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30 Free & Cheap Summer Activities for Kids

Free & Cheap Summer Activities for Kids

Explore 30 No-Cost Days Out & Budget-Friendly Activities for Kids During the Summer Break

Struggling to find wallet-friendly ways to keep the kids entertained during the never-ending stream of inset days and half-terms? We understand how expensive it can get, especially during the lengthy 6-week summer holidays. Fret not! We’re here to help with a great list of budget-friendly options, including free days out and delightful activities to make this summer an unforgettable one for your family.

Discover an array of fantastic free (or highly affordable) fun activities to keep the kids entertained during the summer break without straining your wallet!

Free Outings and Budget-Friendly Ideas

Explore our list of mostly free or incredibly affordable activities for the whole family. While many of these options won’t cost a dime, we understand that dining out can add up. Consider packing drinks, snacks, and treats for your outing to save on expenses, or opt for a low-cost picnic that suits your budget.

Explore 50 No-Cost Days Out & Budget-Friendly Activities for Kids During the Summer Break

In this blog, we will share with you:

1. Embark on a Scenic Walk
In most neighbourhoods, there are countless picturesque spots for delightful walks. To keep the kids engaged and excited, We recommend to create a treasure list for them to check off items as we encounter them. It’s a fun way to keep them entertained during the walk, and as a reward for completing the list, they get a special treat!

2. Explore Your Local Museum
Enjoy a fantastic and cost-free day out by visiting your local museum. Although parking might require a fee since they’re typically located in city centres, the museum itself offers free admission. Before planning your trip, be sure to check their website for a list of free events. Often, they host daily activities that won’t cost you a penny!

3. Discover a Nearby Nature Trail
The UK offers an abundance of stunning nature trails perfect for families to explore. For child-friendly routes, head to the National Trust website, and embark on a memorable adventure amidst nature’s beauty.

4. Geocaching – The Ultimate Treasure Hunt
Join the world’s largest treasure hunt, completely free! Simply download the app from the official Geocaching website to discover the abundance of hidden treasures in your local area. Embark on this exciting adventure right away, but don’t forget to bring along some treasures of your own to replace the ones you find. Happy geocaching!

5. Park Picnic Fun
Gather your friends and head to the nearby park for a delightful picnic day. Consider bringing a Bluetooth speaker to add some music or, for added excitement, a portable BBQ. Alternatively, keep it simple with a traditional picnic on a cosy blanket. To find an excellent free park near you, visit the Green Flag Awards website for award-winning options.

6. Explore the Great Outdoors with Free Cycling
Experience the thrill of cycling outdoors without spending a dime! Enjoy scenic city views from the saddle and have a blast with your entire family on this fun and active day out. From cycling in parks to scenic trails and tranquil roads, there’s a wide variety of routes to choose from. Stop for a bite to eat at street food stalls and make it an endless, family-friendly adventure together.

7. Explore a Splash Pad Adventure
Every year, councils across the UK are installing new splash pads, offering a safe and exhilarating way to spend your day without spending a single penny! Dive into the excitement and enjoy a fun-filled time at these fantastic splash pads.

8. Enjoy Free Tennis Opportunities
Aside from numerous cities offering complimentary tennis courts in their parks, the charity organization ‘Tennis For Free’ provides free two-hour coaching sessions for children aged 3 and above. With 38 locations across England, Wales, and Scotland offering weekly sessions, this is a fantastic chance to engage in tennis without any cost. Check out tennisforfree.com for more information.

9. Host a Budget-Friendly BBQ
Enjoy a sizzling BBQ without breaking the bank! Discover these Top 10 Tips for a Budget-Friendly BBQ to make the most of your outdoor grilling experience.

10. Experience Garden Camping Delight

kids in garden by bonfire with mushmellows

Who says you need to venture far into the wilderness to enjoy nature? Turn your own garden into an outdoor haven by pitching a tent, grabbing your torch, and gathering some books and games. Snuggle down for the night and make unforgettable memories right in the comfort of your own garden.

11. Get Active with a Group Sports Day
When was the last time you had a blast playing catch, Frisbee, rounders, or football? Gather your friends, family, and schoolmates, grab your sports gear, and head to the local field for an action-packed group sports day. It’s a perfect way to bond and have fun together with your loved ones.

12. Enjoy Free Swimming
Great news! Council-run leisure centres are now offering free swimming sessions for under 16s throughout the holidays. Give your local centre a call to find out the schedule for these free sessions and dive into a fantastic time at the pool.

13. Get Ready for a Splashing Water Fight
Summer is here! Let’s cool down. Equip yourself with water guns and balloons from your nearby pound shop and let the kids go wild with excitement in the garden. It’s a perfect way to beat the heat and create unforgettable summer memories filled with laughter and joy.

