Ever find yourself a little low on cash? Naturally, having limited disposable income can leave you feeling pretty bored and deflated sometimes, especially if you’re itching to get out there and explore the city. The good news? You can still see all that Liverpool has to offer on a totally empty wallet. Here's how...
1. Mooch around the museums
Liverpool's museum and art gallery scene is certainly something to shout about and it’s little wonder when a city has as much rich history as ours. There’s a huge choice of brilliant museums and galleries dotted all around the city, all packed with fascinating and unexpected items. The best news? They’re all pretty much free to enter. So whether you fancy a look around the impressive Open Eye Gallery at Mann Island, want to dive into our city's maritime past at the Maritime Museum, or perhaps pay homage to John and Yoko at Liverpool Museum's current Double Fantasy exhibition – there’s something here for everyone, no matter your interests or age.
2. Dive into a book in the Picton Reading Room
Liverpool Central Library is quite simply a treasure trove. Whether it’s the books you’re there for or the stunning architecture of the famous Picton Reading Room – you won’t be disappointed either way. This place looks like something straight out of Hogwarts, and if you can manage to stop staring in awe at its beautiful painted domed ceiling, you might just feel like dipping in to one of the 15,000 rare books on offer.
3. Discover some street art
From our finest football art to transforming yourself into a legendary Liverpool Liver Bird, take a wander around Baltic Triangle and snap some of the best street art around.
4. Suss out Liverpool’s famous filming locations
Did you know that Liverpool is a popular location for the filming and setting of many films and television series? The city’s amazing architecture means it’s often used as a double for the likes of London, New York and Moscow. Sites that have been used include St. George's Hall for the Hollywood blockbuster ‘Fantastic Beasts and Where to Find Them’, BBC hit series ‘Peaky Blinders’, filmed around Stanley Dock, and Netflix favourite ‘The Crown’ – which took Castle Street right back to the 1950’s. You can keep up to date with the latest local filming developments by checking out Liverpool Film Office, and you never know, you might just bump into a Hollywood megastar!
5. Take a stroll along the beach
When it comes to nearby beaches, we’re truly spoilt for choice. Take your pick from the likes of Formby Beach, Ainsdale Beach, Crosby Beach, or for a slightly further away jaunt, West Kirby Beach and Marine Lake. All of these are accessible by train and all totally free to sunbathe the day away (British weather permitting!).
6. Take yourself down to Strawberry Fields
The Strawberry Field gates have become a real point of pilgrimage for Beatles fans seeking to understand the inspiration for John Lennon’s iconic song. Situated in the leafy suburb of Woolton, this spot offers an interactive exhibition, as well a colourful Instagram opportunity, as the famous Magical Mystery Bus parks up to the gates.
Strawberry Fields gates © Peter Tarleton C by 2.0
7. Explore Sefton Park
One of Liverpool’s most loved and luscious parks, this is a great one for joggers, picnic goers, people watchers, and dog walkers alike. Classified as a Grade One listed park by English Heritage, this beautiful 200-acre green space is the home of the magnificent Palm House, it’s very own lake, cute cafes, fitness trails, beautiful floral displays and even a couple of hidden caves!
8. Head down to a free festival
Year-on-year Liverpool plays host to an abundance of festivals, many of which are free. From the colourful celebrations of Africa Oye, to discovering new cuisine and beverages at Liverpool Food and Drink Festival – there’s plenty of chances for you and your friends to have a real party that won’t cost you a penny.
9.Take your pick of two cathedrals
As the legendary Liverpool folk song goes: ‘if you want a Cathedral we’ve got one to spare...’ Our wonderful city is host to not one, but two of these magnificent buildings – each sitting on opposite ends of the very same road. The towering Anglican Cathedral took a whopping 74 years to build and boasts beautiful stained glass windows and a breathtaking tower. Just a couple of hundred yards down the road you’ll find the Metropolitan Cathedral – famous for its striking lantern tower and underground crypt. Both are free to pop into and guaranteed to take your breath away.
Don’t forget that LJMU students can claim a free trip to the top of the Liverpool Cathedral tower for you and a friend. Climb to the only open air 360˚ rooftop view of Liverpool and see the best birds-eye view of the city - most certainly Instagram worthy.
10. Have a ping-pong tournament
In the midst of the hustle and bustle of Liverpool’s city centre, you may have noticed the communal ping-pong tables that are poised for a game. It’s time to challenge your rival and draw in the crowds. Paddles are available from Utility (Liverpool One) and while you’ll have to leave a small deposit, play is totally free.
11. Discover the Albert Dock
Buzzing with life, history and vibrancy, there’s nothing quite like a walk around the Albert Dock where you can look out onto the waterfront and take in the panoramic views. Whether it’s watching the local rowing team fly by on the waters of the Mersey, or looking on as the famous ferry sets sail – there’s always something happening here to keep you entertained.
Take a look around the world famous Tate Liverpool art gallery and use your LJMU student ID to get free access to all paid exhibitions. Even use your ID to claim 10% of in the shop and 20% in the café – grab a coffee and watch the world go by.
12. Indulge in a spot of window shopping
Head up to Bold Street for the ultimate window shopping adventure, where you’ll find all kinds of weird and wonderful shopfronts. We also suggest heading down to Gasp Vintage Warehouse on Lark Lane, which truly feels like stepping back in time.
13. Get on the move
You may have not realised it, but there are all kinds of free ways to get moving and keep active around this city of ours. parkrunUK organise free 5km runs every Saturday morning throughout a number of local beauty spots, including the likes of Croxteth Park, Prince's Park and Crosby Beach. You can also sign yourself up to Dockside Runners – a free running club based in the heart of the city centre, with routes that offer up tremendous waterfront views of the city as you jog along.
14. Pet a fluffy animal at Rice Lane
We think we’ve saved the best for last here. Yes that’s right – a free petting farm open seven days a week. It’s impossible not to fall in love with the animals at Rice Lane City Farm in Walton. With the chance to cosy up to bunnies, chicks, goats, lambs, ponies, ducks and geese – this could be the perfect way to perk yourself up after a stressful week of revision.
So there you have it. Our ultimate guide to a free day out in Liverpool. We think this list is likely to keep you occupied for some time…
Don’t forget, there’s so much more to discover about our city and our University too. If you’re thinking about making Liverpool your new home, take a look at the courses we have on offer at LJMU today. Or for money management advice, get in touch with one of our helpful support officers today at firstname.lastname@example.org.
The LJMU Student Opportunities team are also here to help you settle into your student experience and make the most of it. Find out more about their weekly City Social events, where you can meet other LJMU students and experience the many wonders our city has to offer!