Birmingham listed in Rough Guides’ top 10 places to visit in 2015

  • City is only UK destination named in travel guide’s annual list, joining Malaga, New Orleans and Hamburg 
  • Ranking follows record number of national and international visitors to Birmingham last year


Birmingham has been named among the top 10 most exciting destinations to visit in 2015, in a list compiled annually by the travel guidebook series Rough Guides.

 

The city, which is the only UK location to have been selected by the publication’s travel editors, is joined by worldwide tourist destinations including Johannesburg, Malaga, New Orleans, Hamburg and Wellington.

Rough Guides selected Birmingham in its annual list for “embracing its industrial heritage”. The publication also notes that “with Birmingham New Street station reopening in 2015, this year is the ideal time to make a trip.”

 

Lottie Gross, from Rough Guides, said:

Every year, Rough Guides editors and authors get together to compile a list of the destinations they think will be best to visit in the next 12 months.

From the vibrant Bull Ring markets to the fashionable creative quarter in Digbeth, Birmingham makes a worthy entry in the 2015 list for its cultural variety, excellent shopping and a buzzing live music scene that’s among the best in the UK.”

Emma Gray, Director of Marketing Services at Visit Birmingham, the city’s official leisure tourism programme, added:

“Birmingham’s inclusion in Rough Guides’ acclaimed shortlist is testament to the city’s increasing appeal as one of the most attractive places in the world to visit.

The city’s global reputation continues to grow. As well as welcoming a record 34 million people last year, Birmingham also attracted a 32 per cent rise in international visitors – a greater increase than anywhere else in the UK.

With a spectacular 2015 in store thanks to a number of exciting new developments and events, we look forward to offering even more to our visitors next year than ever before.”

Birmingham is preparing for one of its most important years in over a decade. Highlights in 2015 include the completion of the £600million redevelopment of New Street Station, plus the openings of high end retail development Grand Central – including a flagship John Lewis store – and the UK’s first integrated destination leisure complex, Resorts World Birmingham.

The city will also welcome two matches of the Rugby World Cup at Villa Park, and the third Ashes Test Match between England and Australia at Edgbaston Stadium.

Chris Montgomery, Network Rail’s project director for the Birmingham New Street project, said:

Birmingham is a great place to visit and with the new New Street Station nearing completion it just keeps getting better.

Before the project started the station was dark, unwelcoming and overcrowded with poor access for passengers. The first section of the new station opened in April 2013 and it provides a fantastic experience for visitors. But visitors to the city will be even more impressed when they step off their trains after September next year when the station will be brighter and lighter and provide a great first impression of the city.”

In 2012, Birmingham was named number 19 in the New York Times’ ‘45 Places to Go’ – the only English city outside of London to be selected. The city’s foodie credentials and diverse dining scene earned the city the nineteenth spot in the shortlist, with local talents including Aktar Islam of Lasan Restaurant and Michelin star chefs Glynn Purnell, Richard Turner and Luke Tipping praised for their culinary flair.

 

For the full Rough Guides 2015 listing, log on to http://www.roughguides.com/best-places/2015/.

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