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Griffith Observatory

A vacation to the west coast might take a bit of a bite out of your wallet. Spending your time at amusement parks, shopping on Rodeo Drive, and eating at some of the finest restaurants in the world might leave you needing to add a few lower-cost activities to your schedule. Luckily for you, there are so many free things to do in LA that you could easily stay in the city for a week without spending a penny on entertainment.

Griffith Observatory

The Griffith Observatory in Griffith Park has free planetarium shows and exhibits. Unlike many places, you don’t have to pay to look through the telescopes either. When you are finished at Griffith Observatory, take a hike through the park, look for wildlife, and have a picnic. You can even take a free shuttle throughout the park on weekends.

Griffith Observatory

The Broad

Many museums have free days once each month or even once per week. The Broad offers free admission at all times. Tickets should be reserved in advance to avoid long waits. Inside The Broad, you will find contemporary pieces, immersive art installations, and special events like poetry nights and family weekend workshops. The Broad is conveniently located in DTLA on West 2nd and Grand Avenue.

Hollywood Walk of Fame

The Hollywood Walk of Fame is arguably the most famous of the free things to do in LA. You can wander the sidewalks, happily finding names of your favorite stars from the present and the past. You can also download a free map to learn precisely where to find every star, from Halle Berry to the Beatles. While you are looking at iconic Los Angeles landmarks, head to the TCL Chinese Theatre, and don’t forget to get a good view of the Hollywood sign.

TCL Chinese Theatre at Hollywood Walk of Fame

Live Show Tapings

You can watch a live taping of a talk show, game show, or sitcom as long as you are in town at the right time. Depending on the show you want to watch, you may have to book tickets one to three months in advance. Most live tapings do not allow children, so be sure to look for age restrictions if you are bringing the family along. One exception to this rule is “Wheel of Fortune,” which allows audience members as young as eight to join in on the fun.

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