Hey there travel enthusiasts and welcome to my post where we will check out my 7 best things to do in Los Angeles for free. As we know, travel can be expensive, especially if moving around with your family in tow. Luckily, if you find yourself in LA, you will find that the city is full of free activities that are perfect for families, couples and solo travelers alike.
One of the best free attractions in Los Angeles is Griffith Park. This massive park offers miles of hiking trails, stunning views of the city, and even a zoo. If you’re a fan of art, head to the Getty Center or the Getty Villa, both of which offer free admission. And if you’re looking to soak up some sun, head to Venice Beach or Santa Monica Beach, both of which offer free access to the sand and surf.
No matter what your interests are, there are plenty of free things to do in Los Angeles. Whether you’re a local or just visiting, take advantage of all the city has to offer without spending a dime.
Best Things To Do In Los Angeles For Free
Before we begin looking all the free things we can do below, it is important to remember that even though we are focused on a single city, Los Angeles is quite large and moving around is not always as easy as you would hope. So even though the activities and attractions listed below are free, you are usually always going to have to pay for transport of some sort to get there. Just something to keep in mind.
Ok, now let’s check out my top 10 things to do for nix below.
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1. Exploring the Art Scene
If you’re an art enthusiast, Los Angeles has a wealth of museums, galleries and street art to explore. Here are some of the best free art destinations in the city.
The Broad Museum
The Broad Museum is a contemporary art museum located in downtown Los Angeles that features an impressive collection of postwar and contemporary art including works by Yayoi Kusama, Andy Warhol, Jeff Koons, Roy Lichtenstein, Cindy Sherman and many others.
The museum offers free general admission, but you may need to reserve tickets in advance to avoid long lines.
Los Angeles County Museum of Art
The Los Angeles County Museum of Art (LACMA) is one of the largest art museums in the western United States with a collection that includes more than 150,000 works of art spanning from ancient times to the present day. The museum has a diverse collection of art including artifacts from around the world, contemporary art and works by local artists.
LACMA offers free general admission on the second Tuesday of each month.
The Getty Center is a museum and research institute located in the Brentwood neighborhood of Los Angeles. It features a collection of European paintings, drawings, sculptures and decorative arts as well as photographs and manuscripts. The Getty Center also has beautiful gardens and stunning views of the city.
Admission to the museum is always free, but you may need to pay for parking.
The Getty Villa is an art museum and educational center dedicated to the study of the arts and cultures of ancient Greece, Rome and Etruria. It features a collection of ancient art and artifacts including sculptures, vases and jewelry.
The Getty Villa is located in Pacific Palisades and offers free admission, but you must reserve tickets in advance.
2. Outdoor Activities
Los Angeles is a city that is blessed with year-round sunshine and warm temperatures, making it the perfect place to enjoy outdoor activities. Here are some of the best outdoor activities that you can enjoy in Los Angeles for free.
Griffith Park is one of the largest urban parks in the United States that offers a wide range of outdoor free activities. You can go hiking, enjoy a picnic or take a stroll through the gardens.
One of the highlights of the park is the Griffith Observatory, which offers breathtaking views of the city and the stars.
Runyon Canyon is a popular hiking spot in Los Angeles that offers stunning views of the city and the surrounding park. The hike is relatively easy and suitable for all fitness levels and if you are lucky, you might even spot a celebrity on your hike as well.
Venice Beach is one of the most iconic beaches in Los Angeles and it is the perfect place to enjoy a day in the sun. You can take a stroll along the boardwalk, go for a swim or simply relax on the sand.
If you are feeling adventurous, you can even try your hand at surfing too.
3. Historical Landmarks and Architecture
Los Angeles is home to some of the most iconic and historic landmarks in the world. From the Hollywood Walk of Fame to the Walt Disney Concert Hall, there is something for everyone to enjoy. Here are some of the must-see historical landmarks and architectural wonders that you can explore for free in LA.
Hollywood Walk of Fame
The Hollywood Walk of Fame is a famous landmark located in the heart of Hollywood. This iconic walkway features over 2,600 stars embedded in the sidewalk, each representing a different celebrity or public figure.
As you stroll along the Hollywood Walk of Fame, you can see the stars of some of the biggest names in entertainment history including Marilyn Monroe, Elvis Presley and Michael Jackson.
Walt Disney Concert Hall
Designed by renowned architect Frank Gehry, the Walt Disney Concert Hall is a stunning piece of architecture that is not to be missed. This iconic building is home to the Los Angeles Philharmonic and features a unique design that is meant to resemble a ship sailing down Grand Avenue.
Visitors can explore the exterior of the building for free or take a guided tour of the interior for a small fee.
Located in the heart of downtown LA, Olvera Street is a historic landmark that dates back to the city’s founding in 1781. This vibrant street is home to a variety of shops, restaurants and museums that showcase the rich history and culture of the city.
Visitors can explore the colorful buildings and cobblestone streets of Olvera Street for free or take a guided tour to learn more about the area’s history.
