Free things to do in London

Boy looking through yellow telescope at the house of commons

Planning a trip to London with the kids? Whether it’s a stay-cation or one whole day of exploration, London can be pretty expensive, especially if you are looking for activities for the whole family! Budgeting can be a real headache too, so we have made a list of all the best free things to do in London with your kids. From farms, stately homes, museums, transport, playgrounds, quirky places to visit and more.

So without further ado, put your debit card down and explore the best FREE attraction hotspots London has to offer …

Famous Museums, Landmarks & Art Galleries

British Museum

What better place to learn about the history of the United Kingdom than in The British Museum! It’s a great place to visit if you are on a budget, with FREE entry for all ages and multiple activities for the little ones to get involved with. The museum offers activity backpacks, which include puzzles, games and activities to do in the galleries that are available every day for free! Not to forget the Children’s Multimedia Guide where the kids can listen to Vid the Martian as he looks at Museum objects. Why not try out the Hamlyn Family Trails while you’re at it? With 8 fun trails to follow around the Museum and free digital workshops too!

Info & Pricing

  • Location Great Russell Street. London. Greater London. WC1B 3DG
  • Price FREE
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Nelsons Column

Get a shot of culture and visit iconic landmarks for some family photo gold – it’s the perfect Instagram opportunity! Nelson’s Column remembers the charismatic one-armed, one-eyed admiral who defeated the infamous Napoleon at the Battle of Trafalgar in 1805! So what do you think, one to add to the list?

Info & Pricing

  • Location Trafalgar Square. Westminster. Greater London. WC2N 5DN
  • Price FREE
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The Natural History Museum

The Natural History Museum is home to over 80 million amazing plants, animals, fossils, rocks and minerals. Begin your exploration into by visiting their star resident: an enormous, animatronic T-Rex! He’s definitely worth having a family snap with, that is before travelling through a giant suspended globe or testing your skills as a scientist in the education space.

Info & Pricing

  • Location Cromwell Road. Kensington. Greater London. SW7 5BD
  • Price FREE
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Buckingham Palace

Ever seen a real-life Royal Guard? Head to the most popular tourist destination in London, Buckingham Palace! The palace is the official London residence of Her Majesty The Queen and serves as both home and office. Take a quick snap by the gates or hold out for the next Royal Art Gallery exhibition, opened by the Queen herself in 2002!

Info & Pricing

  • Location St James Park. London. Greater London. SW1A 1AA
  • Price FREE
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Saatchi Gallery

Eye catching and vibrant, the Saatchi Gallery in Chelsea is perfect for kids and parents who love art. On Sundays, there are fun and informative Family Art Workshops which aim to encourage children to explore, develop and have confidence in their creative ideas in relation to art they have seen in the gallery. During holidays and half-terms there are always Free Family Days with messy workshops and activities for all ages too – what’s not to love about a messy workshop?

Info & Pricing

  • Location Duke of York's HQ. Kings Road. Chelsea. Greater London. SW3 4SQ
  • Price FREE
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Imperial War Museum

For an educational & fun day out with the kids, why not take a step back in time and uncover the rich history behind World War I and World War II at the Imperial War Museum! Browse the largest collection in the world of Victoria Crosses in the museum’s free Stamper trail, or check out the colossal Harrier jet and Spitfire aircraft, plus a real T-34 tank! Your little historians will love this one, with so many more free activities to choose from.

Info & Pricing

  • Location IWM London. Lambeth Road. London. Greater London. SE1 6HZ
  • Price FREE but make sure you book in advance!
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Grant Museum of Zoology

Showcasing the weird and wonderful nature of an old fashioned science museum, you will find Dodo bones, Anaconda skeletons, The Brain Skeleton and more! For science lovers and those who are intrigued by the curious world around them, there is lots to explore at the Grant Museum of Zoology, such as the 14000 different specimens of insects, which have been preserved in a variety of interesting ways. The kids will always remember this day out, as it is a trip out of the ordinary!

Info & Pricing

  • Location 21 University Street. Bloomsbury. London. Greater London. WC1E 6DE
  • Price FREE
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Fun on the Farm

Vauxhall City Farm 

If you are tired of walking the busy streets of London and want to touch back down with the calming natural world, visit Vauxhall City Farm! Located in Central London, you will avoid the hustle and bustle of city life and find comfort in some friendly furry friends like Stinker the skunk, Shadow the bunny rabbit and Edward the pig! There are horses to pet too and nature inspired arts and crafts workshops that the little ones can get involved with. Admission to the farm is free but if you want to go horse riding prices range from £25 – £30.

