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13 free things to do in London!

Visiting London definitely isn’t cheap, but if you’re a bit clever you won’t have to get rid of your prized organs just yet! As it turns out there’s a lot of free stuff to do in this world-famous city. If you combine that with a cheap hotel room and cheap street food your trip doesn’t have to be expensive at all. Here are my tips for 13 free things in London!

Free walking tours

One of my favorite tips for every city: free walking tours. It’s still expected that you tip the guide with a few pounds, but even then it’s an extremely cheap tour. You’ve got tours with all sorts of themes, in all sorts of neighborhoods and by all sorts of organisations. In East London you even have a free art tour which I would love to try out.

Sky Garden

Want a view of London’s skyline? For free? Yes, please! I wrote a whole post (in Dutch) about it, but Sky Garden is where it’s happening. Be sure to make your reservations though!

 

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 Museums

London is packed with museums, and the best news? Almost all of them are for free! The free ones include the Museum of London (highly recommended!), Victoria & Albert (a great museum focused on art and design), the British Museum, the Imperial War Museum, the Natural History Museum, Horniman and the Geffrye Museum. Enough to keep you going for weeks!

 Performances in Covent Garden

Sometimes nothing beats getting lost while wandering through an unknown city, peeking at the windows of shops you don’t know, and suddenly hearing the sounds of a classical concert softly in the distance. Classical music ensembles regularly perform in Covent Garden. Only classical instruments are allowed in this building, which makes the whole thing even more romantic.

Have a picnic in one of the parks

London has tons of parks, and nothing beats grabbing some picnic food on a sunny day and settle in with the rest of the locals (see below). Some of the many parks you can choose from are Hyde Park, Regents Park, Battersea Park, St James Park or Hampstead Heath. There’s also some smaller parks in Soho and close to Angel.

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Food markets

Another thing you can find all over London (I’m not complaining) is markets – especially food markets. Borough Market is probably the most famous one, but I personally recommend Maltby Street Market. I also love the hustle and bustle of the food markets on Brick Lane during the weekends.

Comic Monday at Theatre Royal Stratford East

If you’re a fan of English stand-up comedy, you really have to pay a visit to the Theatre Royal Stratford East on Monday nights, as they have free stand-up comedy on those nights. I haven’t been yet so I can’t tell you how good it is, but I love English humor!
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Columbia Road Flower Market

Next to food markets there’s a lot of other markets that are great to get a good impression of the ‘real’ London. The Sunday-only Columbia Road Flower Market is the place to be for some nice flowers. Make sure to get there early though: the nicest flower bouquets sell out quickly!

Vintage at Bermondsey Square

For all vintage lovers: the vintage market at Bermondsey Square is probably the most famous one of London. They sell all sorts of things and if I ever decide to move to London, I’ll make sure to get some gems for my house there.

Portobello Road Market

Another familiar one: the market at Portobello Road. This one is in Notting Hill, which is a beautiful area to explore. Anything you can think of: they sell it here. Clothes, veggies, fruit, underwear… you name it.
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 Walking through Londen

One of the reasons I’ll never get tired of London is because it’s such a diverse city. It’s got so many different neighborhoods with ever-changing looks… I could come back 20 times and would still feel like I haven’t seen everything! My favorite way of exploring the city is by walking around. Buzzfeed wrote a great article about 16 breathtaking walks to take in London.

Movies at The Scoop

In late summer there’s free open air cinema nights at The Scoop. A few days a week they show movies on big screens on a first come, first serve basis. The amphitheater fits up to a 1000 people. Keep your eyes peeled for the latest schedule!
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 Brick Lane

This might be my favorite street in all of London. This creative hotspot is packed with the cutest shops and cafes (especially in the northern part) and has a lot of popup shops and cafes over the weekends. In the little alleys you’ll find awesome graffiti – and make sure to walk along to Shoredith for even more street art and cool concepts!

What is your favorite free activity in London?

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2 comments

  1. Rachel

    I love London! Can’t wait to plan another trip back next year!

    Reply

  2. Caribephoto

    The most expensive will be my ticket!! From Mexico! :(

    Reply

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