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Free Activities in Los Angeles That Aren't Hiking

Free Activities in Los Angeles That Aren't Hiking

If you're looking for cheap or free activities in Los Angeles that aren't going for a hike, we have the guide for you. Team


2 min read

January 31, 2024

Los Angeles, a city known for its sprawling metropolis, iconic Hollywood sign, and beautiful beaches, offers a myriad of activities that don't cost a dime and don't involve hiking. Whether you're a local or a tourist, LA's vibrant culture and diverse neighborhoods provide numerous opportunities to explore and enjoy without breaking the bank. Here's a curated list of free activities in Los Angeles that promise fun, adventure, and a glimpse into the city's unique charm.

1. Explore the Griffith Observatory and Park

While Griffith Park is famous for its hiking trails, the Griffith Observatory offers much more than just outdoor activities. Admission to the observatory is free, and it provides spectacular views of Los Angeles and the Hollywood Sign. Inside, you can explore exhibits and see the Tesla Coil in action. The observatory also hosts public telescopes that are available for night sky viewing, making it a perfect spot for astronomy enthusiasts.

2. Stroll Along the Venice Canals

Take a leisurely walk through the Venice Canals to experience a bit of Venice, Italy, right in Los Angeles. These man-made canals, built in 1905 by developer Abbot Kinney, are surrounded by charming homes and picturesque bridges, offering a serene escape from the city's hustle and bustle. It's a beautiful spot for photography, picnicking, or simply enjoying a quiet afternoon.

The Venice Canals are a unique visual within Los Angeles.

3. Visit the Getty Center

The Getty Center presents an impressive collection of artworks, ranging from medieval times to the present. Admission is free, though parking is paid. The center's architecture, gardens, and the panoramic views of Los Angeles are as much a draw as the art collections themselves. Don't miss the Central Garden, designed by artist Robert Irwin, which is an artwork in its own right.

4. Discover the Art District's Murals

Los Angeles' Art District is an outdoor gallery of vibrant street art and murals that showcase the work of local and international artists. A self-guided walking tour through this neighborhood offers insights into the city's contemporary art scene. You can see a wide array of artistic expressions on the walls of warehouses and former factories, turning the district into a canvas of urban creativity.

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5. Enjoy a Sunset at Santa Monica Beach

A visit to Santa Monica Beach is a must-do in Los Angeles. The beach offers a classic California experience with its expansive sandy shores and the famous Santa Monica Pier in the background. Watching the sunset over the Pacific Ocean is an unforgettable experience that doesn't cost a penny. The adjacent Third Street Promenade is also great for window-shopping and people-watching.

6. Attend a Free Museum Day

Many of Los Angeles' museums offer free admission days. The Los Angeles County Museum of Art (LACMA), for example, provides free access on the second Tuesday of each month and certain holidays. The Broad, known for its contemporary art collection, offers free admission, although it's recommended to reserve tickets in advance. Check museum schedules ahead of time to plan your visit.

There are plenty of museums in Los Angeles that offer free admission days.

7. Explore Historic Olvera Street

Olvera Street, located in the heart of downtown LA, is part of the El Pueblo de Los Angeles Historic Monument and offers a glimpse into the city's Mexican heritage. This vibrant marketplace is filled with street vendors, traditional Mexican restaurants, and historic buildings. Free cultural events and festivals are often held here, celebrating Los Angeles' rich multicultural background.

Los Angeles is a city of endless possibilities, even for those on a tight budget. These free activities showcase the city's diverse culture, history, and natural beauty, proving that you don't need to spend money to experience the best of LA. Whether you're exploring art, history, or just soaking in the scenic views, Los Angeles offers a wealth of experiences that are both enriching and entirely free.

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