London, in spite of its reputation of being an expensive European city, has a surprising number of wonderful experiences and delights that won’t cost you a cent. From artsy galleries and psychedelic outdoor concerts to iconic architectural gems, this vibrant and frenetic multicultural metropolis is drenched in fabulous freebies that guarantee to give you a memorable European getaway. As a matter of fact, most of London's prized attractions and most spectacular sights can be enjoyed by its visitors for free. Yes folks, there are so many free things to do in London!
1. British Museum
The British Museum is a treasury full of gems, amazing exhibits and world-famous objects, such as Egyptian mummies, the Parthenon sculptures and the Rosetta stone.
2. Gunnersbury Park Museum
Swing by the Gunnersbury Park Museum, and get a load of its one-of-a-kind collection of archaeological relics, including Penn medieval tiles, Roman pottery as well as the donated armorial Chinese porcelain and pharmaceutical glass.
3. Royal Air Force Museum
The Royal Air Force Museum, home to one of the world’s biggest free aircraft collections, flaunts awesome exhibits that would surely delight its visitors. As you visit this free museum, make sure to check out the WWI bombers in the Bomber Hall, and try the Eurofighter motion simulator.
4. Imperial War Museum
The Imperial War Museum tells gripping stories of the First World War, through its groundbreaking galleries and exhibits.
5. Petrie Museum of Egyptian Archaeology
The Petrie Museum of Egyptian Archaeology houses more than 70,000 artifacts that detail the spellbinding history of Egypt from prehistory to the Islamic period and the eras of the great pharaohs. It has quite a number of notable pieces, such as a fragment of the first ever calendar, the earliest linens and a bed-net dress of dancer from the Pyramid Age.
6. Natural History Museum
Step back in time, walk among Earth’s mightiest dinosaurs at the free Natural History Museum.
7. Camden Arts Centre
Is contemporary art your cup of tea? Housed in a historic 19th century building, the Camden Arts Centre features beautiful contemporary artworks from aspiring and famous artists.
8. Chisenhale Gallery
The Chisenhale Gallery leaves it spectators in utter amazement with its incredible contemporary art displays.
9. Tate Modern
Known as one of the great contemporary art galleries in the world, Tate Modern is a surreal gem that boasts a collection of 60,000 dazzling artworks created by the likes of Matisse, Rodin, Warhol and Pollock.
10. Pump House Gallery
Battersea Park’s Pump House Gallery is another marvelous contemporary art space in London with rotating expos featuring artists like Hellen van Meene, Ben Cook, and Dallas Seitz.
11. Free events in London Bridge and Pool of London
London Bridge and Pool of London host a pile of thrilling events for free throughout the year, especially during summertime. To get information about their latest free events, check out their listings.
12. Browse the free markets in London
Get a full taste of the London life by visiting any of its 70 colorful markets, which you can browse without spending a dime. As far as I’m concerned, the best markets to visit in London include the Piccadilly Crafts near Saint James Church, the Saturday antique markets in Portobello Road, and the Petticoat Lane Market.
13. Free access to BBC’s shows
Plan your trip to London ahead, and check out BBC’s website, so you can get gratis tickets to taping of some its famous television and radio shows, such as Strictly Come Dancing, Coming of Age, and BBC Symphony Orchestra.
14. Learn more about the Tudor life
Are you a big fan of HBO’s award-winning The Tudors? Then, make your way to the Queen Elizabeth’s Hunting Lodge. Built in the 16th century for Henry VII, this historic lodge lets you discover the Tudor life, through its lovely Tudor customs, carpentry and cookware. What’s more, the venue has a laid-back ambiance, as well as offers breathtaking vistas.
15. A special treat for Beatles groupies
For music lovers and enthusiastic followers of the legendary Beatles, take time to read the original manuscripts of the masterpieces created by John Lennon in the British Library.
16. Free walking tours
With Sandeman’s New London Tours, you can get an inside scoop of the city’s culture and history, without spending a fortune. Furthermore, this free walking tour allows you to take in mesmerizing sights like the Trafalgar Square, Houses of Parliament, Buckingham Palace, and many more.
