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Birmingham UK Information

The city of Birmingham is the second-largest city in the United Kingdom, after London. It offers visitors a variety of interesting museums, fabulous shopping and thrilling nightlife.

Although Birmingham is currently the second-largest and second-richest city in England, its history is not as long as that of other English cities. The city was a small regional center for most of antiquity and the Middle Ages. However, the city's proximity to deposits of coal and iron ore helped it to develop into a center for workshops and industry. In the 18th century, the city's residents invented many different machines, the most significant of which was the industrial steam engine. In many ways, Birmingham can be seen as the birthplace of the Industrial Revolution. Because of the inventiveness of its residents and its ample supply of natural resources, Birmingham boomed. The economy of the city flourished until World War II. The city was heavily damaged during World War II, when Nazi warplanes dropped many bombs on it. After the war, Birmingham's economy slowly declined. In recent years, however, the city has experienced resurgence.

The city has three major draws for tourists: shopping, nightlife and museums. Birmingham is second only to London for shopping in the UK. Visitors will find all the famous international brands present, as well as many interesting local products. As for nightlife, few cities can compete with Birmingham in terms of variety and excitement. Whether it is a local brew in a traditional pub, refined cocktails at an elegant bar, or dancing all night long at a trendy club, Birmingham offers it all.

The city also contains many museums. Birmingham Museum & Art Gallery is home to many fascinating pieces of art. Visitors wishing for a taste of Birmingham's industrial past could visit the Thinktank, a special museum featuring many hands-on displays and exhibits. Finally, fans of heavy metal music will undoubtedly want to visit the birthplace of Ozzy Osbourne. This is a private house, so tours are not available. However, visitors can take pictures outside the home.

Birmingham can be reached in several different ways. Bus and train services are available from the rest of the UK. The city is served by its own airport, Birmingham International Airport. The most special way to reach the city, however, is through the British canal system. Special canal boats bring visitors into the city. These may be crowded during spring and summer, so make sure to book ahead.

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