I love finding cheap things to do alone in London. It’s not like it’s hard to find activities and places to visit off the beaten path in London, but sometimes, I feel like it’s a city where it’s much more enjoyable to be with friends or your partner. Still, visiting London alone is something I’ve done over and over again as I am living half of the time in this great, big, and… expensive city.
That’s why today, I wanted to focus on things to do alone in London that are either free or super cheap. That’s not all – who really wants to splurge when they’re visiting London on a budget? You’re right – not you, not me, and not most people either, to be fair.
If you’ve met me here on The London Rack, it’s because you want to find fun non touristy things to do in London alone, that don’t break the bank, and that don’t include the V&A museum or standing under the London Eye while other people are having the best afternoon tea. You don’t want to go on a day trip from London either, and you need to find what to do in London alone even when it’s raining.
I’ve thought up some cool solo things to do in London under a variety of weather changes – we all know how whimsical the weather can be, and when you’re on solo travel in London, the last thing you want to do is have to find a coffee shop or a library and spend money just to be protected from the rain.
If you’re new to The London Rack, do sign up for the newsletter – you’ll thank yourself later, when you discover all kinds of fun things to do alone in London at night, during the day, come rain or shine. I talk about all things free in London, cheap, and even high-end at times so you can discover London from the point of view of one that lives through all the non-touristy things to do in London day after day.
7 Best Non Touristy Things To Do in London Alone
Things to do in London alone are many, and you can even find amazing London non tourist attractions that are worth your time and low budget. From small museums to amazing, green parks, from food to exhibitions, I’ve put together my own list of favorite fun things to do alone in London.
Those don’t require having to go on a day trip or spending the day window-shopping at Harrod’s. Who wants to go to the best department stores without being able to treat themselves? Not me.
Here are the coolest things to do alone in London off the beaten path – let me know your own favorite solo things to do in London, I’d love to discover cool hidden gems!
1. Free Things to Do in London Alone: Visit the Kyoto Garden
One of my favorite things to do alone in London is visiting one of the many cute parks. English parks have a different aura than the French or Italian parks do. When you go solo travel in London, Kyoto Garden in Holland Park is definitely a relaxing park you’ll want to visit.
I love all things Japanese and tidy, and Kyoto Garden is one of the cutest places that can qualify as off the beaten path in London. There are not often that many people in this park, especially if you go have a walk and a quiet solo time there in the morning. Sometimes, there’s no better thing than to be – and feel – alone in London.
The beautiful fish, the birds, the stones, and the carefully curated park is a visit that you can’t miss. I like how Kyoto Garden is a hidden gem in Holland Park, one of the quietest London non tourist attractions. Back in the day when I was a fashion makeup artist, I have done two or three photoshoots there. Kyoto Garden is that kind of inspiring place where you just want to read and meditate in London. There are no other non tourist places that are that humanly satisfying.
2. London Non Tourist Attractions: Explore Cute Villages Near London
When you go solo travel in London, it’s a cool thing to spend one or two days visiting the most famous attractions and museums in London. The London Eye, the Thames riverside, Trafalgar Square, Covent Garden and Camden Town all have a particular atmosphere to them, and they’re all fun things to do alone in London. But there’s more to the city.
One of the fun non touristy things to do in London alone is visiting all the cute villages scattered around the city. You don’t have to go to Oxford, Rye, or Brighton to enjoy a high-end village feel and dream of higher grounds in London. There’s plenty to see in London.
Here are a few places off the beaten path in London that are cute, classy, and that you’ll dream of owning a house in when you see them:
- West Hampstead London
- Muswell Hill (pictured above)
- Stoke Newington, my favorite!
- Wood Green
I have to highlight a visit to Stoke Newington as one of the best things to do on your own in London. I personally feel like it’s the cutest village within London that I’ve ever been to. Of course, within this village, you can find vegan bakeries, workshops, independent clothing shops in London, and so many more coffee shops concentrated in a cute, homey kind of vibe.
I have discovered Stoke Newington as I was living near Seven Sisters, and it’s really by chance that I came across the beauty of this area. Fun things to do alone in London will always encompass walking around and stumbling on never-before-discovered areas where I can get an artisan donut or brownie, and an amazing caffè latte. Cute villages in London are just the London non tourist attractions you never knew you needed.
3. Best Things to do in London Alone: Visit Small Museums in London
We all know about the best free museums in London, like the Science Museum and the V&A Museum. Okay, well, there are other non-touristy things to do in London. For me, that includes discovering off-the-beaten-path galleries and museums. The one I would like to highlight when you go solo travel in London is the White Cube in Bermondsey.
