Experience 62 free things to do in London for Free: Discover the city without breaking the bank  (2023)

There are so many fascinating and fun things to do and see in London, but the only problem is that it always costs a pretty shilling to check out all these wonderful and historic attractions. London is definitely one of those cities to experience with many unique and one-of-a-kind places to visit, but most do charge exorbitant fees to enter.

What if I told you that you can still have a great time visiting London on the cheap and with lots of free things to do and see all around the city without spending a ton of money?  Well then, check out these suggestions on free things to do in London below and hopefully you can plan your vacation now and not worry about all the money you’re going to spend on this trip.

Ranging from historic and cultural sites, free museum days to explore these amazing institutions, exploring the cool neighborhoods of the city and trying out some delicious food venues and the international food flavors around town, you’ll be amazed by all the things that you can do for free or cheap here and stay on budget when you visit this very expensive city.

Free London FAQ

What’s the best free thing to do in London?

 There’s to many choices of actual free things to do in London, but if you’re not too sure check out the best of our free guide below. But, if you need a guide to also help, there’s free walking tours that you can actually sign up to explore the city that’s fun and free (well maybe tip the guides if you like the tour)

No they are not all free, but the major museums and some smaller institutions are very and you’ll get a chance to see amazing art, artifacts and collections that are world class and only to be found here in London.

Bookmark this post on all these fantastic ideas on what to do on the cheap in town below. So, in no particular order starting with the free museums of London, the outdoor markets, walking tours around the city and so many other fun things to explore and do around the city below.

 Victoria & Albert Museum free in London

Check out these free London museums

Many of London’s Museums are absolutely free and a great way to spend some time enjoying these spectacular and some intimate and more  focused collections. Check out all these free museums that you can visit in London below, the good thing is that there’s so much to choose from and they are all free.

Each museum is linked so you can click on them directly and visit each museum virtually

Free visits to Victoria & Albert Museum

1. The British Museum

2.  The Museum of London

3. The Natural History Museum

4. The Victoria and Albert Museum

5. The Queens House in Greenwhich

6. The Design Museum

7. Science Museum

8. Imperial War Museum

9. Tate Museums

10. The Chocolate Museum

11. National Portrait Gallery

Victoria & Albert Museum free in London

Here’s all the top 11 free museums to visit in London and then some more that are free on certain days out of the month

Borough market, London

Borough market, London

Visit London’s free public markets

London offers so many fantastic public markets and some housed in fabulous buildings and repurposed structures that are popular places to shop, gather, dine and just hang out. Here are some of the more well-known and cool public markets to explore in London

12. Here’s a fun visit of the Borrough market below

London flea markets and free venues

13. Brick Lane Market – Shops and restaurants open daily but the main market is typically held on Sundays.

14. Portobello Road Market – a popular market for antiques, unusual finds and collectables

15. Borough Market – Located in the South Bank on the other end of the London bridge, this 1000 year old market is still fun and trendy to hang out.

16. Columbia Road Flower Market – if you’re into beautiful flowers and shopping, check out this popular Sunday market along with vintage shops, delis and of course garden stores.

17. Camden Market – this popular market opened since 1974 sells fabulous street foods, creative brands and artisanal crafts and one of a kind shops.

18. Old Spitafields Market – located in a re-purposed train station, this colorful complex of shops is open daily with independent brands, fun events and really cool bars and restaurants.

19. Brixton Village Market – located on Station Road offers and international foods from around the world, restaurants and shops

20. LeadenHall Market – set in a stunning 14th century classic building with boutique stores and galleries, restaurants, wine bars and unique vendors to worth visiting.

Check out these top 10 food markets around London below

Walking tours around London

Want to do a free walking tour of London?

You definitely can do a lot of walking around the streets of London, but what a better way to do it than with a local guide or a DIY guide from the area that can spout of fun historic details to off the wall tidbits of info that you’ll only get from an insider. Check out these various walking tours that are really free (tips are welcomed for the guides) for those wanting to save a dime.

21. Free London walking tours by locals

22. Strawberry’s Free walking tours of London

23. Sandemans Free London Walking tours

24. DIY guide of the Regents Canal

25. DIY London loop walk

Check out this free walking tour experience virtually

Southbank, London Views from the Tate Modern

Free views over London

Typically views from London from above are pricey to check the panoramic views of the city. But if your willing to check these places out and walk out to mostly parks and museums, then they are absolutely free! Check out these fantastic views, one of the fun and best things to do with kids in London for family friendly fun.

26. The Tate Modern – Observation area and café on the top floor has fantastic views of the river and downtown London areas.