4. Cultural Experiences
Los Angeles is a city with a rich cultural history that is waiting to be explored. Here are some of the best cultural experiences you can have in the city for free.
Original Farmers Market
The Original Farmers Market in downtown Los Angeles is a must-visit for anyone interested in experiencing the city’s unique culture. The market has been around since 1934 and is home to over 100 vendors selling everything from fresh produce to handmade crafts.
You can spend hours browsing the stalls and trying out different foods and there are often free live music performances and other events happening as well.
Little Tokyo is a neighborhood in downtown Los Angeles that is steeped in history and culture and home to a number of important cultural institutions including the Japanese American National Museum and the Go For Broke Monument, which honors Japanese American soldiers who fought in World War II.
You can also explore the neighborhood’s many shops and restaurants, which offer a taste of authentic Japanese culture.
Chinatown is another neighborhood in downtown Los Angeles that is full of cultural treasures. The neighborhood is home to the Chinese American Museum, which tells the story of Chinese Americans in the city as well as a number of traditional Chinese shops and restaurants.
You can also visit the Thien Hau Temple, which is dedicated to the goddess of the sea and is one of the oldest temples in the city.
5. Free Concerts and Screenings
Los Angeles is known for its vibrant music scene and lucky for you, there are plenty of free concerts and screenings to enjoy throughout the city. Here are a few of the top picks:
The Hollywood Bowl is an iconic outdoor venue that hosts a variety of concerts and events throughout the year. While many of the shows require tickets, there are also a number of free concerts that take place at the Bowl as well.
These shows are part of the “Summer Sounds” series and feature a range of musical genres from classical to jazz to world music. Be sure to check the schedule and arrive early to secure a spot on the lawn.
Hollywood Forever Cemetery
The Hollywood Forever Cemetery is not only a final resting place for many Hollywood legends, but it also hosts a number of free events, including concerts and movie screenings.
During the summer months, the cemetery hosts “Cinespia,” an outdoor movie series that features classic films and cult favorites so bring a picnic blanket and some snacks and enjoy a movie under the stars.
6. Museums with Free Admission
If you’re looking to explore the cultural side of Los Angeles without spending a dime, there are several museums that offer free admission. Here are two must-visit museums with free admission:
California Science Center
The California Science Center is a great place to spend a day with your family. This museum is home to a variety of interactive exhibits that are both fun and educational where you can learn about space exploration, see real-life space shuttles and even touch a real moon rock!
The museum also features a World of Life exhibit that showcases the diversity of life on Earth. You can see live animals, fossils and even a simulated rainforest.
La Brea Tar Pits
The La Brea Tar Pits is a unique museum that is dedicated to the fossils of prehistoric animals that were trapped in the tar pits thousands of years ago. The museum features a variety of exhibits that showcase the different animals that lived in the area during the Ice Age.
You can see mammoths, saber-toothed cats and even dire wolves! The museum also has a laboratory where you can watch scientists working on fossils in real-time.
7. Unique Attractions
Los Angeles is also home to some of the most unique attractions in the world, and the best part is that many of them are completely free! Here are two must-see attractions that you won’t find anywhere else.
You’ve probably seen pictures of Urban Light before, even if you didn’t know it by name. This iconic art installation at the Los Angeles County Museum of Art (LACMA) features 202 restored cast iron street lamps from the 1920s and 1930s, all arranged in a grid. The result is a stunning display of light and shadow that’s perfect for Instagram.
But Urban Light is more than just a pretty photo op. It’s also a symbol of the city’s history and a tribute to its streetlights, which have illuminated the city’s streets for decades. So take a stroll through the installation and appreciate the artistry and history of these beautiful lamps.
Infinity Mirror Rooms
If you’re looking for something truly mind-bending, head to The Broad museum and check out the Infinity Mirror Rooms. Created by artist Yayoi Kusama, these immersive installations use mirrors and lights to create the illusion of infinite space. It’s a trippy, surreal experience that’s unlike anything else.
But be warned: the Infinity Mirror Rooms are incredibly popular, so you’ll need to plan ahead if you want to see them. The museum only allows a limited number of people in at a time and tickets go quickly so make sure to reserve your spot in advance.
What are some fun and free things to do in Downtown LA?
Downtown LA is full of free activities. You can visit the Grand Central Market and try some of the best food in the city. You can also explore the historic Bradbury Building and the Walt Disney Concert Hall or take a stroll through the Arts District and see the incredible street art or visit the Museum of Contemporary Art for free on Thursdays.
What are some interactive and free things to do in LA?
For interactive and free activities, you can visit the Griffith Observatory and explore the universe. You can also visit the California Science Center and see the Space Shuttle Endeavour, take a hike in Runyon Canyon Park or explore the Venice Canals.
There you have it; 7 best things to do in Los Angeles for free. As usual, let me know of your experiences here or if there is anything you think I need to add.
Also, please do not hesitate to comment below if you have any questions, concerns, or corrections or would like me to check anything else out for you.
Until next time.