It is totally possible to do Orlando on the Cheap. In fact, there are many FREE things to do around town. To help you do more with less, we have created a list of our favorite top 10 free things do to in Orlando. You’ll discover plenty of free stuff do to in Orlando: free movies, kids’ activities, farmers’ markets, outdoor recreation and more.
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TOP 10 FREE THINGS TO DO IN ORLANDO
FREE OUTDOOR MOVIES IN ORLANDO
There’s nothing better than watching a movie under the stars on a beautiful night in Orlando — especially if it’s free. Outdoor movies happen regularly throughout the year, all season long. Pack a picnic, bring a blanket, and pick a spot on the grass for a memorable evening.
With the charming town of Winter Park as a backdrop, Popcorn Flicks in the Park screens family-friendly films on the second Thursday of the month. More free outdoor movie options include: Sunset Cinema in Altamonte Springs on the second Saturday of the month and Family Movie Night at Old Town on Sundays.
Visiting a farmers’ market is one of the best ways to learn about a town while supporting local artisans and growers. Even if you don’t end up making a purchase, it’s a great place to sample foods, enjoy beautiful weather and maybe even some live music. Most outdoor markets are dog-friendly too. Two of our favorite outdoor markets are Winter Park on Saturday mornings and downtown Orlando on Sundays.
We also love to shop at Plant Street Market in Winter Garden and East End Market in Orlando. Both are indoor markets that are open daily. Downtown Orlando also has a new and specially scheduled Indoor Farmers’ Market hosted by The Daily City. Check out our list of all the Farmer’s Markets in Central Florida.
FREE ORLANDO MUSEUM VISITS
Orlando has a long list of museums, gardens and cultural attractions. A select few offer designated free admission days. You can also check out our comprehensive list of Orlando free museum days.
- Every second Sunday of the month, Mennello Museum offers free admission to the galleries during Free Family Funday.
- Harry P. Leu Gardens is free the first Monday of each month.
- At the Third Thursday Gallery Hop, downtown organizations invite the community to pop in for a local art immersion.
- The Cornell Fine Arts Museum offers an intimate and unique experience in Winter Park with more than 5,000 works ranging from antiquity to contemporary. And, it’s always free.
- On the first weekend of every month, admission is granted to Orlando museums for Bank of America card holders. Participating museums include: Orlando Museum of Art, Mennello Museum of American Art, Orange County Regional History Center, Orlando Science Center.
- Journey through 12,000 years of Central Florida history at the Orange County Regional History Center in downtown Orlando. The organization offers free entry the 3rd Thursday of the month, 6 p.m. to 9 p.m.
- The Charles Hosmer Morse Museum of American Art in Winter Park is home to the world’s most comprehensive collection of dazzling works by Louis Comfort Tiffany. A visit is complimentary during Friday Nights at the Morse scheduled November through April from 4 p.m. to 8 p.m. The museum also hosts Open Houses throughout the year: Independence Day, Easter weekend, Winter Park Sidewalk Art Festival weekend, and Christmas Eve.
MONTHLY FOOD, WINE & ART FESTIVALS
There’s always a reason to celebrate in Orlando, giving life to monthly food, wine and art festivals. Each month you can enjoy a variety of reoccurring community events such as outdoor festivals, art walks, live music and social events at museums.
- On the first Wednesday of every month from 5 p.m. to 9 p.m., Lake Mary WineArt Wednesday features local artists, food trucks and a beer and wine garden.
- Mingle with Central Florida artists and enjoy live music at the Sanford Art Walk on the fourth Friday of every month from 6 p.m. to 9 p.m. in downtown Sanford.
- Check out our complete list of food, wine & art festivals in Orlando.
LAKE EOLA PARK IN DOWNTOWN ORLANDO
This popular park is a must-do in Orlando. The 43-acre recreational area is located in the heart of downtown and features a huge lake surrounded by a walking path, restaurants, shade trees and public art displays.
You could spend the entire day here: picnic along the shore, catch a free concert at the amphitheater, take a stroll around the lake, and feed the resident swans (dispensers located around the lake; bring quarters). Head down to the lake with this handy guide detailing the different types of swans. The kids will love the large playground with activities for a variety of ages and a convenient bathroom right outside the entrance.
Enjoy spectacular views of Orlando’s skyline and marvel at the iconic fountain that comes to life with dancing bright lights accompanied by jazz music every night at 8 p.m. and 9 p.m.
BIKE AND NATURE TRAILS
Seminole County’s award-winning recreational trail system is a Central Florida best kept secret with more than 60 miles of paved and natural trails. Whatever adventure you choose, it’s free to journey through the trails of Central Florida. Explore Central Florida’s trails:
Winter Park boasts beautiful parks, various free events, cultural attractions and shopping. Stroll along Park Avenue for some window shopping, picnic in Central Park, and then stop at Kraft Azalea Garden to watch the sunset. The town hosts many free events like Popcorn Flicks outdoor movies, concerts, holiday parades and more.
FREE KIDS’ ACTIVITIES IN ORLANDO
There are plenty of cheap ways to entertain your kids in Orlando. Some of our favorites include free story time at Leu Gardens, Disney Springs and the LEGO Imagination Center, Disney’s Boardwalk, craft workshops at local retailers, splash pads, community pools and parks. Here is our complete list of free things to do with your kids.
FREE ORLANDO TOURS
- Travel through the rolling hills of Clermont for an unexpected Florida wine experience at Lakeridge Winery. Stop by any day of the week for complimentary wine tours, tastings and a picturesque view of the 80-acre vineyard. The tour lasts approximately 45 minutes and begins with a 12-minute video presentation that shows the growing of Florida’s grapes all the way to the wine making process.
- For beer connoisseurs, local brewmasters share how the fermenting magic happens during regularly scheduled on-the-house tours. Orlando Brewing in downtown Orlando: Monday through Sunday at 6 p.m. Crooked Can Brewing Company, the flagship of Plant Street Market in Winter Garden: Sundays, 12 p.m. – 4 p.m. ($5 each).
- Learn about historical figures who helped shape Orlando into the city it is today. During a full moon, The Greenwood Cemetery opens its gates for an educational and enlightening Moonlight Walking Tour that unveils the background of notable individuals. The tour is free, but advance registration is required and donations are accepted.
- The Orlando Historic Walking Tour, led by the local Historic Preservation Officer, gives a firsthand look into the background of buildings that have stood the test of time. The walking tour concludes with complimentary admission to the Orange County Regional History Center.
- Observe the city from an artist’s perspective with the See Art Orlando project, a collection of nine permanent contemporary art sculptures arranged throughout downtown Orlando. Walk around to admire each and bring a picnic to enjoy along the way.
Wekiva Island is that secret watering hole locals don’t want visitors to discover. Located along the shore of spring-fed Wekiva River, this eco-friendly oasis has it all — from recreational activities to a bar that serves beer and wine. Spend the day lounging in Adirondack chairs, playing volleyball, swimming in the cool waters and listening to live music. Admission is free during the week, and the charge is only a dollar or two on the weekends.
MORE FREE THINGS TO DO IN ORLANDO:
30 Orlando attractions under $30
Cheap things to do with kids in Orlando
Romantic Orlando dates under $30
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