Dallas, Texas offers a wide variety of free things to do, including many of the area’s best cultural attractions. The Dallas Museum of Art features one of the country’s most impressive and largest collections of art, with the Crow Collection of Asian Art right around the corner. There are numerous other museums that offer free admission, as well as parks and other attractions. Some attractions are free only on certain days – please check before you go.
1.The Dallas Contemporary
© The Dallas Contemporary
The Dallas Contemporary strives to engage visitors through a presentation of challenging ideas from international, national, and regional artists through a variety of exhibitions of present day artwork and learning programs. The art facility is a non-collecting art institution. The Dallas Contemporary maintains a commitment to providing all of its visitors with a seamless museum-going experience. Each one of the galleries at the art museum is wheelchair accessible, and no drinks or food are permitted. Accessible parking is available at the main entrance of The Dallas Contemporary, next to the entrance ramp. The institution is registered as a not-for-profit charity.
161 Glass St, Dallas, TX 75207
2.The John F. Kennedy Memorial
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The John F. Kennedy Memorial features an “open tomb” style, symbolizing the freedom of John F. Kennedy’s spirit. It offers visitors a place for remembrance and reflection. A short distance away is The Sixth Floor Museum at Dealey Plaza, the site of JFK’s assassination. The museum, which has a small fee, features various exhibits that explore, the legacy, life, and assassination of John F. Kennedy within the context of the culture and history of the 1960’s. The multimedia experience is designed to encourage cross-generation communication. The permanent exhibit at the museum is the “John F. Kennedy and the Memory of a Nation” exhibit.
646 Main St, Dallas, TX 75202, Phone: 214-747-6660
3.African American Museum
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The main goal of the African American Museum is providing meaningful experience for both adults and children who ordinarily would not visit a museum. The museum consists of four vaulted galleries that house the rich history and heritage of African American art, as well as a research library. The permanent collections at the African American Museum in Dallas include the Folk Art Collection, African Art, and African American Fine Art. The museum is also home to the Sepia Magazine Archives and the Royce and Carol West Library. Admission to the regular exhibitions is free, some special exhibitions may have a fee.
3536 Grand Ave, Dallas, TX 75210, Phone: 214-565-9026
4.Crow Collection of Asian Art
© Crow Collection of Asian Art
Visitors can explore the Crow Collection of Asian Art from 10:00am until 5:00pm on Tuesdays, Wednesdays, Fridays, Saturdays, and Sundays. The art museum is also open on Thursdays, from 10:00am until 9:00pm. The Crow Collections of Asian Art honors the vision and collecting tradition of Margaret and Trammell Crow. The couple purchased their first work of Asian art in the 1960’s/ From that purchase, their collection grew into a distinguished Asian art collection, featuring works from Southeast Asia, Korea, India, Japan, and China spanning from contemporary to historical works of art.
2010 Flora St, Dallas, TX 75201, Phone: 214-979-6440
5.Dallas Museum of Art
© Dallas Museum of Art
General admission to the Dallas Museum of Art is free for visitors every day. General Admission includes access to view the collection galleries at the museum, along with the majority of the art exhibitions. More than twenty-four thousands pieces of artwork make up the collection of art at the Dallas Museum of Art. This collection features works from a wide variety of time periods and cultures, spanning across five thousand years of the creativity of mankind. Visitors can also explore the Dallas Museum of Art during one of the Saturday Spotlight Tours. This free docent-led tour leaves from Visitor Services at 2:00pm.
1717 North Harwood St, Dallas TX 75201, Phone: 214-922-1200
© Goss-Michael Foundation
The Goss-Michael Foundation was established by George Michael, the British pop star, and Kenny Goss, his partner, in 2007. The gallery strives to introduce guests to the world of British contemporary art. The collection of artwork consists of around five hundred works by seventy-five different artists. All of these works were created during the twentieth century and the twenty-first century. The Goss-Michael Foundation features the most extensive and complete collection of artwork by contemporary British artists in Dallas, Texas. Specific artists are featured in rotating exhibitions in addition to feature works from the private collection of the foundation.
1305 Wycliff Ave, Dallas, TX 75207, Phone: 214-696-0555
7.J. Erik Jonsson Central Library
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The first public library in Dallas, Texas opened in the downtown area back in the year 1901 thanks to some help from Andrew Carnegie. The Downtown public library houses a number of free exhibits, an original copy of Declaration of Independence of 1776, an extensive genealogy library among many other features available to visitors. There are also rotating exhibits and self-guided tours available. The present public library facility in downtown Dallas is named after J. Erik Jonsson, one of the city’s former mayors. The building consists of eight floors and was opened to the public in its current state in 1982.
