There are plenty of free things to do in Boise, Idaho. One of the most popular free activities is wandering around downtown and checking out the local businesses and restaurants. The Basque Block is a great place to start, with its colorful buildings, unique shops, and tasty restaurants.
Another free activity is exploring Boise’s parks. The city has nearly 100 parks, so there’s sure to be one near you. They offer a variety of activities, from playgrounds and picnic areas to basketball courts and ponds. My personal favorite park is Ann Morrison Park, which features a large pond with a walking path around it and a playground for kids.
Lets Dive in and explore some fun things to do in Boise for free
1. BOISE RIVER GREENBELT
If you’re looking for a fun outdoor activity that the whole family can enjoy, consider exploring Boise River Greenbelt’s trail system! With nearly 25 miles of trails to choose from, there’s something for everyone. The trails are well-marked and easy to navigate, making them perfect for inexperienced hikers.
The best part about the Boise River Greenbelt is that it’s right in the heart of the city. You can access the trail system from nearly any neighborhood in Boise, making it a great option for urbanites who don’t have time to travel far for a good hike.
So if you’re looking for a new outdoor adventure to check out this summer, be sure to explore Boise River Greenbelt’s trail system!
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2. IDAHO STATE CAPITOL
The Boise City Capitol building is a must-see for visitors to Boise. This beautiful building is the home of the Idaho legislature and is filled with historical displays and artwork.
The Capitol building was constructed in 1903 and is made out of sandstone and granite. It’s one of the most beautiful buildings in the state, and its architecture is inspired by the Italian Renaissance style.
Inside the Capitol, you’ll find a number of interesting displays. There’s a replica of the Liberty Bell, as well as a statue of Sacagawea, a Lewis and Clark expedition member who was an important part of Pacific Northwest history. The Capitol also features beautiful murals depicting scenes from Idaho’s history.
If you’re looking for a unique gift, you’ll want to visit the Boise City Capitol Building Gift Shop.
Download your Self Guided Idaho State Capitol Tour and be sure to take some time exploring the capitol building.
3. BOISE DEPOT
The Boise train depot is a beautiful example of neoclassical architecture. The building has a grandiose entrance with two large columns and a stately roofline. Visitors can step inside the depot to explore the exhibits in the visitor center, or they can walk around the outside of the building to admire the details of the architecture.
4. FREAK ALLEY IN DOWNTOWN BOISE
Some people might think that Boise, Idaho is just a sleepy little town in the middle of nowhere. But if you know where to look, you’ll find all sorts of weird and wonderful things happening right under your nose. One of my favorite places to explore is Freak Alley, a hidden gem located in the heart of downtown Boise.
Freak Alley is an outdoor art gallery that features the work of local artists and street performers. It’s a great place to go for a walk and take in the sights and sounds of downtown Boise. The alley is constantly changing, so there’s always something new to see.
5. BOISE STATE UNIVERSITY BLUE TURF
One of the highlights of a visit to Boise State University is touring the stadium hall of fame. The hall of fame celebrates the accomplishments of the football team and features displays that chronicle the team’s history. There is also a gift shop where visitors can purchase souvenirs.
The Boise State University Stadium Hall of Fame was created in 2005 to honor the best players, coaches and teams in the history of Bronco football. The hall of fame is located in the east end zone of Albertsons Stadium, and features a rotunda with three levels.
The top level honors all of Boise State’s national championship teams, while the middle level recognizes the best players in school history. The bottom level is home to the Bronco Walk of Fame, which features bronze plaques commemorating every player who has ever played for Boise State.
6. THE MORRISON-KNUDSEN NATURE CENTER
The Morrison-Knudsen Nature Center is a gem of a discovery for anyone who has ever been enthralled by the fascinating world of insects, birds and other wildlife. In addition to being a terrific place to learn about the conservation efforts going on in this region, it also happens to have some terrific educational programs available for kids and families.
Kids will love the underwater viewing windows where you can get face to face with native Idaho fish.
7. HIKE TABLE ROCK TRAIL
Check out, 15 Hikes Near Boise for tips for hiking the Table Rock Trail
Table Rock is a popular hiking destination just outside of Boise, Idaho. The hike to the summit is about 3 miles round trip and offers beautiful views of the city and the surrounding mountains.
The trail starts at Table Rock Park, which can be accessed from either Bogus Basin Road or Eagle Road. There is a small parking lot at the park, but it can often fill up on weekends, so you may have to park along the side of the road.
8. CAMEL’S BACK PARK
Camel’s Back Park is a popular spot for locals and visitors alike. The park is home to a playground, tennis courts, and a large open space that’s perfect for picnics, Frisbee-throwing, and dog-walking. In the fall, the park transforms into a pumpkin patch, and in the winter it becomes a sledding hill.
9. ANNE FRANK HUMAN RIGHTS MEMORIAL
The Anne Frank Human Rights Memorial is a powerful tribute to the life of Anne Frank, and to the importance of human rights. The memorial is located in downtown Boise, Idaho, and was dedicated in 2002.
The memorial consists of two parts: a plaza and a tower. The plaza features a large metal sculpture depicting people standing up for human rights, and is inscribed with excerpts from Anne Frank’s diary. The tower contains a museum that tells the story of Anne Frank’s life and death, as well as the history of human rights violations around the world.
The memorial is a moving experience, and provides a powerful reminder of the importance of human rights. It is definitely worth visit if you are in Boise!
