100 Free Things to Do in Los Angeles: Free Attractions

Korean Bell of Friendship | Photo courtesy of Shawn S. Park Flickr

Korean Bell of Friendship | Photo courtesy of Shawn S. Park Flickr


You might think that sightseeing in Los Angeles will cost a pretty penny, but think again. Free attractions in Los Angeles offer a chance to see the city without breaking the bank.

Hollywood Sign viewed from Mount Lee

Hollywood Sign viewed from Mount Lee

 |  Photo: Yuri Hasegawa

Hike near the Hollywood sign

Feeling uninspired? Try changing your perspective on a familiar sight. While the Hollywood sign’s grounds are barred from public access, some great nearby hikes allow for great angles for photos. We’re talking Los Angeles sightseeing from a unique view. From Franklin Avenue in Hollywood, go north on Beachwood Drive; turn left at Ledgewood Drive and twist and wind uphill. Then go right at the three-way intersection onto Deronda Drive.

Richard J. Riordan Central Library

Richard J. Riordan Central Library | Photo: LAPL

Tour the Los Angeles Central Public Library

The Los Angeles Central Public Library reflects the Egyptian-style architecture mania that swept the country in the 1920s, after the discovery of King Tut's tomb.

Saber-toothed cat from Ice Age Encounters at the La Brea Tar Pits | Photo: Jim Henson's Creature Shop

Saber-toothed cat from Ice Age Encounters at the La Brea Tar Pits | Photo: Jim Henson's Creature Shop

Discover fossil fun

At La Brea Tar Pits in Hancock Park, the site of the richest discovery of Ice Age fossils in the world, more than 100 tons of fossilized bones representing 200-plus species of mammals, birds, reptiles and fish have been unearthed from pools of sticky asphalt dating back to prehistoric time. This is a uniquely favorite point of interest for sightseeing in L.A.

The Original Farmers Market

The Original Farmers Market

Stroll the historic Farmers Market

The Original Farmers Market opened at the corner of Third and Fairfax in 1934 and retains much of its original flavor — the freshest produce, made-to-order peanut butter, gourmet meats and cheeses, and hot donuts — while adding a few extra touches (gluten-free pizza, gumbo, authentic Mexican food). This is a great LA attraction for the whole family.

Marilyn Monroe and Jane Russell at Grauman's Chinese Theatre (1953)

Marilyn Monroe and Jane Russell leave their handprints in the Forecourt of the Stars (June 26, 1953) | Photo courtesy of TCL Chinese Theatre, Facebook

Step into Hollywood History

The forecourt of TCL Chinese Theatre has been one of the most popular free attractions since the 1920s, when actress Norma Talmadge accidentally stepped in wet cement during the premiere of Cecil B. DeMille’s King of Kings. Movie fans from around the world compare their hands and feet to those of stars past and present.

Walk along the stars at Hollywood Walk of Fame

Since the 1960s, more than 2,600 terrazzo and brass stars have been unveiled on Hollywood’s major sidewalks. The best way to see your favorite celebrities up close and personal is to check out the star-dedication ceremonies. They are typically held twice a month and are free to attend.

Korean Bell of Friendship in San Pedro

Korean Bell of Friendship

 |  Photo: Yuri Hasegawa

Stop by the Korean Bell of Friendship

One of LA's most beautiful cultural attractions, the Korean Bell of Friendship has intricate relief patterns that represent spirits and goddesses of liberty, victory and peace - architectural details impart the colorful nature of Korean culture. Best visited on a clear, sunny day for a picnic and a stroll, the area features pristine views complemented by the yachts and charter boats of the harbor below.

Visit the Cathedral of Our Lady of Angels

One of L.A.’s most innovative buildings and one of the biggest Catholic cathedrals in the country, it inspires visitors with its inviting grounds and museum, perfect for introspection.

Exterior of Walt Disney Concert Hall at night

Walt Disney Concert Hall | Photo: Candice Montgomery, Flickr

Take a self-guided tour of Walt Disney Concert Hall

Though the stage and concert hall itself are usually off limits to even paid tours (due to rehearsals), the interior public spaces and rooftop garden are still quite spectacular to explore.  

Venice Canal Historic District

Venice Canal Historic District

 |  Photo: Yuri Hasegawa

Admire the Venice Canals

Winding through quaint (and very expensive) houses, the Venice Canals feature arched bridges and beautiful landscaping. It's a great place to cruise along on a bike. Start between Washington Avenue and Venice Boulevard.  

Clark Family Mausoleum at Hollywood Forever | Photo: Michael Locke, Discover Los Angeles Flickr Pool

Clark Family Mausoleum at Hollywood Forever | Photo: Michael Locke, Discover Los Angeles Flickr Pool

Visit Hollywood Forever Cemetery

Founded in 1899, Hollywood Forever is one of LA's oldest cemeteries. Pay your respects to Golden Age Hollywood legends such as Judy Garland, Rudolph Valentino, and Cecil B. DeMille; and modern musicians like Chris Cornell, Scott Weiland, Dee Dee and Johnny Ramone. Catch outdoor movies during the summer at Cinespia and experience Day of the Dead celebrations in the fall.

Gamble House in "Back to the Future"

Michael J. Fox and Christopher Lloyd at the Gamble House in Back to the Future

 |  Photo: @filmtourismus

Step back in time 100 years

The Victorian era had its influence on local architecture, as evidenced by the homes in the 1300 block of Carroll Avenue in Angelino Heights. 

The Bradbury Building in Downtown LA

The Bradbury Building

 |  Photo: Discover Los Angeles

Explore the Bradbury Building

The one-of-a-kind interior features a five-story atrium finished with glazed bricks and wrought-iron grillwork (including the cage elevator that will be familiar from the many movies filmed here).

Get your steps in Echo Park

The many staircases found in Echo Park were built to assist Angelenos from Red Car stops to uphill homes. Now staircases bring people to city views and give people a no-cost exercise alternative to gyms and fitness studios. 


Disclaimer

The health and safety measures for each organization listed above are provided as a convenience for informational purposes only   Read More