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West Midlands

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West Midlands

Home to the key cities of Birmingham, Coventry, Stoke-on-Trent, Wolverhampton and Worcester, the West Midlands is a lesser-known cultural and sporting gem making its way onto many travellers’ bucket lists.
The Atrium in The Custard Factory
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The heart of England has it all. Find a gem in Birmingham’s Jewellery Quarter before enjoying the shopping delights of the Mailbox and the Bullring. Sample the largest collection of Michelin-starred dining in a British city outside of London and discover the dish that put the Balti Triangle on the map. Follow in the footsteps of the Peaky Blinders at the Black Country Living Museum and uncover Birmingham’s industrial heritage with a canal tour. Alternatively, why not delve into the region’s sporting pedigree – from discovering the clubs that founded the Football League to catching the best of the action at the Birmingham 2022 Commonwealth Games. Head to Coventry, the 2021 UK City of Culture, and enjoy panoramic views from the cathedral tower, before uncovering the city’s musical heritage at Coventry Music Museum. Pop into Fargo village for scrumptious street food and get lost in 500 acres of Lancelot Capability Brown-designed landscape gardens at Coombe Abbey Park. See history from a new perspective within the walls of Warwick Castle, while at Kenilworth you can explore an Elizabethan palace that was fit for a queen. Discover the world’s finest collection of Staffordshire ceramics at Stoke-on-Trent’s Potteries Museum and Art Gallery, or pop in to World of Wedgewood for a whistle-stop tour through Britain’s industrial and design heritage.

Where is the West Midlands?

Located in the centre of England, the West Midlands is served by Birmingham Airport, which has direct routes to more than 150 destinations, as well as connections to hundreds more cities around the world. Trains from the airport (Birmingham International) to Birmingham New Street station take 10-15 minutes.

The region is home to the cities of Birmingham, Coventry, Stoke-on-Trent, Wolverhampton and Worcester, as well as major towns including Dudley, Hereford, Solihull, Shrewsbury, Telford and Walsall.

A range of train routes connect the region with Manchester Airport in under two hours. The West Midlands can also be reached in less than three hours from Bristol Airport and the main London flight hubs of Heathrow and Gatwick. Direct trains into Birmingham from London Euston take from around 90 minutes.

Getting around the West Midlands

The West Midlands is incredibly well connected to Britain’s road network, as major motorways including the M6, M6 Toll, M5, M40 and M42 cross the region. A vast public transport network can also help you get around, while the main town and city centres in the region can all be explored on foot.

  • Visit Birmingham and Visit Coventry have a collection of handy maps to help you plan your trip.
  • Private taxis can be booked to order from a variety of companies across the West Midlands, while Hackney Carriages (black cabs) can be flagged down and operate from ranks at transport hubs and key city centre locations.
  • You can also search here for taxi ranks in Birmingham.

BY BUS

Numerous bus operators run services across the West Midlands, including Arriva, First Bus, Diamond Bus, National Express Coventry, National Express West Midlands and Stagecoach. The network serves all of the major towns and cities, and the majority of operators accept contactless payments, enabling quick and convenient travel.

BY TRAM

The West Midlands Metro tram connects central Birmingham with West Bromwich and Wolverhampton. Tickets can be purchased via the MyMetro app or from an on-board conductor using cash or contactless payment.

BY BIKE

West Midlands Cycle Hire operates a 24/7 bike hire scheme in Birmingham, Coventry, Sandwell, Stourbridge, Solihull, Sutton Coldfield, Walsall and Wolverhampton. Docking stations can be found at major transport hubs and attractions, with bikes unlocked using the Beryl cycle hire app.

Getting to the Birmingham 2022 Commonwealth Games venues

University of Birmingham Squash and Hockey Centre – Trains from Birmingham New Street to University station take around five minutes.

The NEC – Various train operators run services between Birmingham New Street station and Birmingham International (the airport), taking around 20-30 minutes. The NEC is a short walk from Birmingham International station.

Edgbaston Stadium – From Birmingham city centre, National Express buses 45 and 47 serve Pershore Road, a two-minute walk from the ground.

Arena Birmingham – Located in the centre of Birmingham, the arena is just a short walk from New Street, Moor Street, Snow Hill and Five Ways stations.

Alexander Stadium – The 51 bus connects central Birmingham with this stadium in Perry Barr, taking around 30 minutes.

Sandwell Aquatics Centre – Train services operate from Birmingham New Street Station to Smethwick Rolfe Street, with bus connections to the centre.

Coventry Stadium and Arena – Trains serve Coventry Arena train station from Coventry city centre, alongside several bus routes.

Smithfield – Located in central Birmingham, Smithfield is a short walk from New Street and Moor Street stations.

Victoria Park – A 15-minute walk or short bus journey from Leamington Spa station, which has direct connections with London, Birmingham and Coventry.

West Park – Served by several bus routes from Wolverhampton station, which has connections to Birmingham via rail and the West Midlands Metro.

St Nicholas Park – A 10-15-minute walk from Warwick station, which has direct connections to London and Birmingham.