Blake Walsh

15 Free Things to Do in Fort Worth, TX

  • Published 2022/11/18

Fort Worth is a well-known military city with magnificent museums, incredible architecture, and rich Western traditions.

It is the fifth-largest city in Texas and the 13th-largest city in America.

Fort Worth also serves as the county seat of Tarrant County, home to the Kimbell Art Museum and Fort Worth Stockyards, to name a few.

You don’t have to break the bank when you want to go out and have good quality time with friends or family.

Read on to discover the free things to do in Fort Worth, Texas.

Unleash Your Creativity at Amon Carter Museum of American Art

Exterior of the Amon Carter Museum of American Art

Aneese /

In 1961, the Amon Carter Museum of American Art opened its doors to the public, offering free admission.

The museum explores the diversity and elaborateness of American creativity through its extensive collection and inspiring exhibitions.

Located on Camp Bowie Blvd., at the center of Fort Worth’s Cultural District, this establishment presents world-class exhibitions and engages in spirited events.

Interior of the Amon Carter Museum of American Art

Steven Watson, CC BY-SA 4.0, via Wikimedia Commons

The Amon Carter Museum of American Art does state-of-the-art research and much more.

It features collections of the best examples of American esthetic ingenuity from a few prominent names in art history from the 18th century to the present.

Exhibits include paintings, sculptures, pictures, and paper art.

Exhibit in the Amon Carter Museum of American Art

Amon Carter Museum of American Art, CC BY-SA 4.0, via Wikimedia Commons

Enjoy the Beautiful Fort Worth Water Gardens

Daytime view of Fort Worth Water Gardens

Megan McHatten /

Located on Commerce St., Fort Worth Water Gardens is a structural and engineering wonder designed by Philip Johnson that anyone can enjoy any time of the year.

You and the family can experience various water features as you roam the peaceful urban park.

The hardscape canyons and streaming water suggest a break from days of traffic and business, encouraging quiet meditation.

People at Fort Worth Water Gardens

Kit Leong /

You can’t resist the gorgeous water features but note that you can’t swim and wade at the Water Gardens without buying tickets.

At the Northwest Community Park, you can also observe different plants, insects, and animal species.

Rushing waters of Fort Worth Water Gardens

Sierra Red /

Enjoy the Ride of Your Life with Molly the Trolley

If you want a fast but comfortable ride, you must not miss Molly the Trolley, parked at E Lancaster Avenue.

This tram is a vintage-style trolley that travels across the downtown area at no cost.

The Downtown Get Around route rushes between the Fort Worth Convention Center and Sundance Square.

Molly runs every ten to 15 minutes and stops at shops, restaurants, and entertainment sites.

You can also catch this lovely trolley that stops at FWTA’s Fort Worth and serves Trinity Metro’s Fort Worth Central Station.

No more commuting or hitchhiking.

Ride Molly the Trolley for free!

Watch the Cattle Drive at Fort Worth Stockyards National Historic District

Cattle drive at Fort Worth Stockyards National Historic District

JHVEPhoto /

Fort Worth is where the West starts, and nothing depicts Western heritage better than the Fort Worth Stockyards National Historic District.

This 98-acre historic district lies on E Exchange Avenue and has a rich history as a former livestock market run by different owners since 1866.

There are free shows in the area.

Children will love riding the horse-driven carousel and the petting zoo.

Welcome sign of Fort Worth Stockyards National Historic District

JHVEPhoto /

Watch the cattle herd where cows run down the street twice daily.

Fort Worth Stockyards also has shops if you want to buy some souvenir items for personal use or as wonderful presents when you get back home.

Shops at Fort Worth Stockyards National Historic District

Kokoulina /

Discover the Fort Worth Museum of Science and History

Exterior of the Fort Worth Museum of Science and History

Trong Nguyen /

The good old days of the Fort Worth Museum of Science and History started in 1939 when the local council of the Administrative Women in Education introduced a study of children’s museums.

