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An ancient past and a vibrant present

Chart millennia of history as you travel from strategic Warwick Castle to the buzz of 21st century Birmingham

Touring in the Heart of England

As the traditional tourist trails hop across England, in search of the well-known highlights, it's very easy to by-pass the Heart of England and the fascinating destinations it has to offer.

Birmingham is England's second city, a sprawling metropolis which, over the last decade, has been transformed into a vibrant urban offering, with a major Symphony Hall, art galleries and museums and some of the best shopping outside London. At its centre, the famous Jewellery Quarter where some of the finest jewels in Europe have been fashioned over the years.

A tour of the heartland of England unveils a fascinating glimpse into the industrial revolution when Britain dominated the world in manufacturing and innovation. Just a few miles outside the city, the Black Country Museum is a charming reconstruction of this historic era where you can almost believe you have gone back in time.

But ancient history is never far away, and Warwick Castle and Kenilworth Castle shouldn't be missed. Elizabethan and Tudor history is brought to life, with lifelike exhibitions at Warwick charting the story of Warwick the Kingmaker.

Just down the road from Warwick is one of the most popular destinations in England: Shakespeare's Stratford-upon-Avon. Here you can visit his birthplace and the properties that were significant in his life, watch a play at the newly re-built Royal Shakespeare Theatre, and finish your tour in the graceful atmopshere of the church next to the River Avon where he was laid to rest, unaware he would become the most famous writer in the world.

Featured Hotels

Charingworth Manor

The Cotswolds, Gloucestershire

Extensive gardens, pool and luxurious comfort close to Chipping Campden and Hidcote Manor Gardens with glorious views over the Cotswolds.

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The Plough and Harrow

Birmingham, West Midlands

A warm, old fashioned welcome in Birmingham City Centre with its superb shopping, Jewellery Quarter and Canal Quarter.

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Hadley Park House

Ironbridge, Telford, Shropshire

Lovely Georgian house and restaurant close to Ironbridge and the Shropshire countryside.

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