27. Parliament Hill – If you get to the top of Parliament Hill on Hampstead Heath then you will get some gorgeous views hopefully on a nice sunny day.

28. Primrose Hill – at the top of the hill areas are fantastic views out to the city and downtown areas.

29. Greenwich Park – Overlooking the Thames river, the views from the top areas of the park into downtown London are fabulous and free to this historic Unesco site.

Check out the best views from above London below

Kensington Buckingham Park

Check out the free parks of London

Well London does have some amazing and beautiful parks around the city to enjoy and just soaking up the well maintained gardens or wilder English gardens. If you want a break from sight-seeing then the gardens are a nice break to just relax from the urban jungle. Here are some of the more popular parks worth visiting with some cool gems or historic treasures tucked inside.

Free parks to explore in London

30. Greenwich Park – is a Unesco World Heritage site with the London Maritime museum and naval academy that are fun to explore and free sites along with the Queen’s House which is also free to visit.

 31. Hyde Park This popular and classic park in central London has beautiful fountains, ponds, rose garden, statues and classic features in this large park that is fun to explore.

32. Regent’s Park – another classic garden in Central London with gorgeous formal gardens, tree-lined pathways and fountains and playgrounds to this designated royal park in London.

33. Hampstead Hill gardens – with a striking pergola that dominates this beautiful garden, if you like slightly old and almost neglected but interesting, then check this place out.

34. Barbican Conservatory – a lush tropical paradise in a glass conservatory in London is a wonderful getaway from the busy city life.

Here’s the top parks to visit around London area

Free parks to explore in London

Explore the cool neighborhoods of London

Seriously, there are soo many cool and fun neighborhoods to explore around London and the outer boroughs. Depending on your interests, hobbies or looking for something unique and different, each borough offers a unique perspective of living in that particular area. Check out these popular London neighborhoods to find another side of London worth discovering.

East London markets and borough

35. Chinatown – located in the Soho district (you can check out two cool areas in one) is where you will find the mom and pop Chinese shops and eateries when you are hankering for something Chinese or even Asian fusion which is abundant in this district.

36. Soho – since it’s next to Chinatown, you’ll find this to be the active nightlife spot, West End Shows and the Gay area along with some other seedy night venues and burlesque shows.

37. Camden Town – Alternative vibe and hangout spots, live music venues and the popular Camden market is worth exploring in the district.

38. Greenwich Borough – once the maritime center of London, you can visit the old city center, maritime museum and naval college, Greenwich park and Royal Observatory and a variety of other interesting attractions in the borough.

39. Hoxton, Shoreditch and Brick Lane – both areas are next to each other and are fun to explore the many international restaurants and bars, outdoor markets and cool design boutiques, trendy galleries and pop-up shops that open regular in these three areas of London’s East End that run into each other.

40. Notting Hill – After the famous movie, Notting Hill is lively with its colorful homes and buildings, cutting edge stores and events, including its popular market.

41. South Bank and Waterloo – another revitalized area of the Southbank with gorgeous views of the Thames and river walk areas, museums and cultural centers along with cool shopping venues the Borough and Leadenhall Market to explore and even modern buildings and sites like the Tate Modern, the London Eye and the colorful Millenium Bridge over the Thames River.

42. South Kensington – the wealthy side of London also has three free museums, two free royal parks to enjoy and a lot of easy and cheap window shopping of international brands at High Street.

43 Princelet Street – This is a very cool street and surrounding areas of the East end of London with these really old and charming buildings, some which are being converted to pricy lofts and businesses. They still maintain their charming facades and are worth exploring.

East London markets and borough

Here’s some of the best and even off the beaten areas and neighborhoods to visit around London

Free things to do in Greenwich London

Free historic attractions of London to visit

Not surprisingly, some of London’s historic sites are free if you plan ahead of the peak hours at any of these popular tourist attractions and historic sites in the city. A few of these places do charge to enter, but if you go during service times like in the churches below, it’s free to attend.

London at night London theater

44.Kenwood House – located in Hampstead Heath, this gorgeous home is free and open to the public to enjoy.

45. The Queen’s House – Located in Greenwich, this stately manor home has a beautiful painting gallery and gorgeous interiors to explore.

46. Houses of Parliament – Tours are free to UK citizens and available for outsiders with a tour on Saturdays and at recess.

47. Covent Garden – the West end markets at Covent gardens are free and easy to explore with street performers, plays and comedies performed at the theaters close by.

48. St. Paul’s Cathedral – visiting the cathedral is not free unless you just attend the free Choral evensong services that is done entirely by music and responses.

