10 Best Days Out in the West Midlands

The West Midlands is packed with great days out; exciting cities, beautiful castles, fun activities for the family, and much more. Here’s our list of the best days out in the West Midlands…

Days out in the West Midlands

The West Midlands is an area of England made up of the counties of Herefordshire, Shropshire, Staffordshire, Warwickshire and Worcestershire, and it has more than a few things to do no matter what age you are or what you’re into.

From stunning cathedrals to fascinating railways to water sports to historic towns and hundreds more, it wasn’t easy for us to narrow this list down to the top 10 places to visit in West Midlands! But we’ve done our very best.

Whether you’re looking for the area’s most famous gems or you’ve been Googling ‘unusual things to do West Midlands’ on the hunt for something to surprise a partner, family member or the kids, we’re sure you’ll find something here.

Without further delay, here are the best days out in the West Midlands!

1. Day out travelling on the Severn Valley Railway

From Kidderminster in Worcestershire to Bridgnorth in Shropshire, this 16-mile journey is one the whole family will love to do. Severn Valley is one of the most beautiful areas in the West Midlands, and with this unique mode of transport you can take in the rolling hills aboard a 1930s Great Western Railway Carriage.

Severn Valley Railway, England

Hop on for a delicious Sunday lunch while you travel in style through the gorgeous countryside on a real-life steam train. You can choose to sit in either a 1930s Great Western Railways Carriage or a more expensive first class carriage, in the style of the 1940s.

Loosen your belt buckles for a 3-course meal, with lots of time to take in the stunning surrounds as you whoosh through the valley. There are other options available if you don’t want a full Sunday lunch, such as afternoon teas and something called a ‘Gin Train’… gin fans might want to check that one out!

This is one of the most memory-making days out in the West Midlands, and one that your seatmates won’t forget in a hurry.

If you’re interested in what else there is to do in Shropshire, you can check out the 15 best days out in Shropshire.

2. Day out in Stratford-Upon-Avon

William Shakespeare is an incredibly significant historical figure in England, and you can find places all over the country that celebrate this famous playwright. However, none have quite as strong a connection to the world-renowned writer as Stratford-Upon-Avon.

Stratford-upon-avon, England

Shakespeare was born in this picturesque town which sits right on the River Avon, hence the name. The town is pretty much entirely dedicated to the man, with lots of tourist shops selling Shakespeare memorabilia and many points of interest that document a lot about his life.

You’ll find his birthplace there, which you can visit, the cottage that his wife Anne Hathaway lived in (exceptionally cute!), and the house of his mother, Mary Arden. All of the homes have been well-preserved and look exactly as they would have when Shakespeare stayed there. Think, preserved timber frames and original interiors.

The pedestrianised Henley Street, which is where you’ll find Shakespeare’s birthplace, has lots of cute cafes and independent shops where you can buy a Shakespeare book, a trinket, or souvenir for someone special.

There’s also the Royal Shakespeare Theatre which is absolutely worth visiting for a show if there’s one on while you are in the area. Many a famous British actor has stood on that stage, and it regularly performs some of Shakespeare’s most notable works.

This is definitely one of the best days out in the Midlands for adults, but if you have kids in tow and want somewhere they can run around, Bancroft Gardens is a great spot. They’ll also love watching winged things at Stratford Butterfly Farm.

Stratford-Upon-Avon is certainly one of the best days out in the West Midlands if you’re into Shakespeare, but there’s lots more to do so definitely check it out.

3. Day out hiking in the Malvern Hills

There’s nothing like a hike in the outdoors if the great British weather plays ball, and the Malvern Hills are a fantastic area to get your fix if you fancy a day out hiking or walking.

Malvern Hills, West Midlands, England

These hills are visible from miles around, and the peaks stretch along an eight mile ridge so there’s lots of walks to be done. You’ll find marked walking routes, but they also have an app you can use to navigate the area.

Some of these hills can be quite steep so we’d recommend a decent level of fitness for this day out. At the top of the peaks you’ll find stunning views and a few ridge walks worth photographing.

This area is proudly an Area of Outstanding Natural Beauty, and you’ll see why when you get there. There’s wildlife to spot, countryside views to take in, and small villages around the area of Great Malvern where you can charge up with a coffee in a cafe pre-hike, or recharge with something sweet post-hike.

