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27 Fun Things to Do for Free

By Kylie Ora Lobell · June 14, 2023 · 8 minute read

We’re here to help! First and foremost, SoFi Learn strives to be a beneficial resource to you as you navigate your financial journey. Read more We develop content that covers a variety of financial topics. Sometimes, that content may include information about products, features, or services that SoFi does not provide. We aim to break down complicated concepts, loop you in on the latest trends, and keep you up-to-date on the stuff you can use to help get your money right. Read less

27 Fun Things to Do for Free

Having a good time doesn’t have to be expensive. In fact, there are plenty of fun and interesting things to do that don’t cost any money at all.

While it may take a little more research and imagination, it’s possible to find new and entertaining activities to do on your own or with your family and friends without busting your budget.

If you’re looking for some fun ways to save money, read on. We’ve got 27 ideas.

Fun Free Things To Do

If you find that you often spend your free time binge-watching shows or scrolling through social media on your phone, it may be time to work some new activities into your repertoire. Fortunately, that doesn’t have to mean breaking out your wallet.

Consider trying one (or a few) of these fun, free activities.

1. Going on a Hike

If the weather is nice outside, then it could be time to hit the great outdoors and take a hike. You can search for nearby hikes at . You’ll also be able to check out the length and difficulty of the trail, as well how long it takes to hike.

2. Volunteering with a Local Organization

Volunteering can be a great cost-free activity because it allows you to give back, potentially meet some new people, and feel good about how you spent your day. To find local volunteering opportunities, you can check out , which matches people with local organizations that need help.

3. Playing Board Games

When looking for fun things to do with the family, consider busting out a game of Monopoly or Life and competing against one another. You might reward the winner with a few days or a week off from their everyday chores.

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4. Decluttering the House

While this might not be the first thing that comes to mind when looking for a fun way to spend your free time, cleaning and being productive can actually be very satisfying, and also help relieve stress. You can declutter alone or get the kids involved. Consider donating your discards to a local charity or thrift store.

Recommended: Is Hiring a Maid or Cleaning Service Worth It?

5. Going to a Free Museum Day

Many museums will offer free admission once a week or once a month. You can spend an afternoon browsing through the beautiful works of art without spending a dime.

6. Having a Picnic in the Park

Dining al fresco doesn’t have to be pricey if you head for a local park. A picnic can be a great way to spend a liesurely afternoon with family and friends. All you need is a blanket, lunch, a ball or Frisbee, and a shady spot.

Recommended: 13 Cheap Ways to Live

7. Streaming an Exercise Video

Gym memberships, personal trainers, and exercise classes can be expensive. However, exercise videos on YouTube and Instagram are totally free. Consider breaking out the sweats and burning some calories for free.

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8. FaceTiming With Friends and Family

Whether you prefer an old-fashioned phone call or a video call, reconnecting with an old friend or a family member you haven’t spoken with in a while can be an enjoyable, no-cost way to spend some free time.

9. Trying Meditation

Meditating can be a relaxing solo activity that helps to clear your mind and reduce stress. You can find free meditations on YouTube, or you might want to check out Headspace, which has guided meditation for beginners and offers a free trial.

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10. Playing Free Games Online

Playing games online can be a fun way to spend a rainy afternoon with the kids. You can find free educational games for kids on sites like Funbrain .

11. Going to the Beach Off Hours

Hitting the beach in the late afternoon or early morning is often free. At these times you’re also likely to find fewer crowds, as well as beautiful light.

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12. Starting a Journal

Journaling can be a great way to get things off your mind, collect your thoughts, and even come up with solutions to nagging problems. All you need is a pen and an old notebook to get started.

13. Visiting Your Local Library

You can not only find great books to read at your local library, but also pick up DVDs, CDs, and audio books, and possibly also attend a lecture, film screening, or other free community event.

14. Cooking Something New

Consider shopping your cupboard, fridge, and freezer, and then looking for something you can make with what you have on hand. You can find plenty of free recipes at sites like Allrecipes and Food Network.

15. Checking Out a Fire Station

Kids typically love fire trucks. Consider reaching out to your local fire station to see if they offer tours. This is not only a fun, free family activity, but allows kids to learn all about how the fire department works while meeting their local heroes.

💡 Quick Tip: When you feel the urge to buy something that isn’t in your budget, try the 30-day rule. Make a note of the item in your calendar for 30 days into the future. When the date rolls around, there’s a good chance the “gotta have it” feeling will have subsided.

16. Making a Movie

Whether you have a video camera or just a smartphone, you have what you need to make a short film. You can have everyone in the family pitch in to create a storyline, sets, costumes, and props. You can then edit the film and share it online.

17. Learning a New Skill

Whether you want to get better at applying makeup or have always wanted to learn how to juggle or knit a scarf, you can likely find a great tutorial on YouTube.

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18. Going to Local Historical Site

There are likely a number of places around town where you and your family can soak up some local history. Many towns also offer free walking tours.

19. Attending a Free Concert

During the summer, many towns will put on free concerts for everyone to enjoy. You might even bring a blanket and dinner for a nice evening out.

20. Doing a Puzzle

Putting together a large puzzle can be a fun and challenging activity to do alone or with friends and family. If you are tired of the ones you own, consider trading puzzles with a friend or neighbor so you have something new to tackle.

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21. Camping in the Backyard

In warmer weather, camping in the backyard offers an opportunity for fun, free adventure with the kids. If you don’t have a tent, consider borrowing one for the night. You can make a fire (or light up the grill) to roast marshmallows and tell ghost stories before bed.

22. Starting a Book Club

While this can take a little planning, book clubs are relatively easy to set up. You can create a private book club on Facebook or another social media platform. Or, you can recruit a group of book-loving friends to meet once a month at each other’s homes.

23. Washing the Car

You can have fun and accomplish something at the same time by getting your kids involved in washing the car. You could even host a neighborhood car wash so the kiddos can earn some pocket money.

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24. Heading to the Dog Park

This can obviously be a great idea if you have a dog, but can also be entertaining if you don’t. You can grab a bench and have fun watching cute dogs run around and play. Dog parks can also be fun for people watching.

Recommended: 19 Tips to Save Money on Pet Care

25. Trying a New Playground

Your kids probably know all the local playgrounds pretty well. For a change of pace, consider checking out a playground you’ve never been to in a town nearby. Pack a lunch to make it feel like a mini-vacation.

26. Writing a Letter

Writing letters may seem old-fashioned, but it can be a nice way to communicate with your loved ones. The letter can be handwritten and sent via snail mail, or you might just want to send an email updating a friend or family member about what’s going on in your life.

27. Building a Fort

Kids typically love building forts. On a cold or rainy day, you can have an indoor adventure by breaking out some chairs and blankets and letting the kids create their own little hideaway filled with their favorite books and toys. They may even wind up sleeping in the fort for the night.

The Takeaway

It can take thinking a little outside the box and a bit of planning, but it’s possible to entertain yourself and your family with fun new activities without busting your budget.

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