Best Free Things to Do in Raleigh, NC
Why spend money with so many free activities to do?
Raleigh is a city with a small-town feel best known for the oak trees that line its city streets. It has many great options when it comes to finding free entertainment that you’ll all enjoy.
African American Cultural Center
When you’re looking for a cultural experience in Raleigh, head over to the African American Cultural Center.
You’ll find activities, events, a library, and an art gallery dedicated to providing information and appreciation for African American culture.
They also produce a podcast around the experiences and perspectives of African Americans in their community. This podcast is free and available on their website.
Everything else at the African American Cultural Center is free too, but you’re welcome to provide a donation.
American Tobacco Trail
Ready to get outdoors? Pick up the southern trailhead of the American Tobacco Trail in Raleigh, and enjoy over 22-miles of trails perfect for walking, running, biking, skating, or horseback riding.
Along the way, you’ll enjoy beautiful pine trees, wildlife sightings, water views, and bridges.
This rail-trail is a combination of paved asphalt and crushed stone, so be sure to grab a map and plan your trip before you head out.
Disc golf is a really fun, family-friendly activity that helps you get exercise, fresh air, and sunshine, all while working on your athletic skills. And Raleigh has over ten disc golf courses around the city for you to enjoy.
So pack up your favorite putters, mid-range discs, and drivers and check out the courses Raleigh has to offer, such as Cedar Hills Park, Buckhorn Disc Golf Course, New Hop Disc Golf Course, and Middle Creek.
Many of the 10+ disc golf courses have other park amenities for you to enjoy, too, such as picnic tables and playgrounds.
Raleigh is also a dog-friendly city, and it has 7 different dog parks available to help your furry friend get some exercise and social interaction too.
You and your pet can enjoy many amenities at the Raleigh area dog parks, including natural shade, benches, water fountains, wood chips, picnic tables, small and large dog enclosures, waste bag dispensers, and agility equipment.
So grab a ball and enjoy spending time with your favorite pet.
North Carolina Museum of Art
The North Carolina Museum of Art houses more than 40 art galleries and is the nation’s largest museum park at a staggering 164-acres.
The permanent collection is free to the public and hosts artifacts from around the world, including pieces from Africa, North America, and Europe. The collection also has art from ancient civilizations all the way to modern ones.
The Museum hosts several festivals throughout the year, a self-guided outdoor scavenger hunt, and 90-minute Museum Park Tours.
Plus, you can hit the trails and check out the fields, woodlands, and creeks on the property.
Raleigh Flea Market
Do you like to hunt for treasure? If so, the Raleigh Flea Market has to be at the top of your list.
Enjoy free admission and parking while you stroll through a giant flea market with 500+ vendors each and every weekend.
As a nationally recognized flea market, the Raleigh Flea Market has anything you could possibly ever want. From great vintage pieces to collectibles, cleaning supplies, motorcycle parts, meats, cheeses, and wines, you’re sure to find plenty of fun items to check out.
The flea market is open rain or shine, so dress appropriately and be ready for hours of fun.
Raleigh Municipal Rose Garden
When you’re ready to take a walk outdoors, you must check out the Raleigh Municipal Rose Garden.
Admission to this stunning garden is free, and it’s open 7 days per week.
Enjoy the beautiful sights and pleasant scent created by 1200 roses of 60 different varieties. There are other gorgeous annuals and perennials planted there, a pond, and an arboretum to explore, as well.