1515 Young St, Dallas, TX 75201, Phone: 214-670-1700
8.Kimbell Art Museum
© Kimbell Art Museum
Visitors can join a tour of the Kimbell Art Museum’s permanent collection on Wednesdays at 2:00pm and Sundays at 3:00pm. The museum is open every day except for Monday. The permanent collection is free to visit, but special exhibitions charge a fee for those who aren’t Kimbell Members. Free parking is available in the Kimbell East Parking area and the Underground Parking Garage in the Piano Pavilion, off of Van Cliburn Way. While the permanent collection of the Kimbell Art Museum is small, it boasts a very high level of importance and quality, focusing quality over quantity.
3333 Camp Bowie Blvd, Fort Worth, TX 76107, Phone: 817-332-8451
9.Klyde Warren Park
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The Klyde Warren Park is open from 6:00am until 11:00pm and offers activities for guests every day and special weekend activities throughout the year. During the summer season, visitors can have fun with games from the Summer Game Cart. For visitors not wanting to pay for for parking nearby, the D-Link provides free transportation from the downtown area to the historic area of Oak Cliff. This is a free bus service offered by DART which runs every fifteen minutes Monday through Saturday, from 11:00am until 11:30pm. The Pearl Street and Olive Street stops are closest to the park.
2012 Woodall Rodgers Freeway Dallas, TX 75201, Phone: 214-716-4500
10.Mary Kay Museum
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The Mary Kay Museum in Dallas, Texas highlights the innovative business ideas and numerous accomplishments of Mary Kay Ash, the founder of the Mary Kay company. There is also a theater housed inside of the museum in which visitors can watch some of the motivational speeches given by Mary Kay Ash over the history of the company. One of the main features of the museum is the Keepers of the Dream Independent National Sales Director Hall of Honor, a tribute to the company’s top achievers. The Mary Kay Museum is open from Monday to Friday, 9:00am until 4:00pm.
16251 Dallas Parkway, Addison, TX 75001
11.Nasher Sculpture Center
© Nasher Sculpture Center
The Nasher Sculpture Center first opened in 2003, and is one of the world’s few institutions devoted to exhibiting, studying, and preserving contemporary and modern sculpture. Visitors can reach the center via free public transportation on the D-Link Bus. The Nasher Sculpture Center is close to Stop 19 for the Dallas Arts District. The sculpture collection consists of over three hundred different sculptures, in addition to a collection of photographs, prints, drawings, and paintings from the twentieth century. The center was designed to be a tranquil retreat in the urban city for visitors to enjoy modern art.
2001 Flora St, Dallas, TX 75201, Phone: 214-242-5100
© NorthPark Center
The NorthPark Center is home to an internationally-acclaimed art collection consisting of works from the twentieth century and twenty-first century. The collection of art turns shopping at the center into more of a cultural experience and makes viewing museum-quality works of art easily accessible for everyone. The collection has become a tradition of NorthPark that has added a unique feature to the atmosphere of the gathering place in the Dallas community. The collection of art at the NorthPark Center includes major works by several renowned artists, such as James Rosenquist, Andy Warhol, Joel Shapiro, Antony Gormley, Beverly Pepper, and Jim Dine.
8687 North Central Expressway, Dallas, TX 75225, Phone: 214-363-7441
13.The Ann & Gabriel Barbier-Mueller Museum: The Samurai Collection
© The Ann & Gabriel Barbier-Mueller Museum: The Samurai Collection
Visitors of all ages can enjoy self-guided family activities while viewing The Samurai Collection at the Ann and Gabriel Barbier-Mueller Museum. Guests have the opportunity to learn more about the collection through one of the trails that will guide them through the museum galleries. The Samurai Collection was established in 2012 as a place to house the Japanese armor belonging to Gabriel and Ann Barbier-Mueller. The ever-growing collection is made up of nearly one thousand objects, several of which are outstanding examples of armor worn by samurais. It is one of the world’slargest and most complete collection of samurai objects of its kind.
2501 N. Harwood St, Dallas, TX 75201, Phone: 214-965-1032
14.The Dallas Arts District
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The Dallas Arts District is the nation’s largest continuous urban arts district, spanning across nineteen contiguous blocks and sixty-eight acres. The arts district is made up of performance halls, art museums, corporate offices, churches, restaurants, a school, and residences. The district is a thirty-year venture in the making and now features building designed by four different award-winning architects across several blocks in the city. Some buildings in the Dallas Arts District go back to the latter part of the 1880’s, only forty years after the founding of Dallas. The district seamlessly integrates artistic, commercial, cultural, and residential life.
