The South African rand, the British pound and the euro aren’t the best of bedfellows these days, but you can still have a good time when visiting London, just look out for the free things to do.
Life in the park
With eight Royal parks in central London and multiple smaller and more hidden parks, spending a day out in the sun or having a run in beautiful green open space is rather easy. The famous parks, such as Regent’s, Green Park and Hyde Park, are always attractive. Some other, lesser-known, green delights are Battersea Park on the Thames, as well as Southwark Park, not too far from Borough Market and the new Shard (with restaurants and views across the city).
Hit the museums
With an array of free museums in the city, access to all things past and future isn’t difficult. Try the Victoria and Albert Museum in Knightsbridge with some of the world’s greatest decorative arts; the British Museum in Bloomsbury with its mummies and the Rosetta stone; the Science Museum on Gloucester Road, which includes a flight simulator; or the Natural History Museum in Knightsbridge with its fossils and rock specimens dating back many centuries.
Visit the city farms
London has a series of farms in the greater part of the city. The Spitalfields City Farm has family-friendly animals to pet and hang out so it’s ideal for kids of all ages. Its annual Oxford-Cambridge Goat Race (on the same date as the famous “boat race”) draws the crowds for that day.
Listen to the music
A city that has hosted every major musician in the world and was once home to bands such as the Beatles has music in its veins. Therefore, free music is aplenty everywhere. The Royal Opera has free Monday lunchtime recitals, Notting Hill Arts Club has live music almost every night of the week and doesn’t charge entrance fees, the Southbank Centre features different bands in good weather and St Martin-in-the-Fields has free classical music over lunchtime.
For hints and tips and things to do in London, don’t miss the latest issue of Sawubona magazine