Info & Pricing

  • Location 165 Tyers Street
  • London
  • Greater London
  • SE11 5HS.
  • Price FREE
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Spitalfields City Farm

Experience some farmyard fun in Spitalfields City Farm! Nestled in a green patch of the city, your kids can burn off some of their wild energy running around this great open space as well as the farm’s epic Treehouse. Meet all your favourite farm animals too such as sheep, pigs and donkeys! Your kids also have the opportunity to learn and take part in daily animal care. So what do you say mum & dad, can you lend a hand on the farm?

Info & Pricing

  • Location Buxton Street. London. Greater London. E1 5AR.
  • Price FREE
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Kentish Town City Farm 

Want to escape the loud traffic, fast-walkers and expensive shops? Head to the Kentish Town City Farm! Meet over 50 adorable  animals including goats, sheep, horses, ducks, chicken, geese, a pig and a cow! At the heart of its community, Kentish Town City Farm offers lots of family fun and the chance to watch it’s animals graze in their pastures. There are also farm tours and an educational programme, which tells you all about the importance of living things. Grab those wellies, we’re off to the farm!

Info & Pricing

  • Location 1 Cressfield Close. Grafton Road. Kentish Town. Greater London. NW5 4BN.
  • Price FREE
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Surrey Docks Farm

Enjoy a slice of rural life at Surrey Docks Farm! This interactive, free to enter and educational farm offers the magical experience of meeting animals in an open farmyard. Forge friendships with pigs, sheep, goats, cows, geese, ducks, turkeys and chickens, as they roam freely around the yard. Children are also allowed to handle, stroke and play with the ferrets, rabbits and guinea pigs that are pets of the farm. This is an especially exciting attraction to visit with younger children or children who have never been on a farm before.

Info & Pricing

  • Location Rotherhithe Street. London. Greater London. SE16 5ET
  • Price FREE
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Mudchute Park and Farm

Ever petted a llama? At Mudchute Park and Farm you can meet, pet and play with SO MANY ANIMALS – 100 animals, to be exact! Set in over 32 acres of countryside, with the city’s breathtaking skyline as its backdrop, it has been called one of the biggest inner city farms in Europe! Meet cattle, sheep, pigs, coats, donkeys, llamas, chickens, ducks, geese and an aviary! Venture into the Pet Corner where you can handle rabbits, guinea pigs and ferrets! However, for some bigger-animal-loving, it comes at an extra cost which you can pre-book and pay with on their website.

Info & Pricing

  • Location Pier Street. Isle of Dogs. Greater London. E14 3HP
  • Price FREE
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Perfect Parks & Glorious Gardens

Hyde Park

Perhaps one of London’s most popular and well known parks, Hyde park is a fine landscape covering 350 acres of land! That’s plenty of room to hitch up a picnic blanket for midday feast, or it can be the perfect sprinting track to race the kids! This is a great place to visit in the Summer, especially with the 110 yard Serpentine Lido & child’s pool, and Princess Diana’s memorial fountain if you are looking to cool off. Did you know Hyde Park also has a specialist horse riding arena, with two designated routes for horse riding? Go on, play a game of horse-spotting while you have the ultimate chill-sesh on the grass.

Info & Pricing

  • Location London. Greater London. W2 2UH. England
  • Price FREE
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The Regents Park and Primrose Hill

Regents Park is a beautiful Royal Park in the city, as well as having the most phenomenal views of London at the top of Primrose Hill! The kids will have field-day at the Marylebone Green Playground! It is a wonderland of climbing frames, seesaws, and sand pits divided into 3 themed zones: The Traditional Zone, The Art Zone, and the Natural Zone! There is an open air theatre too, a boating lake with pedalos, a children’s lake open at the weekends, and more! The park’s beauty and wonderland-nature is also owed to its flourishing and magnificent rose garden, with over 12,000 roses planted in Queen Mary’s Garden, making it London’s largest collection!

Info & Pricing

  • Location Regents Park. Greater London. NW1 4NR
  • Price FREE
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Barnard Park Adventure Playground

Known for it’s super-fun and sporty reputation, the Barnard Park Adventure Playground ensures a day of adventure and the occasional spraying of water… Yep you’ll want to pack some activewear and maybe even some swimwear too! There is also a full size redgra surfaced football and basketball pitch, for the kids who LOVE ball games! It’s not just sports on offer, with arts & crafts activities and an amphitheater too, this 9 acre park is an exceptional place to take the kids on a free day out, they’ll be busy from the AM to the PM!

