With London free museums attractions, you get to stay on budget, visit some great places and have a lot of fun with your kids.
Some of the best things in London are free. That includes kid-friendly museum attractions that combine education with entertainment. To help you enrich your itinerary with free London attractions guaranteed to thrill the little ones and maybe even the teens, we created a list of the leading free museum attractions.
Museum exhibits can change monthly, so there’s no guarantee that all of these attractions are still available. Make sure to check with each museum because when one is taken down, something equally entertaining is likely to go up. Check the “what’s on” tab on each museum’s website to see the current exhibitions and special events.
Favorite London Free Museums Attractions for Families:
Dinosaurs Gallery – Natural History Museum
Look for the dinosaurs to come to life in the Blue Zone of the Natural History Museum. This free exhibit includes part of a T. Rex skull, the skeleton of an Iguanodon, and a full Triceratops skull. Kids can also enjoy the Dinosaur Trail, which teaches about the first dinosaurs to walk the Earth. This is one of many kids’ favorite London free museum attractions.
Dutch Barn – Horniman Museum & Gardens
Explore a real Dutch barn that was brought to the UK from Holland in the late 1800s. The architecture is interesting, and the environment speaks volumes about Dutch culture. You can now picnic or just get out of the sunshine or rain by visiting the barn.
Earth’s Treasury – National History Museum
Rocks and minerals are some of the most intriguing components of our planet. Families can now explore real samples of everything from gold to diamonds, rubies, and even kryptonite by visiting this free exhibit in the Red Zone of the National History Museum.
Do you have any future aviators in the family? If so, give them a head start on the science behind flight by visiting this object gallery in London’s Science Museum one of the most popular London free museum attractions. Jets and planes with historical significance are suspended from the air, allowing families to walk below and explore each one up close and personal. There’s even a submarine in the collection.
Gardens Walk – Horniman Museum & Gardens
From the Grasslands Garden to the Sunken Display Garden, there’s a lot to explore in the gardens of the Horniman Museum. The Gardens Walk allows families to walk through 16.5 acres to explore a variety of plants, grasses, and trees. It’s a beautiful way to spend an afternoon without spending a dime, and the kids aren’t pressured to remain quiet or still as is often the case in museums.
Horniman Market – Horniman Museum & Gardens
Sunday is the perfect time to take a free tour of the gardens at the Horniman Museum. The gardens are beautifully landscaped and include sunken features. On Sunday, they come alive with a free market featuring fresh produce from local producers in the London area. It’s a great way to pick up some healthy treats for the family while looking at the flowers and allowing the kids to stretch their legs and burn off some energy.
Medicine: The Wellcome Galleries – Science Museum
What did the world’s first MRI scanner look like? What’s it like to use robotic equipment to complete a surgery? These questions are answered plus many more at the Medicine attraction found at the Science Museum in London. While advances in medical technology take center stage throughout the exhibit, some kids may also enjoy the artwork and sculptures that are presented alongside the exhibits.
There are patterns throughout your daily environment, but you miss most of them because you aren’t paying close enough attention. Kids of all ages are welcome to start seeing those patterns in all their brilliance at the Pattern Pod in the Science museum. Through interactive games, children learn what patterns are, how they’re created, and why they’re significant to the world.
This is one free London museum attraction that may deliver tons of fun even after you leave the museum. Watch as the little ones start to look for and find patterns in their daily lives, including on the streets of London.
Sailortown – Museum of London Docklands
The Museum of London’s Dockland location features a recreated town that takes families through life in a sailortown of the 1800s. While it’s educational, it’s also a lot of fun for kids to walk through what feels like a town ripped straight out of history.
Volcanoes and Earthquakes – National History Museum
Find this free museum exhibit in the Red Zone at the National History Museum. It contains artifacts and stories from some of the world’s most noteworthy and tragic volcanoes and earthquakes. Kids have a blast playing with the earthquake simulator, and there are a variety of interactive games and video footages that bring scientific facts to life.
Some of the best features of this free exhibit include the objects that were melted by lava and the real display of field equipment and heat suits worn by scientists in the field as they study volcanoes. There’s a little something to grab the attention of kids of all ages here.
London’s Museum of Childhood started redesigning and introducing new exhibits, many of which include objects at toddler height to ensure inclusion for the youngest members of the family. Once the redesign is complete, you can put every one of their attractions on your must-see list of free London museum attractions.
This museum is designed to capture the history of childhood, but it also serves as a playground where kids can have fun in a learning environment. If it isn’t already on your London itinerary, put it on there now and see what the new exhibits have in store for your little ones.
London Pass Makes More Museums FREE
The museum attractions listed above are all museums that are always free to visitors. If you intend to invest in the London Pass or other attraction passes serving the city, you will find even more free museums focused on a wide variety of topics. They all have their own exhibits, many of which will entertain children of varying ages.
Some of the museums that you can visit free with the London Pass include:
- Victoria and Albert Museum – A leading London museum focused on art, design, and performance. From sculptures and textiles to ceramics and paintings, there are millions of items on display. You can also buy artwork from their website.
- Churchill War Rooms – Explore the bunker where Winston Churchill lived during World War II. Walk through rooms that were once used to make critical wartime decisions, and then visit the museum to learn more about Winston Churchill and the war.
- Pollock’s Toy Museum – Head to Fitzrovia to explore a museum dedicated to toys and then stop by the toy shop next door to pick up a new play thing for your little one.
There are many more where these came from, so check the current list on the London Pass website. You can also visit each museum’s website to see what exhibitions and attraction they’re presenting during your upcoming visit to London.
Finding More London Free Museum Attractions Throughout the City
There are over 150 museums in London, and many offer free exhibits and events. It’s impossible to list them all here, but that doesn’t mean you have to miss out on those not listed. Pull up Google maps and type in the name of major attractions you want to visit while in London. Then click the “nearby” button and type in “museums.”
You will then see dots on the map for every museum close to that London attraction. Repeat this for each attraction on your itinerary, writing down the names of museums that sound interesting for your family. You can then find those museums online to see if they charge an admission fee and what exhibitions and activities they currently have on display.
It takes some time to research museum attractions in London, but finding those hidden gems that your family loves will make it time well spent.
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