If the outdoors are your thing, this is one of the best free days out in the West Midlands (or if you’re investing in that cake as a reward, at least it’s one of the more cheap days out West Midlands has to offer!)

4. Day out in Royal Leamington Spa

The town of Royal Leamington Spa is simply beautiful, and that’s probably why it attracts so many visitors. With lots of lovely green spaces to relax in, and shopping galore, it’s a great day out.

Royal Leamington Spa, England

Warwickshire has a few gems, and Royal Leamington Spa is one of them. A definite highlight is Jephson Gardens, which is our top pick for a picnic spot when the weather’s nice. You’ll find these gardens next to the River Leam outside of Leamington’s Parade, which is the central point of the town.

In it you’ll find a duckpond (the kids will love waving to the ducks!), lots of streaming fountains, and the Jephson Glasshouse; a botanical garden inside the park that has tropical trees, plants and flowers surrounding modern art sculptures. The gardens are definitely one of the best days out in the West Midlands.

Outside of the park, Royal Leamington Spa also sometimes has things on in the Leamington Library Royal Pump Rooms, shows at the Loft Theatre, and there’s nearby National Trust site Charlecote Park to explore.

Or, if you’re looking for unusual things to do West Midlands for couples, you can visit the Warwickshire Gin Company for a tipple or too!

5. Day out in Birmingham

Birmingham is absolutely packed with things to do. Tonnes of museums and art galleries, theatres to catch a show in, great bars and pubs for a night out – only one day in Birmingham may see you struggle to fit everything in!

Birmingham, West Midlands, England

Birmingham is known for having one of the biggest shopping centres in the country, the Bullring. You’ll find every type of shop and everything you could ever want in there, as well as lots of eating spots to fuel your shopping. If retail therapy is what you’re after on your day out, this is thee place to go – it’s one of the best days out in the Midlands for couples who want to treat themselves.

Birmingham also has the Botanical Gardens, a Science Museum, the National Motorcycle Museum, and lots more unique things to do. Check out Cadbury World (best tickets here) for your fix of all things chocolate, the LEGOLAND Discovery Centre (best tickets here) for those who love to build things, or the Bear Grylls Adventure at the NEC (best tickets here) if you want that adrenaline rush.

You can’t visit Birmingham without getting a delicious curry, as the city is known for its amazing Indian food. There are tonnes all over the city centre so do some research to see what the best rated ones are. At the time of writing Asha’s, Lasan, Indian Streatery, Tamatanga and Opheem are all highly rated, and all of these options will offer a great end to one of the best days out in the West Midlands.

6. Day out to see Worcester Cathedral

Worcester Cathedral is as eye-catching as it is fascinating, with a long history and extensive renovations adding to its intrigue. Located in Worcester, it’s well worth a visit if you love architecture.

Worcester Cathedral, Worcester, England

Worcester Cathedral is unusual as it boasts architectural elements from the medieval period, Norman period and Gothic period, as well as others. The oldest part is the well-known Norman crypt, which dates back to the 11th century,

While inside, don’t skip out on seeing the tomb of King John, and feel free to let your jaw hit the floor as you gaze up at the stunning Victorian stained glass windows that line the cathedral.

You can follow a guided historical trail through the cathedral using the app, which you can find intructions on downloading when you get there. Take a beat in the Cloister Café where you can enjoy a cup of coffee or a sandwich, and take in this wonderful day out in the West Midlands which shows off some of the fantastic architecture England has up its sleeve.

If you want to see more in Worcester while you’re there, you’ll find 15 of the greatest days out in Worcestershire right here.

7. Day out at Warwick Castle

Warwick Castle is truly a must-see while you’re in England, and it just so happens to be located in the Midlands. Happy days!

Warwick Castle, West Midlands, England

Warwick Castle is of course situated in Warwick, and it’s one of the best preserved ancient fortresses you will find anywhere in the country. If history is your thing, it doesn’t get better than a day out here.

Warwick Castle has history from as early as 914, when Alfred the Great’s daughter built a fortress there. The oldest surviving part of the site is the mound from William the Conqueror’s time! Today it is a bustling tourist attraction with many secrets to uncover. Not to mention, it’s actually home to the world’s most powerful catapult – a fact that will surely impress any kids you’re bringing along!

