Planning a trip to London? Looking for things to do with kids in London that won’t break the bank?
Then you’ve come to the right place!
As a family of five I know only too well days out can be expensive, but you don’t need to spend a fortune to have a good time.
We regularly travel into London as a family and while a trip to the capital might sound expensive, it needn’t be. Even if you don’t live within driving distance flights to London can be less than you think. And when you get there, there are plenty of cheap and free activities that will keep the whole family entertained, from free museums to Harry Potter’s famous platform 9 ¾ at King’s Cross Station.
10 cheap & free things to do with kids in London
1. The Sensational Butterflies exhibition at the Natural History Museum. Open every summer on the lawn next to the Natural History Museum is a tropical butterfly house where you can see hundreds of live butterflies and moths up close (they even land on you!) Children aged three and under are free and family tickets are under £20.
2. Go to the theatre. You might think the theatre is a pricey day out but think again. Discount London offer huge savings on entertainment and experiences in London including theatre tickets. You can save up to 47% on West End shows including Aladdin, The Lion King and We’re Going On A Bear Hunt.
3. See the Crown Jewels. Hidden away in the Tower of London the Crown Jewels are a dazzling sight to behold whether you’re six or 60. The last time we went the kids rode the moving walkway past the crowns no less than three times! Again, Discount London offer a variety of savings if you book online, from individual tickets to combined experiences like a Tower of London and London Dungeon visit in one.
4. Visit Borough Market. Borough Market is London’s oldest and most famous food and drink market where you’ll find everything from pigs’ heads to gourmet meats and cheeses jostling for space. Next to London Bridge, it’s a real feast for the senses and will open their eyes to where their food really comes from.
5. The Science Museum. Open daily from 10am to 6pm the Science Museum is free (although there is a charge for some of the special exhibitions). Attractions for summer 2018 include a virtual reality space descent with astronaut Tim Peake and a full-size model of the European Space Agency’s first space craft to explore Mercury.
6. Go on an open-top bus tour. We recently did this in Windsor with The Original Tour Windsor and it’s such fun! They also operate in London with The Original Tour London and you can hop-on and hop-off wherever you like, so it’s a great way to see the city. Tickets cost from £13.50 for children and you can even pack a picnic to make an extra saving.
7. Visit the Diana Memorial Fountain in Hyde Park. Built in memory of Diana, Princess of Wales on a hot day this is basically a giant paddling pool. You can dip your feet in the water which ebbs and flows in two directions and there are three bridges you can cross to the heart of the fountain. And best of all its free!
8. Visit platform 9 ¾ at King’s Cross Station. Harry Potter fans can have their photo taken on the platform where Harry’s adventure to Hogwarts began, and there’s also a magical shop designed to look like Ollivander’s wand shop where you’ll find all sorts of Harry Potter related paraphernalia.
9. Watch the Changing the Guard ceremony outside Buckingham Palace. This happens at 10.45am every day when the new guard take over from the old guard. Think pomp, pageantry and drums (oh and men in uniform!)
10. Visit Piccadilly Circus. My older two love watching the illuminated adverts on the big screens and the general hub bub of Piccadilly Circus. Admittedly you need eyes in the back of your head but watch the world go by from a café or coffee shop and you can keep a close eye on them without breaking the bank.
Do you visit London with kids in tow? Do you know of any cheap or free activities? I’d love to know what they are!
This post was written in collaboration with Discount London.