Friday, 4 May 2012

Free things to do with the kids at the weekend

This is a guest post written by the bargain loving Ross who runs popular UK  freebies website and facebook page.

Weekends can often fill you with a need to have fun and spend some quality time with your children. You might not always have the funds to do exactly what you want, but it shouldn't mean you can’t still have a great time, which is why we have compiled a list of fantastic free activities available around the UK to help you save money and still have a great day out with the family.

South West:

St Catherine’s Castle in Fowey, Cornwall, offers a lovely day out for the family. There is usually lovely weather in Cornwall and you can visit this magnificent castle completely free of charge. You can explore this artillery fort built by Henry VIII in 1530 and view the ground level gun ports. This is
a way to provide your children with an educational yet fun day out.

You can take part in a free walking tour in Bath, Somerset if you are looking for something a little bit different to do with your family. Every day of the year (except Christmas Day) you can meet in the Abbey Church Yard and take part in a two hour walking tour and take in some fantastic places of architectural and historical importance. This may be suitable for older children or you will be able to take younger children in a pushchair but they may not find the sites quite so fascinating.

London and South East:

The Museum of Childhood is home to the UK’s biggest collection of toys and childhood paraphernalia. This makes it a fantastic place to spend a day with your family. You will find toys from the 16th century right up until the present day and there is much on offer for young families here.

Greenwich park is another fantastic place to visit with your family. This is London’s oldest Royal Park and will allow you to take in some of the truly breathtaking views that London does have to offer. On a clear day you will be able to take in St Paul’s Cathedral and take in the sights surrounding the River Thames.

A visit to the beach in Ramsgate is always something nice to do with children. There will be nice weather during the summer and there is a lovely high street to explore. Walks along the beach here will allow you to relax, play and enjoy your weekend completely free!

North West:

The National Conservation Centre in Liverpool will allow your children to learn about everything from motorbikes to Egyptian mummies. Entry is free and the whole family are welcome to come and learn about many artefacts and rare pieces that have been well cared for and preserved.

Wetheriggs Pottery, in Penrith, Cumbria, is a 19th century industrial monument steeped in history and filled with restored machinery as well as an original kiln dating right back to the 19th century. There are 10 acres of grounds just waiting to be explored and lots of wildlife can be seen here
including newts, birds and even the odd badger or fox! You can enter the grounds for free and there are additional activities available that may cost money to become involved in.

North East:

Morpeth Chantry Bagpipe Museum in Morpeth, Northumberland can provide an interesting yet varied day out for the family. If you are wanting to view some bagpipes up close and personal then this is the ideal place to take your children. It can be a little busy at weekends but do not let that deter you from this wonderful location with lots to offer.

Faringdon Woodland in Faringdon, Oxfordshire is home to a wonderful 4 acre wood that is ideal for
families who want to explore and packed with activities for the children too. This is a wonderful open space with lots to see and do. Whether you are looking for 24 black birds and a giant willow pie or finding the fairly useless bridge you will be sure to have a fantastic time here with the whole family.


Green’s Mill in Sneinton, Nottingham is home to a 200 year old windmill. This is a grade 2 listed
building and is now one of just a handful of working mills left in Britain. You can tour this windmill for free and check out the process of turning grain in to flour. You can see the method used more than 200 years ago and best of all admission is free!

If your children love castles then the ruins of Clun Castle in Clun, Shropshire will provide a fantastic backdrop for a free family day out. These ruins lay by the riverside and allow you to see what’s left of a Welsh Border castle that is now run by English Heritage. You can view the information boards throughout these ruins to learn more and your children will have a blast pretending that they are in the ruins of their very own castle after they have made it through a long and arduous battle!


Gorgie City Farm in Edinburgh is a donation based activity day for the family. Here you will find a
wide range of livestock and pets including chinchillas and tortoises. There is an on site cafĂ© and a play park for the children so that they can really tire themselves out running around. You can also buy some of the farm’s own produce from the on site shop. You can introduce your children to the workings of a real farm and let them see up close and personal what running a farm can entail.

The Boat of Garten Community Gardens in Boat Of Garten, Highlands is a wonderful place to visit with your family. This is a delightful place to stop off with your family for a picnic or just a relaxing rest after a long day of sight seeing or travelling. These gardens are wheelchair accessible too making them even more fantastic!


Goferydd in Holyhead, Isle of Anglesey is a fantastic place to visit. Here you will find the RSPB Seabird Centre in Ellin’s Tower. You will be able to see thousands of breeding seabirds and admission is free all day from 10am - 530pm.

The National Museum & Gallery in Cardiff is one of the most unique museums in Britain. Here you will find a wide range of art and science displays. You and your children will be able to learn about a vast array of interesting topics and afterwards you can explore Cardiff itself and take in some of the lovely sites there.

If you fancy something a little different for you and your children then why not consider visiting the National Library of Wales. Here you will be able to find photographs, maps, books and much more of
Wales and you may just uncover a gem and find out something new about Wales that you never knew before. You can even make it a little more fun by giving a prize to the child to find a picture of Cardiff or somewhere similar first. Obviously this type of place is more suited to older children to avoid any damage occurring to priceless books or photographs.  

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