In 1968, they renamed the structure to the Fort Worth Museum of Science and History, enabling adults to visit the museum without their children so they could also enjoy it.

The museum accommodates Innovation Studios, Energy Blast, CattleRaiser’s Museum, the Children’s Museum, DinoLabs, and DinoDig.

Entrance to the Fort Worth Museum of Science and History

Geert Verhoeff /

The Galaxy Park playground offers unmatched family entertainment in Cozy Dome and Hedra Scout in this galaxy-themed playground.

Located in Gendy St., the Fort Worth Museum of Science and History is free for members and kids aged two and below.

Dinosaur sculpture at Fort Worth Museum of Science and History

Philip Lange /

Explore the Marine Creek Lake & Trails

Marine Creek Lake was once a part of the flood control system that protects North Fort Worth.

Located on Huffines Blvd., the 250-acre Marine Creek Lake is best known for its six miles of panoramic trails that encircle the pleasing and serene reservoir.

Many parking areas, including trailheads surrounding the loop, make it easily accessible for families or groups who want to walk or bike on the trail.

You can also take advantage of the free public boat ramps with massive areas of shoreline ideal for bank fishing.

Primary fish species you can catch include white crappie, spotted bass, sunfish, largemouth bass, and channel catfish.

See the Names on the Texas Trail of Fame

Clint Walker star at Texas Trail of Fame

Wmsonmike68, CC BY-SA 4.0, via Wikimedia Commons

The Texas Trail of Fame pays homage to those who contributed to the country’s way of life.

Each bronze marker laid through the Fort Worth Stockyards National Historic District walkways signifies the recognition of their accomplishments.

You’ll notice that these markers contain the honoree’s name and a frontier marshal’s badge.

Wild Bill Hickock star at Texas Trail of Fame

Billy Hathorn, CC BY-SA 3.0, via Wikimedia Commons

Located on E. Exchange Avenue, the Texas Trail of Fame is similar to Hollywood’s Walk of Fame, where admission is free.

You can walk along the trail and admire the bronze markers on the ground.

Explore the First Department Stores at Leonard’s Department Store Museum

Located on Carroll Street #100, Leonard’s Department Store Museum was once a cherished department store that welcomed generations of shoppers from 1918 to the 1970s.

The department store sold lingerie to boats; it also had the first privately owned subway in the US.

Today, it has become a museum committed to exhibiting old photos of the old department store and its staff.

Likewise, the museum holds memorabilia including a popcorn maker, store advertisements, and a piece of the old store escalator.

Challenge Yourself at Marion Sansom Park

The Marion Sansom Park dates back to the 1800s when rancher and banker Marion Sansom Sr purchased 7,000 acres north of the West Fork of the Trinity River between Marine Creek and Lake Worth.

Situated on Roberts Cut-Off Road, this 260-acre park nestles on a limestone precipice that commands a spectacular view of the Trinity River and Lake Worth.

Challenge yourself to an 11-mile hike and bike trails that cruise down a sharp hillside, varying from intermediate to expert.

You can spot many migratory birds and winter waterfowl species, so bring your binoculars and camera.

It’s also worth noting that several plant species in Marion Sansom Park only live in North Central Texas, including the pale-leaf yucca and Engelmann’s sage.

Explore Sundance Square

Splash pad at Sundance Square

Paul Brady Photography /

Sundance Square integrates historical western architecture with advanced designs throughout its proximate 37-square-block downtown campus of restaurants, entertainment, residential living, art galleries, and shopping.

This lively place got its name from the outlaw called the Sundance Kid.

It also became a hotspot for Western outlaws, including Doc Holliday and Wyatt Earp, who figured in the infamous “Shootout at the OK Corral.”

Sundance Square can make your ordinary days into something special with lasting memories even without spending money.

Night scene at Sundance Square

CK Foto /

Enjoy live music, art festivals, yoga classes, and theater.

Explore this family-friendly place and its unique murals, courtyards, and fountains at no charge.

