Free Things To Do

Due to COVID 19, we encourage you to check the status of any Indianapolis establishment prior to visiting.

Whether you’re planning an affordable weekend away, are in town on a limited business budget, or simply want a staycation the kids will rave about for years to come, Indianapolis is your kind of destination. On any given day, you are certain to find something fun to do without spending a single cent. Without further ado, here are the top free things to do in Indianapolis. 


Daily Light Show on Monument Circle

Shining A LightVisit Monument Circle for Shining a Light, a seasonally-themed light show and a nightly Signature Salute. The show begins at 9:45 pm and is synchronized with an Indianapolis Symphony Orchestra original score that pays tribute to the iconic Monument. 


Original Farmer's Market at Monument Circle

City Market

City Market’s Original Farmer’s Market has a new home on Monument Circle for you to explore and shop local. With new precautions set in place, including mandatory masks, social distancing, and  contactless payment options, you can safely enjoy this weekly market in the heart of downtown Indy. Discovery locally made products, such as fresh produce and herbs, baked goods, syrups, dog treats, and more.


LO-FI and HI-FI's First Fridays at the Murphy Art Center

Lo-Fi and Hi-Fi First Fridays

Made possible by Dogfish Head, Tinker Coffee, and Klipsch, First Fridays at the Murphy Art Center have free monthly shows by up-and-coming bands as well as new visual art installation each month. In September, enjoy an art walk through Virginia Avenue and a small, socially-distanced gathering outside the center. 


#BlackLivesMatter Mural on Indiana Avenue

#BlackLivesMatter Mural on Indiana Avenue

Reflect on the past and become inspired for a better tomorrow with the newly completed #BlackLivesMatter mural on this historic Indianapolis street. Indiana Avenue was a bustling cultural hub for African Americans in the early 20th century, and now serves as a backdrop for vital and significant movement in the modern age. Each letter of the mural was completed by a local, Black artist.


Indianapolis Arts Center Art Park

Brown, shingled house that is twisted with green leaves behind

Right along the Monon Trail in Broad Ripple lies the Indianapolis Arts Center, where you can find sprawling gardens and unique works of art nestled right along the White River. The gardens are free to access and explore. See if you can spot the Twisted House sculpture in the Art Park, a fairytale-like garden designed by Indiana native and renowned architect Michael Graves. 


Yappy Hour at White River State Park

White Dog Beside a sign that reads "Yappy Hour"

On the last Thursday of each month, you can take your furry friend for a socially-distanced get-together with other pups and pals at Yappy Hour, hosted by White River State Park. Yappy Hour is a free family-friendly happy hour event that welcomes both people and pups alike. Attendees will enjoy music, food trucks, yard games, multiple local dog vendors, dog training demos, and local beer and wine. Indy Humane will in attendance with their Pet Awareness Wagon with dogs available for adoption.


Relive your youth and take in the great outdoors at one of Indy's 211 city parks. From Eagle Creek Park on the Northwest side of the city, with its expansive reservoir and crisscrossing nature trails, to Highland Park, with one of the most beautiful sunset views of the city, there’s something for everyone with Indy Parks. Pickup takeout from your favorite restaurant for a summer picnic, or dust off your frisbee and take advantage of the wide-open spaces.


History buff? Check out the Indiana Landmarks Center free public tour. May through October you can also take a free walking tour of Monument Circle, every Friday and Saturday at 10 am. 

Take a walk, run, or bike ride down the internationally acclaimed 8-mile long Indianapolis Cultural Trail. The trail travels from Mass Ave to White River State Park and Fountain Square and is perfect for a stroll anytime during the day. Explore the city and learn about the culture of Indy one trail at a time.


Indy Parks and Recreation has been celebrating summer with a scenes and song. Catch one of the free movie nights or concerts held at Indy’s many spacious parks and outdoor settings. Enforced safety procedures are in place to bring you and your crew peace of mind as you get outside and enjoy a favorite flick or a local musical artist. 