Info & Pricing

  • Location Copenhagen Street. Islington. Greater London. N1 0ER
  • Price FREE - But you MUST register your children online before attending the park
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Crystal Palace Park Dinosaurs

This unique attraction is home to 30 full-scale, three-dimensional model dinosaurs built by Benjamin Waterhouse Hawkins in around 1854. It’s the first set of this kind that was ever attempted anywhere in the world and is now resident at Crystal Palace, giving guests a more historical and accurate depiction of this long-forgotten time… Visit Crystal Palace Park Dinosaurs today!

Info & Pricing

  • Location Thicket Road. Bromley. Greater London. SE19 2GA
  • Price FREE
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Princess Diana Memorial Playground

Suitable for children up to the age of 12, The Princess Diana Memorial Playground inspires creativity and imagination in all children! Will you climb aboard a pirate ship, and journey into the realms of your own make-believe-world…? The pirate ship has its own beach to add to that ever special sense of adventure! The park also has a sensory trail with teepees, which are designed for less able and able-bodied children to play together, sharing in discovery and growing in confidence. With plenty of seating dotted around for the parents too, you can relax while your kids blow off some imaginative steam.

Info & Pricing

  • Location Kensington Gardens. Kensington. Greater London. W2 2UH.
  • Price FREE
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Epic Transport & Sightseeing

Sightsee on a London Bus

Why not plunge into the lively city itself and grab exploration by its collar… How is the best way to do that? I hear you ask. Climb aboard the big red, quintessentially British, London bus! Kids under 11 travel FREE on the iconic bus’, but mum & dad you will have to pay. Make sure to use either a debit/credit card or a rail card as physical money is no longer accepted! Play a good-old game of eye-spy on the ultimate sight-seeing-mobile. For guided tours, they will cost a little bit extra which you can book with Golden Tours! For a family of 2 adults & 2 children it will cost £67.00 to explore the most iconic sights in London for 90 minutes.

Info & Pricing

  • Location No specific location
  • Price FREE! If you want to book the Golden Tours it costs £67.00 for a family of 2 adults and 2 children.
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Emirates Air Line Cable Car

Feel like a VIP as you travel in the UK’s first and only urban cable car, with the Emirates Air Line! Experience London with 360 views at the highest observation point, with magnificent views directly above the Thames, the O2, Greenwich, and the Queen Elizabeth Olympic Park! Follow your in-flight guide and see who spot London’s most famous landmarks first. Save your legs and see the whole of London in these 10 minutes. This inexpensive flight can even be the place to pick out where you want to explore in London next as you pick out it’s most breath-taking and beautiful buildings.

Info & Pricing

  • Location Excel. Royal Docks. Greenwich. Greater London. E16 1DR
  • Price Under 5’s go FREE
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Quirky Places To Visit For Free

Jeppe Hein Appearing Rooms, Southbank

Take a stroll down Southbank and experience the beating heart of London’s vibrant cultural life. In Southbank you will find many cool shops, restaurants, cafes and the Jeppe Hein Appearing Rooms!

The Jeppe Hein Appearing Rooms is a great free attraction that combines sculpture, architecture and technology! This immersive bit of artwork is perfect for families to enjoy together, with rising water falls too that you can run through, you’ll want to take the kids and extra change of clothes or some swim gear! Open in the Summertime it’s the ideal place to cool off.

Info & Pricing

  • Location Southbank Centre. Belvedere Road. South Bank. Greater London. SE1 8XX.
  • Price FREE
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London Mithraeum

Travel 2000 years back in time to the age when the temple to the god Mithras was built by the Romans, in the London Mithraeum. There are over 600 artefacts for you to explore and learn about the past! Watch history come to life in the small presentations of Roman soldiers, which will have your little explorers in awe! Take a bite out of history with this interactive, fun and FREE museum. Psst, Make sure to pre-book slots online too!