Join the Fort Worth Mural Tour

A mural at Sundance Square

Paul Brady Photography /

You will surely appreciate the Fort Worth Murals even if you’re not an artist.

You’ll find the “Good Vibes Only” mural in the River East work-living community that could make you dance, painted by GDT Studios and styled by Thirst & Company.

In Near Southside, you’ll see the Art South project, Mag and May Murals, while the Hudgins Companies consist of 20 commissioned murals alongside the ground-level patios of the apartment complex.

Buffalo mural at Fort Worth

Ginae McDonald /

Murals on the River East include “Greeting From Fort Worth” by Leslie Marshall, “Stagecoach Ballroom” by Arnulfo Pena, and “Welcome to Riverside” by Guillermo D. Tapia, to name a few.

Visit the Fort Worth Murals with family or friends and admire their vivid colors and the artist’s creative imagination.

Identify Meteorites at the Oscar E. Monnig Meteorite Gallery

Oscar E. Monnig Meteorite Gallery has reopened to the public with free admission.

Located on the TCU campus inside the Sid Richardson Science Building, the gallery’s meteorite is one of the biggest university-based meteorite collections worldwide.

It contains almost 3,000 specimens from over 2,300 different meteorites and still counting.

Last year, it acquired two interesting meteorites.

They believed one came from Mars and named the other donated meteorite Erg Chech 002.

Visit the Oscar E. Monnig Meteorite Gallery with your kids and learn how to identify a meteorite.

Revisit History at the Sid Richardson Museum

Exterior of the Sid Richardson Museum

Michael Barera, CC BY-SA 4.0, via Wikimedia Commons

The art museum got its name from Sid Richardson, an oil businessman who acquired massive ranching operations in Oklahoma and Texas.

He turned his interest to collecting artists’ works he believed to best describe the West he knew and loved, namely Charles Russell and Frederic Remington.

Located at 309 Main St., Sid Richardson Museum offers events and programs for individuals or families, from lectures and comprehensive engagements to the compilation of movies and interactive activities.

Exhibit in the Sid Richardson Museum

Michael Barera, CC BY-SA 4.0, via Wikimedia Commons

You can take pictures but remember to turn off your flash and don’t use tripods or selfie sticks.

It’s free admission, but at the same time, the museum prohibits smoking inside the premises and bringing weapons.

Interior of the Sid Richardson Museum

Michael Barera, CC BY-SA 4.0, via Wikimedia Commons

Bring Your Kids to Dream Park

Kids won’t stop playing throughout their childhood.

Fort Worth is a family-friendly city and kid-friendly as well.

That’s why Dream Park came into being, providing a hot air balloon-themed play space for toddlers aged two to five.

Located on S University Dr., this inclusive 57,000-square-foot playground allows kids of all capabilities to participate in adventures together.

Exceptional amenities abound at the Dream Park: flexible swings for toddlers and children with low muscle tone, a stainless steel roller slide, and ADA-accessible grounds.

This fantastic playground is the dream play area of every child that could help enrich their sensory environment and trigger their curiosity and imagination.

Take a Hike at Eagle Mountain Lake & Park

The waters of Eagle Mountain Lake & Park

Gordon Reid, CC BY-SA 3.0, via Wikimedia Commons

Eagle Mountain Lake & Park is the place to go if you love nature.

This extraordinary conservation area is located on Morris Dido Newark Rd., where the “prairie meets the timbers.”

Take an enjoyable hike while you study the diversity in flora and fauna and the beauty of the landscape.

Eagle Mountain Lake and Park has a 400-acre land profile with more than five miles of well-kept hiking trails.

Its amenities include pavilions, picnic tables, restrooms, benches, and water fountains.

Final Thoughts

Finding time to enjoy nature or do things you love must not cost you a lot.

While Fort Worth might be a big city, it has many activities and attractions that don’t cost a dime.

The best things in life are free, so take advantage of them and discover the free things to do in Fort Worth, Texas.

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