14. Exciting Photography Adventure for All Ages
Engage your kids in a thrilling photography challenge! Compile a list of 10 items for them to find and capture with their mobile phones at a chosen location, be it the beach, park, museum, or city street. Afterward, select the best shot from each category and award 3 points for the top, 2 points for second place, and 1 point for third (you can adjust the scoring based on the number of children participating). The child with the highest points emerges as the winner. With modern mobile phones, this activity is a breeze, and you can share these memorable moments on Instagram or WhatsApp, adding to the fun and excitement.

15. Library Workshops: A Treasure Trove of Free Events
During the half term, your local library hosts an array of fantastic free workshops and special events. Stay updated on the latest happenings by checking your library’s website for event information. Don’t miss out on these enriching opportunities.

16. Immerse in the World of Books

Immerse in the World of Books

Reading shouldn’t be confined to school time. Bookstart, a reading charity, organizes numerous free literary events for young ones in libraries and community spaces nationwide. Discover the exciting events available in your area at booktrust.org.uk. Let’s continue to explore and learn beyond the classroom, embracing the joy of reading in our own time too.

17. Discover Thrilling Free Community Events
Explore the wonderful world of free activities offered by local churches, libraries, and children’s centres. These organizations host a variety of exciting events that are perfect for families. Additionally, don’t forget to inquire about free local activities in your area through local Facebook groups. It’s a fantastic way to stay informed about the latest happenings and engage in delightful community experiences without spending a penny.

18. Discover the Joy of Gardening Together
Let your little ones embrace their inner gardeners and enjoy a fun-filled time in the garden while you get your gardening done without any extra cost.

19. Experience the Joy of Blackberry Picking
Picking fresh fruit is not only healthy but also a fun way to stay active. We have cherished this family activity since childhood, especially the excitement of making (and eating) delicious desserts afterward. Share the joy with friends or family and make it a group adventure to find even more blackberries.

20. Embark on a Veggie Growing Adventure
Engage the kids in the joy of gardening as they tend to their own vegetable patch every day, watering and nurturing their plants. Not only will this keep them busy, but it also comes with the bonus of free, homegrown food – a delightful and welcomed reward for your efforts.

21. Learn with Fun Cooking Sessions
Why not involve the kids in preparing your meals? It’s a fantastic opportunity to teach them about healthy eating while enjoying quality time together in the kitchen.

22. Delightful Duck Feeding Adventure
Embark on a charming outing to your nearby park, river, or lake, and share the joy of feeding ducks, swans, and even some cheeky seagulls! It’s a heart warming experience that will surely leave you with fond memories of this enchanting activity.

23. Create a Fun Sandpit Adventure
Turn an old pool or any sturdy container into a delightful sandpit by filling it with affordable play sand. Provide your kids with buckets and spades, and watch them enjoy endless hours of digging and playing in the garden! It’s a simple and cost-effective way to add joy and excitement to their outdoor playtime.

24. Head to the Beach

Family of four at the beach

Indulge in a delightful day at the beach with sun cream, a bucket, spade, and a cosy blanket. Whether with your family or a group of friends, enjoy the sun, sand, and fun as you build sandcastles and create unforgettable beach memories together.

25. Experience the Joy of Kite Flying
Fly a kite for a thrilling and enjoyable activity. You can even try making your very own kite for added excitement and a personal touch.

26. Exciting Skate Park Adventure
Head to a skate park and witness older kids showcasing their impressive tricks, or better yet, help boost the little ones’ confidence by introducing them to the ramps and offering some beginner training. It’s an exciting outing that the whole family can enjoy together.

27. Fun and Free Car Wash
Here’s a sneaky yet brilliant way to get your kids involved in chores for free! They’ll absolutely love anything involving water, making it a surefire hit. Let them enjoy a fun car wash session, and you’ll have a sparkling clean car with happy helpers by your side.

28. Budget-Friendly Cinema Experience
Save big on cinema tickets by attending dedicated morning screenings in most theatres. Enjoy tickets priced around £2.50 each at Cineworld, and for even greater savings, bring along your own snacks! It’s a fantastic way to have an affordable movie outing without compromising on the fun.

29. Delightful Homemade Treats
Get the kids involved in some baking fun! Let them whip up cost-effective desserts, and for a refreshing treat in the sun, allow them to make delicious homemade ice lollies. With the addition of extra friends, you can all share and enjoy your delightful creations together. It’s a sure fire way to have a wonderful time while satisfying those sweet cravings.

30. Join the Game Swap Fun
Explore Facebook Groups to find people giving away free toys, board games, or books. You can also suggest a game swap among friends to exchange your old board games and books for new ones. It’s a fantastic way to declutter your collection, discover fresh entertainment, and have an enjoyable time trying out exciting new games and books.

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