So it’s half-term and you want to do something fun with the kids? We’ve compiled our top picks of family friendly socially distanced days out in London. Although all the information is correct at the time of publication, please do check with the individual events to see if there are any changes.
Drive-in Film Club at Alexandra Palace
Enjoy the drive-in cinema from the spectacular grounds at Alexandra Palace and check out classics like Jurassic Park, get spooked by Beetlejuice or The Gremlins, meet Casper the friendly ghosts, dress in black with the Adams Family or get witchy with Hocus Pocus.
When: Throughout October 2020 half-term
Where: Alexandra Palace
How much: £29.50 per vehicle more info and bookings here.
A Midsummer’s Dream Workshop
The Shakespeare Globe has a variety of fun events at the venue as well as on Zoom to celebrate their Telling Tales season this autumn. Expect a variety of performances, workshops, tours and interactive storytelling. More info on the series of events here.
When: 17 – 29 October 2020
Where: Shakespeare Globe
How much: From £12 per person more info and booking for the workshop here.
Museum of Brands
If you are into marketing, love household brands and want to explore 200 years of consumer culture then the Museum of Brands is for you. There is going to be a spooky Halloween trail as well as free goodie bags for all children taking part.
When: from 17 -31st October
Where: Museum of Brands
How much: Use code KIDSGOFREE and only pay £9 per adult. More info and booking here.
Kids go free to St Paul’s
Families can discover the treasures and hidden stories at St Paul’s Cathedral minus the price tag as children under 18 can go free from 17th until 31st of October. Marvel at London views from the Stone Gallery and check out the pineapples Sir Chrisopher Wren packed on each of the towers of this iconic London landmark.
When: 17 – 31 October 2020
Where: St Paul’s Cathedral
How much: £17 for adults with kids going free. More info and booking here.
Where’s Wally big museum hunt
Join museums throughout the UK as you hunt for Wally. Participating London Museums include the Museum of Water and Steam, London Transport Museum where you can take a sneak peek inside vehicles, take part in singing and storytelling and enjoy family games together as well Horniman Museum and Gardens, the V&A and more.
When: throughout October
Where: Various museums throughout the UK. Full details here.
How much: entry to the museums varies. Check the individual website.
Discover the wild exploits of Frank McClean and others who have flown through Tower Bridge. Young Londoners and their parents can have a go at making your own paper aeroplane to recreate the stunt. Tower Bridge has a dedicated space exclusively for families to have fun and get crafty this half term, on the East Walkway. Family activities are drop-in throughout the day and included within the price of admission, so all you have to do is pre-book your tickets for half term.
When: 24 -31 October from 10am until 4pm.
Where: Tower Bridge
How much: £10:60 for adults and £5:50 for children over the age of five. More info and booking here.
The Very Hungry Caterpillar live
Created by Jonathan Rockefeller, the critically acclaimed production of The Very Hungry Caterpillar Show features a menagerie of 75 lovable puppets, faithfully adapting four of Eric Carle’s stories, Brown Bear, Brown Bear, 10 Little Rubber Ducks, The Very Lonely Firefly and of course, the star of the show The Very Hungry Caterpillar who celebrated its 50th Birthday in 2019. Read our full review here.
When: 24 October – 27th October at various times
Where: Artsdepot, Finchley
How much: £14 per person check website for details and bookings.
Halloween Afternoon Tea Bus Tour
Take in the views of London as you tuck into spooktacular treats from Brigit’s Bakery including pumpkin tartlets, finger sandwiches, mini cupcakes, sweet pastries and of course, the obligatory freshly baked scone with jam and clotted cream. Yum. You have the option of trying out some of Jimini’s edible insects if you’re feeling particularly hungry and brave. Anyone for a spider surprise?
When: 24-25 October and 30 – 31st October
Where: departing from Victoria Coach station
How much: £45 per adult more info here.
Reach for the stars
Rocket into space with Nat as she overcomes her fears and strives to achieve her greatest ambition – to fly. Told through dazzling puppetry and inspired by the life of Mae Jemison, the first female African-American astronaut to go into space, this heart-warming and inspiring story encourages us all to strive for our goals.
When: 27 – 31 October 2020
Where: The Albany
How much: Little bubble (which includes one adult and two children) is £14 and big bubble (two adults and up to three children) is £28. More info and booking here.
When: Daily check website for availability
Where: Paddington & Kingston
How much: Use code HALFTERM15 for 15% off so you pay £101.15 for 2 hours. More info and booking here.
