When it comes to getting out and about with family and friends, trying to think of things to do that cost as little as possible is always at the front of our minds.

Well, for those living or heading to County Durham, there’s one major attraction that won’t cost you a penny.

How about visiting Durham Cathedral? It featured heavily in Harry Potter and has now been named among the UK’s 10 top-rated free attractions to visit this year, according to new research.

Alongside this, when it comes to visiting museums or exploring the great outdoors, the UK has plenty to offer without breaking the bank.

GO Outdoors have taken a closer look at the top destinations with the best free family activities, ranking them in order of overall Tripadvisor ratings and percentage of reviews that are ‘excellent’.

The UK’s 10 top-rated free attractions to visit in 2024

Each location is also listed along with its overall Tripadvisor score out of five – the full research can be found here.

  1. St Kilda - The Hebrides, Scotland (5)
  2. Staffa National Nature Reserve - Isle of Staffa, Scotland (5)
  3. Goatfell - Isle of Arran, Scotland (5)
  4. St Abb's Head National Nature Reserve - St Abbs, Scotland (5)
  5. Grey Mare's Tail - Moffat, Scotland (5)
  6. RAF Museum Cosford - Shifnal, Shropshire (5)
  7. Ben Lomond - Rowardennan, Stirlingshire (4.5)
  8. Durham Cathedral - Durham, County Durham (4.5)
  9. Kettle's Yard - Cambridge, Cambridgeshire (4.5)
  10. Lady Lever Art Gallery - Birkenhead, Merseyside (4.5)
@jakobcl1989 One of the most beautiful places we’ve ever seen, even without it being a Harry Potter filming location, but it definitely helps! 😜⚡️🪄🏰#hogwarts #harrypotter #harrypottertiktok #wizardingworld #durhamcathedral #uk #england ♬ Jacob and the Stone - Emile Mosseri

Go Outdoors commented: "St Kilda takes first place as the UK’s top-rated free attraction on our list with an impressive 93% excellent reviews on Tripadvisor.

"Wedged in the Hebrides on the West Coast of Scotland, this isolated archipelago is internationally recognised for its magnificent birdlife and is just as famous for its human history."

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It added: "The Staffa National Nature Reserve comes in second on our list with 88% of excellent reviews and five-star reviews on Tripadvisor.

"This beautiful island is filled with distinctive rocks, enchanting caves and seabirds. It is no surprise that this is a perfect location for a free day out, filled with family fun and adventure. 

"Goatfell Mountain completes the top three list with 86% excellent reviews on Tripadvisor.

"Goatfell is a top destination for hillwalkers and climbers, it offers spectacular views and is perfect for gazing across the island."