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14 fun things to do in west London for under a tenner

The summer holidays are just around the corner, and you may be looking for cheap, fun activities near you to amuse the children while they're off school! Well look no further...

Mayor of London Boris Johnson and Arnold Schwarzenegger enjoy a ride on the Boris Bikes!(Image: Anthony Devlin/PA Wire)

The school summer holidays are just around the corner, with most schools breaking up for the long holiday in mid-July.

And with the weather perking up, now is the time to head outside and enjoy a summer activity that doesn't break the bank!

Whether you're looking to keep the kids occupied for cheap, or you fancy a summer day trip with friends or family, sometimes the best fun can be free!

Here are our top 14 suggestions for things to do in west London for under a tenner:

Watch free outdoor theatre

Hounslow's Bell Square holds free outdoor theatre and events for local residents weekly; from Holi colour festivals to dance recitals and plays, you can always find something fun and interesting to pop into.

Most of the events are colourful, lively and perfect for children, so why not call them up and find out what exciting performances they have in store for summer?

Bell Square, High Street, Hounslow, TW3 3HH - 0208 232 1019

Budget: Free!

Visit one of west London's famous parks

London has been proven to be pretty leafy, with the capital boasting more green spaces and parks than any other major city in the world.

West London holds most of the city's Royal Parks, including Green Park and Richmond Park; so pack a picnic on a sunny day and head down with the kids for some free fun in the middle of nature.

Budget: A few sandwiches and crisps.

Sample some street food and wander around a market

Portobello Market in Notting Hill is one of the most famous markets in London, and it's right on our doorstep! Sample the best street food and look around for hidden gems.

With one of the biggest collections of antiques worldwide, spend some time looking for a buried treasure on a sunny day!

Budget: Free to look around, depends on what you buy!

Soak up culture at a museum

How lucky are we that all of our major museums are free to enter? Battle the crowds during summer and head to the Natural History museum or Science Museum in South Kensington and soak up some culture.

Kids will love seeing the old dinosaur bones and enormous blue whale model, so take them on a day they will never forget this summer.

Budget: A voluntary donation of £4.

Head to the farm

Spend the day surrounded by cute piggies and cheeky llamas at Hounslow Urban Farm; let your children feed the sheep and goats, or if you're feeling brave, hold a snake or spider in the creepy crawly section.

Hounslow Urban Farm, Fagg's Road, Feltham, TW14 0LZ - 020 8831 9658

Budget: £7.50 for adults, £6 for children

Go to a cheap concert

Opera Holland Park are staging a performance of Alice's Adventures in Wonderland from July 16 to August 1; this fun and sensory opera for children provides a perfect day out in the sunshine this summer.

Fall down the rabbit hole and enjoy music and drama in the open air.

Budget: Opera Holland Park's Alice's Adventures in Wonderland is £10 for adults and £5 for children.

Hire a Boris Bike and cycle around

Hire one of London's legendary Boris Bikes and cycle around your local area, taking in the sights. Even Arnold Schwarzenegger has been seen riding one!

Budget: £2 to access the bikes for 24-hour bike access, and the first 30 minutes of each journey is free. Longer journeys cost £2 for each extra 30 minutes (For under a tenner you can have the bike for two and a half hours...)

Visit a library or bookshop

Though it's a little journey away, the British Library is one of the most beautiful public libraries around; take a trip and read to your children all day in the idyllic setting.

Failing that, local libraries and bookshops often hold fun free events for locals, and they make a wonderful afternoon out. Visit a bookshop near you and ask about their events!

Budget: Free (unless you buy a book!)

Buy some old-fashioned sweets

There are loads of old-fashioned sweet shops in London to try some vintage candy, from cola cubes to licorice. Wander around some of these brilliant shops and buy a tuck shop bag... Then run around the park for a while to burn off the sugar rush!

Budget: Depends how much you buy!

Relax at Ruislip Lido

Ruislip Lido is a 60-acre lake and artificial beach that's perfect for relaxing on sunny days with children. Take a book, slather on the SPF and pretend you're on a Caribbean island for a while - ahhh...

Ruislip Lido, Ruislip

Budget: Free.

Walk through China Town

Chinatown in Soho attracts thousands of visitors and tourists who come for not only the delicious food, but also to see the beautiful decorations and archways. Walk up and down the famous streets and admire the architecture, then stop for a meal on the way home.

Budget: Free.

Wander through Covent Garden

What better way to spend the day than wandering through the lanes and markets of Covent Garden? The myriad stalls and marketplaces mean you could find a brilliant bargain if you look hard enough!

There is also a performance space inside the piazza and out, so make sure to stop and enjoy the brilliant street entertainment on offer.

Budget: Free, unless you stop to shop!

Enjoy an open mic night

There are thousands of really cheap open mic comedy and music nights dotted all around London. If you're looking for a fun night out on a budget, watch up-and-coming talent perform in some great venues near you... And maybe even have a go yourself!

For more information about open mic nights in Hillingdon borough, read our music columnist Hughie Dixon's weekly live music round-up.

Budget: Most open mic nights locally are under £5 to enter.

Visit an art gallery

There are plenty of gorgeous art galleries in west London to visit and admire; certain exhibits, such as Alexander McQueen's Savage Beauty at the V&A may be a little pricey, but what you can find for free is just as divine.

Wander down to an art gallery near your for some culture that doesn't break the bank.

Budget: Free.

For an extensive list of things to do outside in west London, check out our list of 100 outdoor activities in the area.

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