London may be one of the world’s more expensive cities, but don’t let sticker shock scare you away from this remarkable metropolis. What a lot of visitors don’t realize is that London offers more free access to sights and attractions than almost any other major city in the world, meaning you can enjoy a trip to the UK capital without breaking your budget. If you’re still not convinced, here are five fabulous things you can do in London for free.
Sample Gourmet Treats at Borough Market:
Feeding hungry Londoners for over 1000 years, Borough Market is one of the city’s most legendary foods haunts. The market as it stands today dates back to the Victorian era. With its distinctive green iron roof, hearty brick archways, and colorful signage, Borough Market is as much a photographer’s paradise as it is a foodie haven. Instagram addicts and photo fanatics will want to visit on weekdays when the market’s architectural features aren’t concealed by the crowds. If you’re a food-lover, stop by on Saturdays to see the market in full bloom and sample everything from organic honey and chutneys to exotic kangaroo burgers and traditional British fare.
Catch up on Culture at World Renowned Museums in South Kensington:
In addition to being a favorite with London’s well-to-do, the historic neighborhood of South Kensington is also home to three fabulously free museums: The Natural History Museum, Victoria & Albert Museum, and Science Museum. From the outside, each museum is an architectural masterpiece in its own right. Step inside and you’ll discover beautiful exhibits filled with priceless treasures from the worlds of biology, anthropology, art, design, technology, and innovation. All three world-class institutions are just a short stroll from South Kensington Underground Station and offer enough to provide you with a full day of admission-free fun.
See the Ruins of Ancient London at the London Wall:
Long before the days of Queen Elizabeth, Big Ben, and Buckingham Palace, London went by a different name – Londinium. Founded 2000 years ago by the Romans, Londinium’s ancient walls still guard parts of the city. You can see the largest remaining section of the London Wall, as it’s now called, right outside the Tower of London. Another substantial piece of the wall sits on its original foundation outside the Museum of London, where it stands in stark contrast to the towering skyscrapers and glittering glass shopping centers that surround it.
Witness the Changing of the Guard:
Few scenes are more quintessentially British than the changing of the guard. In Central London, you can witness this unique spectacle of pomp and circumstance outside Buckingham Palace and the Horse Guards Parade. The Changing of the Guard at Buckingham Palace is performed daily at 11:30am in the summer, and every other day the rest of the year. Over at the Horse Guards Parade, the Changing of the Guard takes place Monday through Saturday at 11:00am, and at 10:00am on Sundays. Both ceremonies feature guards in full regalia, complete with bright red coats and those unmistakable bearskin hats.
Walk in the Footsteps of Royalty at Kensington Gardens and Hyde Park:
Situated in the heart of chic West London, Kensington Gardens offers a welcome respite from the city’s busy streets. The gardens are essentially the front lawn of fabulous Kensington Palace, where Will and Kate call home. Complete with a duck pond, lounge chairs, and a plethora of footpaths, this is the place to be on a sunny day in London. The Duchess of Cambridge herself frequents the garden with the family dog, Lupo. If you’re in the mood for a lengthy stroll, head east to adjoining Hyde Park for some of the best people-watching this side of the Atlantic.