Birmingham is the second biggest city in England after London with more than 1 million inhabitants. Perhaps not so many people would choose this city as the final destination of their touristic trip, but sometimes unusual choices worth it.
Some parts of Birmingham can seem as wild industrial city jungle but there are also districts as calmy as you can imagine an English countryside. And exactly on this kind of contrasts Birmingham is built. Old meets new and I cannot explain how or why, but it is working.
There is no better example of it than the church of St. Martin in Bullring which is completely surrounded by new buildings of shopping centre. Hard to imagine that this church was the dominant of Birmingham panorama one time as the highest building on the hill, when nowadays it is literally eaten by its environment and to reach it is necessary to make few steps down the stairs.
In Birmingham you can find classical type of museums and galleries, which have more than rich collections, but you can also explore unusual places such as Black Country living museum in Dudley, only few miles away from Birmingham. There you can feel by your own senses how was the life of miners and workers around Birmingham in the 18th and 19th century. Outside museum area offers many objects to visit such as printer shop, school, church, petrol station, pharmacy or candy shop, everything fully equipped, accompanied by professional guides in authentic dress.
Right after entrance stands a unique iron house, which is the result of experiments with building materials to solve the crises caused by the lack of material after world war I. In the end of the visitation there is possibility to try local craft ale beer in authentic pub from the year 1822. It is very special to explore the beauty of this industrial and utilitarian objects.
Except life of miners and workers also the history of their products is interesting. It has also left mark in the image of today‘s city. The most impressive and significant industrial monuments of Birmingham are its canals which we can follow all over the city. These canals were built from 1769 and it helped with transport of coal and iron from neighbouring towns into Birmingham. During next sixty years, much more canals have been built and they reached even farther places such as Liverpool and London.
Birmingham is the city where nobody can get bored. It is very ambitious, quickly changing and full of modern architecture. From modern buildings I would like to mention the new library. It is good as the last stop of your sightseeing trip because you can see the whole city from its roof and summarize what you have already visited and what is still waiting for you to explore.