Journey to Awareness
This outdoor, socially distanced event for all ages will have an interactive story telling session based on an Oscar Wilde story, live entertainment including performances from English Touring Opera and a Dementia Friends presentation. The Museum and Gardens as well as the play area will also be open but the museum needs booking in advance here.
When: 29 October 2020 from 13:15 until 15:30
Where: Fulham Palace
How much: free but tickets need booking here.
Halloween Trick or Treat Trail
A fun trail throughout Covent Garden that teaches kids to be more observant and curious about their surroundings. Expect street art, a little history and a lot of naughty and nice treats along the way.
When: throughout October 2020 half-term
Where: Covent Garden
How much: free trail can be found here.
Alice in Wonderland
Don’t be late for this very important date! Be transported down the rabbit hole into a world that is a little less crazy than ours has been in the past few months. Expect the usual cast of characters as well as colourful costumes in this super family friendly ballet recommended for ages 2 and above.
When: 29th October
Where: Stanley Halls
How much: adult £20 children £17.50 more info and booking here for Leicester Square and here for Stanley Halls.
Forbidden Forest Cinema
An immersive cinematic experience where you wander through a magical woodland to find your seating and check out new releases including Onward and Toy Story 4.
When:Throughout October 2020 half-term
How much: £15 for one adult and up to three kids or £25 for two adults and two kids. More info and booking here
Search for Where’s Wally in this spooky museum search, meet Cutty’s characters and listen to some of their exploits or take part in a live workshop. The Cutty Sark crew have been busy writing a new book for little sailors and curated activities around this new publication (which is available in the shop). Bring your toddlers on board to hear about James Robson’s search for tea.
When: 28 of October for a sea without tea – more info and booking here. Other activities run daily during half-term, more info here.
Where: Cutty Sark, Royal Museums Greenwich.
How much: Adult £15, Child £7.50 more info and booking here.
Roald Dahl and the Imagination Seekers
Roald Dahl and the Imagination Seekers is a theatrical and interactive experience, especially made for all the family to enjoy. It’s a thrilling story delivered through performance, games and creative play that explores Roald Dahl’s extraordinary stories, including Charlie and the Chocolate Factory, The BFG and The Twits along the way.
When: 31 October 2020 at 11am and 2pm
Where: Greenwich Theatre
How much: £13.50 for adults and £8.50 for children
Pumpkin Carving Party
Come and carve pumpkins with the kids into spooky Halloween lanterns and then light them all up at 6pm. Expect a decorated outdoor yard, a spooky soundtrack and seasonal food including mulled wine. For £4 you get your own pumpkin and carving kit.
When: 25 October 2020 2pm
Where: Stanley Halls
How much: £4 per person more info and booking here.
Autumn themed art and craft activities for families will be available at the Royal Mews. Be inspired by Autumn and create your own seasonal scene. In addition to the art & craft activities there will be family themed talks plus activity sheets and challenges to take part in.
When: 29 & 30 October 2020 between 11am and 3pm
Where: Royal Mews
How much: £13 for an adult gives you access for the whole year. More info and bookings here.
Sculpture in the city
To run alongside the 9th Edition of Sculpture in the City, Sculpture in the City Learning is a programme of fun, educational activities for families to do at home or whilst visiting the City. You can expect a mix of creative and informative activities, videos and downloadable packs with original illustrations by Danielle Rhoda. Great one for London families looking for a new part of London to explore together (all the sculptures are outside and safe to visit – the website has up to date info on safety measures in link with government guidelines).
When: in your own time
Where: Throughout the city of London
How much: free.
Make t-shirts, tote bags and Halloween lanterns
Opening at The Founding Museum on 24 October, The Covid Letters: A Vital Update is a project from Jonny Banger (of subversive fashion label Sports Banger), featuring work created by the nation’s children during lockdown. Jonny’s call out on social media invited children under the age of 16 to customise the letter sent by the government at the start of lockdown, which urged residents to stay at home and protect the NHS. Toddlers to teenagers from all across the UK responded with scribbles and doodles, calls to support the NHS with more PPE and anti-government graffiti. Now is your turn to bring the kids in to customise a variety of t-shirts and tote bags or to make halloween lanterns.
When: 27 – 30 october 2020
Where: Foundling Museum
How much: free but tickets must be booked in advance here.
Family Bundle Feast
Feed up to five adults with a delicious bundle from Hard Rock Cafe – we had a great time when we visited earlier in the year and we love a good deal. The bundles come in six mouthwatering options and include family favourites like chicken and fries, burgers, pasta and fajitas.
When: Ongoing until 22 November 2020
Where: Hard Rock Cafe
How much: From £29.95 more info and booking here.