Top things to do in Coventry

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by Hertz - 23 December 2019

Coventry has plenty to offer outside of the cathedral ruins the city is famous for. From locations steeped in history and culture, to exciting and modern family activities, a Coventry has a wealth of things to do.

 

As Coventry prepares to become the UK’s City of Culture 2021, there’s never been a better time to jump in your Hertz rental car and explore this fascinating city.  Follow our guide to the top things to do during your stay in Coventry.

 
Coventry Cathedrals


Coventry Cathedral

Coventry is home to not one, not two, but three cathedrals - the ruins of the two ancient cathedrals as well as the modern reconstruction of a third.

 

Destroyed as part of the Protestant Reformation under the rule of Henry VIII, St Mary’s Cathedral is now open to the public after local authorities excavated the ruins in the mid-1990s. Wander the walkways that cross over the priory church for a birds-eye-view of the ruins, or spend time relaxing in the cloisters, which have been transformed into a small park.

 

St Michael’s is several centuries younger. It too was destroyed, this time as a result of the World War II bombings of Coventry. The still standing 245-foot spire now merges Coventry Cathedral - the city’s newest addition. This new building began development in the 20th century and is a stunning example of how old and new architecture can complement one another. Climb the old tower for one of the best views of the city or enjoy the stunning 20th-century redevelopment.

 

Coventry Transport Museum

The Coventry Transport Museum houses the most extensive collection of British-made cars and engines in the world. It’s a must-see location for automotive fans. With a host of interactive exhibits and events, including creative ‘make and take’ sessions and mini-museum engineer tasks, the museum is an ideal family day out.

 

Looking around you’ll find the Austin Metro that once belonged to Princess Dianna and the bus that carried Coventry City Football Club through the streets as part of their FA Cup victory celebration in 1987.

 

There’s also a chance to admire the record-breaking ThrustSSC. This British-designed car broke the world record for the fastest land speed on October 15, 1997. Reaching a speed of 763mph, the ThrustSSC was the first land vehicle to break the sound barrier.

 

Broadgate House Escape Room

As if having the world’s biggest collection of British-made cars wasn’t enough, Coventry is also home to one of the biggest escape rooms in the Midlands. Puzzle solvers, code breakers and thrill-seekers will all find something to enjoy at Broadgate House’s multiple escape rooms. These fully immersive and interactive escape tasks challenge your logic as you go up against the clock and work together to solve puzzles and escape.

 

With a range of family-friendly and adult-only rooms, there’s something to suit all tastes. Immerse yourself in the world of Caribbean pirates or head down the rabbit hole into a mysterious fantasy land – all without leaving the building.

 

Whether you decide to test your abilities as a criminal mastermind or to undergo a jungle-based challenge, there are plenty of thrills and excitement in store. Remember – you only have an hour to succeed.

 

FarGo Village

Like the renovated St Michael’s Cathedral, FarGo Village is another example of Coventry’s ability to seamlessly mix the historical with the modern-day. By repurposing old and unused industrial spaces, the FarGo team have regenerated the area and made the most of its rich cultural heritage.

 

By inviting independent artists, boutiques, designers and restaurants to fill out the village, the team behind FarGo have created a unique, urban hub filled with creativity. From retro scooter displays and vintage treasure troves to independent art studios, craft shops and gift shops, FarGo village has enough to keep everyone entertained.

 

The village is also home to a range of artistic agencies, businesses and food outlets, making it a hub of creative and commercial activity - and it’s still expanding. The plan is to grow the village and fill every space available by 2021 when Coventry becomes the UK’s city of culture.

Caludon Castle Ruins


Caludon Castle Ruins Coventry

Coventry is well known for being steeped in history, but few people realise that it’s historical links reach further than its cathedrals. Wander the ruins of Caludon Castles, and you’ll be walking in the footsteps of historical figures like Lady Godiva.

 

The castle is also thought to be the location of the first performance of William Shakespeare’s A Midsummer Night’s Dream. Fans of the play will be able to picture how this once glorious castle and expansive grounds would have made an ideal backdrop for the fanciful comedy.

 

The ruins also make an excellent place for an afternoon outdoors. The vast open space surrounding the castle remains is perfect for a picnic lunch or afternoon walk. With a free car park just on the outskirts of the castle’s grounds, you can pack a real feast and plenty of lawn games to enjoy for the afternoon.

Spon Street

Yet another example of Coventry’s history, Spon Street is filled with historic timber buildings that mostly survived wartime bombings thanks to their location on what was the very edge of the city centre.

 

Many medieval timber buildings from across the city were moved to Spon Street to preserve the structures during the city’s redevelopment. The City Council made Spon Street a designated conservation area in 1969 to ensure the future of these well-preserved buildings.

 

With over 20 shops and a range of pubs and restaurants all operating out of either original or relocated medieval buildings, it’s easy to believe you’ve travelled back in time. Make sure you visit the Old Windmill for intricate examples of old furniture repurposed for modern-day visitors to Coventry.

 

Coventry is a great city for a quick visit as many of the key sites are located centrally. But there’s still plenty to explore further afield. Book with Hertz today to start your trip.

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