You don't need a lot of money to have a little fun in Los Angeles. There are fun free things to do in L.A. at every turn. So, whether you're new in town or looking for new places to explore, it's easy to get plugged into all the amazing things this city has to offer.
Try one of these fun free things to do in L.A.
Looking for some things to see and do in Los Angeles? Look no further. Here are some of the best fun free things to do in L.A.
See the sights
Reconnect with nature by walking, hiking or driving to some of the most Instagram-worthy spots in the L.A. area without spending a dime. Here are a few places to visit:
The Hollywood sign: This iconic landmark is a must-see, offering 360-degree views of the city from Mt. Lee Drive
Hollywood Walk of Fame: Hollywood Boulevard hosts some of the greatest things to do in L.A. Not only is there the famed Chinese Theater and the Dolby Theater but it's also home to the Hollywood walk of fame. Take a stroll down Hollywood Boulevard, and find the Hollywood star of your favorite celebrity.
Griffith Observatory: Spend some time star-gazing via an assortment of intriguing shows and exhibitions about the heavens. Be sure to check out other highlights, including the Foucault pendulum, the Tesla coil and the planetarium show.
Los Angeles has green spaces to fit every kind of park-goer, from urban wildernesses to quiet valley escapes, and each comes with its own brand of events and activities. Here are a couple to check out:
The Marvin Braude Bike Trail: Grab your bike or running shoes and jump on this popular 22-mile path, nicknamed The Strand, which faces the city's Pacific coastline. It begins at Will Rogers State Beach and travels through the beach towns of Santa Monica, Venice, Marina del Rey, Manhattan, Hermosa and Redondo. If you need to make a pit-stop, you'll find plenty of places to eat and drink along the way.
Runyon Canyon: See one of the best views of L.A. at this 160-acre park at the eastern end of the Santa Monica Mountains, complete with hiking trails and the main loop. You may even spot a celebrity or two working out.
Grant Park: This 12-acre downtown urban oasis of bright pink benches, fountains and picnic-friendly spaces makes this park the perfect place to hang. Located between The Music Center and City Hall, the area boasts a splash pad with interactive jets, light shows after dark and plenty of lawn space for special programs and events throughout the year.
Indulge in art
See art through the ages throughout the city. Many of the area's art museums are free and others offer free admission on select days. Here are a few to check out:
The Broad: If you love contemporary art, you'll get more than your fill at this museum, which includes works by some of the most famous artists in the genre — like Andy Warhol and Jeff Koons. Make sure to check out the endless field of LEDs called “Infinity Mirrored Room" and a nine-screen video piece called “The Visitors." Although the museum is free, reservations are recommended.
Los Angeles County Museum of Art: Enjoy one of the most impressive art collections Los Angeles has to offer. Christ Burden's Urban Light — an installation of 202 restored cast-iron street lamps — is one of the many must-sees at this 20-acre complex. Free general admission is offered to L.A. County residents after 3 p.m. on weekdays, and everyone can get in free every second Tuesday of each month.
The Getty: The Getty is not only a destination for its incredible gardens but it also offers a major art collection spanning the Renaissance to 20th-century American photography. Take a book and sit and read amongst the beautiful landscaping for an incredible enjoyable afternoon. The museum is free to visit, however, you do have to pay for parking.
Explore history, culture
Travel to the past in engaging ways by visiting a few of Los Angeles' history exhibitions featuring culture, wildlife and more. Try these out for starters:
Getty Villa: History buffs will love strolling through the roughly 1,200 ancient artifacts on display, organized under themes such as Stories of the Trojan War and Gods and Goddesses. You'll also find conservation laboratories, seminar rooms and a research library. While admission is free, you'll have to book a time ticket for entry. No walk-ins are accepted.
Huntington Library, Art Collections and Botanical Gardens: There's so much to see and do in this 207-acre complex, you'll keep coming back for more. Take in the art, stroll through a Japanese garden and check out the notable book collection — including a Gutenberg Bible and one of the earliest known editions of The Canterbury Tales. The library is free every first Thursday of the month with an advance ticket.
Natural History Museum: This museum offers everything from dinosaur history to Native American history to the culture of present-day L.A. It also features the Nature Gardens, a 3.5-acre urban wilderness.
Bring the family or go solo
These kid-friendly places are just as fun on your own as they are with the whole family. Here are a few to explore:
Santa Monica Pier: Spend a warm weekend with family and friends at this vibrant sea-side pier located in Pacific Park. You'll find everything from an aquarium and sweet treats to fairground games and a Ferris wheel.
Travel Town/Los Angeles Live Steamers Railroad Museum: Bring the family out for a train ride (free, but donations are welcome) and explore the locomotive jewels of this historic railroad museum, featuring trains from the 1800s.
Annenberg Community Beach House: Originally built as an estate by William Randolph Hearst for Hollywood star Marion Davies in the 1920s, this five-acre site is now a popular beach club with great seaside amenities, including free Wi-Fi. It's open to the public (no membership fees) but access to the seasonal swimming pool will cost $10 for adults, $4 for kids.
Monday nights are for music
In L.A., Monday night is the new Friday night when it comes to great music. Check out these local hot spots to hear the latest talent:
The Satellite: See rock stars in the making for free every Monday night at this music venue in Silver Lake. Check out the venue's calendar for upcoming shows.
The Echo: Just like the Satellite, this venue offers free music every Monday with the latest up-and-coming bands in the area.
School Night: Turn your Mondays into fun days with this free concert series in Bardot's courtyard lounge showcasing a mix of local bands and touring acts.
Take a free yoga class
Take advantage of the sunny weather by taking your yoga workout outdoors. There're plenty of free yoga sessions all over the city. Here are a few to try:
Yogalution on Bluff Park: A free, daily outdoor session by Long Beach's Trilogy Yoga teachers takes place every day of the week. Can't make the morning hour? Stop by at 6 p.m. Monday through Friday from March to November.
Runyon Canyon Yoga: All levels are welcome at yoga sessions in the park, which takes place three to four times a day with a professional yoga instructor at 2000 North Fuller Avenue. Be sure to bring a mat, towel, bottled water and sunscreen. While the classes are free, donations are encouraged.
Go window shopping
Los Angeles is truly a shopper's paradise with some of the biggest high-fashion brands in the industry, along with trendy independent boutiques, too. Here're a few places to hit:
Rodeo Drive: Window shop with a vengeance at this well-known glitzy, upscale spot where fashion becomes the main event. Come for the clothes, accessories and the people-watching.
Rose Bowl Flea Market: This giant market has a day's worth of shopping adventures featuring 2,500 booths with something for everyone, including antiques, furniture and more.
Abbot Kinney: Set in the heart of Venice is an adorable set of boutique shops and delicious ice cream stores along Abbot Kinney street. Take your time to check out the unique shops, as well as the amazing street art.
There are plenty of fun free things to do in L.A.
There are so many fun, free things to do in LA. From sightseeing to taking a walk through a beautiful canyon, it's hard to keep track of the many things to do and see in Los Angeles.
Ashley Singleton is a writer who loves following and writing about current lifestyle, DIY and home improvement trends. You can read some of her other work on the Lady Spike Media website. In her spare time, she performs stand-up comedy in Los Angeles.