10 Free or Cheap Things To Do When The Sun Comes Out!

Right going to try something new today because I write like I speak so now I'm going to try to use dictation to write a blog post. It takes me so long to type and I have all these ideas I thought I give it a go and we'll see how it works out.

A lot of us have lived in areas that have better summers than England has, so you really need to make the most of the nice weather. I've been thinking about ideas of cheap, free and easy ideas of what to do when the sun comes out that doesn't take a lot of organization.

  1. Go for walk. This is very easy there's a lot of public footpaths all over England and I find it is a really good way to see the country in a different light. Admittedly I wasn't much a walker until after I got out of the military but now I really enjoy just going for a stroll. If you're not sure where to go or want directions of the best place to go is the AA website. It has a lot different places where you can go and you can learn about history you can either go on the website or you can buy the books which I found really helpful.
  2. Go for a bike ride. I know a lot of people are not fans of sharing the road with bikes but since I'm a cyclist I really think that it is another great way to see this country. Again the AA website is another good resource for cycling routes. If you're not confident enough to ride on the road with the cars I took a class that helps me again confidence to ride on the road call Bikeability. Another place to ride where you're not on the road is Thetford Forest. It has a lot of different paths you can take you to take the children.

  3. Heading to the park. Now I'm not sure if this is a European thing or if it's because their gardens are very small but I really like that the British seem to make the most of the parks when the sun is out. Go to Cambridge on a sunny day, Parker's Piece or Jesus Green will be full. And as the weather has been warmer I've been meeting my friends in parks. In fact I got a picnic blanket which I carry in my backpack so that Bug and I can stop anywhere and hang out. Some parks will have playgrounds for children which is great when you have older children. 
  4. Which leads me onto packing a picnic. As I'm doing baby led weaning, I am constantly packing a lunch for Bug and I. You have to eat and its expensive. And if you're formula feeding like I am, the only thing you have to buy if you're out and about is a coffee so can get hot water to make a bottle. I also like this because then I can make healthy choices not that you can't do that when you're eating out but I have spent the money in the food in my house. And I know I sound idealistic, but I'm trying to show Bug ways of eating as a family because I feel like meals should be social.
  5. If you have a National Trust or English Heritage, make the most of them. There are quite a few properties in the local area, which means that you don't have to drive very far just to get out of the house. If you don't have one of these memberships, then I would say they are very beneficial and make days out affordable. If you're trying to decide which one to get I think both are great and I've written a post about it to tell you what the differences are between the two.
  6. Sit in your garden. I often joke that the reason why we bought this house was because the garden is so nice but what I like to do is just sit in it enjoy the space. 

  7. Have a barbecue. If the weather is nice and you want to have a barbecue, I highly suggest getting to the butchers or the local shop early. The British love to have a barbecue whenever the weather is nice so often hamburgers and buns sellout. It's relatively cheap and there's just something about a barbecue that is relaxing. The British will still sit out in their garden while they are having a barbecue and it starts to rain because they're committed.
  8. Go to your local. Okay, depending upon how much you drink, this can get expensive, but there is nothing more relaxing than sitting in the pub garden with a pint. If you are not much of a drink, a shandy is nice. It is half ale and half lemonade (the British kind). ÷'[
  9. Go to the beach. So not all the beaches in England are sandy like in the US. I was as shocked as you are when I first went to Aldeburgh and it was all rocks. Some allow dogs and others don't. A little over an hour drive and you can be at the seaside. Some sandy beaches are Hunstanton, Cromer, Great Yarmouth (British think its tacky, but Americans seem to love it!), Brancaster, Sherringham and Wells-Next-The-Sea. Some dog friendly ones are Holkham, Thornham, Burnham Overy Striathe,  Whereas Brancaster, Cromer and Wells-Next-The-Sea have restrictions. Some beaches do not allow dogs on the beach from 31 March to 30 October. Here is a great website to see where a dog friendly beach is no matter where you are! 

  10. Head to the splashpads and outdoor pools. Outdoor pools are not as common here as the weather doesn't call for it. But there are some splash pads, a lido (open air pool) and paddling pools in Cambridge, you can find more information here. Just know that these are generally are open between the late May Bank holiday to the Bank Holiday in August.

All the Best!

American to Britain