If you’re anything like me, you’re probably looking for ideas to keep your children busy without breaking the bank this half term… I am based in Manchester, and have compiled a list of free half term activities to help us get through half term. I figured I’d share it with my readers so you too can (hopefully) survive half term without going bankrupt or stir crazy at home.

Free half term activities

The free half term activities I am sharing are a bit different from the usual parks, libraries and museums so often shared in the run up to the school holidays. First up is the Smyths Lego Event…

free half term activities - smyths

This Saturday (28th May), all Smyths stores across the UK are having a Lego event. All children will be given a goodie bag containing a free lego mini build toy, Skylanders trading cards and a My Little Pony figure. There will also be face painting, Nerf and Play-Doh activities in selected stores too.

free half term activities - Ordsall hall

If (like us) you’re into growing your own fruit and veggies… The Ordsall Hall WW1 Allotment open day sounds like it will be worth a look. We are definitely calling in here on Sunday to see how allotments looked 100 years ago! We have got an allotment ourselves so I am really excited to see how things have changed in the past 100 years.

Free half term activities at Salford Museum & Art Gallery

There are lots of other free half term activities happening in Salford this half term. These include craft sessions, a chance to play with the Victorian toys in the Salford Museum and Art Gallery and lots more besides. Check their website for full info.

Park lives is a free and easy way to get outdoors and keep the kids (and yourself) entertained this Summer. There’s a huge range of free activities available across Manchester each week. These include donkey grooming, fun family fishing, buggy bootcamp, family fun camp, yoga and much more. You do need to register and reserve your place in advance, but I am definitely going to take advantage of some of these free activities next week and over the summer holidays as well.

If you (like us) have a child with additional needs… You may want to check out The Donkey Sanctuary’s Donkey Interaction Day on 1st June. It’s for children with additional needs and their siblings. My two both went on a Donkey ride earlier this year, so I am confident they’ll love this free activity. Booking is essential though. It’s top of my to-do list in the morning!

The Trafford Centre have loads of free activities going on next week. There’s a teddy bear biscuit design station. Plus a crazy hair cress pot making day. Additionally, there’s a bug hunt and a superstar stage day, amongst other things.


Last but by no means least, The Printworks have got lots of fun activities planned for the week ahead. All of the activities take place under cover in the Pump Yard. So you won’t struggle to find them, and you can avoid the bad weather that’s been forecast!

Tuesday is a fun day, packed with activities including giant games, dancing and mascot racing. Wednesday will give kids a chance to learn how to plant vegetables. As well as help make a scarecrow for The Printworks’ rooftop garden.

Thursday will involve a bear hunt inside a giant storytelling tent. The chance for your child to send a postcard to their teddy bear. Additionally, there’s stories read by children’s author Michael Rosen.

Friday is Emergency Services Day. Children will be taught how to stay safe by members of Manchester’s emergency services. It definitely sounds like a great week of activities. Although I think Wednesday and Thursday will appeal to my children the most. If you fancy grabbing a bite to eat while you’re there, kids eat free in Frankie and Bennys… As long as an adult meal is purchased too.

That’s it for the free activities. However, do come back tomorrow to check out my post on other good value activities as well.

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