Welcome to Birmingham, a city that has been my home for twenty three years. It's England's second city, and it's not hard to see why. The city itself is so diverse and multi-cultural, with plenty to do for all walks of life.
I couldn't possibly fit everything that B town has to offer in one post, so I've whittled it down to my favourite spots for shopping, eating and boozing in the city centre.
Of course, there's only one place you need to visit to find all your favourite high street shops under one roof, the Bullring. My absolute favourite place to shop, not only because of the vast array of shops, but because it's all inside the same building, perfect for the typically British days of rain.
If you're into more vintage shopping, then I'd recommend you head past the bullring, and straight for Digbeth, where you'll find COW and the Custard Factory, home of Birmingham creative corner, which holds a variety of small vintage stores, so you can thrift to your hearts content.
Being in the city, you'll find plenty of different places to eat. The Bullring even offers plenty of restaurants whilst you shop 'till you drop, including my favourite burger place of the moment, Five Guys. If you fancy something a bit more.. fancy, there's plenty of choice dotted around the town also. If you're into your jerk chicken and reggae music, I'd definitely check out Turtle Bay (located on John Bright street) the food is delicious, and their cocktails are gorgeous(2 for 1 during most the day also!) For the best south american cuisine, theres Bodega on Bennett's hill (who also do killer cocktails might I add) or if you can't quite decide, you'll find plenty of selection at the Mailbox, home to a variety of bars and restaurants right next to the canal.
Now, as I'm reaching the grand ol' age of 24, I'm definitely more of a bar and cocktail girl than a nightclub and 1.50 Jagerbomb rascal that I used to be, but when I do fancy a big night on the town I'll most likely head to Birmingham's favourite indie dive, snobs. However, if you're not big on your rock n roll, and love nothing more than cheesy pop songs mixed with the latest chart hits, I'd direct you straight to Broadstreet, home of Reflex, Popworld and Walkabout.
If you're like me, and all you want is a night of cocktails and less chaos, there's plenty of bars around also. My favourite place to hit before heading to a club, is Island bar (Suffolk Street) as you can image by the name, the bar is themed around an tropical island, and even it's own Tiki Bar upstairs. If you're into something more on the chilled out side, one of my particular favourites is a quirky little pub called Jekyll and Hyde, located in a small corner of the cities edge, on Steelhouse Lane. Other favourite cocktail joints include; Lost & Found, Pennyblacks in the Mailbox and as previously mentioned, Turtle Bay.
Have you been to Birmingham before? Are there any favourite spots which I haven't mentioned here that you'd recommend? let me know in the comments :)