49. Trafalgar Square – A very historic and popular hang out square (at night time) there are and many attractions within the square which includes: Nelson’s Column and fountains, the National Gallery,  St. Martins in the Fields church and the National Portrait Gallery.

50. Westminister Abbey – Tours are offered to visit Westminster Abbey, but if you do come during the official worship service hours, then that is absolutely free.

51. Tower Bridge – Always confused as the London Bridge, you can walk for free to walk across the bridge and enjoy the views of the Thames River from the walking lanes. This is a great spot to take some wonderful river shots to iconic London city skylines and the South Bank areas. You can also take an elevator to the top of the tower for a nominal fee.

Here’s a video of London’s top historical attractions you can visit and a quick preview

Weather and best times to visit London

Walking the Southbank at night

Free activities to do in London

There are London activities that are free for the public to enjoy, they are very popular and very crowded. You can attend many of these events or activities for free if you plan ahead to get a better viewing spot or place to sit.

52. Changing of the guard – located in front of Buckingham Palace, get there early for great views and photo ops.

53. Southbank Skate park – If you have some wheels, you definitely can skate for free at the graffiti zoned skate park under the Southbank Center.

54. Kings Cross illuminated tunnel – its colorful, cool and free to explore and showcasing local artist commissions.

55. Walk the Southbank at night – The Southbank area of London comes alive on the river front, illuminated colorful buildings and the very cool Millenium bridge and other bridges lit up at night.

56. Check out Speakers Corner – located in Hyde park, listed to speakers sharing their views and demonstrating free speech at this iconic speaking demonstration area in the park.

57. Do a selfie on Abbey Road – If you’re a Beatles fan then the famous Abby Road and cover image is a must that you can definitely replicate on this famous venue.

58. Check out London’s street art scene – If you’re into amazing street art combined with cool places to visit, then check this site here for places t visit around the city with the best street art to view in those boroughs.

Getting around London cheap or free

59. Walk around the city – London is a friendly walking city and if you break it down to visiting specific boroughs, then it is easy walk around and break up your visits into one or a few areas at a time. That way you can spend more time visiting the attractions in that particular borough.

60. Public transportation – the easiest way to get around is by the London Underground or Tube and one direction tickets in the general London area costing between 2 to 4 Pounds. The most affordable way to use the underground is to buy an Oyster card that you can recharge to any amount using your credit card. The Oyster card allows for travel via underground, national trains, buses, London trams and the Emirates cable car.

61. Uber ride – Uber does run in London, so you can easily use your app when you want to get around quickly or when you are just t exhausted to walk one more step around the city.

62. Gett – another version of Uber that is popular in London and major hubs around England along with many European cities.

Here’s a quick tour on navigating around London area below

Where to stay in London cheap or very affordable

Staying in London is very, very expensive and there’s not that many options to sleeping here on a dime. But here are some options of areas that are fairly central with easy access to the Underground and the most reasonable hotels with good reviews.

Staying in the Shoreditch area, check out the reviews and best prices here.

Kensington and Hyde park – very central and affordable properties. Check the reviews here and latest prices.

London Bridge and South Bank – Easy access to Underground and main London attractions – check hotel reviews here for availability and prices.

Affordable East End London – Trendy boroughs and easy access to underground – check hotel reviews here for availability and prices.

Victoria borough – Affordable hotels in this transport hub. check hotel reviews here for availability and prices.

Check out these reviews of affordable places to stay on Tripadvisor here for more details and current prices for an overnight stay.

Kensington Buckingham historic attractions in London

Where to eat cheap in London

If you are looking for cheap eating venues around the city, consider the public marketplaces, international food courts and ethnic food restaurants to get some delicious and cheap foods to eat around the city.

Popular public markets to visit for good and cheap food includes the following places:

Brick Lane and Truman Brewery Markets

The east end is the ‘real London’ and this ecclectic neighborhood  with fantastic markets with cheap foods and food courts. will show you why! You can find a variety of popups, vintage goods and clothing, the Upmarket for fashion and food, the Backyard Market for jewelery and accessories, the Tea Rooms for antiques, and the Boiler House Food Hall for more street food options.

Camden Market

A combination of a number of markets, Camden Market is home to more than 1,000 shops, food stalls, cafes, pubs, and restaurants. You’ll find plenty of eating options here with so many food stalls, cheap eateries and brew pubs to enjoy and explore for a day of exploring in Camden area.

Brixton Market

You’ll find a lot of shopping, eating, and finding some great bargains at the Brixton Market in South London. A real community feel dwith a mixture of vendors and items on sale at the market and authentic food and goods from the African and Caribbean communities taking pride of place. You’ll also find more flea market type items, electronics, home wares, clothing and delicious food to go.

