If funds are low and the kids are bored, why not have a day out in London? There are LOADS of places to entertain kiddies of all ages, and so many are completely free! With travel free for under 11s too (for travel via the tube, DLR, Overground and TfL rail services) it can be great fun exploring the capital!
Here are ten things to do in London that won’t break the bank…
1. Diana, Princess of Wales’ Memorial Playground
Playgrounds don’t get much better than this, but it may be one to avoid in the height of the summer holidays as it’s very popular. Most of the action takes place around the enormous Peter Pan-inspired pirate ship and surrounding beach but there’s also a sensory trail, teepees and plenty of seating for parents to rest their weary legs!
2. The Natural History Museum
The whole family will love exploring the Natural History Museum – thanks to their huge dinosaur skeleton exhibit. The kids will love getting up close and personal with the creatures which used to roam the Earth.
3. Coram’s Fields
This is a great place for the kiddies to let off some steam if you’re in central London – seven acres dedicated entirely to children! There’s an adventure playground with an aerial slide plus sand pits, a paddling pool (perfect for the summer months) and a small farm.
4. Changing of the Guard
Make sure you head over to Buckingham Palace to see the Changing of the Guard. It starts at 11am and lasts for around 45 minutes, but make sure you arrive a little early to make sure you don’t miss it, as it only happens once each day!
5. The Science Museum
Discover how the world works at the Science Museum. Budding young astronauts will adore the gallery dedicated to space exploration, featuring a full-sized model of the lander that put the first men on the moon!
6. Brockwell Park
Brockwell Park is one of South London’s best parks. The playground is great; with zip wires, climbing frames and tunnels, as well as a separate sandpit and paddling pool with water jets. There is also a lido, perfect for a sunny day, so bring your swimsuits!
7. Crystal Palace dinosaurs
Crystal Palace is a revelation for any dinosaur lovers! Wooden carved dinosaurs peep over the tree tops and can be climbed on in the play area. And, you can also make the most of the maze and lakes too.
8. Golders Hill Park Zoo
Golders Hill Park Zoo is a small zoo, and completely free to enter, with its rare species of birds and animals. Hampstead Heath, is a great place to visit, with swimming ponds and lido too, so there is a lot to do in this part of London if you fancy a busy afternoon.
9. The British Museum
Children will love exploring history through statues of pharaohs and ancient board games – there is even a large, mummified bull. The British Museum holds artefacts from all over the world.
10. Ride the Routemaster
Cost: £1.50 for adults; children under 11 are free
This one is technically not free, as there is a small charge for adults, but the kids won’t cost a penny! The top deck of a real double-decker bus is good fun and a lot cheaper than a tourist bus. A good route is the No11; running from Fulham Town Hall to Liverpool Street, past the Houses of Parliament, Nelson’s Column, Westminster Abbey, Horse Guards Parade and St Paul’s Cathedral in about an hour.