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Andy Parsons

Time Out staff pick their favourite free things to do in London

From ace museums to lovely community gardens, we pick the best free events in the city

By Time Out London editors

London gets a bad rep for being an expensive city, but there are loads of great free things to do all over town – if you know where to look. Street-art covered tunnels, community gardens and off-the-beaten-track art galleries are just some of our favourite activities that won’t cost a penny. We pick the best of the bunch.

Sir John Soane's Museum

Museums History Holborn

‘Sir John Soane’s Museum is home to the visionary architect’s bizarre collection of artefacts. It’s like a posh version of one of those Channel 4 shows about hoarders.’ Chris Waywell, Associate Editor

© UCL Grant Museum / Matt Clayton

Grant Museum of Zoology

Museums Natural history Bloomsbury

‘The Grant Museum of Zoology is a collection of thousands of animal specimens. Hunt for a dodo skeleton, ponder a sinister-looking jar of moles or marvel at an elephant’s skull.’ James Manning, Global Projects Editor


Dalston Eastern Curve Garden

Attractions Parks and gardens Dalston

‘Dalston Curve Garden is a hidden oasis. If you just want to soak up Glastonbury-in-London vibes, no one will bother you. It’s where I go to feel instantly calmer.’ Lisa Wright, Time Out London contributor

© Gagosian Gallery

Gagosian Gallery

Art Galleries Mayfair

‘Mayfair is full of galleries and they’re all free. Start with the big ones – Hauser & Wirth or Gagosian for huge names like Richard Serra and Picasso – then try the little fancy ones.’ Eddy Frankel, Art & Culture Editor


Leake Street

Art Graffiti Waterloo

‘Leake Street Tunnel in Waterloo is full of street art. Go with some mates and a bag of tinnies to watch the artists in action. You’ll always see something new.’ Alexandra Sims, Acting Things to Do Editor

Imperial War Museum

Museums Military and maritime Lambeth

‘I like the gallery at the top of the Imperial War Museum. There’s loads of art from great British war artists and it’s a bit of secret space. Plus it’s all light and summery.’ Phil De Semlyen, Global Film Editor

Andy Parsons

Nomadic Community Gardens

Things to do Spitalfields

‘If you wish you could be at a festival 24/7, Shoreditch’s Nomadic Garden is a handy proxy. Styled a bit like Glastonbury’s Block9 and the Green Fields, it’s a delight.’ Oliver Keens, Music and Nightlife Editor


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