Many of the best things in life really are free. To prove it, here are some of the top things to do across the West, from Las Vegas to Seattle, that don't cost a dime (save for the occasional parking and transportation expense). Put away your wallet and get ready to experience extraordinarily budget-friendly art, spectacular parks, and fascinating museums.
Experience free art (and superb views of the nearby Space Needle and the Olympic Mountains) at Seattle Art Museum's Olympic Sculpture Park, a former industrial site transformed into a sculpture garden along the city's downtown waterfront. Nearly two dozen permanent and temporary site-specific installations include Alexander Calder's 39-foot-tall, red steel sculpture, Eagle, and Regina Silveira's curving, tire-tracked wall piece, Octopus Wrap, on display through March 2020.
Witness the inner workings of the Hiram M. Chittenden Locks, aka the Ballard Locks, on a free walking tour. This intricate waterway system accommodates vessels ranging in size from large ships to kayaks, and even features a 21-step “fish ladder” to help migrating salmon and other fish climb from saltwater to freshwater to spawn. An on-site interpretive center and seven-acre botanical garden are also free.