10 things to do with kids in the summer holidays (for free!)
No spend days during the long six-week summer holidays are extra important to us as a family. For us it means that if we save on lots of days out and activities then we can splurge on other things like a week’s holiday. We always do lots of things for free so I have pulled together my list of 10 things to do with kids in the summer holidays, with the help of a few friends, to give you lots of ideas on fun things to keep everyone happy. After all, if we can keep them amused and stop them fighting then parents are happy people!
When I say free I mean free, literally no cost to eating or entry to where you are going. Sometimes this may require strength to say no to your children and yourself! But we can do this. We can make ten days in the summer holiday no-spend days and still have tons of fun…. so not only the fact that all these are free but you could also treat this as a hints and tip list of FUN things to do in the summer holidays!
For the long days out this will require you to take packed lunches, snacks and drinks. This food is taken from your weekly shopping budget. It may also require a drive or a train ride. Taken from your weekly transportation budget. So totally affordable.. picnics are probably one of the best things to do in the summer holidays!
1) The ever so simple country walk
We all live near to nature, even if you live in the middle of a city. Find some green space and explore. Walk to a corn field and walk around the edges. Take out the kids on their bikes. Go to the woods and created houses from branches and tree. I like to write a list of 20 flowers, trees, animals and birds that the children need to search for. Always a family for a spot of competition the winner might get to choose which DVD to put on when we get home from the walk.
Ensure you take a big bottle of water in your rucksack and fruit and energy snacks for when they start moaning that they have walked too far.
An extension to the country walk if the run treasure hunt world of Geocaching. Check out this website for a nice video explaining what you do. I have just done a quick search and there are 10 treasure spots within one mile of my house alone! I can see how recently they have been visited and how easy they are to find. You will need to take some treasure with you to replace the treasure that you find. I am sure the kids can find a toys or gift that you no longer need to put in the treasure chest.
3) Visit a free museum
So many museums are free, from the huge Science Museum or Natural History museum in London to the smaller places more local to you. The one pictured here is RAF Hendon. Money Saving Expert has a fab list of free museums where you search by location. In Eastern England, particularly Cambridge we have the choice of around 10 free museums to visit and then another 20 in London. I have just seen the bank of England museum is free. We are so doing that, how exciting. And apparently you get to hold a gold bar. Thank you to my friend Cleo of the Graffiti Academy for recommending this freebie.
4) Go to a Splash Park
We love a splash park in this household. Luckily, we are surrounded by them in lots of parks so I am guessing it’s the same for you as well, wherever you are reading this post? We have them in St. Albans, Stevenage, Letchworth, Royston. All very near to where we live. Just take a couple of towels and your packed lunch and you are good to go.
5) Assault Course at Park
Check out your local park assault course/exercise course. Our most local big park is Fairlands park in Stevenage that has a course of apparatus running through the fields and trees. The boys can do pole climbs, monkey bars, chin ups. They like to compete and have me take videos of chin up records! Thank you Emma Bradley for the reminder of another freebie activity.
6) Free community activities
Check out the free classes at your local church, library or Sure start children’s centre. All of these organisations offer freebie activities. There will be play in the park, messy play, rhyme time. All sorts. Ask around in local Facebook groups or google it. Thank you Rebecca Megson for this suggestion. Fab writer and friend of just the 29 years.
7) Plan your summer with Clubcard vouchers
The boys are very keen to go to Legoland this summer. I have been before and it is amazing, especially for three boys who all adore Lego. Alas I’m not paying full or even half price for tickets as it’s so so so expensive. For me and three boys, just checked online and if I booked at least 7 days in advance is £135 for us. Oh my gosh.
Instead I will use my Clubcard vouchers and get four tickets from there. The tickets will cost £13 each in Clubcard vouchers so I need £52 in my Clubcard vouchers account. I tend to save them up so I have that.
I would also ensure that I took plenty of drinks and a packed lunch and snacks. We will also avoid the shop!!
8) Fruit Picking
Now is a great time to hit the berry farms and go fruit picking. Near me I have them all, strawberries, raspberries, gooseberries, even the blackberries are starting to go black. And of course, you are not going to pay for what you eat!! I have a few places I know where we can go proper freebie blackberry picking, or foraging so we might end up doing that. Make sure you know what blackberry is though and don’t go picking any near a road or below a metre in height (where animals might have weed).
9) Recycling box creativity
There’s also tons of things to do in the summer holidays at home too… it doesn’t mean you have to go out everywhere! I always have a craft box suitable for any given moment of inspiration. Whenever I get stuff from goodie bags or packaging it all goes into the craft box. I just let the boys go wild with creativity. There are tons of amazing printables online that you could find. Or even printables to then make card models of things. I did lots of Finding Dory last year. I know we will be doing lot of Cars 3 themed stuff this year.
10) Cake baking
I properly love baking with the boys. I used to love baking with my mum too so I am sure it has come from her. We make fairy cakes, chocolate cake, marble cake. We make Victoria sponge, cookies and ginger biscuits. And the most fun part is always licking the bowl!