in science and engineering. Explore the Spitfire Museum, the Marine World gallery and all things astronomy at the Planetarium. Thinktank’s Natural Science collection is the largest in the West Midlands and has over 250,000 specimens.
The Library of Birmingham
Centenary Square, Broad St, Birmingham, West Midlands B1 2ND
Why not take a tour of one of the most iconic buildings in Birmingham? The Library is one of Birmingham’s biggest tourist hotspots. See the memorial room dedicated to Shakespeare on the top floor with a vast collection of the famous playwright’s work. The Library has a number of events and talks, a photography wall, and collections that pay homage to Birmingham’s heritage.
Birmingham Botanical Gardens and Glasshouses
Westbourne Road, Edgbaston, Birmingham B15 3TR
With four glasshouses and 15 acres of grounds, the Botanical Gardens and Glasshouses offer school trips like no other. Awarded the Growing Schools garden award by the Department of Education, the Gardens have tailored made activities for different topics and age groups. For teachers who want to lead their own activities, the Botanical Gardens offer a range of resources.
Museum of the Jewellery Quarter
75-80 Vyse St, Birmingham B18 6HA
A visit to Birmingham’s famous Jewellery Quarter is a must. The Museum of the Jewellery Quarter tells the story of the Quarter and the city’s renowned jewellery heritage. Set in the Smith & Pepper jewellery manufacturing firm, this fantastic time capsule offers live demonstrations at the jewellers’ bench, giving visitors a chance to see what it was like to work there.
Hurst St, Southside, Birmingham B5 4TB
The Birmingham Hippodrome is one of the most popular theatres in the UK, regularly attracting over 500,000 visitors at performances every year.
From the Birmingham Royal Ballet to West End shows, the Hippodrome can accommodate groups of all sizes. Whether it’s dance or drama, the theatre is a great venue for students who have an interest in the creative arts.
Birmingham Back to Backs
50-54 Inge St, Birmingham B5 4TE
Take a fascinating guided tour of the last surviving courtyard built back to back, a key part of Birmingham’s history. From the 1840s to the 1970s discover the lives of the residents who came to work in these small houses. With workshops and a 1930s sweet shop, it is a great place for students to learn about the city’s history.
47-49 Station St, Birmingham B5 4DY
Birmingham is home to the UK’s oldest working cinema, which is now complete with luxury sofas and a waiter service. With regular showings of the latest movies from foreign, classic, independent and contemporary – this is a perfect school trip for students interested in film and media.
Black Country Living Museum
2 Tipton Rd, Dudley, West Midlands DY1 4SQ
The Black Country Living Museum caters to all ages from primary school to secondary. Whether it is geography, science, history, design or literacy, the museum has a range of learning tools to assist with your visit. Celebrating the 1830s industrial landscape, take a tour of the Museum’s village to hear the stories of people in their workshops. See vintage transport, play games and explore over 26 acres that celebrate a key part of history in the West Midlands.
Aston Villa and Birmingham City Football Stadium Tours
Aston Villa Football Club, Villa Park, Birmingham, B6 6HE
Birmingham City Football Club, St. Andrew’s Stadium, Birmingham, B9 4RL
Birmingham is home to two famous football clubs, with Aston Villa one of only a handful of English teams to lift the European Cup. Why not visit the stadia where historic footballing memories took place? From the press room and the players’ tunnel to the dressing rooms and hallowed turf itself, these tours are perfect for students who love sport.
St George’s Park – The Ultimate Football Experience
St. George’s Park, Newborough Road, Needwood, Burton upon Trent, Staffordshire, DE13 9PD, UK
Ever wondered where the England football team trains? Not far from Birmingham isSt George’s Park. The Ultimate Football Experience is a brilliant way to help and encourage students to take part in sport, offering a trained FA coach, 3G pitch and fun football activity sessions on the grounds where England’s best players – including Wayne Rooney, Joe Hart and Harry Kane – perfect their art.
Birmingham Museum and Art Gallery
Chamberlain Square, Birmingham, B3 3DH
The Birmingham Museum and Art Gallery is one of the most visited attractions in Birmingham, right in the centre of the city. It is home to the world’s biggest collection of Pre-Raphaelite paintings, while exhibitions and over 40 galleries also ensure it is a popular destination for educational visits. See artefacts and objects throughout history from Ancient Egypt to the Romans and Ancient Greece.
1 Oozells St, Birmingham B1 2HS
Celebrating modern art from across the globe, Birmingham’s Ikon Gallery is housed in a Victorian school building in Brindleyplace, beside the city’s canals. Whether it is painting, sculptures, mixed media or photography, there is something for everyone. Learn about the meaning behind these visual masterpieces through seminars, tours and workshops that enable visitors to share and discuss their views. Pupils can engage through creative learning, and teachers will have access to a number of resources so that students can make the most out of their visit.
The Wonderful World of Planes and Trains
3 Mary Ann Street, St Paul’s Square, B3 1BG
An interactive and fun way to learn about the history of trains from the 1890s to today. With a number of engaging activities such as plane flight simulators, Scalextric, and train travel workshops – it’s the perfect day out for a school trip.
Birmingham Repertory Theatre
Broad Street, Birmingham B1 2EP
The REP – as it is commonly known – has a Learning and Participation team that visit schools to give a greater understanding of theatrical technique. Drama is a fantastic way to develop communication skills and improve confidence, and the REP has workshops that will help students develop these skills through theatrical exercises. The theatre also has a number of exciting productions throughout the year that you don’t want to miss.
Birmingham Conservation Park
Birmingham Wildlife Conservation Park, Pershore Road, Edgbaston, B5 7RL
The Birmingham Wildlife Conservation Park is home to a number of animals from squirrel monkeys to the Green Tree Python. The park is focused on helping endangered species with a captive breeding programme. With educational talks and campaigns, it is a great way to learn about the animals, their habitat and to encourage students to volunteer.
Visit Birmingham is the official tourism programme for Birmingham and the wider region.