Today’s ‘Five free things to do in Ipswich’ post is the second in my series about free things to do around the UK as a family.
(In case you’re wondering where the first post was, it was way back in March before the world went crazy and was all about the best free things to do in Middlesbrough)
Today’s post is from the very lovely Faith Archer who blogs over at Much More with Less and is one of my blogging idols – she’s such a lovely lady and her blog is fantastic with much more grown-up money advice that I give here so I can’t recommend highly enough that you pop over and have a read.
Five Free Things to do in Ipswich
After making the big move from London to Suffolk, we scoped out loads of fun things to do for next to nothing. Our nearest big town is Ipswich, so here are my five favourite family activities for free!
Visit Christchurch Park and Mansion
Christchurch Park is bang in the middle of Ipswich, so you can divert from the shops into a big green space. Inside the park, Christchurch Mansion is a higgedly-piggedly Tudor house with free entry to a varied collection including furniture, period fashion, toys and paintings by local artists Constable and Gainsborough. It also hosts temporary exhibitions, like the recent Ed Sheeran show, and has a fun gift shop.
If you fancy letting off steam afterwards, head up the hill to the children’s playground or show up for the Park Run on Saturday mornings.
Head to the Ipswich Museum
Entering Ipswich Museum is like stepping back in time, with a mind-blowing collection of stuffed animals, from tiny birds to a giraffe and a woolly mammoth. Head past the main room and there’s an interesting selection of Egyptian objects, a display about Ipswich at War with interactive labels, a whale skull and a history of Ipswich up on the gallery. For younger kids, there’s a decent toy box in the first room.
The only drawback is the lack of a picnic room or café, though you can use the drinks machine or head outside to a small lawn to eat a picnic.
Check out the boats in Ipswich Marina
I had no idea Ipswich had a marina before moving here. It’s fun walking along the waterside when the sun is shining, glinting off the water and all the glass and chrome on the boats, and heading up the steps of the Old Customs House. We look forward to the free Maritime Festival every year, with stalls and the chance to board some of the boats.
Head for the playground in Holywells Park
Holywells Park is another brilliant green space near the centre of Ipswich. We make special trips to the big children’s playground – pack swimming costumes when it’s warm in summer, so you can take advantage of the water features!
The playground has a whole range of equipment including stuff suitable for older kids too, such as outdoor gym equipment, table tennis and a kind of ‘Simon says’ interactive installation. There’s a café and loos inside the playground and loads to explore outside too.
Start statue spotting
We’ve enjoyed wandering around Ipswich statue spotting when there were temporary installations of pigs and Elmer elephants as fundraisers for St Elizabeth Hospice. But you can also go statue spotting all year round. A couple of my favourites are the Giles statue just near the market, with all the familiar characters from Giles cartoons, and the looming statue of Cardinal Wolsey where Silent Street and St Peter’s Street meet.
Don’t miss out on future posts like this – receive updates directly to your inbox by email by adding your email address here and hitting subscribe. You can also follow me on Twitter or BlogLovin and I’d love to see you over on my Facebook page and on Instagram. If you’re interested, you can find out more about me here. 😉
Why not Pin ‘Five Free things to do in Ipswich’ for later?