Los Angeles and free are not two words that you often hear in the same sentence. Especially considering that LA is one of the most expensive places to live in the US. But I am here to tell you that it is totally possible to explore this city for FREE! From the most prestigious museums to the most beautiful beaches, there are a TON of sights and activities that can be done without costing you an arm and a leg.

Here is a guide to the best things to do in Los Angeles for free! 


One of the great things about LA is all the wonderful and world-renowned museums we have at our fingertips. Lucky for us, most of these museums offer free admission at least once a month. But it just so happens that a select few offer FREE admission every day of the week!

(*Please Note: while the following museums do not charge patrons admission, they almost always require visitors to pay for parking.  If you’re looking to avoid any costs, there is always the option of public transportation.)

Here are some museums that offer free admission here in LA:


photo via Instagram @thebroadmuseum

Advanced tickets can be reserved online here. Stand-by for first-come, first-serve is also available.


221 S. Grand Avenue, Los Angeles, CA 90012


Tuesday and Wednesday 11:00 am- 5:00 pm

Thursday and Friday 11:00  am- 8:00 pm

Saturday 10:00 am- 8:00 pm                                                                                                                                      Sunday 10:00 am- 6:00 pm

Monday Closed                    



1200 Getty Center Drive

Los AngelesCA 90049


Tuesday–Friday and Sunday 10:00 a.m.–5:30 p.m.

Saturday 10:00 a.m.–9:00 p.m.

Closed Mondays

*Parking is $15; $10 after 3p.m.
Pay once, park twice on the same day. (Offer not valid on Mondays or Tuesdays.)


 An advance timed-entry ticket is required via their website: http://www.getty.edu/visit/villa/
17985 Pacific Coast Highway

Pacific PalisadesCA 90272



Wednesday–Monday 10:00 a.m.–5:00 p.m.

Closed Tuesdays.

*Parking is $15; $10 after 3:00 p.m.
Pay once, park twice on the same day. (Offer not valid on Mondays or Tuesdays.)

Want to learn more about the Villa? Just click here!


Read all about our visit to the California Science Center HERE.


700 Exposition Park Drive
Los Angeles, CA 90037


Open daily 10:00am- 5:00pm

*Parking $12

If you want to double your free museum experience, don’t forget the California African American Museum located at 600 State Dr, Los Angeles, CA 90037.



photo via Instagram @hammer_museum


Hammer Museum
10899 Wilshire Boulevard
Los Angeles, CA 90024


Tuesday- Friday 11:00 am- 8:00 pm

Saturday & Sunday11:00 am- 5:00 pm

Monday Closed 

Parking $6 for the first three hours with museum validation, and $3 for each additional 20 minutes, with a $20 daily maximum. There is a $6 flat rate after 6 p.m. on weekdays, and all day on weekends. Parking is cash only.



401 East M Street
Wilmington, CA 90744


Guided tours are available:

Tuesday – Thursday: 12:30, 1:30, 2:30
Saturday – Sunday: 12:30, 1:30, 2:30, 3:30

Closed Monday

*Admission is free but a $5 donation per person is requested.
(To check out some old family photos and to why the Banning Museum has a special place in my heart, click HERE.)



One of the more distinctive buildings in Downtown LA, the sight of city hall is impressive within its self. Built in 1928, this stunning structure has served as the hub for the city of Los Angeles government for nearly 90 years. But what most people don’t know is that city hall also serves as one of the best vantage points to view all of LA! Weekdays from 9:00 am- 5:00 pm visitors are welcomed to the 27th-floor observation deck where you can find 360-degree views of the city.

To get to the observation deck, simply enter through Main Street and provide a valid I.D. Depending on the day and time there may be a line. Otherwise, take the express elevator to the 22nd floor, then take another elevator up to 26th floor. Take stairway up to 27th floor.



Another great activity, if you find yourself in the downtown area, is to visit the Historic Core and El Pueblo de Los Angeles. Located within walking distance, both the Historic Core and Olvera Street have wonderful things to do, see, and eat. To get a better overall experience, and even learn about some LA history, I suggest downloading a free walking-guide provided by the Los Angeles Conservancy. These guides are full of fun and interesting facts and provide a step by step guide through various parts of downtown, highlighting many points-of-interest.

(For a guided group tour, see laconservacy.org for times and prices)


photo via la.curbed.com

You can’t really say you’ve experienced LA unless you’ve viewed the Hollywood sign. While there are many vantage points to see the famous sign, I suggest hiking to see it. Choose from three different trails (easy, moderate, and difficult), if you want to enjoy the best view of this cultural landmark.

To learn more about the Hollywood Sign trails, just click here.


Did you know the County of Los Angeles is home to nearly 20 public beaches?? From the Port of Los Angeles to the rocky shores of Malibu, LA county beaches cover nearly 25 miles of pristine coastland. So whether you want to just meander through the sand or check out the best surf spots, visiting one of the LA’s beaches is a fun and FREE option.

For a complete list of LA County beaches, visit lacounty.gov or click here.


photo via google images

While hiking might not be the first thing that comes to mind when you think of things-to-do in LA, it is actually one of the best ways to view the city. Whether you are an enthusiast or an advanced hiker, Los Angeles has trails for everyone who wants to get out experience LA’s natural wonders.

Some of the more popular trails include:

  • Runyon Canyon
  • Los Liones Trail
  • Solstice Canyon
  • Echo Mountain/Sam Merrill Trail

For a complete guide of trails in Los Angeles check out this article from TIMEOUT LA.


photo via la.streetsblog.org

Another great way to experience Los Angeles is to ditch your car and hop on your bike. Recently, LA has become a lot more bike-friendly by adding lanes exclusively for bikers. But if riding through the traffic-filled streets isn’t your idea of fun, I suggest checking out these bike trails:

MARVIN BRAUDE/ PACIFIC COAST PATH: if you love the beach then this is the bike trail for you. Starting in Torrance, bike along “the strand” following the shore of the Santa Monica Bay all the way to Will Rodgers State Beach. Stretching over 22 miles, visit some of LA’s most popular beaches and stop for drink/food at one of the many beachside restaurants and bars.

LA RIVER PATHS: While the LA River is more of a concrete stream running throughout LA, there has been a recent movement to restore the river to its natural state. Thanks to Friends of the LA River and other various programs the cleanup of the river and reintroduction of its natural habitat has become possible. Take advantage of this green movement and discover the beauty of the river that once was by biking along various paved paths.

To learn more about exploring the LA River, click here.


If you have kids one of the best ways to explore LA for free is by visiting one of its parks! From Griffith Park in the Santa Monica Mountains to Grand Park in the heart of downtown, LA offers tons of recreational space whether you are looking to play or just have a picnic.

If you want to know some of my favorite parks, just click HERE.

For a complete list of parks found in the LA area, visit laparks.org.


Well, what do you think?? Feel like you have a complete guide to all the things to do in LA for free? If you have any other free activities to do in LA, please share in the comments below!



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