70 Free Issues to Do in London

big ben and parliament in london
07/06/2018 | July sixth 2018

London is among the costliest cities on the planet to go to, sleep, eat, drink, or simply plain reside in. There’s no solution to sugar coat it. London eats into your price range faster than Homer Simpson eats right into a donut. Whereas there are some ways to go to London on a price range , among the finest methods to economize within the metropolis is to make the most of the plethora of free issues to see and do within the metropolis.

While you’re spending a lot on meals, drink, or lodging, each little bit helps and fortunately you’ll be able to spend weeks right here with out ever spending a penny on an attraction. Here’s a record of 58 free issues to do in London:

Go to the Free Museums
All public museums in the UK are free to go to, which is nice as a result of London has over twenty free museums within the metropolis that may offer you infinite days of free exploration and studying!  Here’s a record of the free museums:

  • The Museum of London – This unbelievable museum has an in depth historical past of town of London and an in depth exhibit on the good fireplace of 1666 that destroyed a lot of town. It’s open day by day from 10 am-6 pm.
  • The British Historical past Museum – One of many high museums on the planet, you might spend days visiting this place. Opened within the 18th century, this museum is residence to over Eight million works, together with the famed Rosetta Stone. I’ve spent hours and hours right here. Open day by day from 10 am-5:30 pm (8:30 pm on Fridays).
  • The Pure Historical past Museum – There are over 80 million objects on this complete museum, together with specimens collected by Charles Darwin. It’s a very good museum for youths too. Open day by day from 10am-5:30pm.
  • The Science Museum – Based in 1857, you’ll discover some neat interactive galleries on aviation, house exploration, and funky sciency stuff basically. It’s enjoyable museum to geek out in. Open day by day from 10am-6pm.
  • The Nationwide Gallery –  This artwork museum was based in 1824 and homes a set of over 2,300 work relationship from the mid-13th century to round 1900. There are works by Johannes Vermeer, Sandro Botticelli, Rembrandt, and Michelangelo. Open day by day from 10am-6pm.
  • The Tate Trendy – Housed in a former energy plant, I believe this is among the greatest artwork museums within the metropolis and is residence to plenty of up to date and fashionable artwork. It’s an attractive house and is full of some actually attention-grabbing items. Open day by day from 10am to 6pm (10pm on Friday and Saturday).
  • The Victoria and Albert Museum – Named after Queen Victoria and Prince Albert, this museums is residence to over 2,000 artistic endeavors masking over 3,000 years of human historical past. Open day by day from 10am-5:45pm (10pm on Fridays).
  • The Imperial Battle Museum – This museum covers British conflicts from WWI to the current. For these actually , additionally they have an archive right here the place you’ll be able to learn actual paperwork from varied wars. Open day by day from 10am-6pm.
  • The Horniman Museum and Gardens – This museum has a complete assortment of historic musical devices in addition to some spectacular pure historical past shows. It additionally has an enormous backyard you’ll be able to discover as properly. Open day by day from 10am-5:30pm (Backyard is open 7:15am to sundown Monday to Saturday and 8am to sundown on Sundays)
  • The Nationwide Maritime Museum – This is among the largest maritime museums on the planet, with over 2 million objects of their assortment together with historical maps, ship fashions, and manuscripts. Open day by day from 10am-5pm.
  • The V&A Museum of Childhood – It is a department of the Victoria and Albert museum, with a deal with artwork and crafts made for (and by) youngsters. Open day by day from 10am-5:45pm
  • The Sir John Soane’s Museum – This small museum is positioned within the former residence of Sir John Soane, a neo-classical architect. It’s residence to lots of his drawings and fashions making it a noteworthy cease for anybody all for structure. Open Wednesday to Sunday from 10am-5pm
  • The Guildhall Artwork Gallery and Roman Amphitheatre – This gallery is residence to the artwork assortment of town of London. It was inbuilt 1999 to interchange an earlier constructing destroyed within the Blitz. There are normally just a few hundred items on show at any given time. Open day by day from 10am-5pm (12pm to 4pm on Sundays)
  • The Wallace Assortment – This artwork assortment accommodates items from the 15th to 19th centuries, unfold out over 30 separate galleries. You’ll discover work, armor, furnishings, ornamental artwork, and the whole lot in between right here. Open day by day from 10am-5pm.
  • The Nationwide Portrait Gallery – This was the very first portrait gallery on the planet when it opened in 1856, and to at the present time continues to be one of many largest — there are virtually 200,000 portraits right here! Open day by day from 10am-5pm (10am-8pm on Thursday and Friday).
  • The Tate Britain – To not be confused to with the Tate Trendy, the Tate Britain is a beautiful museum residence to an expansive assortment of British art work from the 16th century to the current. It’s not as huge because the Trendy, however it arguably has extra well-known artistic endeavors, together with works by Francis Bacon, Richard Dadd, and William Blake. Open day by day from 10am-6pm.
  • The Royal Air Drive Museum – Opened in 1972, this museum is unfold out over just a few completely different airplane hangars. There are dozens of plane right here, with shows masking the historical past of aviation and the Royal Air Drive’s function in Britain’s historical past. Open day by day from 10am-5pm.
  • The Wellcome Assortment – It is a quirky museum and library with all kinds of bizarre shows, masking biology, medication, science, and artwork. Open Tu-Sa (10am-6pm; 10am-10pm on Thursdays), 11am-6pm Sa, M (closed).
  • The British Library – Established within the 1970’s, that is usually thought of to be the biggest nationwide library on the planet, with a catalog of over 200 million objects. You might spend a lifetime right here and never even see each ebook, not to mention learn all of them! Open M-Th (9:30am-8pm), Fr (9:30am-6pm), Sa (9:30am-5pm), Su (11am-5pm).
  • The Whitechapel Gallery – This gallery is residence to up to date artistic endeavors, and infrequently shows short-term retrospective displays. Opened in 1901, it was additionally one of many first publicly funded galleries in London. Open Tu-Su (11am-6pm; 11am-9pm on Thursdays).
  • The Nationwide Military Museum – This museum focuses on the experiences of the British soldier, from the English civil conflict to the current day. Established within the 1960’s, it not too long ago went via a large renovation and re-opened in 2017 with the works now offered throughout 5 galleries. Open day by day from 10am-5:30pm (open till 8pm on the primary Wednesday of each month).
  • The Serpentine Galleries – Situated in Kensington Gardens in Hyde Park, these two galleries had been established in 1970 and are residence to fashionable and up to date artwork. Open day by day from 10am-6pm.

