There is so much to do in St. Louis in the summer without spending money. Many of the area's most popular attractions are free or offer special free events. Here's information on the best free attractions in St. Louis this summer. For more ideas, check out my articles on free summer movies and live theater and free summer concerts.
Of course admission to the St. Louis Zoo is always free, but each summer day from 8 a.m. to 9 a.m., the Children's Zoo, the Conservation Carousel, the Stingrays at Caribbean Cove and other special exhibits are also free.
Admission to the St. Louis Science Center is free for everyone (except for special exhibits). On the first Friday night of each month there is also a free Star Party at the Planetarium. Members of the St. Louis Astronomical Society set up telescopes for public viewing and are available to answer questions.
See world class art for free at the St. Louis Art Museum in Forest Park. Museum admission is free for everyone (except special exhibits.) On Fridays, the Art Museum is open late until 9 p.m., with music and seminars for visitors.
Citygarden is an attraction in Downtown St. Louis. It's a city park filled with fountains, wading pools, sculpture and more. It's a great free place for kids to play on a hot summer day. Citygarden is located along Market Street between 8th and 10th Streets. It is open daily from sunrise to 10 p.m.
The Missouri History Museum is another great attraction in Forest Park that offers free admission (except special exhibits). The museum has free programs for kids, it is also the site of the popular free outdoor Twilight Tuesday concerts.
Residents of St. Louis City and County can get in free at the Missouri Botanical Garden on Saturdays before noon, but be sure to bring proof of residency. And during the summer, everyone gets free admission on Wednesdays after 5 p.m., for the Whitaker Music Festival and Children's Garden.
St. Louis' top childrens museum has free admission for families on the third Friday of the month from 5:30 p.m. to 9 p.m.
The Jewel Box is a giant greenhouse in Forest Park filled with seasonal flowers and plants. It opened in 1936 and is listed on the National Historic Register. Admission is free on Mondays and Tuesdays from 9 a.m. to noon. Regular admission is only $1.
There are plenty of other free attractions that are open year round, like Cahokia Mounds, the Anheuser-Busch Brewery and the World Bird Sanctuary. For more information, see The Top 15 Free Attractions in St. Louis.