750 N. St Paul St, Dallas, TX 75201, Phone: 214-744-6642
15.The Meadows Museum
© The Meadows Museum
The Meadows Museum is located on the Southern Methodist University campus. The art museum boasts a permanent art collection of Spanish works of art, ranging from the fifteenth century to the twentieth century. There is also a sculpture garden and several special exhibitions throughout the year. There is usually an admission fee for visiting the Meadows Museum, however, free admission is offered after 5:00pm on Thursdays. Free parking is offered to museum visitors in the parking garage beneath the museum. There are also the Mustang Express or Museum Express free shuttles that leave from the Mockingbird Station.
5900 Bishop Blvd, Dallas, TX 75205, Phone: 214-768-2516
16.The Museum of Geometric and MADI Art
© The Museum of Geometric and MADI Art
The Museum of Geometric and MADI Art first opened to the public and the Dallas community in February of 2003 as the first museum to focus on MADI art, artwork that is always hard-edged, comes out of its frame, and is non-representational. Geometric artwork is sometimes rectangular in its format. This is hardly ever the case when it comes to MADI art, which usually only has prints that are rectangular. The Museum of Geometric and MADI Art is open Tuesday through Saturday from 11:00am to 5:00pm and on Sundays from 1:00pm to 5:00pm.
3109 Carlisle St, Dallas, TX 75204, Phone: 214-855-7802
17.Bureau of Engraving and Printing
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The Bureau of Engraving and Printing in Fort Worth in the Dallas area offers a Visitor Center and a free public tour for visitors to learn more about the currency of the United States. Guests can view billions of dollar bills being printed from the enclosed walkway suspended above the facility’s production floor where more than half of the currency in the country is produced. The experience at the Bureau of Engraving and Printing includes an informative film in the theater, and chance for visitors to explore displays and interactive exhibits on two floors highlighting the history of currency.
9000 Blue Mound Rd, Fort Worth, TX 76131, Phone: 817-231-4000
18.Dallas Fine Arts Chamber Players
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The Dallas Fine Arts Chamber Players offers free concerts for both visitors and Dallas area residents alike. The groups put on two different concert series during the year. One is the Bancroft Family Concert series and the other is their annual Basically Beethoven Festival. The Bancroft Family concerts are held at the Dallas Museum of Art in the Horchow Auditorium on Saturdays at 3:00pm. This concert series runs from October through May, except for the month of December. The Basically Beethoven Festival runs in July on Sundays at 2:30pm at the Moody Performance Hall.
3630 Harry Hines Blvd, Dallas, TX 75219, Phone: 214-520-2219
19.M Line Vintage Trolley
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The M-Line Vintage Trolley is a group of heated and air-conditioned restored vintage trolley cars that run through the Uptown Neighborhood in Dallas. The trolley typically operates every single day of the year, offering a convenient, reliable, clean, safe, and free form of public transportation. Visitors can look for the round maroon signs with “M-Line Trolley” on them to let them know where the stops for the M-Line are. To let the Motorman known to stop, passengers pull an overhead string to ring a bell that signals the trolley to stop at the next M-Line sign.
3153 Oak Grove Ave, Dallas, TX 75204, Phone: 214-855-0006
20.Annual Native American Pow Wow
© Annual Native American Pow Wow
The Annual Native American Pow Wow in Grand Prairie, Texas is a Pow Wow featuring colorful tribal dances, honoring ceremonies,an arts and crafts show, singing, tipis, and many other activities and events. The event typically takes place on a weekend in the middle of September and is a good event for visiting old friends or to make some new ones. The Native American Pow Wow is held at the Traders Village and hosted by the DFW Inter-Tribal Association. Representatives from dozens of different Native American tribes from throughout the country come to the event to celebrate their heritage and culture.
2602 Mayfield Rd, Grand Prairie, TX 75052, Phone: 972-647-2331
21.The Traveling Man
© The Traveling Man
The Traveling Man is made up of three giant statues places throughout a neighborhood in Dallas. The trio of statues chart a giant robot’s emergence from a locomotive. The three art installations were created by Brad Oldham as a replacement for the group of murals that once welcomed visitors to the neighborhood. These murals were removed to build a rail system. Each statue is made out of polished sheets of metal that are held together by rivets, meant to remind people of the history of railroad in the Deep Ellum neighborhood. The statues show a progression of the robot’s emergence.
