The Wirral and Birkenhead boast a great selection of family attractions and things to do. Children will be fascinated by the space-themed Spaceport attraction in Wallasey and the U-boat exhibition in Birkenhead. Both attractions are owned and operated by Mersey Ferries who operate River Explorer Cruises between both attractions and Pier Head in Liverpool. Cruises to Salford Quays along the Manchester Ship Canal are also available.
The Floral Pavilion is an 800-seat theatre in New Brighton offering a varied programme of music, comedy shows, and theatrical performances. It dates back to 1913 but was rebuilt in 2008.
The Lady Lever Art Gallery houses the personal art collection of one of William Lever, the founder of Lever Brothers (now part of Unilever). The soap manufacturing company played an important part in the development of the Wirral and was one of the largest employers in the area. At the turn of the century Lever built the unique model village of Port Sunlight to house workers from his factory. The fascinating story of village and its creator are explored at the Port Sunlight Museum.
In Birkenhead the Williamson Art Gallery and Museum features a large display of model shops plus a large collection of ceramics from the town’s Della Robbia Pottery.
Wirral Country Park opened in 1973 and was the first designated Country Park in the UK. It follows the route of the old Birkenhead Railway from West Kirby to Hooton and attracts more than 250,000 visitors each year. There are two visitor centres along the 12-mile route, at Thurstaston and Willaston. Both are housed in former train stations. The centre at Willaston (Hadlow Road station) has been restored to resemble how it would have appeared in the 1950s.
Birkenhead Park is another popular spot for relaxation. It dates back to the mid-19th century and was England’s first publicly funded park. Other parks on the Wirral include Arrowe Country Park and the North Wirral Coastal Park.
West Kirby is a small seaside town on the western side of the Wirral. A major attraction here is West Kirby Marine Lake, a 52-acre man-made saltwater lake. The Wirral Sailing Centre is based here and offers courses in windsurfing, dinghy sailing, kayaking and power boating. All equipment is provided including wetsuits. The public path around the lake is a popular seaside walk.
Just north of West Kirby is the famous Royal Liverpool Golf Club at Hoylake, scheduled to hold the Open Championship in 2014.
Tranmere Rovers are the only professional football club on the Wirral. They play at Prenton Park in Birkenhead.