The best parks around Birmingham

Birmingham’s industrial past shouldn't give you the impression that the city lacks green spaces. In fact, it's one of the UK's greenest cities and there are loads of options for connecting with nature or just chilling in the park.

Students sitting at a picnic table in Cannon Hill park talking and laughing

Spending time outside is proven to boost your mood, health and productivity, so what better way to balance the demands of student life than exploring the places listed below? All these parks are dog-friendly too, so don’t hesitate to bring along your furry friends.

Check out our guide to the best parks in Birmingham, and how close they are to our City Centre Campus

Eastside City Park

Distance from City Centre Campus: 0 miles (Location on Google Maps)

Located right outside the doors of our Curzon and Parkside buildings is Eastside City Park. This stretch of manicured lawn also features lots of shady sitting areas and benches and is the perfect spot for lunch or studying on a nice day. 

Cannon Hill Park

Distance from City Centre Campus: 2.1 miles (Location on Google Maps)

Opened in 1873, Cannon Hill Park is situated across the road from Edgbaston Cricket Ground and encompasses 80 acres of parkland. The park also contains the MAC arts theatre and the Birmingham Wildlife Conservation Centre.

Harborne Walkway

Distance from City Centre Campus: 2.3 miles (Location on Google Maps)

Though this is more of a walking route than a park, the Harborne walkway is still well worth the visit. It turns out there used to be a railway between Harborne and New Street station, but it was eventually abandoned. Now, however, part of the former track has been turned into a walkway, spanning from Harborne to Summerfield Park, near the Barclaycard Arena. If you’re looking for an inner city route that doesn’t involve canals (for once), this is the one for you.

Kings Heath Park

Distance from City Centre Campus: 3.5 miles (Location on Google Maps)

Down the road from Cannon Hill Park, Kings Heath Park is situated in 35 acres of land. It is known for its flower beds, and was once the home of the BBC show Gardeners' World.

Handsworth Park

Distance from City Centre Campus: 2.6 miles (Location on Google Maps)

For those who commute into Birmingham from the outskirts or are based in the North of the city, Handsworth Park is worth a visit. Set in 63 acres of land, once a year the park plays host to the largest Vaisakhi festival in Europe.

Sandwell Valley

Distance from City Centre Campus: 4.4 miles (Location on Google Maps)

We’re not so much stretching the definition of “Birmingham” here, as smashing it to pieces. But it's worth it for Sandwell Valley, arguably one of the best parks in the West Midlands. Covering 670 acres, Sandwell Valley contains two farms and features stunning views around the central Swan Pool. Anyone who grew up in the area during the 90s may remember the wild rumour that there was a crocodile living in the lake (as reported in this wonderfully quirky Midlands Today report from 1999), but don’t worry – there is no massive reptile ready to swallow you or your dog whole.

...At last check.

Sutton Park

Distance from City Centre Campus: 5.6 miles (Location on Google Maps)

Another out of the way place for those who don’t live in the city centre, Sutton Park is set in a mind boggling 2,400 acres, making it one of the largest urban parks in Europe. It has several restaurants, sailing and fishing spaces, and if you really want to push the cute factor through the roof on your walk, there is also a donkey sanctuary!

Lickey Hills

Distance from City Centre Campus: 9.4 miles (Location on Google Maps)

Lickey Hills is a little shy of 10 miles away from City Centre Campus, but worth the journey – the park is comprised of 524 picturesque acres. Not only will it give your legs a good stretch, it is also a must visit location for fans of the Lord of the Rings. After moving to Rednal in 1904, a young J.R.R. Tolkien loved the Lickey Hills so much, they served as his inspiration for the Shire!

Even more parks 

If you're looking for something specific like a basketball court, equipment, or just want to find the nearest park to you then visit the Birmingham Council website here.

Student life in Birmingham

Birmingham has everything: bars, restaurants, theatre, music, nightlife, street food. We're one of the most cost-effective cities for students in the UK and with five universities there's so much here to see and do. Find out why Birmingham has the UK's largest student population outside London!

Find out more