10 Free Ways to Enjoy Orlando

Want to hear the worst-kept secret of 2023? Traveling is expensive. No way around it. But, there are some ways to extend your vacation itinerary without extending the cost. While most towns have a few select attractions that are free of charge, there are plenty of ways to enjoy Orlando without handing over a debit card. Check out this list of 10 free ways to enjoy Orlando.

Free Family Fun

  • Disney Springs offers free admission and free parking to guests. This entertainment district of Walt Disney World offers shopping, dining, and free family fun. Catch a live performance, or spend some time building at The LEGO Store. Take a free Ferrie ride that leads to a variety of resort properties and back to Disney Springs.
  • Promenade at Sunset Walk is next to Margaritaville Resort Orlando and houses nightlife, shopping ventures, dining destinations,  and more. Free entertainment and events are scheduled throughout the year, including a variety of holiday celebrations.
  • Universal CityWalk is similar to the first two examples, as it is an extension of another theme park. Universal Studios allows free parking after 6pm, while admission to Universal CityWalk is always free. Family-friendly activities here include dance parties hosted by live DJ sets,  kids’ cooling splash areas, and free water taxi trips to several of the Universal hotel properties, for guests and non-guests alike. the 30-acre entertainment complex also houses a bowling alley, restaurants, shopping, and nightclubs.
Margaritaville at Universal CityWalk. courtesy of Universal Studios.
  • Old Town Entertainment District is a fun place to visit, as it provides a look and feel of yesteryear. Authentic storefronts and architecture add to the reminiscent atmosphere. For families, there are free events such as classic car shows and live entertainment. There are several optional paid attractions including carnival-style rides and a magic shop.
  • Disney’s BoardWalk provides free admission that will take you back in time to the dawning of the 20th century of Atlantic City. Your family can stroll slowly down a Coney Island-style boardwalk while enjoying the free entertainment and artists that are also on the boardwalk. Your family will enjoy interactions with fire-eaters, jugglers, and comedians. Much like all other Disney properties, there are plenty of opportunities to find the perfect souvenir through multiple gift shops. After much debate, my child walked out with her Minnie Mouse ears headband, but there were plenty of other options.

Free Arts and Culture

  • Winter Park History Museum highlights include a photo timeline of Winter Park’s history, an ever-changing lineup of themed exhibits, and a walking tour. The walking tour focuses on 20 sites and includes a free audio-tour CD, a CD player, and a map that is available to be checked out for the day.
  • Lake Nona Sculpture Garden is a new addition to the city’s Lake Nona community. The Sculpture Garden is a 50,000-square-foot outdoor space that features a large selection of sculptures from one of the world’s largest private art collections, The Lewis Collection. There are pieces to view from artists such as Fernando Botero, Philip Jackson, Enzo Plazzotta, and Henry Moore.
  • Hannibal Square Heritage Center is in Winter Park and serves to give insight into the nearby Hannibal Square district’s origins. As one of Florida’s original African American communities, history comes alive through artwork, photography, and oral histories.
  • City Arts houses several art galleries within the Rogers Kiene building in downtown Orlando. Local and regional artists are showcased.
  • Charles Hosmer Morse Museum of American Art is located within Winter Park and provides the world’s most comprehensive collection of works from Louis Comfort Tiffany. The collection includes glasswork, lamps, jewelry, and pottery, among other items.  This museum is free to guests on select dates.
Photo courtesy of The Charles Hosmer Morse Museum.


Other free options include free outdoor adventures in Orlando and free nightlife activities. For even more free fun in Orlando, check out the full list.


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