The White Cube is a contemporary art gallery where the walls are all-white. It almost feels hospital-like when you wander from room to room, and every piece of avant-garde art is not only carefully chosen but in the spotlight thanks to the nudity of the walls.
What I really appreciate, beyond the amazing art pieces, is the proximity of this London art gallery with Borough Market where you can get the best donuts in London, London Bridge, The Shard, and the Thames riverside. It’s just super central, and one of the most thought-provoking solo things to do in London.
White Cube Gallery London Address: 144-152, Bermondsey St, London SE1 3TQ
4. Fun Non-Touristy Things To Do in London: Free Concert at St Martin in the Fields
I bet you didn’t think of going to a free concert in London as one of the best things to do in London solo, am I right? Well, if you are a classic music enthusiast, there’s this church in the city that holds free lunchtime concerts that you really can’t miss on solo travel in London. St Martin in the Fields organizes 45-minute free concerts for those who want to enjoy some downtime between one shift and another.
This church is one of the almost hidden gems in London – I am saying almost because many of us know that those free concerts are one of the fun things to do alone in London. However, not too many Londoners actually take the time to rest during lunch, and that’s understandable given the fast pace of life.
When you’re looking for things to do in London by yourself, visiting, chilling, and you find yourself near Trafalgar square, these free concerts are one of the most fun non touristy things to do in London alone.
There are other concerts organized by St Martin in the Fields in the evening as well, and I’d suggest you really check the time for the free concerts there, and other types of non-classic music concerts in London.
Discover more amazing things to do in London alone!
5. Cool Things To Do in London Alone: Hop on and off a Thames Riverboat
Now, this is one of the best things to do alone in London. Getting a day pass for the Thames Clippers riverboats is one of the coolest things that I’ve done in the city, and I cannot understand how not more people know about this. It’s like Uber or a bus, and when you’re looking for solo things to do in London, it’s uber-cool (no pun intended) to take a boat like you’d take the metro.
If you’re looking for some off the beaten path things to do in London solo, you can take the boat in the East around Canary Wharf, and hop off at the Shakespeare Globe. There are 23 piers in total around the Thames river which also include the Houses of Parliament and the Tate Modern. If you just take a day pass, you’ll be able to hop on and off as much as you want during the day – and we love that kind of freedom, don’t we?
Those boats are cool to take when you’re alone in London because of the cool feeling of freedom they bring you. They’re definitely a London non tourist attraction, and you just feel grand and stylish when you’re on one of those boats.
6. Things To Do Off The Beaten Path London Alone: Visit the Hurlingham Second Hand Bookshop
Listen, I’ll always count hunting for the best second hand bookshops as one of the coolest things to do alone in London. And the Hurlingham Books bookshop which I’ve already mentioned once or twice is one of the coolest places to visit alone in London. I’ll grant it to you, it’s far – Putney Bridge and Fulham aren’t exactly the closest places to Central London.
However, if you find a great used bookshop in London, you just travel to it because you know it’s irreplaceable. Plus, buying books in one of the best things to do in London alone, especially on a budget.
I highly recommend getting one or two classic or modern literature titles from Hurlingham Books, then getting a coffee and a slice of cake from the more-than-amazing River Cafe. You wanted the most fun non touristy things to do in London, and that quiet moment by myself that I try to implement quite often in my life is one of the coolest things I can offer myself.
7. Things To Do Alone in London: Visit the London Landmarks Colorful Houses
I will talk here about Notting Hill and Portobello Road, but not only. This wouldn’t be a full list of non touristy things to do in London otherwise, now would it? Finding colorful houses scattered around London is one of my favorite things to do on your own in London. It plays on your curiosity and traveller’s basic instincts.
Here are a few of those colorful places where the houses are painted in pastel, bright, and even muted colors:
- Notting Hill
- Portobello Road
- Aberfeldy Street in East London, one of the top top top London non tourist attractions – trust!
- Chalcot Crescent
- Bywater Street
- Neal’s Yard
- Hartland Road
- Camden Market
- Kelly Street
- Lancaster Road
There are MANY MORE of these colorful streets in London, and finding out where they are is one of my favorite activities to do alone in London. I’ve written a super colorful post about the Notting Hill houses and London famous streets that you might absolutely love – check it out if you’re a color enthusiast!
I’ll also soon write a full post about the most colorful places in the city – do sign up for the newsletter if you don’t want to miss it, or other great things to do on a budget in London!
7 Best Things To Do in London Alone
These 7 non touristy things to do in London alone are among my favorite. I’ll soon share more of cool things to do on a solo travel in London, for there are many, many more amazing places to discover, great foods to eat, and museums to marvel in.
In the meantime, why not go on a hunt for the biggest bookstores in London? You’re bound to find one or two titles there that you fall in love with!