The UK’s second-largest city, known by Victorians as the ‘workshop of the world’, is a hub of culture, shopping and fantastic eating-out opportunities. Birmingham has had a long association with trade and industry, and its jewellery quarter is world-renowned, but has also produced a plethora of foodie treats as well, including Cadbury’s Bourneville, Typhoo tea, Bird’s custard and HP Sauce. Literary associations abound too – J.R.R. Tolkien grew up in Birmingham, and Sherlock Holmes creator Sir Arthur Conan Doyle worked in the city while he was a medical student.
Nowadays, Birmingham offers some of the best shopping outside of London, and some of the best restaurants too. It boasts three Michelin-starred establishments – Purnell’s, Simpsons and Turners – and Lasan, a must-visit for curry fans, is also Michelin-recommended. There are also plenty of first-rate cafés, tearooms, bistros, bars and pubs to try too – it comes as no surprise the BBC’s Olive magazine named Birmingham as the food capital.