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Free things to do in Fort Lauderdale

Free things to do in Fort Lauderdale

Many people think of Fort Lauderdale as a place to park their car and catch their cruise ship. While this is true, there is a lot of fun to be had while you are in town.

Many of them are free! If you are anything like us, we would tell you that free fun is the best fun, especially if you are just passing through on your way to your next destination.

We’ve put together a list of 6 Free Things to do in Fort Lauderdale

Hit the beach!

The Fort Lauderdale beach is free for the public to use and for the most part it is fairly calm. The sand stretches for miles and even though that many people visit, there is more than enough room for everyone. Just a note, parking can be tricky, so get there early and spend the day making sandcastles with your kids!

Fort Lauderdale beach

Riverwalk Fort Lauderdale

The Riverwalk features tons of museums, gardens and a performing arts center. While the museums and performing arts center might not be free, the time spent in this beautiful area certainly is, plus the people watching is awesome!

Riverwalk Water Trolly

Crossing the New River is super easy and fun with the Riverwalk Water Trolley. The best part? You can cruise the New River for free and in style for no cost. Hop on and see a part of the Riverwalk that you haven’t before! 

Volunteer Park

I am quite sure that once my kids get older, they won’t be as enamored with “new to them” playgrounds, but for now, they are happier than anyone visiting a playground they haven’t explored before. If you can tear your kiddos away from the play structure, there are family hikes to be had and ducks to feed!

Secret Woods Nature Center

The secret woods nature center is a hidden gem of Fort Lauderdale. There are several trails with walkways that are made of recycled materials. Don’t miss Butterfly Island with over a dozen plants that attract butterflies. The garden is over 3,500 square feet.

Buehler Planetarium

Currently only opened Wednesdays from 7pm – 10 pm because of on going renovations, you can still make plans to look at the night sky free of charge. In addition just outside of the planetarium, are high powered telescopes that you can use to take a look at the Fort Lauderdale night sky yourself!

Fort Lauderdale Antique Car Museum

If your family is anything like mine, you might find it hard to pull them away from a spot with lots of antique cars but it might just be the perfect place to spend a rainy day or seek shelter from the sun.

Anne Kolb Nature Center

So this is a mostly free attraction. On weekdays, admission is free that changes on the weekends, admission then becomes $1.50 per person. Which is still a very affordable it isn’t technically free. With over 1,500 miles of marshland to explore, there is something for everyone in your family to enjoy.

Have you visited Fort Lauderdale before? What was your favorite low-cost attraction?

Barbara Rose

Sunday 14th of February 2021

The Bonnet House and gardens were lovely. But it was NOT free! With our senior discount it was $9 per person. It's not named for the Bonnet family either. The original owner was Hugh Taylor Birch, a Chicago lawyer and real estate developer. It was later owned by his son-in-law, Frederic Clay Bartlett, a renowned artist. They named it the Bonnet house because the alligators who came onto their property via a canal they had built would surface under water lily's, which they thought made the alligators appear to be wearing bonnets on their heads.