Stroll via the London markets – On a regular basis is market day in London (although plenty of them occur simply on Sunday) and there are numerous markets you’ll be able to wander via, individuals watch, or window store in. Listed below are my favourite London markets to go to:

  • Camden Market – This place is residence to 1,000+ retailers, stalls, cafes, eating places, bars, buskers, and the whole lot in between. It’s in all probability probably the most well-known markets within the metropolis and nice for quirky issues. Open day by day from 8am-6pm.
  • Portobello Market – That is the world’s largest vintage market with over 1,000 sellers providing each form of vintage conceivable. Saturday has the busiest market exercise and essentially the most streetside distributors.
  • Brick Lane Market – This market is residence to all kinds of odds and ends from antiques to books to outdated electronics. Moreover, you’ll discover a ton of meals distributors lining the road. Whereas the retailers that line the road are open every single day, Sunday is the primary market day when the road fills with sellers and meals distributors and other people searching the market.
  • Borough Market – This market dates again to the 1100’s, although the present incarnation dates again to 1851. You’ll discover all kinds of eating places, meals distributors, and locations to purchase your groceries. It’s my favourite meals market within the metropolis. Open W-Th (10am-5pm), F (10am-6pm), and Sa (8am-5pm).
  • Columbia Highway Flower Market – This market options principally flowers and different gardening objects.Not a lot for the traveler, however it’s enjoyable to have a look at and other people watch. Open on Sundays from 8am-3pm.
  • Covent Backyard Market –  Opened within the 1830’s, that is one other good market to seize a chunk to eat at in addition to store at a few of the artisan craft stalls right here. Open Monday to Saturday from 8am-7pm and Sunday 11am-5pm
  • Greenwhich Market – This indoor market dates again to the 18th century and is residence to all kinds of things, from jewellery to antiques to crafts to meals. Open day by day from 10am-5:30pm.
  • Previous Spitalfield Market – This place hosts a classic market each Thursday and occasional vinyl markets on Fridays. Open M-F (10am-5pm), Sa (11am-5pm), and Su 9am-5pm.
  • Maltby Road Market – This market opened in 2010 and is a bustling place the place you will discover connoisseur road meals and recent produce, in addition to just a few bars the place you’ll be able to seize a refreshing pint. Open Saturdays 9am-4pm and Sundays 11am-4pm.
  • Southbank Heart – This market is residence to common meals and ebook markets. Open day by day from 10am-11pm.
  • Flea at Flat Iron Sq. – This weekend classic market options the eclectic clothes, loads of information, books, crafts, and furnishings. Open Saturday 11am-6pm and Sunday 10am-5pm.

See the altering of the guard – Watch the altering of the guard at Buckingham Palace at 11:30am in addition to the horse guards at Whitehall at 11:00am.

Stroll across the metropolis – London is a large metropolis and has many distinctive and attention-grabbing neighborhoods.For a extra organized self-guided tour, Go to London has a free app that allows you to create customized maps and itineraries. Detour is one other app that gives downloadable audio excursions with primarily based round completely different themes (the Detour app is free, however the excursions will price cash to obtain). StrollOn is one other app that allows you to have customized strolling excursions too.

