Family-friendly activities for the bank holiday weekend

Animals in city farm with skyline in the background. Pic: city farm

Explore the local area with our fun and budget-friendly family activity suggestions

With lockdown restrictions continuing to ease and the warmer weather beginning to creep in, the bank holiday weekend could not have come at a better time. We have made it easy for families by putting together a list of exciting local activity ideas that promise to keep the whole family entertained this weekend without breaking the bank.


The Horniman Museum in Forest Hill, Croydon. Photo: Julian Osley
  • Horniman Museum

The Horniman Museum and Gardens is a museum located in Forest Hill, Lewisham. First opened in 1901 and designed by Charles Harrison Townsend, its displays include a wide range of anthropology, natural history, musical instruments and taxidermied animals. It is also home to an Aquarium and butterfly house. The museum itself is free to enter but you must secure tickets in advance. The museum is open every day from 10am-5:30pm with the exception of Wednesdays. Tickets are available here.

  • Brockley Market

Open from 10am-12pm every Saturday, the multi award winning Brockley market hosts traders selling a wide range of local produce including artesian breads, pastries, plants, vegetables and street food. The bustling market is a great way to ease yourself into the bank holiday weekend and treat yourself to some luxurious fine food all while supporting local business.

  • Plonk Crazy Golf

Located on the grounds of the Horniman Museum this outdoor crazy golf course is a great way to spend the afternoon with the family. The 9 hole course is one of five located around the city that were created by a group of film industry set designers. The course is open from 10am-4pm and tickets start from £4. You can purchase tickets here.

  • Hilly Fields

The 30 acre Hilly fields park in Lewisham offers gorgeous panoramic views over the city. It is home to a café, picnic area, football pitch, cricket pitch, play area, tennis court and basketball court making it an ideal spot for a day of outdoor family activities during the sunny bank holiday weekend. 


Families swimming in London fields Lido. Pic:Peter Smith
  • Hackney Museum

The Hackney Museum is situated conveniently beside the town hall square. The museum focuses on the history of the borough and explores its history of immigration. It offers a great experience for older families, delving into the history of the area. Entry to the museum is free of charge however tickets must be booked in advance due to its limited capacity. The museum is open Saturday from 10am-5pm and tickets are available here.

  • London Fields Lido

This 50m Olympic size heated outdoor swimming pool is located in Hackney. It includes a café, sundeck and sunbathing area, so there really is something for everyone. It is open seven days a week from 6:30am-9:30pm and admission prices start from £3.05. More details can be found here.

  • Hackney City Farm

Hackney City Farm is a city farm and independent alternative school in Haggerston, offering families the opportunity to get close to a number of farmyard animals and take part in educational vegetable planting workshops. The farmyard is open to the public from 12-3pm every afternoon and is also home to Frizzante café which boosts an impressive range of freshly baked bread and cakes. Visit their website here.

  • Clissold park

This Hackney park first opened its doors in 1889 and is a favourite spot among locals. It won a Green Flag award in 2006 and was newly renovated in 2011 following an £8.9 million Heritage Lottery Fund project. It is home to Grade II listed Clissold house, a café, paddling pool and a number of animals, including deer, who have lived in the park since 1890. This is the perfect green space to enjoy the weather and keep the whole family entertained 

Tower Hamlets:

Lake at Victoria Park. Pic: Ewan Munro
  • V&A Museum of Childhood

 The V&A Museum of Childhood is a part of the Victoria and Albert Museum based in Bethnal Green. It specialises in objects by and for children and is the perfect venue for a family friendly day out. With its vast collection of over 33,000 children’s toys from throughout the last 400 years and its interactive instillations, it offers endless amounts of educational entertainment for your little ones. Entry to the museum’s collection is free, proving perfect for a budget friendly outing. The museum is open from 10am-5:45pm daily. More in formation can be found on their website here.

  • St Katherines Dock treasure trail

This exciting family adventure takes you around some of the city’s most iconic sites by foot. Following a custom-made treasure map, you will be lead around London in hunt of clues to solve on plaques, buildings, monuments and more. This fun activity is also social distancing friendly so a perfect option for those who are covid conscious. The trail map is available here for £9.99 and can be download as a PDF, printed or posted to your home. Treasure maps can be purchased here.

  • Spitalfields City Farm

Situated just 5 minutes away from Brick Lane sits the 1.3-acre Spitalfields City Farm. It is one of 16 City Farms around London and offers free family visits. Originally opened in 1978, It is the most centrally located farm in the city and is home to an impressive range of animals and insects.  The farm also hosts a gift shop and is open to the public six days a week, Tuesday-Sunday from 10am-4pm. Visit their website here.

  • Victoria Park

Victoria Park is the largest green space in the borough of Tower Hamlets, spreading over an impressive 213 acres. Welcoming over 9 million visitors per year, the park which first opened in 1845 has won the Green Flag Peoples Choice award more than any other UK venue. It is home to two cafes, the Pavilion and the Park Café, making it the perfect place to soak up some of the pre-summer rays with the family this bank holiday weekend.


Boxpark Croydon, pic: Eagleash
  • Airport Visitor Centre

Once a World War One aerodrome turned international airport, Croydon Airport was Britain’s major international airport of the 1920s. Although not no longer an active airport, it now boosts an educational visitor centre and holds tours of Airport House, the worlds first modern airport terminal and air traffic control tower. The centre is open to visitors one Sunday per month and although admission is free, it is advised that adults provide a £6 donation where possible upon entering the museum. For more information visit their website here.

  • Box Park

Boxpark Croydon opened in 2016 and is the second instillation in the Boxpark franchise. It is the home to an endless amount of street food cuisines ensuring to satisfy even the fussiest of eaters with its vast number of options. The communal eating areas allow everyone to enjoy their food together regardless of their chosen dishes.

  • Crystal Palace Park Farm

Located on the outskirts of the borough the Crystal Palace Park Farm is home to a wide range of animals including pigs, sheep, goats, rabbits and chickens. The farm also offers educational tours for families, teaching about the environment and sustainability. The Farm is open Saturday-Sunday from 12-3:30pm. Entrance is free however donations are gladly welcomed. Find out more info here.

  • South Norwood Country Park

Croydon’s South Norwood Country Park is a nature reserve home to over 100 species of birds and has been cited by the RSPB as Croydon’s premier bird watching site. It also houses Britain’s largest dragonfly, the green emperor dragonfly. Croydon sports arena, The grounds of Croydon FC can also be found on the south eastern edge of the park.

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