Free things to do and see

Free things to do

There are few places in the world offering more for eager culture vultures hunting for free things to do. Free museums and art galleries sit on top of the list. For the more outdoor-minded, grab a map from the local tourist office or visitor centre and go on a treasure hunt through town or countryside. Farmers’ markets offer a vivid tableau of community life, and often encourage you to taste free samples. See window shopping in a new light. The displays are often works of art in their own right and the architecture and design of some of the most famous shopping emporiums in the world is breathtakingly impressive.

Free things to do

There are few places in the world offering more for eager culture vultures hunting for free things to do. Free museums and art galleries sit on top of the list. For the more outdoor-minded, grab a map from the local tourist office or visitor centre and go on a treasure hunt through town or countryside. Farmers’ markets offer a vivid tableau of community life, and often encourage you to taste free samples. See window shopping in a new light. The displays are often works of art in their own right and the architecture and design of some of the most famous shopping emporiums in the world is breathtakingly impressive.

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See Lynn Lumiere light up King's Lynn's historic buildings

See Lynn Lumiere light up King's Lynn's historic buildings

Rich in history and fascinating by day, Lynn Lumiere lights up some of King's Lynn's stunning building with an amazing animated light display every evening from dusk.

Location: King's Lynn, Norfolk

 
Investigate the origins of Sherlock Holmes at Portsmouth Museum

Investigate the origins of Sherlock Holmes at Portsmouth Museum

Discover more about the creator of the iconic detective Sherlock Holmes at Portsmouth Museum.

Location: Portsmouth, Hampshire

 
Free fun for the family at Monkwearmouth Station Museum

Free fun for the family at Monkwearmouth Station Museum

Monkwearmouth Station Museum has received national commendations for work with young children and provides fun and education for the whole family.

Location: Sunderland, Tyne and Wear

 
Experience contemporary art in Margate

Experience contemporary art in Margate

Contemporary art is leading the way in Margate alongside retro shops and funky bars framed by the trappings of the classic English seaside.

Location: Margate, Kent

 
Harness the power of the landscape at Gibson Mill

Harness the power of the landscape at Gibson Mill

One of the first mills of the Industrial Revolution, Gibson Mill is still a lesson in self-sufficiency, in tranquil surroundings.

Location: Hebden Bridge, West Yorkshire

 
Be inspired at Middlesbrough Institute of Modern Art

Be inspired at Middlesbrough Institute of Modern Art

A day out at mima has something to offer everyone: World-class exhibitions, café and shop, family activities, workshops and talks.

Location: Middlesbrough, North Yorkshire

 
Learn about Jack the Ripper at City of London Police Museum

Learn about Jack the Ripper at City of London Police Museum

This museum offers a fascinating insight into the lives of the men, women and animals who have guarded the City since 1839.

Location: London, Greater London

 
Pier to Pier in Bournemouth

Pier to Pier in Bournemouth

Got a spare hour or two in Bournemouth? Then take a stroll between the two piers.

Location: Bournemouth, Dorset

 
Experience life in a WWI trench at the Lancashire Museum

Experience life in a WWI trench at the Lancashire Museum

Tens of thousands of proud Lancastrians perished in the Great War, whose experiences in the trenches are brought to life at the Museum of Lancashire in Preston.

Location: Preston, Lancashire

 
Take your pick from Liverpool’s rich cultural gems

Take your pick from Liverpool’s rich cultural gems

Liverpool is a thriving capital of culture with museums and galleries for every taste, many of which are free to explore. Dip in and emerge inspired.

Location: Liverpool, Merseyside

 
Discover a haven for flowers in the heart of England

Discover a haven for flowers in the heart of England

Wander hand-in-hand along Worcestershire’s Spring Blossom Trail, through field after field, amongst the county’s blossoming flowers and plant life.

Location: Vale of Evesham, Worcestershire

 
Activities for all ages at Sunderland Museum & Winter Gardens

Activities for all ages at Sunderland Museum & Winter Gardens

Sunderland Museum and Winter Gardens is a great place for the whole family to spend the day – and it’s free.

Location: Sunderland, Tyne and Wear

 
September events: Be blown away at St Annes International Kite Festival

September events: Be blown away at St Annes International Kite Festival

St Annes hosts the spectacular annual Kite Festival, featuring magnificent kites from all over the world.

Location: St Annes on Sea, Lancashire

 
Explore the working trawler Arctic Corsair

Explore the working trawler Arctic Corsair

Journey back to the stormy waters of the North Sea at the height of the Cod Wars on the only trawler accessible to the public.

Location: Hull, East Riding of Yorkshire

 
Rainy Day Activities: Visit the Ashmolean Museum in Oxford

Rainy Day Activities: Visit the Ashmolean Museum in Oxford

All the great civilizations of the world are represented in the Ashmolean Museum’s collections; escape the rain for a whole day, or pop in for five minutes for a quick browse.

Location: Oxford, Oxfordshire

 
Experience the beauty of art outdoors in Blackpool

Experience the beauty of art outdoors in Blackpool

The Great Promenade Show is a series of outdoor art installations set on the 2km sea defences along Blackpool's South Shore.

Location: Blackpool, Lancashire

 
July events: Enjoy the energy of South Tyneside Festival

July events: Enjoy the energy of South Tyneside Festival

This fabulous summer festival brings three months of free entertainment to the vibrant seafront resort of South Shields.

Location: South Shields, Tyne and Wear

 
June events: Become part of the Hebden Bridge Arts Festival

June events: Become part of the Hebden Bridge Arts Festival

Celebrate Hebden Bridge's quirky and distinctive arts scene at this unique festival, known for delivering big names in a local setting.

Location: Hebden Bridge, West Yorkshire

 
Explore the West Bay coastline as seen on TV’s Broadchurch

Explore the West Bay coastline as seen on TV’s Broadchurch

Soak up the picture-perfect setting used in the TV series Broadchurch as you explore West Bay on Dorset’s Jurassic Coast.

Location: West Bay, Dorset

 
Small pleasures come free at Dimminsdale Nature Reserve

Small pleasures come free at Dimminsdale Nature Reserve

Just a few small snowdrops bring cheer to the colder, shorter days of England’s winter, and seen at Dimminsdale, they’re simply breathtaking.

Location: Staunton Harold, Leicestershire

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