October Half Term free days out

Published on: Tuesday, 18 October 2022
Last updated: Tuesday, 18 October 2022

  • Days Out

Free things to do on the Greater Anglia network this October half term

With October half term 2022 fast approaching, we’ve compiled some ideas for free things to that are accessible by train.

Families can save even more with our great offers as well as being able to relax and have fun on board together, avoid the hassle of having to find and pay for a parking space and help the planet by travelling the environmentally friendly way.

Grab one of our bargain Hare Fares until 30 October, for travel for travel between 12th October to 2nd December, opt for a great value Family & Friends Railcard or take advantage of GroupSave, offering groups of three to nine adults travelling together a 1/3 OFF all fares.


Visit Peterborough cathedral , one of the finest Norman cathedrals in England, burial place of two queens and the scene of civil war upheavals.

Discover stories of extinction, survival, evolution and exploration at the Museum of Zoology , Cambridge. Its brilliant galleries showcase the diversity of animal life, from marsupials to monkeys, mammoths to manatees.

The Fitzwilliam Museum , Cambridge, houses the spectacular collections of the University of Cambridge Museums and Botanic Garden. From antiquity to the present day, the world-renowned collection includes over half a million beautiful works of art, masterpiece paintings and historical artefacts.

Enjoy a day out in Ely. Visit the Cathedral, walk by the river and discover the city’s rich history.


Autumn is a great time to take a refreshing trip to the coast, and in Essex you are spoilt for choice. Choose from the sandy beaches of Clacton on sea, Frinton on sea or Walton the Naze and enjoy the sea air, walks on the pier and some traditional fish and chips, head to Wrabness for wildlife or Harwich for its history.

Visit Firstsite art gallery , very near to Colchester Town station and enjoy lots of family activities. Then pop across the road to Colchester Castle Park where there’s a fantastic playground, or drop into Hollytrees Museum next to the castle to see its display of old toys.

There is lots of fun for children at the Essex Police Museum, Chelmsford. Enjoy Museum Explorer Eye-Spy, solve a crime, dress up in real police uniform, try Fingerprinting and play with toy police cars.

Go geocaching across Essex countryside. Geocaching is an exciting treasure hunting game using GPS technology to find hidden caches or boxes.

Visit Harwich Lighthouse. The High Lighthouse in Harwich was built in the late 19th century to aid navigation into the harbour. These days, the 90ft, nine-sided tower is run by Harwich Society as a museum of local interest with displays on different floors and knowledgeable guides on hand to answer questions. Though it is £1 entry for adults, it is free for children.

Southend Pier is sure to excite little minds. Extending 1.34 miles into the Thames Estuary, it’s the longest pleasure pier in the world.


Visit Hertford Museum to discover over 100,000 artefacts. Collections include archaeology, paper ephemera, ethnography, fine art, geology, natural history, photographs, social history and the Hertfordshire Regiment collection.

Walk some of the River Lee tow path and spot canal boats and wildlife.

From Rye House station, visit the Rye Meads nature reserve - a fantastic place for birdwatching and with a visitor centre on site there is always someone on hand to answer questions and help you get the most out of your visit.

The New River Line Community Rail Partnership has produced a free activity guide to help you explore the line between Hertford East and Broxbourne which has lots of fantastic suggestions for things to see and do in the area.


Head over to Visit London to discover 101 free attractions in London that all the family will love. There are so many to choose from – such as the Natural History Museum, Tate Modern, the National Gallery, Hyde Park, the Science Museum, watching the changing of the Guard at Buckingham Palace, taking in the famous landmarks and sights or shopping – that you’d need much more than a day to do them all.


North Norfolk boasts some of the region’s best beaches and Autumn is a great time to visit. Hunt for fossils at West Runton, stroll on the pier at Cromer, experience a traditional quaint fishing town at Sheringham, or enjoy traditional seaside fun in the amusement arcades of Great Yarmouth.

Visit Norwich’s stunning Norman cathedral, its covered market place, which has existed since medieval times and discover the intriguing Plantation Garden , a real hidden gem in the city centre.

Jump aboard the Bure Valley Railway at Wroxham – kids go free during October half term. Although not free, nearby Wroxham Barns is great fun for little ones with its junior farm, indoor play, Halloween maize maze and pumpkin picking – with a free pumpkin for every paying child.

Thetford Priory was one of the largest and most important monasteries in medieval East Anglia. Founded in the early 12th century, for 400 years it was the burial place of the Earls and Dukes of Norfolk, and enjoyed their powerful protection. It was because of this that Thetford was one of the last monasteries to be suppressed when it surrendered to Henry VIII's commissioners in 1540. The extensive surviving remains include the lower walls of the church and cloister, together with the impressive shell of the prior's lodging and an almost complete 14th century gatehouse.


A visit to the Landguard Visitor Centre and View Point café at Felixstowe docks - Britain’s busiest container port and one of the largest in Europe - is entertaining for children and adults alike as you watch the massive container ships come and go. On a clear day, enjoy stunning views across the estuary to the Shotley Peninsula and the Essex towns of Harwich and Dovercourt.

Visit Christchurch Park and Mansion in Ipswich. Christchurch Mansion is one of Suffolk’s most treasured buildings, a beautiful Tudor mansion boasting over 500 years of history. Admission is free and you can explore the period rooms such as the Tudor kitchen, sumptuous Georgian saloon and the beautifully detailed Victorian wing, as well as seeing the biggest collection of Thomas Gainsborough and John Constable paintings outside of London.

Visit St Edmundsbury Cathedral and the Abbey Gardens in Bury St Edmunds where children can enjoy the open space, play area, see the aviaries and feed the squirrels.

Take a quiz as you explore the rooms at Sudbury Heritage Centre . Afterwards, take a walk through the town’s water meadows that inspired the work of the famous artist, Thomas Gainsborough.