Info & Pricing

  • Location 12 Walbrook. London. Greater London. EC4N 8AA
  • Price FREE
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Queen Elizabeth Olympic Park

Previously home to the London 2012 Games, the Queen Elizabeth Olympic Park is now used for sporting fun among families! With an awesome slide from top to bottom of the 80m Orbit icon and The Tumbling Bay playground, which includes rock pools, sand pits, tall tree-houses, wobbly bridges, slides, and swings! Not to forget the biggest Urban Beach in the UK that arrives at the park every Summer! There is badminton, a velo park and an ‘art in the park’ activity, alongside many more fun things to do with the kids!

Info & Pricing

  • Location London. Greater London. E20 2ST
  • Price FREE
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Regents Canal

Fancy a pleasant stroll down Regents Canal? Each boathouse has its own personal charm, so why not play a game and pick a favourite for each member of the family. This peaceful 2 hour stretch of water is the perfect answer to some quiet time with the kids. You can always hop on a boat tour too if you fancy it!

Info & Pricing

  • Location 42 Blomfield Road. London. Greater London. W9 2PF
  • Price FREE
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Sky Garden 

Climb the highest heights for the best views in London’s magnificent Sky Garden! Perched 525 ft in the air, on the 35th floor of the 6th highest building in the City of London, the Sky Garden takes the crown for the highest public garden in the capital. Up there you’ll find observation decks and an open air terrace, offering breathtaking views of London. Make sure you’ve got plenty of free memory on your camera!

Info & Pricing

  • Location 20 Fenchurch Street. London. Greater London. EC3M 8AF
  • Price FREE
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Abbey Road Studio

CALLING ALL MUSIC LOVERS & BEATLES FANS! Take a free trip to the iconic Abbey Road Studio where the Beatles famously recorded their greatest hits! Since this is a working recording studio, you can only see the building from the outside, so get your camera’s ready for a picture in front of the glitzy building!

Did you know the Abbey Road street camera records you on the zebra crossing? Give the camera a wave or strike a pose and you could see yourself on the Abbey Road Studios website, and if you really work the camera you could appear in the Hall of Fame! Take a sharpie with you and add to the much loved graffiti / street art wall on the side of the studio.

Info & Pricing

  • Location 3 Abbey Road. St. John's Wood. London. Greater London
  • Price FREE
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Almost Free / Cheap Places

Battersea Park Code-breaking Walk 

While this activity is not free, 99p is definitely not a stretch too far to fund a few hours of fun that all the family can get involved with. In the Battersea Park Code-breaking Walk, you can turn your beautiful stroll into a game!

All you need to do is download the Tramble App on your smartphone and get ready to complete the Battersea Park Codebreaking Walk. 10 questions, 60 minutes – can you answer them all? Your best chance is to work as a team – bring the family along and work together to complete the trail in time.

If you want plenty of exploration and family bonding time in your trip to London, this is the answer to your day-out-on-a-budget prayers!

Info & Pricing

  • Location Battersea Park. London. Greater London. SW11 4NJ
  • Price 99p per walking route download
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Chiswick House & Gardens

This day out is more so free for the kids but the age range of 0 – 17 years is a great saving for your family, especially if your kids vary in ages or big age gaps!

Explore the immaculate 18th century home, Chiswick House and its glorious garden landscape. Unearth the curious history of families that lived in the home through the captivating tales of the house staff… Feel like Lords and Ladies as you roam around the beautiful rooms and long corridors. Follow fun and exciting historical trails and watch the history of the house unfold before your kids eyes! Collect your champion stamp and head over to the house’s quintessential cafe.

Info & Pricing

  • Location Chiswick House. Burlington Lane. London. Greater London. W4 2RP
  • Price kids 0 - 17 years go FREE. Concessions: £5.50. Adults: £8.50.
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Charles Dickens museum

Visit the home of the marvellous and much loved author of the Charles Dickens Museum! You are invited to the home where the nation’s childhood classic, Oliver Twist, was created. Decorated in a Victorian style, the home has preserved its history as well as some possessions Charles Dickens owned! Free Family Activity Days are held during the summer and include a variety of fun-filled craft and hands-on activities such as churning butter, building hot air balloons or making madcap top hats!

Info & Pricing

  • Location 48 Doughty Street. Holburn. London. Greater London. WC1N 2LX
  • Price Under 6’s go FREE. Child 6-16 years: £4.00. Adult: £9.00 Concessions (Students and Seniors): £6.00.
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So, have you found the perfect FREE London hotspots to take the kids? If you are looking for more inspiration and FREE things to do, check out our other blogs! We hope you’ve found the perfect location for your family, may the adventure continue!

 

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