Despite the ridiculous number of resources that the Internet age has borne to help us travel cheaper, the overwhelming perception is that travel has to be expensive. But that is absolutely not the case. Resources to find affordable (and even free) travel options exist these days in droves, and there truly are no more excuses that money is an obstacle to experiencing the world.
Collecting credit card rewards points, for instance, will put you further towards finding free flights, and organizations like couch surfing, housesitting and homestays exist to cut your costs on accommodation to almost none! And sightseeing doesn’t have to be expensive either – there are options for entertainment throughout every city in the world which won’t bleed you dry.
The following are free activities to do while traveling through almost any country in the world – you don’t have to let cash dictate whether you enjoy your time abroad!
Walking tours are a fabulous way to experience a new destination for free, and the majority of cities around the world excel at being pedestrian friendly. It’s a great way to orientate yourself with a new location while taking in the most popular tourist attractions, and seeing a city’s top landmarks is absolutely free.
Among the most walkable cities in the world are Sydney, Florence, Paris, Dubrovnik, New York and Berlin, and walking tours are a great way to see London for free too.
It’s usually pretty easy to catch a free walking tour in major cities; students and freelance tour guides offer tours with no upfront cost. Tour options will often be advertised on hostel bulletin boards, though for those who don’t like group tours, or aren’t fond of feeling pressured to tip, it’s just as easy to search Google and download a free walking map of your city for a self guided tour.
Lay on a Beach
There’s nothing more enjoyable than lying in the sun, and if you’ve planned ahead and packed a compact travel hammock for the beach, you’re already set with a recipe for success!
Many of the world’s major cities have their own beaches, from Chicago to New York and Sydney, so even if you’ve traveled with no intention of hitting the beach, perhaps you should make a quick change of plans! Even landlocked cities like Paris create their own makeshift beach during the summer months.
One of the best ways to experience part of a city or town that few tourists ever see is to throw on your hiking shoes and trek as the locals do. Many times the greatest sites are nearby tourist attractions which just require a little bit of effort to get to, but many people while traveling don’t take time to explore.
With this in mind, National Parks throughout the world may charge entrance fees, though many will waive this fee if you walk or bike in.
Visit a Museum
There’s a big international movement behind the notion of making history and culture as accessible as can be, and with this in mind, you’ll find quite a lot of museums throughout the world will be free.
Take London for example – all of the major museums are all free, even if they do have some special exhibitions which do run at a fee. The Natural History Museum is one of the world’s finest, and all of the national galleries, modern art museums and most public buildings are open to the public without a charge for admission.
The Louvre in Paris is free on the first Sunday of every month, the MoMA in New York City is free every ‘Target Free Friday’ between 4pm and 8pm. So there are definitely options out there if you’re a buff for history and/or art.
Surf the Web
Free Wi-Fi is now a perk of many hotels and hostels, and even if you don’t want to sit around in your room all day, the vast majority of bars and cafes now offer it too.
Complete research on your destination, book your accommodation for the following day, or play in an Online Casino for free before you hit up the real thing (for instance you can play in Mansion Casino for free with their practice mode, no money involved). Paying for internet is a way of the past!
Part of experiencing a new destination is fully immersing yourself, and that sometimes requires taking time to just sit! Park yourself on an outside seat and allow yourself the time to sit and watch the world go by.
People watching is a fascinating pastime, especially if witnessing a completely different culture to that of your own, and part of the fun is imagining people’s life stories – where they came from, what they do, and where they’re going.
Visit a Church
Likewise with the museums, places of worship are a fantastic free option for exploring a city, and regardless of your religion, these are often the most amazing buildings that a city will have on display.
For instance there are stunning temples all over Asian cities, and churches, mosques, synagogues, cathedrals and basilicas still play a very important role in the city landscapes throughout Europe. In Italy there are more churches throughout Rome than would be possible to visit even if you spent the whole year hopping from the next one to the next.
You can easily spend your day throughout most cities taking in places of worship – just grab a tourist map, locate the icon for a church or temple and get going!
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Photo credits: Featured Photo + all money images by Images Money. Woman on beach by Saradipity Media.
Megan, Spot-On! Walking and exploring by foot has always been my favorite way to explore someplace new, to really get to know it.
And Yeah, its FREE!
And Yeah, its Great Exercise!
Just spent a day wandering Greenwich, and just like the rest of London, it is probably the best walking city anywhere. For an entire day, not counting pub visits, I only spent 2£ on some pamphlets. But the photos you get when walking are priceless.
Glad you enjoyed the post JR! Walking is our favorite form of transport – you really do get to know a city far more intimately than if you just catch a cab from one attraction to the next. And the exercise thing too :D
London is the best, love wandering aimlessly around and exploring the city, you’re so right, you have a wonderful day for almost nothing – and people think London is expensive to enjoy!
Will head on over and check out your wanderings!
Those sound like awesome ways to enjoy any place you visit! Pinned and shared.
Thanks Danny! So glad you enjoyed the post :)
You are right New York City is walkable city. And i would highly recommend everyone to check out The High Line and Conservatory Garden are hidden gems and easy to walk through.
Thanks for the tips Vitali! New York is one of my favorite cities, though I’m always learning about more and more hidden gems as I talk to people. Good excuses for continual trips back!