Thinktank Birmingham is one the city’s most interactive and entertaining museums, targeted at both kids and adults, who like to let out the hidden child in them once in a while. The scientific museum is divided into four different floors, each dedicated to a special theme within the world of science and discovery. The top floor is a first-class digital planetarium, whereas the rest of the museum is strongly linked to Birmingham’s industrial past. Visitors also have to opportunity to participate in regular science workshops or solve crimes with the help of modern-day technology. This museum is the perfect choice for the young and old.
Opening hours: Mon-Sun 10am-5pm
Millennium Point, Curzon St, Birmingham, UK, +44 121 348 8000
Birmingham Museum & Art Gallery
The Birmingham Museum & Art Gallery is a must-see for every first-time tourist to the city. First opened in 1885, the museum now houses an impressive range of as many as 40 permanent galleries that showcase applied arts, social history, archaeology and ethnography. In addition to the permanent galleries, the museum also hosts a diverse exhibition program that ranges from a special exhibition on the West Midlands Fire Service to 20th century British ceramics. The exceptional cultural space is also often the location for free musical performances in its domed round room. Check out the museum’s website for an up-to-date events calendar.
Opening hours: Mon-Sun 10am-5pm
Chamberlain Square, Birmingham, UK, +44 121 348 8032
Soho House, located on Soho Avenue, is the former home of the renowned Birmingham industrialist Matthew Boulton. The impressive specimen of Georgian architecture was Matthew Boulton’s home from 1766 onwards, and was subsequently used as the main meeting place for him and fellow scientists, such as physician Erasmus Darwin, inventor James Watt and theologian Joseph Priestley. Although mostly known for its importance throughout the 18th century, Soho House has had a colourful past, having previously been used as hotel, school and hostel for police officers. Today, Soho House is open to visitors everyday and features special tours of the house’s fascinating past.
Opening hours: Mon-Sun 9am-5pm
Soho Ave, Birmingham, West Midlands, UK, +44 121 348 8150
Museum of the Jewellery Quarter
The Museum of the Jewellery Quarter forms the heart of Birmingham’s famous Jewellery Quarter today. Having been the centre of the United Kingdom’s jewellery trade throughout the bigger part of the 19th century, this area of Birmingham has been of great importance for the city’s development. The Museum of the Jewellery Quarter is located in a restored jewellery manufacturing firm, formerly known as Smith and Pepper. The structure of the old manufactory has widely been left untouched and visitors can still see the jeweller’s original work benches and tools. The guided tours, offered by the museum today, will both explore the fascinating process of jewellery making and lead visitors through the whole area’s fascinating past.
Opening hours: Tue-Sat 10.30am-5pm
75-80 Vyse St, Birmingham, UK, +44 121 348 8140
The Coffin Works
The Coffin Works, also located in the Jewellery Quarter, is one of Birmingham’s quirkier museums that explores a unique part of the city’s industrial past. First opened in 1894, the Newman Brothers Coffin Works was one of the most renowned businesses for over 100 years, providing coffin fittings for the funerals of Queen Victoria and Winston Churchill. Now closed for nearly 25 years, the Newman Brothers’ site has been extensively restored and reopened as a museum. Visitors can now explore the machinery and tools used to produce top-of-the-art funeral furniture.
13-15 Fleet St, Birmingham, UK, +44 121 233 4790