23 Free & Inexpensive Family Activities

Minneapolis has a lot of things you can do with your family for FREE or a small cost! Seeing the sites of the city is a start, but when you want to entertain your family but not spend a lot, work your way through this list.


  1. Get lost in exhibits at the Walker Art Center on First Free Saturdays and every Thursday night.
  2. Take a walk through the Sculpture Garden at the Walker Art Center and take your photo with the iconic Spoonbridge & Cherry.
  3. Explore at the Guthrie Theater and take a look at the Mississippi River and St. Anthony Falls from the Endless Bridge.
  4. Explore Minnesota’s largest art educator, the Minneapolis Institute of Art, which is free and open to the public daily.
  5. Take a walk around the Mall of America, the largest indoor shopping center in the nation.
  6. Stroll or bike through the Mill District, the historic birthplace to Minneapolis.
  7. Read your way through the Minneapolis Central Library, located downtown between Hennepin Avenue and Nicollet at Third Street. 
  8. Stroll the Mill City Farmer’s Market and take in free entertainment and fun shopping on the riverfront on Saturday mornings. 
  9. Hike near Minnehaha Falls and Creek and stop to see the Song of Hiawatha statue. 
  10. Stop for ice cream at Izzy's, a local favorite all year round. Don't forget your Izzy's scoop!
  11. For a small fee, visit the Foshay Observation Deck and Museum and get the only outdoor skyscraper view of the city of Minneapolis. 
  12. Shop from local and diverse businesses and have an inexpensive lunch at the Midtown Global Market.
  13. Visit Como Zoo and Conservatory in Saint Paul, a free zoo and historic indoor gardens with a Japanese garden and an inexpensive Carousel ride.
  14. Bike or walk along the Midtown Greenway, a 5.5-mile long former railroad corridor that winds throughout the city.
  15. Enjoy a free brewery tour at Insight Brewing every Saturday.
  16. Play Frisbee golf--the Minneapolis area hosts more disc golf parks than almost any other metropolitan area in the U.S. 
  17. Play in one of Minneapolis' 197 parks, the number one park system in the country for three years.
  18. Browse the boutiques in the hottest neighborhood in the country, the North Loop neighborhood.
  19. Stroll through the gorgeous Lyndale Rose Gardens and Eloise Butler Wildflower Garden and Bird Sanctuary
  20. Shop and get free visitor advice and ideas at Minneapolis Visitor Information on Nicollet & 5th Street.
  21. Take a free tour of the State Capitol any day of the week.
  22. Visit the Weisman Art Museum and get a tour. Both admission and weekly tours are completely free!
  23. Run, walk, bike or people watch at Bde Maka Ska (Lake Calhoun).