Free Things to Do in Salt Lake City
Free things to do in Salt Lake City! The capital of Utah is known for its breathtaking scenery and vibrant culture. However, you don’t need to break the bank to enjoy what this city offers. Salt Lake City has something for everyone, from outdoor adventures to exquisite art. So let’s dive into some free activities you can enjoy while visiting this incredible destination. You’ll never have to ask what to do in Salt Lake City again.
Exploring the Great Outdoors
Spanning over 80 acres, Liberty Park is a fantastic place to spend an afternoon with friends or family. You can relax on the grass, play sports, or stroll the park’s picturesque ponds. Children will love the playground and splash pad, while the park’s walking paths allow a pleasant and leisurely stroll.
For hiking enthusiasts, Ensign Peak is a must-visit destination. This relatively easy hike offers incredible views of the city and surrounding mountains. Bring a camera, as the sunset from the summit, is genuinely breathtaking.
Big Cottonwood Canyon
Big Cottonwood Canyon, just a short drive from Salt Lake City, is an outdoor enthusiast’s dream. With numerous hiking trails, breathtaking mountain views, and picturesque lakes, you’ll have plenty to explore. Take advantage of popular hikes like Donut Falls and Lake Blanche, which showcase the canyon’s natural beauty.
Another beautiful canyon close to the city is Millcreek Canyon. This canyon is a local favorite with its dog-friendly trails, cascading waterfalls, and vibrant fall colors. For a moderate hike, try the Desolation Trail to Salt Lake Overlook, which offers panoramic views of the city and surrounding mountains.
Bonneville Shoreline Trail
The Bonneville Shoreline Trail is a fantastic option for those who want to explore Salt Lake City’s foothills. This extensive trail system follows the ancient shoreline of Lake Bonneville. It offers a range of hikes suitable for all skill levels. You’ll enjoy stunning views of the city, the Great Salt Lake, and the Wasatch Mountains as you traverse this scenic trail.
Memory Grove Park and City Creek Canyon
Head to Memory Grove Park and City Creek Canyon for a nature escape within the city limits. This peaceful park features a picturesque creek, various memorials, and lush vegetation. You can take a leisurely stroll through the park or venture further into City Creek Canyon for a more challenging hike. The canyon’s trail system offers several routes, including the popular hike to Elephant Rock, which provides incredible city views.
Free SLC Arts and Culture
Utah Museum of Fine Arts
The Utah Museum of Fine Arts offers free admission on the first Wednesday and third Saturday of each month. You’ll find a vast collection of artwork spanning various eras and styles, from ancient Greek sculptures to contemporary installations.
Utah Museum of Contemporary Art
Another cultural gem in Salt Lake City, the Utah Museum of Contemporary Art, offers free admission all year round. This cutting-edge museum features thought-provoking exhibitions and installations by local, national, and international artists.
Located in the heart of downtown, the Gallivan Center regularly hosts free events, including live music, outdoor movie screenings, and festivals. Check their event calendar to see what’s happening during your visit.
The State Capitol Building
Utah’s State Capitol Building is a stunning architectural masterpiece that offers free guided tours. You’ll learn about the building’s history, admire its beautiful interior, and enjoy panoramic views of the city from Capitol Hill. Make sure to bring your camera for some great photo opportunities.
Fort Douglas Military Museum
Dive into Utah’s military history at the Fort Douglas Military Museum. This fascinating, free museum contains exhibits on various conflicts, military equipment, and uniforms. You’ll gain insight into Fort Douglas’s role in shaping the region’s history.
At the heart of Salt Lake City, Temple Square is a beautiful historic site that offers free tours, lovely gardens, and stunning architecture. Also, take advantage of the iconic Salt Lake Temple, the Assembly Hall, and the Tabernacle, home to the world-famous Tabernacle Choir.
While some exhibits at the Clark Planetarium require a fee, many of its engaging and interactive displays are free to the public. As a result, kids and adults alike will be captivated by the wonders of space, astronomy, and science.
International Peace Gardens
A hidden gem in Salt Lake City, the International Peace Gardens is a peaceful retreat featuring themed gardens representing different nations. As you stroll through the gardens, you’ll enjoy a delightful mix of flora, sculptures, and monuments worldwide. It’s a perfect spot for a family picnic or an afternoon of relaxation.
Although the Tracy Aviary has an admission fee, it’s free on select days throughout the year. Home to more than 400 birds from over 135 species, this beautiful, eight-acre sanctuary offers a unique opportunity to learn about and appreciate our feathered friends.
Salt Lake City has so much to offer; you don’t need to spend a fortune to enjoy it. From outdoor adventures to cultural experiences and family-friendly activities, there’s something for everyone in this captivating city. So, pack your bags and prepare for an unforgettable trip full of free attractions and unforgettable memories.
Q: What is the best time of year to visit Salt Lake City?
A: Salt Lake City is a year-round destination, offering unique attractions each season. Spring and fall have mild weather and fewer crowds, while winter is perfect for skiing and snowboarding enthusiasts. Summer can be hot but offers numerous outdoor activities and events.
Q: Is public transportation available in Salt Lake City?
A: Yes, Salt Lake City has an extensive public transportation system, including buses, light rail (TRAX), and commuter rail (FrontRunner). These options make exploring the city and its surrounding areas easy and affordable.
Q: Are there any free events or festivals in Salt Lake City?
A: Salt Lake City hosts numerous free events and festivals throughout the year, including the Utah Arts Festival, the Downtown Farmers Market, and various outdoor concerts. Check local event calendars for up-to-date information during your visit.
Q: Are the Great Salt Lake beaches free to visit?
A: Most beaches around the Great Salt Lake are free to visit, but some state parks, like Antelope Island, may require a small entrance fee.
Q: Is it safe to explore Salt Lake City on foot?
A: Salt Lake City is generally safe for pedestrians, with well-maintained sidewalks and crosswalks. However, staying aware of your surroundings and practicing basic safety precautions, like not walking alone late at night or in unfamiliar areas, is always a good idea.