Lounge within the Parks – London has some stunning parks, and when the solar comes out (which isn’t too typically), Londoners flock exterior. With vast spacious parks full of flowers, walkways, ponds, geese, geese, and superbly manicured lawns, the parks within the metropolis are the place to be! A few of the greatest parks are:

  • St. James’s Park – Protecting over 23 hectares, it’s residence to a wide range of paths and trails, a lake, and loads of birds (together with pelicans!).
  • Inexperienced Park – This park was first established within the 1500’s, although in contrast to virtually each different park within the metropolis it doesn’t have any buildings or lakes in it.
  • Regent’s Park – This large park is among the Royal Parks of London. Established in 1811, it’s additionally residence to the London Zoo and Regent’s College.
  • Kensington Gardens – One other Royal Backyard of London, this once-private backyard is residence to the Serpentine Galleries in addition to Kensington Palace.
  • Hyde Park – That is maybe essentially the most well-known park in London. Initially the personal searching grounds of Henry VII, it opened to the general public is 1637 is is a good place to walk, picnic, or catch one of many many occasions which are hosted right here all year long.
  • Holland Park – This park has an eclectic mixture of sights, from Japanese gardens to an enormous chess set to the ruins of the Holland Home that was bombed in WWII.
  • Battersea Park – This park was a very fashionable space for dueling. These days it’s used for operating, enjoying sports activities, having picnics, and music performances.

Go to Westminster Abbey – Westminster prices 20 GBP to go to however you can get into Westminster without cost throughout hours of worship. If you wish to go to and never pay the doorway charge, go for one of many providers and also you’ll get in without cost.

Take a free strolling tour – London is a megacity full of a mega quantity of strolling excursions. From free excursions to specialty excursions to paid excursions to literary excursions to quirky tea excursions, London has all of it – together with plenty of free excursions. Here’s a record of my favourite free strolling tour corporations:

  • Free Excursions by Foot – I’ve taken this firm’s NYC excursions so once I came upon that they had a London model I used to be thrilled to take a pair extra. The excursions are simply pretty much as good as they’re in NYC, masking the main highlights, properly written, offered, and really insightful. A few of their actually good excursions are: Westminster tour, Harry Potter Strolling Tour, Soho tour, Ghost tour, and road artwork tour. Most walks final two to 2 and half hours.
  • Free London Strolling Excursions – This tiny firm presents free walks from just a few older British chaps which have the air of college professor. They inform foolish jokes however are tremendous information about essentially the most arcane info of London historical past. They have an inclination to cowl plenty of floor – bodily and factually – so it’s a whirlwind! Make sure you take a look at their Hearth, Pestilence and Plague and Debauched London excursions. Excursions final two hours.
  • Strawberry Excursions – This tour firm is a extra “hip” tour firm for younger vacationers. The guides and the attendees are youthful. They run quite a few free excursions, specialty excursions, and paid pub crawls (that may clarify the younger viewers). You’ll see them marketed rather a lot. Whereas I didn’t love their pub crawl, their Harry Potter tour, meals tour, and London in a Day tour had been enjoyable and informative.
  • New Europe Strolling Excursions – This free strolling tour firm has strolling excursions throughout Europe. They’re form of the “backpacker” tour as most hostels all the time promote them and also you see principally younger vacationers on their excursions. They’re good for a big historic overview of town.

Attend a Couchsurfing meet up and meet some locals – Couchsurfing is a platform that connects locals and vacationers. You may stick with native hosts without cost however, what I really like concerning the platform, are the variety of meet-ups and occasions you’ll be able to attend. It is a nice solution to meet individuals, discover quirky stuff, and get to actually know town. For those who obtain the app, you’ll be able to even see who’s close by within the metropolis and free to hang around! For suggestions and tips on tips on how to succeed on Couchsurfing, you’ll be able to take a look at this weblog publish.

Go to some East London road artwork – Shoreditch, aspect streets round Brick Lane, Middlesex, and Sclater streets all the time are inclined to have some actually attention-grabbing road artwork value exploring.

