St. Louis is home to many attractions and historic sites for tourists (and locals) to enjoy. And if you’re sightseeing on a budget, not to worry. Several of the city’s most popular sites won’t cost you a dime. That’s right. St. Louis is a Metro mecca for even the thriftiest of travelers and families. Which is why we thought it’d be fun to put together, in no particular order, a list of our favorite free things to do in St. Louis. Happy traveling!
St. Louis Zoo
Rated one of the best zoos and best free attractions in the nation, this metropolitan safari within Forest Park is fun for all ages. TIP: Don’t miss out on the penguin exhibit!
Location: Government Drive (Forest Park)
Hours: Daily 9 am – 5 pm, longer hours in summer
Note: You can pay to park in the lot or find free parking throughout the park
Nothing says “St. Louis” quite like an ice cold Budweiser. Stop by the brewery for an interactive tour and learn all there is to know about the legendary lager (and meet the iconic Budweiser Clydesdales!) And complete your tour with a complimentary free sample.
Location: 12th & Lynch St
Hours: Vary by season, check website for tour times
Note: Basic brewery tour is free and first come first served (must be 21+ for the free samples at the end). Specialized tours cost extra.
The one-time home of President Ulysses S. Grant, this 281-acre wildlife preserve gives viewers a close-up view of hundreds of animals including buffalo, kangaroos, camels, and even the legendary Budweiser Clydesdales.
Location: 10501 Gravois Road
Hours: Vary depending on month (Open April-October)
Note: Paid parking is available on site or bike/walk down Grant’s Trail to the Farm for free
A popular attraction for inquisitive kids of all ages, the Science Center is home to hundreds of interactive and hands-on exhibits designed to entertain and educate. (TIP: Bring along someone tall to help you construct a scale model of the Gateway Arch.)
Location: Off Interstate 64 in Forest Park
Hours: Mon – Sat 9:30 am – 4:30 pm, Sun 11 am – 4:30 pm (open until 5:30 pm in summer)
Note: Certain attractions including the Planetarium and Omnimax Theatre require additional fees
Home to attractions including the Zoo, Science Center, Art Museum, and The Muny, St. Louis’ 1,300-acre Forest Park is one of the nation’s most beautiful urban public parks. Pack a lunch and your most comfortable walking shoes for a relaxing day outdoors.
Location: Grand Drive off Interstate 64
Hours: Daily 6 am – 10 pm
Note: Ample free parking throughout the park
St. Louis Art Museum
View breathtaking and priceless artwork from around the globe and throughout history inside one of St. Louis’ most beautiful structures. The St. Louis Art Museum is located within historic Forest Park.
Location: 1 Fine Arts Drive, Forest Park
Hours: Tue-Sun 10 am – 5 pm, Fri 10 am – 9 pm
Note: Free parking nearby
Completed in 1914, this gorgeous cathedral is home to one of the largest mosaic collections in the entire world; a must-see for lovers of architecture from every faith background.
Location: 4431 Lindell Blvd
Hours: Guided Tours available weekdays 10 am – 4 pm (closed for mass, weddings, and other special events)
Note: Mosaic Museum requires $2 donation
Laumeier Sculpture Park
Part public park and part art museum, this sprawling outdoor exhibit showcases some unbelievable modern sculptures. With so many artistic creations and a seemingly endless maze of walking paths, you’ll want to set aside plenty of time in order to see everything.
Location: 12580 Rott Road
Hours: Grounds open 8 am – Sunset
Note: Open year-round
Known commonly as “The Loop”, this stretch of Delmar Boulevard is home to many St. Louis landmarks and entertainment hotspots including Blueberry Hill, The Pageant, the Tivoli Theatre, Pin-Up Bowl, and plenty of food and drink options. The Loop is also home to the St. Louis Walk of Fame and the iconic Chuck Berry statue.
Location: Delmar Blvd, University City
Hours: Business and attraction hours vary
Note: Stroll the Loop and see the sites for free…but attractions and local hotspots cost money.