Virtual Birmingham (and beyond)

Although during the current UK lockdown you can’t get out to enjoy all that Birmingham and the surrounding area has to offer, you can still experience the fantastic culture, sights and sounds from the comfort of your room.

Birmingham statue - 300x400

We have put together some ideas of activities you can access online from the local area and some from beyond.

These should give you some interesting activities to take part in and they might even inspire you to make a list of things you can arrange to visit and do once the lockdown has been lifted. 


Arts & Culture

Visit Birmingham have put together a good overview of the Birmingham attractions you can access online with At home in the West Midlands

Birmingham museums

Many of the Birmingham Museums are offering virtual tours and activities for you to do.

Jewellery Quarter Museum - why not have a look around one of the original workshops and offices of Birmingham's famous Jewellery quarter.

Aston Hall - you can view all of the rooms of Birmingham's famour seventeenth century red-brick mansion, which was built in Jacobean style. Or browse through its impressive art collection.

abstract painting

Ikon Gallery is Birmingham's contemporary art gallery. They are offering online exhibitions. 

Dear Nature exhibition is an exploration of how we interact with our environment by John Newling, Judy Watson exhibition is work by an Australian Aboriginal artist, Etude no 10 in B minor is an exhibition by Mariateresa Sartori and explores the connection between music and language. 

Ironbridge museum has got lots of cultural resources and activities for you to access online.

The Black Country Living Museum are offering a 360 degree virtual tour of their site.

History West Midlands are offering various historical podcasts. 

Royal Shakespeare Company

Find out how you can enjoy getting to know some of this great writter's work.  

Shakespeare actorAt home with Shakespeare offers a range of ways you can find out about Shakespeare and his work and some ideas of some cultural activities to keep you entertained.  

Culture in quarantine gives you access to watch six Shakespeare performances via iplayer.  



Other local online entertainment

Everyman Cinema are hosting an online House Party on Saturday each week.


Glee Club are offering a 7 day free trial to access some of their comedy shows online.

Be Festival are offering some of their events online for free.

Women and theatre have released some audio plays as podcasts.

Birmingham Royal Ballet have produced a new film available to watch from home.

Hay Festival are running the Hay Digital Festival, with interactive events from more than 100 award-winning writers (running from 18 - 31 May). 


Our very own campus has lots of facilities, which are available in an online format.Old Joe 3

Virtual campus - Explore our beautiful campus virtually.

Barber Home gives you the opportunity to join online events, take part in art workshops and other activities or simply share your reflections with others (new content released every Thursday).

Barber's art collection - You can also view much of the collection online.

Winterbourne House and Garden's Digging for Dirt Blog will help keep you up to date on what's happening on the University's very own botanical garden. 

The Cadbury Research Library is home to the University's special collections, rare materials and archives.

Research and Cultural Collections has much of its collection available to view online.

University's main library - You can 'visit' the library in our 360 degree tour.


Lots of musicians are making their performances available online during this time.  Here are a few local highlights.


Town Hall Symphony Hall - Lots of performances are available to watch online via Facebook watch parties, including their free Friday Jazz Performances.  

City of Birmingham Symphony Orchestra - have lots of resources to allow you to watch or listen to their performances, as well as some activities to do and articles to keep you interested. 

Brum radio offers local music, comedy and chat.


This is a great time to improve your cooking skills or attempt cooking new types of food. Have a look at what's available.


Jamie Oliver - Stay home: New cooking skills

Ready, Steady, Cook - The return of this popular TV programme is very timely, with the country in lockdown, people are cooking more than usual.  Chefs competeto come up with the most delicious recipes from a bag of unknown ingredients. Swap the unknown ingredients for the food left in your fridge and store cupboard and you could take up the challenge in your own kitchen.  

Huffposts recipes - The top ten most popular recipes people have accessed since lockdown began.

Wagamama - lauched their 'wok from home' cooking lessons on Instagram. 

And if you're missing your trips to Digbeth Dining Club, many of the outlets are now offering a delivery service:


You may not be able to watch live sports at the moment, but there are opportunities to take part in online activities and also to find out about local sports clubs.  

Twickenham - View the home of England Rugby online.

Sport England have a ‘stay in work out' campaign which has lots of ideas to do in your home or outside as part of your daily exercise. 

The Active Wellbeing Society are streaming a range of activities for all abilities. These include some suitable for children (which might be helpful for those with children or who are isolating with younger brothers and sisters). 

Birmingham Sport & Fitness - connect with sports groups virtually through the Facebook group. 


DanceXchange are offering some free online fitness classes.

Yoga with Adriane - free online yoga classes.

Aston Villa Football club provides a virtual tour of Villa Park in Birmingham.

Birmingham City Football Club have put together an online quiz - How well do you know Blues, to test your knowledge about the team.  

Wimbledon - You can view the Wimbledon collection online. 


Many organisations have opened their virtual doors to allow you to experience the wonder of nature from online.

Birmingham Botanical Garden are offering a 360 virtual tour of their beautiful gardens.  


Birmingham Wildlife Conservation Park are streamling their feeding sessions live on Facebook.

Dudley Zoo have got their tigers and penguins on camera for you to watch live.

New skills and crafts

This may be a good time to learn an  new skill or take up a hobby.  There are some ideas below.

Origami - You can learn to make lots of interesting designs using old scraps of paper, or maybe some old notes you no longer need.


Learn to draw - This free resource will give you the basic skills and advanced techniques to improve your current drawing skills. 

Cass Art offer some really good art tutorials.

Learn how to code - This site offers free and subscription memberships to help you learn HTML, CSS and Javascript coding languages. From building basic websites to designing interactive web-apps, there's something for everyone interested. 

Take up knitting, crocheting or sewing - Get ideas on what you'd like to do and remember there are lots of You Tube videos that can show you new techniques.

Bird image

Try out bird spotting - The National Trust have put together a guide to help you know what to look and listen for when you're out for a walk, or sitting in your garden.  

Puzzles and quizzes

You might like to keep your brain active by doing a daily quiz or puzzle. Here are a range to can access online.


The Birmingham Mail have put together a list of the best online quizes to keep you occupied during lockdown. 

Visit Birmingham are advertising Colmore Business District's online quiz night to raise money for SIFA charity, which will run on Tuesday 5 May. Tickets are £10 per group. 

Jimmy Carr is running a daily lockdown quiz on his You Tube channel between 6pm & 8pm.

Keep your brain sharp with a variety of online puzzles.

Other UK attractions

And of course you are not limited to viewing attractions in the local area.  Why not take the opportunity to find out more about some of the fantastic attractions across the UK.

London Science Museum

Victoria & Albert Museum - secrets of the museum (6 episodes available on iplayer).

Natural History Museum

Tate Modern - view the online galleries

National Gallery - take a virtual tour of the gallery.

National Theatre - stream new shows every Thursday.

Houses of Parliament - take a virtual tour.

Buckingham Palace - You may not be able to visit the palace in person, you can view many of the opulent spaces online

Stonehenge - take a virtual tour in real time. 

These are just a sample of the attractions available online. If you find something interesting you’d like to share with others, please email us on: 


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