17. Southbank Centre events
From concerts and gallery openings to outdoor installations, Southbank Centre has heaps of cost-less events available throughout the year.
18. Wallace Collection
Set grandly in a wonderfully mansion, the Wallace Collection gives you a fascinating glimpse of the aristocratic life in the 18th century.
19. The Kyoto Garden
Want to get away from London’s frenzied energy? The Kyoto Garden, with its colorful flowerbeds, pond petite shrubs, and tiny stone paths, is a calm oasis that lets you experience a serene respite in the midst of a pulsating capital. You can have a picnic here, or just sit down while admiring its relaxing and peaceful surroundings.
20. Hampstead Heath
Hampstead Heath, one of London’s largest parks, is a beautiful natural haven that gives you another idyllic place to escape the city’s buzz. Not only is it a great spot to take a walk or jog, but it’s also teeming with scenic sights of natural wildlife, rolling hills, creeks and ponds.
21. Richmond Park
Explore Richmond Park by bike, and get a chance to spot a wild deer.
22. Vauxhall City Farm
Traveling with your kids? The Vauxhall City Farm is a rare rural treasure set right at the heart of the electrifying English capital. Here, you get to feed and meet an array of cordial animals, including ducks, pigs, rabbits, and horses.
23. Free entertainment at a sunken amphitheater
The Scoop, a sunken 800-seat amphitheater, offers film screenings, concerts and theater shows, all for free during summertime.
24. Free concerts
From opera ensembles and chamber music to jazz percussion groups, the Guildhall Schools of Music and Drama hosts a wide array of cost-less music concerts.
25. Laugh out loud for free
London has a handful of free comedy shows that guarantee to split your sides, such as Angel Comedy, Weirdos Comedy presents, Lewis Schaffer is Free Until Famous, Shoot from the Hip, The Freedom Fridge Comedy, and a whole lot more.
26. An ultra modern way to window shop
An emporium of electronic, UV and neon fashions, Cyberdog is a psychedelic, crazy and ultra modern shop that entertains it shoppers and visitors with its heart-pounding music, podium dancers and robot mascots.
27. Theatre Royal
Every night, Theatre Royal amuses its visitors with free entertainment like poetry readings and comedy shows.
28. Granary Square fountains
The Granary Square’s fountain shows are an absolute spectacle that you don’t want to miss during your trip to London.
29. Notable suburbs
London has gorgeous suburbs that you can visit for free like Notting Hill and Camden Town.
30. Relive the 2012 Olympics
The 2012 Olympic Games may be over, but you can relive the event’s most remarkable moments by paying a visit to the Queen Elizabeth Olympic Park.
31. Blue Plaques
From the fictitious like Sherlock Holmes to the real like Charles Dickens and Karl Marx, there are plenty of blue plaques all over the city that commemorate the famous people who have worked and lived in the edifice where the plaque is placed.
32. Striking landmarks
Last, but not the least, London has a medley of stunning landmarks that you can visit for free, such as the Leicester Square, Trafalgar Square, Old Bailey and Piccadilly Circus.
Book Your Trip: Logistical Tips & Tricks
Shop for Travel Essentials
Book your flight
Find cheap flights using SkyScanner. This search engine is are our favorite, making sure you get the best deal for tickets all over the world. They are great at aggregating flights from multiple providers.
Book your accommodations
If you're looking for a hostel, you should book it with Hostelworld. If you want to stay somewhere else, book with Booking.com. Their hotel system usually offers the best rates out of any provider worldwide.
Don't forget travel insurance
Protects yourself against illness, injury, theft, and even cancellations with travel insurance. You're buying comprehensive protection in case anything goes wrong. We never recommend traveling without it. We’ve been using World Nomads, a great company, with great service and highly recommend them.
- World Nomads (for everyone below 70)
- Travelx Insurance (for those over 70)
Disclosure: Some of the links above may be affiliate links, and at no additional cost to you, we earn a commission if you make a purchase. We only recommend products and companies we use and the income keeps the community supported.