I love a day out! Days out are great to discover different places, do something exciting or just do something a little bit different! However, sometimes you just can't afford a lavish day out shopping, pampering yourself or visiting expensive theme parks and centres. Let alone paying for lunch and maybe even dinner on top of that!
Here is a list of my top 5 things you can do on a day out on a budget! Some of these are completely free and some cost next to nothing. I hope you find a little inspiration here somewhere...!
I'm starting off with the big one, because it is so wonderful!
Now these prices may look scary, but with the individual, joint and family passes, you will get into all National Trust properties absolutely free, including free parking if it's in a place where you pay for the parking for just £5.75-£10 a month!
For example, the nearest National Trust place to me is Belton House. It costs £12 for the grounds and £15.70 for the grounds and a house tour for one adult. You go there once for the house and grounds in a month and you have more that got your money's worth! And you can go to any National Trust property time and time again - there is no limit!
Belton House is great to have a walk round, get some exercise, see some gorgeous views and all of the other National Trust places, another favourite of mine being Clumber Park, I have been to are the same! There is so much to appreciate at these places, and it really is so worth the monthly payment to be able to just get up in the morning and head to a property for a family day out.
So this isn't a day out in itself BUT when you go for your days out, take a picnic with you rather than buying food and drink out all day!
As kids, me, P and M always always wanted to go out and not have to help carry a picnic for five people. We wanted to eat out at the place we were visiting. But Mum and Dad insisted we would be taking lunch with us! Now I get it. Some places charge £6-£8 for a small, crappy burger and a few soggy fries and then they have the audacity to charge anything up to 75p for a sachet of ketchup to do with it. And don't get me started on the small £2 cups of watered down soft drinks or £2.50 for a standard bottle of water!
I really do sound like my mum right now...!
But in all seriousness, you have a family of four and you're look at around £30-£40 for a bog standard, rubbish meal that's not going to fill you up for long so you'll be searching for food again in the next hour or two.
Instead, get yourself to your local supermarket for a loaf of bread, sandwich filling, sausage rolls, fruit and, if you so desire, a few little cakes to enjoy afterwards. This would cost a fraction of the price and will save you so much money!
I have a post about walks coming out fairly soon, but taking a walk as a family, couple or on your own to clear your head is a great way to get out for a few hours.
Take your phone or camera, a bottle of drink and lunch or snacks, pop it in a backpack and head off on a walk along a river, through some fields (stick to the footpaths guys!) or just having a walk around your village or town. Maybe go and discover places you never go to like the park on the opposite end to where you live, or a country lane somewhere?
Pick your own fruit
You know those fruits farms where you can pick your own strawberries, raspberries, etc? Go to one of those!
This can kill a few hours with the kids, some even have a little adventure playground there. All you have to do at the end is pay for your fruit! The fruit is more pricey than it is at Supermarkets, but it's always nicer, and it's a day out in fresh air with the kids blowing off steam and you get a healthy product out of it. With it coming up to winter, some of them also grow their own Christmas trees - so if you are wanting a real Christmas tree, go and have a walk round and finish by picking your tree!
Bored of all the places nearby? Pick a town not far from you that you haven't been to before, jump in the car/on the train/on a bus - and just go! All you would need to pay is fuel or your travel ticket, then you can go and have a look round somewhere different.
Is there a woodland that you have never been to before? Go and have a wander round with the dog/kids/friends - it might become your new favourite place in the world!
So there is a few ideas of days out on a budget. Just because you're skint or can't afford to visit big places just for a day out, doesn't mean you should have to miss out! These things can be just as fun, if not more, than a day at a theme park! What days out do you like to do on a budget?