Leather Lane Market

Also located on the South end of London, Leather Lane Market is more low key and down to earth with several fruit and vegetable stalls, as well as a variety of cheap street eats. It’s a real neighborhood and local vibe shopping and finding some cheap eats at this local market. There are also a few vendors selling cheap clothing on the southern end.

Check out all these cheap food venues to try in the city below and really delicious

If you love cheap and fast street foods in London, check out all these easy, fast and cheap food venues to try out in the city.

If you want to try more classic English food tour for a property English bread, check out these fantastic venues below

More inside tips about visiting London for free?

Outside of visiting the main attractions, free museums and parks, here are more inside tips for enjoying London . We share 16 more tips for free without focusing on other fun activities to do around the city:

1. **Street Art Tours:** Explore London’s vibrant street art scene in neighborhoods like Shoreditch and Camden. Take a self-guided tour to discover incredible murals and graffiti art.

2. **Walking Tours:** Join free walking tours that delve into London’s diverse history, such as Jack the Ripper tours, literary tours, or themed neighborhood walks.

3. **Free Museums:** While well-known museums charge for special exhibitions, many of London’s museums, like the British Museum and the National Gallery, offer free entry to their permanent collections.

4. **Green Spaces:** Relax in London’s beautiful parks, such as Hyde Park, Hampstead Heath, and Richmond Park. Pack a picnic, go for a stroll, or simply enjoy the serene surroundings.

5. **Free Galleries:** Explore smaller, lesser-known art galleries like the Saatchi Gallery, the Whitechapel Gallery, and the Serpentine Galleries, which often host free exhibitions.

6. **Hidden Gardens:** Discover hidden gardens and green spaces tucked away in the city, like the Kyoto Garden in Holland Park or the Roof Garden in Kensington.

7. **Local Markets:** Stroll through vibrant local markets like Borough Market and Camden Market. While you can indulge in delicious food, you can also soak in the lively atmosphere without spending a dime.

8. **Street Performers:** Covent Garden is famous for its street performers and buskers. Enjoy their entertaining acts while exploring the area.

9. **Library Visits:** Visit historic libraries like the British Library and the Maughan Library, which offer stunning architecture and often host free exhibitions.

10. **Music in the Parks:** Many London parks host free outdoor concerts during the summer months. Check local listings for open-air music events.

11. **Free Classes:** Some yoga studios and fitness centers offer free trial classes. It’s an opportunity to stay active and meet locals.

12. **Festivals and Parades:** Keep an eye out for free festivals and parades happening throughout the year, celebrating different cultures, music, and arts.

13. **Local Talks and Lectures:** Attend free talks, lectures, and panel discussions at universities and cultural institutions. They cover a wide range of topics, from science to literature.

14. **Free Comedy Shows:** Some comedy clubs offer free or pay-what-you-want comedy nights, showcasing up-and-coming comedians.

15. **City Views:** Climb to the top of Primrose Hill or Parliament Hill on Hampstead Heath for stunning panoramic views of London’s skyline.

By exploring these free and lesser-known experiences, you can gain a deeper understanding of London’s diverse culture and vibrant neighborhoods while keeping your budget in check.

Want more posts about London?

Best foods to eat in London

We share all amazing cuisine coming from London starting with traditional English favorites to more artisinal, street food and then popular ethnic foods and food markets you need to visit around the city.

Check out our post on the  Best foods to eat in London for more information and images to inspire to visit these fab places.

Explore the East End of London

The trendy East End of London has some of the coolest and fun places to shop, eat and hang out with many popular venues and up and coming attractions that is always evolving.

Check out our post on Exploring the East End of London for more images and inspiration to visiting this fun area of the city.

Discovering London at night

London town really comes alive at night with the lights of Convent Garden and Picadilly, the cool venues in South Bank and the fun and busy areas of Soho, the alternative place to enjoy a fun night in the city.

Check out our post on Discovering London at night for more images and inspiration to visiting this fun area of the city.

Looking for more stuff to do in London?

25 fun and cool places to visit in London

Things to do in Greenwich, London

Eating London and exploring the East End

Cool attractions in the South Bank

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Free things to do in London

Conclusion to Free things to do in London

London offers a multitude of attractions and activities to suit every traveler. With iconic landmarks, world-class museums, vibrant markets, and diverse dining options, the city provides endless opportunities for exploration and enjoyment. Whether you’re interested in history, art, food, or simply immersing yourself in the city’s unique atmosphere, London has something to captivate and inspire you. So, plan your visit, embrace the city’s charm, and create unforgettable memories in the dynamic and captivating streets of London.

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