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    22 Things To Do In London That Are Surprisingly Free

    Did you know that Nando's has a music studio that you can use for free?

    1. Visit the city's museums.

    2. Go backstage at the National Theatre.

    Philip Vile / National Theatre / Via Twitter: @ntbookshop

    Head to the Sherling Backstage Walkway at the National Theatre, and you’ll be able to see down into the backstage area, strolling above the rooms where scenery is painted, props are stored and sets are sawed and nailed into life. Access is on the Gallery Level in the Dorfman Theatre Foyer.

    3. See East London's street art.

    4. Volunteer on the city waterways with Moo Canoes.

    5. Visit God's Own Junkyard.

    6. Record a song at Nando's.


    Fans of both music and Nando's can rejoice. The legendary chicken restaurant has launched the perfect venn diagram of both interests: a free-to-use-music studio in its Frith Street branch in Soho. Fitted with state of the art equipment, those using the studio will just have to content with the curious eyes of diners.

    7. Listen to the evensong at St Paul's.

    8. Browse Harry Potter memorabilia at MinaLima.


    Satiating your love for Harry Potter can be expensive – merchandise, tours and a full robe-and-wand-getup don’t come cheap, and not all of us have a secret stash of coins in Gringotts. Luckily there are a handful of free Potter experiences around the city. The best is The House of MinaLima, run by graphic designers Miraphora Mina & Eduardo Lima (Mina + Lima = MinaLima). The dream team helped design the worlds of all the Harry Potter and Fantastic Beasts films, and a huge amount of wizarding world graphic art and memorabilia can be browsed in their Soho gallery and shop.

    9. ...and take a picture at Platform 9¾.

    10. Do a tour of Freemasons' Hall.

    United Grand Lodge of England

    Freemasons' Hall is the principal meeting place for Masonic Lodges in London – for everyone who isn’t a Masonic Lodge, however, it’s a seriously pretty Grade II* listed Art Deco building. Open from Monday to Saturday, free guided tours are available which will take you through the Grand Temple, Museum of Freemasonry and through more gilt than you ever thought possible.

    11. See Leake Street’s graffiti.

    12. Walk through some mews.

    13. Find Soho’s hidden noses.

    Flickr: karvajavi

    Nose your way round Soho to find noses hidden around the streets. A piece of public art created by Rick Buckley in 1977 in protest against too many ‘nosey’ CCTV cameras being installed. 35 were originally installed, but now only ten are thought to be still remaining.

    14. Stroll the Columbia Road Flower Market.

    15. See a great view of London at the Sky Garden.

    Sky Garden

    The plushest free views over London can be found at the Sky Garden, an atrium on the 43rd floor of the Walkie Talkie building stuffed with foliage. Think floor to ceiling windows, jungle-like interiors, and an open air terrace. Though free, slots do need to be booked ahead.

    16. Listen to a free concert at the Royal Opera House.

    17. Walk London’s most colourful street.

    18. Listen in on Speaker’s Corner.

    Antony / Via Flickr: anton41

    A slightly niche option, Speaker’s Corner in Hyde Park has been a traditional site for public speeches and debates since the mid 1800s. Karl Marx, Vladimir Lenin and George Orwell are all known to have given speeches near it. Grab a seat nearby, and listen in to Londoner’s exercising their right to free speech – a free live podcast, if you will.

    19. See some free comedy at Top Secret Comedy Club.

    20. Get fit for free with Our Parks.

    Our Parks

    Working in partnership with local councils, Our Parks is a new initiative that lets people work out for free in London. Sign up to the program, and choose from a number of free classes led by qualified instructors in local parks across the city. Classes range from boxing to buggy exercise for new parents.

    21. Take a moment at Highgate Cemetary.

    22. Marvel at this Hindu temple.