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Free Family Fun in Salford This Christmas

image of 3 girls in the snow
28 Nov 2019

Free family fun in Salford is possible if you know where to look. Check out this guide to our favourite festive outings that won’t cost a penny!

Christmas can be a ridiculously expensive time, and parents can feel pressured to spend, spend, spend. But how often have you treated the kids to something extravagent…. for their favourite thing to be the box. Or taken them somewhere exciting (and expensive), only to discover their memory is finding a special rock on the floor or bumping into a classmate.

So we’ve compiled our tips on how to save money on days out this Christmas, as well as a list of FREE events taking place in Salford this Christmas.


Top Tips for Spending Less on Family Days Out This Christmas


  • Be organised. Make sure you have plenty of snacks and sandwich fillers in, ready to throw together a packed lunch at a moment’s notice. If you’re heading out on a family walk, bring a flask with you, as it can be tempting to treat yourself to a hot drink when you get cold.
  • Be firm. Christmas is almost here, so honestly, what do your kids really need in the lead upto Christmas? No doubt when you’re out and about, the kids will see things that they desperately want, but this is the one time of year you can say the words all parents love to utter; “put it on your Christmas list.”
  • With the excitement cranked up to all time highs, a little bit of down time from all the excitement is not only OK, it’s actually needed. When it’s miserable outside, cuddle up with the kids and watch a festive film. When that winter sun makes a rare appearance (and even if it doesn’t), make the most of it and get out in nature. With beautiful countryside on our doorstep like Clifton Country Park and Worsley Woods, there’s no excuse not to.
  • Set a budget (and stick to it). If you’re heading out on a festive day out, tell the kids what they are allowed to spend before you go. Or make it clear you won’t be buying anything. By talking about budgets before you leave the house, it can avoid meltdowns later.
  • Do your research before you go. Companies just love to up-sell at this time of year, and know that families will pay extra for fear of not giving their kids the magical experience they deserve (don’t you love Chistmas guilt). Find out all about the little extra costs which could escalate, such as parking, any trails that are running, potential upgrades on your Christmas experience, so you are prepared for the actual cost of the day.


FREE Family Days Out in Salford This Christmas


Here are some of our favourite days out in Salford that won’t cost you a penny this Christmas! 

A Victorian Christmas At Salford Museum’s Lark Hill Place

4th November – 22nd December 2019

We just love a museum trip for a free family day out. We’re very excited that, for the first time ever, Salford Museum’s Lark Hill Place has been beautifully dressed to show families how the Victorians decorated their shops and houses at Christmas. Find out more here.


6th-15th December 2019

Lightwaves makes for a fantastic Christmas evening out with the kids….we just wish it would stick around a little bit longer, so make sure you don’t miss it. It’s basically an outdoor sculpture trail, with lit-up sculptures scattterd around Salford Quays.

It’s really beautiful to see the Quays at night, and exciting for the kids to be out in the dark too. Several of the sculptures are interactive too, ideal for keeping kids engaged. This year there is a light orchestra, musical seesaws, and the return of the popular cathedral of mirrors, as well as lots more.  For more details on the highlight of Lightwaves 2019, see here.

Grinch Trail

21st November 2019- 5th Januay 2020

If you need to squeeze in some Christmas shopping, why not tie it in with this festive-themed FREE trail around the  Lowry Outlet, Lowry Theatre and MediaCityUK. The Grinch has stolen 16 presents from under the Whos’ Christmas trees. Can you help find them all, saving Christmas?  Find out more here.

Walkden In A Winter Wonderland

30th November 2019

Each year, this event gets bigger and better, and there’s a whole host of FREE entertainment planned for 2019, with a children’s activity area, Greatest Showman tribute, brass bands, theatrical performances and lots more. Find out more here.


Monton Christmas Tree Festival

13th -15th December 2019

We popped along to see this last year, and even though it was in its infancy, it was a lovely intimate event that the kids really enjoyed. Businesses from around Monton have decorated their Christmas trees in their own special ways, and families can enjoy looking at them all in the stunning surroundings of Monton Unitarian Church. This year, there will be choirs performing at certain times, and stalls too. Find out more here.

Nativity Live In Irlam

18th December 2019

The Churches of Irlam and Cadishead have come together to host a live nativity at Irlam Station. If the kids are getting more interested in the Christmas Story or you just want to remind them what Christmas is all about, this could be just the thing. Find out more here. 


Boxing Day Walk at Clifton Country Park

26th December 2019

If you know you won’t make it out on a family walk without a little nudge, this could be perfect for you. Salford Rangers has organised this Boxing Day walk for all ages. If you’re anything like us, the kids will be a little crazy after all the sugar/pressies/Christmas excitement, so we love the idea of getting them out nice and early on Boxing Day. Here’s the details.


For places to see Santa in Salford this Christmas, see here





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