6 things to do with a National Art Pass for the Easter holidays and beyond
From exciting art exhibitions designed to inspire children to roaming around castles, there’s a huge range of fun activities that are sure to keep your children entertained during the school holidays.
By Gemma Wilcock | Last updated Mar 16, 2023
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If you’re searching for something the whole family can enjoy during the Easter holidays this April, we know just the thing… And it’s something Mumsnetters themselves swear by.
A National Art Pass allows you to explore a huge range of museums and galleries for less, with free and reduced-price entry and 50% off major exhibitions. That’s not all, pass holders can also enjoy special offers at museum shops and cafes, making it the ultimate day out. You can even add ‘Plus Kids’ to any membership for just £15, and bring along children in your family under the age of 16 years old.
This Easter, a National Art Pass should be more than enough to keep everyone happy during the holidays and beyond. In fact, you’ll probably be spoilt for choice! As Mumsnet user GhostBustersFavouriteMum shares, having a National Art Pass “gives you free entry to LOADS. We had our first day out yesterday and the entry cost would have been more than [what] we paid for the four passes...”
Check out our guide to the top six things you can do with a National Art Pass to keep you busy during the school holidays, on weekends, and for the rest of the year.
1. Take part in The Wild Escape
The Wild Escape invites 7–11-year-olds to discover animals and nature in UK museums and is inspired by the BBC’s landmark series presented by David Attenborough, Wild Isles.
There's endless fun for families to enjoy together, from fascinating exhibitions to crafty workshops. And you'll get to make your own nature-inspired art and contribute to a collective artwork full of amazing creatures.
2. Get free and reduced-price entry to museums and galleries
With a National Art Pass, there's so many places you can visit for free or reduced-price, so you'll always have options when searching for somewhere to go during the school holidays or at the weekend.
Wander around The Story Museum in Oxford, enjoying the immersive galleries all about storytelling, or for football fans there’s the National Football Museum in Manchester. Other fun museums children will love to visit include the science and engineering museum, Enginuity, and the Museum of Making, celebrating Derby’s innovation and history. With hundreds of museums and galleries around the country included in the pass, no matter where you are, there’ll be somewhere you can visit that’ll be both fun and educational for the whole family.
What Mumsnet users say
“Have you thought of buying an Art Pass from Art Fund? It gives free entry to several properties (including Kensington Palace) and half-price entry to exhibitions at most major museums and galleries.” AnnunciataZ
3. Explore must-see exhibitions nationwide
Enjoy 50% off major exhibitions across the UK this Easter. With a National Art Pass, you’ll be able to visit must-see museums and galleries such as London’s Tate Modern, the Natural History Museum and the Science Museum for less – these fantastic places have so much on offer to spark your child’s imagination and entertain the whole family.
“We have the National Art Pass and use them regularly for galleries and exhibitions. [We] travel to London for big exhibitions every couple of months.”
There’s a huge variety of exhibitions to explore about history, music, TV and science, such as ‘Doctor Who: Worlds of Wonder’ at the National Museum Scotland, ‘Turn it Up: The Power of Music’ at the Science and Industry Museum, or ‘Visions of Egypt’ at Laing Art Gallery.
4. Not just museums! Discover boats, caves, castles…
The great thing about the National Art Pass is there’s so much more than museums to explore. When you’re done visiting the galleries on your list, veer off the beaten track and visit unique places for less.
The pass includes reduced-price entry onto boats, like The Cutty Sark and HMS Belfast, where children can explore the ships and get involved in the fun activities on board. You can also roam around castles and parks at free-entry locations like Cardiff Castle, Norwich Castle, and Yorkshire Sculpture Park.
Last but not least, take your family on an adventure exploring caves, like Margate Caves and Creswell Crag. There’s such a huge range of activities to try out, you’re sure to get plenty of use out of your pass.
What Mumsnet users say
“I’ve enjoyed receiving subscriptions- and I give them too. The gift that keeps on giving ( for a year, anyway !) I’ve had art gallery memberships, magazines, online tutorials ( art) - I’m giving an Art Fund membership to someone this week as a milestone birthday gift.” PlatypusPie
5. Nurture your child’s love for art
Museums and galleries offer endless opportunities for little learners to embrace art and incorporate it into their lives, with more and more places encouraging children to explore, play and draw when visiting.
Many places will have fantastic activities specially designed for families, such as interactive exhibitions and hands-on workshops to get everyone inspired. This can help encourage them to create their own pieces of art - don’t forget to clear a space on the wall for their amazing creations!
What Mumsnet users say
“Art Pass - discounts and free entry to lots of places.” Pinkdoor
6. Support museums and galleries
Art Fund supports museums and galleries across the UK to ensure that everyone can enjoy these brilliant spaces. The National Art Pass helps you give back, supporting museums far and wide, from national favourites to local gems.
Not only will you gain access to free and reduced-price days out for your entire family, but your membership will help ensure children can keep enjoying the arts for years to come.
What Mumsnet users say
“Museums and galleries are what I do most, (I like to get my money's worth from my Art Fund card,) but I do go to the theatre from time to time.” EBearhug
“The gift that keeps on giving…”
National Art Pass, add 'Plus Kids' for just £15
For just £75, or £45 for Under 30s, A National Art Pass gets you free and reduced-price entry, plus 50% off exhibitions, at hundreds of cultural destinations across the UK.
The National Art Pass is really flexible for families. With Art Fund’s ‘Plus One’ and ‘Plus Kids’ memberships, you can customise your pass to suit you.
You can add ‘Plus Kids’ to any membership for just £15 and bring along children in your family (under 16) and share all National Art Pass benefits with them, whilst also enjoying your pass independently.
About Art Fund
Art Fund supports museums and galleries across the UK, helping them grow their collections and bring art and inspiration to a wider public – by purchasing a National Art Pass, you too are helping museums thrive. And with 850+ places to explore near you or wherever you’re headed, the Art Map and Art Quarterly magazine delivered direct to your door will help you plan where to visit next.