Alumni Said Business School, University of Oxford, UK
An International Student’s Guide to FREE activities in London
London is one of the most visited cities in the world which has a lot of offer starting with history, culture, food, landmarks, and bustling nightlife. However, the city has been consistently ranked as one of the most expensive cities to live in year on year.
As a student, you might be on a budget so we present to you top 5activities in London which are free and also allow you to take a sneak peek into the city’s rich history, vibrant social scene, and culture.
1. Visit the museums
London offers a wide range of museums for every person’s interest. From art to transport and history to science, the British capital has an exhibition for everything. And the best news is that many of them are free. You can just top up your travel card or get walking/cycling, and off you go to learn about ancient civilizations, extinct animals the history of psychology, the latest modern art movement – whatever takes your interest.
2. Take a walk in the parks
You have probably already heard all about the non-stop rain and fog in London, and you expect to be stuck indoors all the time. Well, the truth is that this is (more or less) a myth. London has lots of sunny and pleasant days during the year and you may well find that it’s actually not as cold and grim as you expected. What’s even better is that the city has numerous beautiful parks and gardens for you to enjoy! Have a picnic beside the water in Hyde Park, take advantage of the free sports facilities of Regent’s Park, enjoy the cityscape views from the top of Primrose Hill, or admire the swans in St James's Park – lots to explore, all free of charge!
3. Explore the famous landmarks
For those of you who are interested in popular landmarks and historical monuments, you will NOT be disappointed! Lot of those have entrance fees if you want to go inside, but who’s to say you cannot admire them from the outside? The Houses of Parliament and the famous ‘Big Ben’ clock tower will leave you breathless with their grandeur and magnificence. Tower Bridge, one of the most beautiful bridges in the world, is definitely a must-see, especially when magically lit up at night or emerging from the early morning mist. Then there’s the iconic St. Paul’s Cathedral, the royal seat Buckingham Palace, and more contemporary landmarks such as the famous Tate Modern gallery and London Eye.
4. Walk along the Thames
Some of the best walks in London are to be had along the banks of the River Thames. It is the longest river in England and the second longest in the United Kingdom. Its source is at the Thames Head in Gloucestershire and empties into the North Sea at the Thames Estuary but there is no stretch of this river that is so highly populated with iconic buildings and monuments as the stretch traversing the heart of the London city.
5. See the street performers at Covent Garden
The former fruit and vegetable market that was founded in Central Square has now been modified in to a popular tourist spot in the Central Building: the abode of several pubs, cafes, small shops and a craft market called the Apple Market. It is a popular place for shopping. The district is also home to the Royal Opera House also called Covent Garden. There are a number of independent shops in the vicinity like Neal’s Yard.
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