Travel to castles in London England

British Tours by Tristan

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British Capitol Freebies !



Many of London’s biggest and best cultural attractions are “Free” to enter, and the number of museums offering “Free” entry is staggering. Donations are often more than welcome, and special exhibits usually cost extra.

Major Museums

British Museum

Imperial War Museum

Museum of London

National Gallery

National Maritime Museum, Queen’s House, and Royal Observatory

National Portrait Gallery

Natural History Museum

Science Museum

Tate Britain

Tate Modern

Victoria & Albert Museum

Smaller Museums & Galleries

Burgh House and the Hampstead Museum

Clown’s Gallery and Museum

Courtauld Permanent Exhibition (Free on Monday only)

Hogarth House

Houses of Parliament

ICA Gallery (�2.50)

Museum of Childhood

Serpentine Gallery

Sir John Soane’s Museum

Theatre Museum

Wallace Collection

Whitechapel Art Gallery


St. Paul‘s Cathedral, St. Martin-in-the-Fields, St. George Bloomsbury, and St. James’s Church have regular lunchtime concerts, as does St. George Bloomsbury on Monday, Hyde Park Chapel on Thursday, and St. Giles in the Fields on Friday. There are regular organ recitals at Westminster Abbey.

Of the music colleges, the Royal Academy of Music, the Royal College of Music, the Guildhall, the Trinity College of Music, and the Royal Opera House have regular recitals; the Trinity College of Music holds recitals at lunchtime on Tuesday.

For contemporary ears, the area outside the National Theatre on the South Bank (known as the Djanogly Concert Pitch) reverberates to live world music weekdays at 6 PM, and on Saturday at 1 PM and 6 PM.

You can catch decent open-mike nights for unsigned acts and singer-songwriters at the River Bar (just south of Tower Bridge) every Wednesday, and Roadhouse (in Covent Garden) every Monday. Blues lovers should not miss the legendary Billy Chong Blues Revue band jam every Monday at the Globe pub in Hackney. The Palm Tree, in Mile End, is another great East End pub that hosts accomplished local jazz players on weekends.

Film, Theater & Opera

If all seats have been sold, the English National Opera sells standing tickets for the back of the Dress and Upper Circles at �10 each. Check at the box office.

Standing tickets with obstructed views for the ballet or the opera at the Royal Opera House start at �7.

Sloane Square‘s Royal Court Theatre, one of the U.K.’s best venues for new playwriting, has restricted-view, standing-room-only tickets at the downstairs Jerwood Theatre for 10 pence (yes, �0.10), available one hour before the performance.

The Battersea Arts Club (BAC) has pay-what-you-can night on Tuesdays.

The Prince Charles Cinema in the West End shows weekday movie matinees for �3.50.

Offbeat Experiences

Go to the Public Record Office in Kew or Islington if you have a few hours to kill and want to track down some ancient branch of the family tree. Even if you don’t have any leads, browsing through sheaves of ancient ledgers is great fun.

London has some of the finest parks in the world, and enjoying them won’t cost you a pretty pence. Keen ornithologists can join free bird-watching walks in Hyde Park, while dedicated strollers touched by royal nostalgia can take the 7-mi Diana, Princess of Wales Memorial Walk through Hyde, Green, and St. James’s Parks.

There are free spectacles throughout the year, but one of the most warmly enjoyed is Guy Fawkes’ Night (November 5), when parks throughout the country hold spectacular fireworks displays.

On New Year’s Eve thousands of revelers descend on Trafalgar Square and the South Bank to watch more free fireworks. The Underground usually runs all night, and is free into the new year.

Finally, set aside some time for random wandering. London is a great walking city because so many of its real treasures are untouted: tiny alleyways barely visible on the map, garden squares, churchyards, shop windows, sudden vistas of skyline or park. With comfortable, weatherproof shoes and an umbrella, walking might well become your favorite free activity here.

Affordable Sightseeing

Join real Londoners on the top deck of a double-decker bus. You can use your Zones 1 and 2 Travelcard or buy tickets from machines at the bus stops for the following routes:

Bus 11: King’s Road, Sloane Square, Victoria Station, Westminster Abbey, Houses of Parliament and Big Ben, Whitehall, Trafalgar Square, the Strand, Fleet Street, and St. Paul’s Cathedral.

Bus 12: Bayswater, Marble Arch, Oxford Street, Piccadilly Circus, Trafalgar Square, Horse Guards, Whitehall, Houses of Parliament and Big Ben, Westminster Bridge.

Bus 19: Sloane Square, Knightsbridge, Hyde Park Corner, Green Park, Piccadilly Circus, Shaftsbury Avenue, Oxford Street, Bloomsbury, Islington.

Bus 88: Oxford Circus, Piccadilly Circus, Trafalgar Square, Whitehall, Houses of Parliament and Big Ben, Westminster Abbey, Tate Britain.

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