A visitor attraction since 1990, Cadbury World is sure to go down well with the kids – who doesn’t like chocolate? Explore the fantastic history of the Cadbury brand in its original Bournville home, an operating factory since the early 1900s. There are interactive activities, the famous Cadabra ride, an outdoor play area, café, gift shop and so much more to see and do.
Birmingham’s SEA LIFE Centre is home to more than 2,000 creatures and is situated in the middle of the city’s bustling Brindleyplace district. If you plan your trip in advance you may even be able to catch talks and feeding times with penguins, sharks and turtles, among other species.
The city’s biggest museum offers free entry, although donations are welcomed. Here, kids can learn all about the Victorians, the Egyptians, the Romans and World War II in the museum’s various exhibition halls and activity rooms, with the latter packed with interactive displays.
For a unique experience, why not indulge in some 3D cinema? Cineworld on Broad Street is the home of IMAX 3D, and more recently 4DX, a revolutionary cinematic experience that stimulates all the senses. Special effects in 4DX include wind, fog, lightning, rain, bubbles and scents, which kids are guaranteed to love.
Previously called the Nature Centre, the Wildlife Conservation Park sits next to Cannon Hill Park and is home to an array of animals from across the world, including red pandas, lynxes, monkeys and wallabies. With entry costs staying low and the free-entry mac Birmingham in the park next door, the Conservation Park makes for a great (and affordable) day out.
Ackers is an outdoor adventure park based in Sparkbrook, just outside the city centre. Perfect for all the family, Ackers offers dry slopes for skiing, snowboarding and tobogganing, as well as spaces for climbing, water sports and orienteering activities.
Birmingham’s Thinktank, conveniently situated in the city centre, is an award-winning museum that celebrates all things scientific – with a local twist. Take the Spitfire exhibition for example, which explores the aircraft’s part in World War II and its lasting effect on the city of Birmingham. Here, you’ll also find exhibitions on the industrial heritage of Birmingham plus a planetarium, galleries and interactive displays on marine worlds, natural sciences and future medical advancements.
One of the largest leisure centres in Birmingham, Cocks Moors Woods is a great way to keep the kids happy. Sporting a swimming pool with a wave machine, plus a 50-metre flume and a baby pool, the centre caters for all ages. For the teens and young adults in the family, gym classes are also available. During seasonal periods the leisure centre also hosts special events such as roller discos and pool parties.
If you have a budding Alan Titchmarsh in the family, make sure to visit the Botanical Gardens. Not only is the garden home to buildings and monuments dating back to the 1800s, including an original brick shelter from the Cadbury factory, there are over 30 horticultural areas to explore. Take the Victorian greenhouses for example, proudly showing off over 1,000 exotic and unusual plants, or the beautifully quaint Japanese garden with its variety of bonsai trees.
For the explorers in the family, look no further than the Lickey Hills. Located in Rednal on the southern edge of Birmingham, this country park boasts 212 hectares of unspoilt land. This certified country park has a Green Flag award (recognising it as one of the top green spaces in the UK) and is home to wildlife including lizards, grass snakes and a range of birds. If exploring has tired the kids out, head for the park’s café next to the car park.