First Thursdays at the Indianapolis Museum of Art at Newfields

First Thursdays at Newfields

The first Thursday of every month from 4 to 8 pm, the IMA at Newfields will be offering free general admission to view its collection of over 54,000 works. The IMA is one of the 10 largest and 10 oldest art museums in the nation, and it features a wide variety of pieces spanning over 5,000 years.


See Larger-Than-Life Murals

Mass Ave Murals: Reggie Miller, Kurt Vonnegut, Mari Evans

Scout for three larger-than-life murals along Massachusetts Avenue, in the first cultural district of the city. Look up to Pacers star Reggie Miller, author Kurt Vonnegut, and poet Mari Evans as you stroll along Mass Ave to explore the shops, restaurants, and bars.


Venture Along the White River

White River and New York Street BridgeGo mountain biking on 6.8 miles of singletrack at White River Wapahani Trail as you take in nature and views of the White River. Our suggestion – take a break from your ride at dusk to take in the stunning colors decorating the New York Street Bridge, and marvel at the views of the city. 


Crown Hill Cemetery 

Crown Hill

Crown Hill Cemetery is a favorite destination for Indianapolis visitors and locals alike, earning Trip Advisor’s “Certificate of Excellence” from visitor reviews! Founded in 1863, it’s the nation’s 3rd largest cemetery with 555 acres of beautiful rolling hills and is located across the street from Newfields. Thousands visit to take an award-winning guided tour, enjoy the peaceful beauty, sculptures, and trees, as well as to exercise, picnic, and study the history of the 200,000+ people buried there. Notables include President Benjamin Harrison, poet James Whitcomb Riley, Col. Eli Lilly, three U.S. Vice Presidents, and numerous others, including the infamous bank robber John Dillinger.


Ride the Monon Trail

Monon Trail

The Monon is the rail trail that started it all. The trail extends out of downtown and runs through Mapleton-Fall Creek, Meridian-Kessler, Broad Ripple, and Nora. The northern stretch is called the Monon Greenway and stretches north to Carmel and Westfield. The Monon is one of the busiest urban greenways in the country and offers connections to the Fall Creek Trail, Canal Towpath, and the Indianapolis Cultural Trail. Discover more info at BikeTheMonon.com.


Arts Market on the Circle

Arts Market on the Circle

More than 20 local artisans will gather once a month on Thursdays on Monument Circle to display unique creations. Purchase body care products, jewelry, art, pop culture pieces, and homemade masks. Admission is free, and while there, visit surrounding shops and restaurants. Additional market dates are September 17 and October 15.


Be the "I" in Indy

NDY signImage: @m_rbanks

Declare your love for Indy to the world, and be the “I” in Indy. All you have to do is:

  • STAND: Find the foot prints and become the "I" in Indy.
  • SNAP: Kindly ask someone to take your picture.
  • SHARE: Post to your favorite social network with hashtag #LOVEIND

You can find sculptures at the following locations:

  • Indianapolis International Airport
  • Cental Canal at White River State Park (pictured)
  • Washington Pedestrian Bridge at White River State Park

Virginia B. Fairbanks Art and Nature Park 

Virginia B. Fairbanks Art and Nature Park

Perfect for the warmer days of the year, these 100 acres of the Newfields campus have surprises around every corner. Outdoor art installations, such as Funky Bones, pair with natural beauty to create the afternoon of a lifetime – completely free. 


Marvel at Indy's Monuments & Memorials

Monuments

Indianapolis devotes more acreage than any other U.S. city to honoring our nation’s fallen, and is second only to Washington, DC, in the number of war memorials. Discover the monuments, memorials, and patriotic spirit of Indy that every visitor should experience. 


Find Your Indiana County at the Indiana State Museum

Surrounding the exterior walls of Indiana State Museum is a collection of etched designs to represent each county in the state of Indiana. Journey to White River State Park, and see if you can spot each county.