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11:00 The free breakfast at Hatters Hostel (from £16pn) is available all day, so you don’t have to get out of bed too early.

Take it easy on the grey matter and make your first stop Cadbury World (from £14.75, or 2-for-1 on Thursdays if pre-booked).

Exploring the history and production of Britain’s best chocolate, try not to overdo it at the world’s biggest Cadbury shop at the end.

13:00 If you’re still hungry after all that, grab a table at the waterside for lunch at Canalside Cafe (35 Worcester Bar, Gas Street Basin, off Gas Street).

Once an 18th-century lock keeper’s cottage, it’s got more character than Brum’s myriad chain eateries and does healthy, filling fare (try the veggie soup at £3.95).

14:00 Now engage the brain at the Barber Institute of Fine Arts (free). Representing greats from the Renaissance to Impressionism (including Picasso), there’s also a good selection of Brit work from the likes of Turner.

16:00 Still going strong? Then try the Birmingham Tolkien Bus Tour (£10), which takes you to parts of the city said to have inspired The Lord Of The Rings (Tolkien spent his early years in Birmingham).

Bid goodbye to Brum’s curry scene at Bollywood singer Asha Bhosle’s imaginatively named Asha’s. Though a chain, this is the only UK outlet.

The dal makhni here is the most sinfully buttery dollop of deliciousness we’ve ever been naughty enough to nibble. Mains from about £11-16.

End your weekend in style at the Gin Parlour (, a Victorian-style drinking den with a huge gin selection and various theme nights (film screenings, burlesque). Adopt Brum accent: “Class-oi”.

Single tickets from London Euston to Birmingham New Street can cost as little as £10 if booked in advance


Photos: Visit Birmingham

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