Good Latimer between Swiss Ave and Miranda, Dallas, TX 75204
22.The Adrian E. Flatt, M.D., Hand Collection
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The hands of people who have hit home runs at the World Series, won Academy Awards, wrote famous books, and even those who have lead the country are memorialized forever at the Adrian E. Flatt, M.D., Hand Collection, a very unique collection. The collection was created originally to prove that the idea of “surgeon’s hands” doesn’t actually exist. The interesting display can now be viewed by the public with no charge for admission. The hand collection consists of more than 120 cast bronze pairs of hands that belong to influential and famous people, including President Eisenhower, Norman Rockwell, and Walt Disney.
3500 Gaston Ave, Dallas, TX 75246, Phone: 214-820-6684
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Fair Park in Dallas, Texas was designated in 1986 as a National Historic Landmark and encompasses more than 275 acres near downtown Dallas. The park is home to one of the largest collections of architecture and art in the Art Deco style in the world. Fair Park is also the only unaltered and intact world fair site from before the 1950’s in the country. The world fair was held in 1936 in commemoration of the Texas Republic’s one hundredth anniversary. The park today features sports, educational, and cultural facilities that draw in over seven million people every year.
1121 First Ave, Dallas, TX 75210, Phone: 214-426-3400
24.Four Corners Brewing Co
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The Four Corners Brewing Company offers free guided tours of its brewery every Saturday at 12:30pm and 2:00pm. During the brewery tour, guests can learn about the Four Corners brewing process, as well as the story of how the brewery came to be. The tour also includes some samples of the craft beer. Afterwards, visitors can spend some time in the Taproom and try some of the other beers from the full selection, take advantage of Taproom specials, and grab some small bites to eat. Guests can reserve their spot for one of the tours on the brewery’s website.
1311 S. Ervay St, Dallas, TX 75215
25.Dallas Comedy House Playground Nights
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The Dallas Comedy House Playgrounds Nights are free night of comedy fun. There is no charge for tickets to this improvisation show, however, guests must be at least twenty years of age to attend the Playground Night show. While there is no cost for to attend the show, it’s advised that people get their tickets ahead of time. Any unclaimed tickets are released to people in standby when the show starts. Each improv show consists of three different teams of comedians. Visitors to the Dallas Comedy House are not permitted to bring in outside beverages and food.
3025 Main St, Dallas, TX 75226, Phone: 214-741-4448
25 Best Free Things to Do in Dallas
- The Dallas Contemporary, Photo: The Dallas Contemporary
- The John F. Kennedy Memorial, Photo: Courtesy of f11photo - Fotolia.com
- African American Museum, Photo: Courtesy of dallaspaparazzo - Fotolia.com
- Crow Collection of Asian Art, Photo: Crow Collection of Asian Art
- Dallas Museum of Art, Photo: Dallas Museum of Art
- Goss-Michael Foundation, Photo: Goss-Michael Foundation
- J. Erik Jonsson Central Library, Photo: Courtesy of Oleh - Fotolia.com
- Kimbell Art Museum, Photo: Kimbell Art Museum
- Klyde Warren Park, Photo: Courtesy of trongnguyen - Fotolia.com
- Mary Kay Museum, Photo: Courtesy of anon - Fotolia.com
- Nasher Sculpture Center, Photo: Nasher Sculpture Center
- NorthPark Center, Photo: NorthPark Center
- The Ann & Gabriel Barbier-Mueller Museum: The Samurai Collection, Photo: The Ann & Gabriel Barbier-Mueller Museum: The Samurai Collection
- The Dallas Arts District, Photo: Courtesy of SeanPavonePhoto - Fotolia.com
- The Meadows Museum, Photo: The Meadows Museum
- The Museum of Geometric and MADI Art, Photo: The Museum of Geometric and MADI Art
- Bureau of Engraving and Printing, Photo: Courtesy of JackF - Fotolia.com
- Dallas Fine Arts Chamber Players, Photo: Courtesy of Anna Jurkovska - Fotolia.com
- M Line Vintage Trolley, Photo: Courtesy of frimufilms - Fotolia.com
- Annual Native American Pow Wow, Photo: Annual Native American Pow Wow
- The Traveling Man, Photo: The Traveling Man
- The Adrian E. Flatt, M.D., Hand Collection, Photo: Courtesy of tverdohlib - Fotolia.com
- Fair Park, Photo: Courtesy of offfstock - Fotolia.com
- Four Corners Brewing Co, Photo: Courtesy of David Prahl - Fotolia.com
- Dallas Comedy House Playground Nights, Photo: Courtesy of ivanovevgeniy - Fotolia.com
- Cover Photo: Courtesy of digidreamgrafix - Fotolia.com