There’s always lots to do at Warwick Castle; watch incredible falconry displays, see battles re-enacted by actors, head down into the dungeons to see some of the gruesome forms of torture and execution carried out there in the past, and of course watch the world’s biggest catapult do its thing!

This is 100% one of the best days out in the West Midlands, and with so much to do with the kids there, we’d say it’s one of the best options for families.

8. Day out at West Midlands Safari Park

If you love to see animals and you’re coming to the West Midlands, you MUST visit West Midlands Safari Park in Worcester. With rides to go on and animals to say hello to, this is a fantastic day out for all ages.

West Midlands Safari Park, England

With 165 animal species to discover and lots of events throughout the year, you definitely won’t run out of things to do at this fantastic safari park. The drive-thru safari makes this one of the best days out in West Midlands for families, as you’ll be marveling at unique species together, and giggling as animals approach your car on the drive.

Don’t forget to take your dino-obsessed little one to the Land of the Living Dinosaurs exhibition, or if they want some squeals there’s a section of the park with adventure rides too.

This one is firmly on our list of the 10 best safari parks in England you need to visit (and you’ll find more on that list if you want to meet more creatures!)

9. Day out paddleboarding in Shrewsbury

When the weather is nice, a day out paddleboarding is always a fun activity for those who enjoy something a little active and outdoorsy. Shrewsbury is a good spot for this.

Shrewsbury, England

Shrewsbury in the West Midlands has a lovely town centre surrounded by beautiful countryside, so there’s lots to do there. And the River Severn has a lot to add to your day out, with lovely walks, and opportunities to go paddleboarding.

There are a few places you can try paddleboarding in and around Shrewsbury, but Hire a Canoe is a good one to check out as they have three different paddleboard sizes so anyone over 10 years old can get involved. Plus their wetsuits are free of charge, so you don’t need to worry about bringing anything along except your swimwear and some shoes you don’t mind getting wet.

You can hire your paddleboard for 1 or 2 hours, or go on a day trip with the team who will pick you up from Frankwell in Shrewsbury and drive you to Montford Bridge, where you will paddle downstream until you make it back to the town of Shrewsbury.

This is such a fun activity that will suit lots of different people, and one of the best days out in the West Midlands. If you like water-based fun, you can find more amazing places to go paddleboarding in the West Midlands here.

10. Day out at Drayton Manor Theme Park

This is by far one of the best days out in the area – who doesn’t love a theme park?! Drayton Manor has fun and laughter in spades.

Drayton Manor is one of England’s very best theme parks, and you’ll find it in Staffordshire. With a resort featuring a great hotel, many people make an entire holiday out of this, but you can also go for just a day out. Our advice would be to arrive early though, as there is A LOT to do in this park.

Some of the bigger rides include the scream-worthy Stormforce 10, Thor, River Rapids, and Accelerator, but they are always adding new hair-raising rides to the park and updating them, so even if you’ve been before you are bound to find something new there.

The great thing about Drayton Manor is that it has fun things to do whether you’re an adrenaline junkie running around from one huge rollercoaster to the next, or you’re a family with small children who need something a bit gentler to enjoy. There’s Thomas Land if your children are obsessed with Thomas the Tank Engine, a zoo with lots of unique species, and a tonne of Viking themed rides too.

It’s not hard to see why people flock to Drayton Manor every year as it’s one of the best days out in the West Midlands, hands down!

Think you know of another brilliant day out in the West Midlands that should be on this list? Share it with us in the comments. We love to make sure our lists are jam-packed with the best days out all over the country, so whether you’re a West Midlands local or you’ve just been to a fun place that you think should have made the list, we’re all ears!

READ MORE: What to Do in the East Midlands

Quick List: Best Days out in the West Midlands

  1. Day out travelling on the Severn Valley Railway
  2. Day out in Stratford-Upon-Avon
  3. Day out hiking in the Malvern Hills
  4. Day out in Royal Leamington Spa
  5. Day out in Birmingham
  6. Day out to see Worcester Cathedral
  7. Day out at Warwick Castle
  8. Day out at West Midlands Safari Park
  9. Day out paddleboarding in Shrewsbury
  10. Day out at Drayton Manor theme park
Caitlin McAllister
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