Go to a Church – London is filled with free church buildings which you can go to. Most aren’t terribly outdated as they had been bombed out throughout the conflict however many do date again to the 1600s! Listed below are a few of the greatest:

  • Westminster Abbey – See above!
  • St Paul’s Cathedral – This Anglican cathedral is residence to the Bishop of London and is among the iconic websites of town. The funeral providers of many well-known individuals have been held right here, together with Admiral Nelson, the Duke of Wellington, Sir Winston Churchill, and Margaret Thatcher.
  • Southwark Cathedral – One other Anglican cathedral, Southwark Cathedral was constructed within the 19th century from an present church, although that individual website has been utilized by Christians for worship for over 1,000 years.
  • Temple Church – This church was constructed within the 1100’s by the Knight’s Templar and is noteworthy for its peculiar spherical form. It was closely broken in WWII, although it was restored afterward.
  • St Mary-le-Bow – This church was rebuilt after WWII, having additionally beforehand been rebuilt after the Nice Hearth of 1666. Custom says that the one true Cockneys are those that are born inside earshot of St Mary’s bells.
  • St Olave Hart Road – This is among the smaller church buildings within the metropolis, and one of many few that survived the Nice Hearth of 1666. The current constructing dates from across the 15th century, although it too was closely broken in WWII.
  • St Magnus the Martyr – This Baroque church was one of many first to go up in flames throughout the Nice Hearth, finally being rebuilt by architect Christoper Wren (who additionally designed St Paul’s). Like most of London, it was closely broken throughout the Blitz and has since been restored.
  • St Bride’s – That is one other church designed by Christopher Wren, who spent 7 years constructing it. It too was destroyed throughout the Blitz and has since been rebuilt.

Take the London wall stroll – This stroll takes you from the Tower of London round what’s left of the traditional Roman wall that surrounded Roman London. You may stroll alongside the wall, learn some historic panels, and even obtain a booklet concerning the route.

Go to the Harry Potter platform – Harry Potter took his practice to Hogwarts from platform 9 3/4ths at London’s Pancreas Station. Head right here, get your image taken with a baggage cart wanting prefer it’s going via the wall and reside out your Harry Potter goals.

Crossbones Cemetery – This unconsecrated cemetery is devoted to the prostitutes of London and is a hauntingly stunning cemetery with plaques, music, and details about its historical past and that of the neighborhood. It closed in 1853 with the stays of an estimated 15,000 paupers, greater than half of them youngsters, who lived, labored within the space. (Fascinating Reality: A legislation was proposed by a virulent anti-prostitution member of Parliament dictating that nothing ought to ever be constructed on the world. A number of years again, they tried to place a railway on the land and the neighborhood used the legislation to stop it from being constructed.)

Study some stuff – Wish to be taught some stuff? Attend a free lecture at a few of the greatest universities on the planet without cost! The next faculties provide free lectures:

  • London College of Economics – Upcoming lectures might be posted on the web site (together with dates, occasions, and areas.) You may as well obtain earlier lectures to look at or hearken to.
  • Gresham School – Lectures are normally held from 6pm-7pm on the Museum of London. Doorways open round 30 minutes earlier than the lecture, and seats are on a primary come, first served foundation.
  • UCL Lunch Hour Lectures – This lecture sequence is normally held from 1:10pm-1:55pm with seating on a primary come, first served foundation. Verify the web site for matters and areas.
  • Morley School Penny Lectures – These lectures technically price 1p to attend, however that’s virtually free! Verify the web site for dates, matters, and areas!

See a free comedy present – Chortle your butt off at certainly one of these 4 locations that provide free comedy reveals:

Get your groove on – Hearken to see some free music at a few of these locations:

  • Royal Academy of Music – The RAM has common free scholar performances in addition to occasional free ticketed occasions. Verify their calendar for dates and areas.
  • Daylight Music on the Union Chapel – Pay-What-You-Can performances from 12pm-2pm each Saturday (test their web site for particular efficiency particulars).
  • Southbank Centre – Free lectures, poetry readings, musical occasions, and extra! Verify their calendar for up-to-date data and areas.
  • “Ain’t Nothing However…” Blues Bar – They host common free blues jams in addition to ticketed blues live shows.

****With so many free issues to see and do in London, you’ll be capable of fill your days and nights of your go to with out ever having to spend a pence! Town could also be costly however with some many free issues to do, you’ll be capable of make up all these pints by not spending any cash throughout your day. There’s no purpose to spend some huge cash when there’s a lot to do right here without cost.

E book Your Journey to London: Logistical Suggestions and Methods

E book Your Flight
Discover a low cost flight to London through the use of Skyscanner or Momondo. They’re my two favourite search engines like google and yahoo. Begin with Momondo.

E book Your Lodging
You may ebook your hostel in London with Hostelworld. If you wish to keep elsewhere, use Reserving.com as they constantly return the most cost effective charges. (Right here’s the proof.)

Don’t Overlook Journey Insurance coverage
Journey insurance coverage will defend you in opposition to sickness, damage, theft, and cancellations. I by no means ever go on a visit with out it. I’ve been utilizing World Nomads for ten years. You need to too.

Want Some Gear?
Take a look at our useful resource web page for one of the best corporations to make use of!

Need Extra Info on London?
Make sure you go to my sturdy information to London for much more planning suggestions!

For extra data, go to my web page on backpacking Europe or my information to England.

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