Free things to do

Free things to do and see

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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Rainy Day Activities: Explore history at Winchester’s Military Museums

Broaden your knowledge of the British Army and the various battles fought throughout history at Winchester’s six Military Museums.

Location: Winchester, Hampshire

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

Rainy Day Activities: See famous works in the Royal Albert Memorial Museum

With numerous famous artworks and historical artefacts on display, the award-winning Royal Albert Memorial Museum is a must-see indoor attraction in the heart of Exeter.

Location: Exeter, Devon

August events: Celebrate the arts at Devizes’ International Street Festival

Head to the Wiltshire town of Devizes in late August for the annual Devizes International Street Festival.

Location: Devizes, Wiltshire

Discover the history of Hertford Castle

As part of National Heritage Weekend, Hertford Castle will open its doors to the public free of charge.

Location: Hertford, Hertfordshire

Pier to Pier in Bournemouth

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

Location: Bournemouth, Dorset

Walk, cycle or ride the Longdendale Trail

Cycle, walk or bring a horse...

Location: Glossop, Derbyshire

Visit Battlefield 1403, site of the Battle of Shrewsbury

Visit the site of the Battle of Shrewsbury in Shropshire and discover how it changed the course of English and French history.

Location: Shrewsbury, Shropshire

Enjoy the energy of South Tyneside Festival

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

Location: South Shields, Tyne and Wear

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

Rainy Day Activities: Sunderland Museum

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

Picnic in Blackpool’s largest park

Stanley Park, in the heart of Blackpool, is renowned for being one of the region's finest parks.

Location: Blackpool, Lancashire

Discover Bristol on a budget city break

From Banksy to Brunel, pirates to parks, Bristol on a budget is perfectly possible

Location: Bristol

Cycle Bristol’s Clifton Suspension Bridge on a free tour

Celebrate Bristol's year as European City of Sport 2017 and pedal to your heart’s content along its cycle-friendly routes.

Location: Bristol

Peep into Durham’s locomotive past

Discover Durham’s role in the development of the railways at Locomotion, the National Railway Museum at Shildon.

Location: Vale of Durham

Savour the wilds of the UK’s first national park

Relish windswept moors, ancient woodland, towering rock faces and rolling dales in the Peak District National Park.

Location: Peak District, Derbyshire

Wander the medieval passageways & get lost in the City

Navigate your way through the intriguing streets of the old City and embrace its quirky nature.

Location: London, Greater London

October events: Taste Lincolnshire’s best export at the Sausage Festival

Eat your way around this flavoursome festival on Saturday 12 October, and celebrate one of the UK’s most distinctive foods.

Location: Lincoln, Lincolnshire

Brighton Pride

August events: Strut your stuff at Brighton Pride

At Brighton Pride you can enjoy a risqué drag act, dance till your heart’s content and eat fish ‘n’ chips by the sea all in the same day.

Location: Brighton & Hove, East Sussex

Admire the iconic architectural landmarks of the City

Explore the fusion of historical and modern architecture in the ever-evolving City of London.

Location: London, Greater London

Discover 1,000 years of history at Chester Cathedral

Journey through hundreds of years of history and discover hidden spaces as you climb to the top of the cathedral tower.

Location: Chester, Cheshire

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