St. Louis, Missouri
St. Louis might not have the same number of famous sights as Washington, D.C., but it challenges the capital when it comes to the overall quality of its free attractions. In most cities, the headlining museums have steep admission prices — but not so in St. Louis. The best exhibit halls and most sought-after attractions are completely free. The famed Saint Louis Zoo does not charge admission (though some attractions do cost per person fees), one of the only major zoos in the U.S. to do that. The Saint Louis Science Center, Saint Louis Art Museum and Missouri Museum of History also have free general admission.
The city also boasts one of the Midwest's strongest collections of public art, and free theater performances are offered throughout the summertime at the outdoor Muny Amphitheater. Free tours (with complimentary tastings for of-age visitors) are available at the Budweiser Brewery. People who want to spend more time outdoors can head to the Laumeier Sculpture Park for an art-flavored stroll, while the fountains and greenery at the CityGarden Park are pleasant day or night.