10. JULIA DAVIS PARK AND ROSE GARDEN
If you’re looking for a fun place to visit in Boise, Idaho, Julia Davis Park is definitely worth checking out. This large park offers something for everyone, from playgrounds and picnic areas to gardens and ponds.
One of the best things about Julia Davis Park is its variety of activities. You can go for a walk, take your dog for a run, ride your bike, play some sports, or just relax by the river. The park also hosts special events throughout the year, such as concerts and art festivals.
Additionally, Julia Davis is packed with cultural attractions like the Idaho Historical Museum, Zoo Boise and the renowned Boise Art Museum.
No matter what you’re interested in, Julia Davis Park is sure to have something for you. So if you’re visiting Boise, be sure to stop by amazing park!
11. Kathryn Albertson Park
Kathryn Albertson Park, a 41-acre special use park near downtown Boise, is an idyllic environment of serenity and wildlife for anyone looking to take time out for themselves.
The park boasts wide paved walkways with reservable outdoor gazebos in the midst of lush natural scenery that can bring peace to even the busiest minds.
Inhabiting Kathryn Albertson Park are a host of animals, especially birds such as waterfowls, songbirds, game birds and herons – not to mention the mysterious yet captivating owls. They have each established their own special sanctuary in this magnificent park!
The water in the park is bustling with life – not just ducks, but salamanders, painted and boxed turtles, bullfrogs whose croaks can be heard from afar. Raccoons, beavers, rabbits and voles also make an appearance here occasionally.
Red foxes are a rare sighting; however they have been known to visit more often than one may think!
12. Basque Market
Wander the Basque market and take in all of the sights and smells. The Basque Market is a paradise for all things Basque. From the Iberian Peninsula, you can find kitchen items and gifts to take home, such as dishes, olive oil dispensers, and an impressive selection of Spanish wines from Northwest’s largest collection.
If that wasn’t enough to entice you already – they also host cooking classes and wine tastings!
13. Boise Farmers Market
Why not spend your Saturday mornings at the local farmers market, enjoying some fresh air and showing your support for small businesses in your area? There’s no better way to kickstart the weekend!
From April to October, the Boise Farmers Market is your one-stop shop for local food and beverages. Not only that, but they also host an indoor winter market from November to December!
And with a mission of supporting “regenerative and healthy agricultural systems” through their marketplace offerings of locally grown products, you can ensure that whatever you buy will be both fresh and sustainably sourced.
14. Capital City Public Market
Schedule: Saturdays, April 13th thru October, 9:30 am – 1:30 pm
You can’t help but notice the vibrant atmosphere of Boise’s beloved farmers market that takes over downtown every Saturday from April through October.
From delectable culinary treats to art, jewelry and apparel galore, this iconic destination has something for everyone!
It’s no wonder why it continues to draw crowds week after week as shoppers hunt for unique items they won’t find elsewhere.
From sampling regional wine and beer to indulging in a freshly-made donut or crepe, the Capital City Public Market offers an abundance of possibilities. For those looking for unique holiday gifts crafted right here in Boise, their Holiday Market at Grove Plaza has extended hours so that you can check everyone off your list with ease!
15. Wander Historic Hyde Park
Hyde Park is one of the oldest neighborhoods in Boise, and its quaint streets are perfect for a leisurely stroll; explore the many local shops, restaurants, and galleries.
This classic district is brimming with character – from historic homes to bustling cafes it’s is one of the best places in town to experience true Boise culture.
A popular attraction here is Camels Back park where you’ll find plenty of hiking and biking trails (which are of course free to explore) .
16. Alive After Five
Enjoy a spectacular summer evening at the Grove Plaza, next to the Boise Centre in downtown Boise – for absolutely no cost! Alive After Five is an outdoor concert series on Scheduled Wednesdays perfect for all ages and won’t break your bank.
HERE ARE A FEW FREE THINGS TO DO OUTSIDE OF THE BOISE AREA
OREGON TRAIL HISTORIC RESERVE
Another spot for history lovers!
The Oregon Trail Reserve is a 77 acre site in Southeast Boise. The area features a scenic view of the Boise Front and the historic Kelton Ramp, a path forged by overland travelers heading down the rim to the Boise River.
The reserve is open sunrise to sunset, and offers hiking, bird watching, and wildlife viewing opportunities. Be sure to stop by the information kiosk near the entrance for more information on what you can see and do at the reserve.
VILLAGE AT MERIDIAN
A short drive from the city will take you to this amazing mall. From modern shops to an outdoor entertainment center, it has everything.
Entertain yourself to lively fountains, live music and an amazing water show. During November, the mall is converted into a winter wonderland and even has an outdoor ice skating rink.
CLEO’S FERRY MUSEUM
The Cleo’s Ferry Museum is a great place to learn about the area’s history. It’s located in downtown Idaho, and it features exhibits on the local Native American tribes, the Oregon Trail, and more. The museum is open every day, and admission is free(donations are excepted).
If you want to learn more about the history of Idaho, make sure to visit the Cleo’s Ferry Museum! You won’t be disappointed.
Situated near Snake River, the celebration park is the only archeological park in the state. Thankfully, it offers free tours. You can view petroglyphs carved into basalt rock as old as 10,000 years.
Furthermore, you can walk over the McGuffy Bridge and capture some stunning pictures.
Free Things To Do In Boise In The Winter
Some of the free things to do in Boise in the winter include visiting winter art festivals, exploring the Idaho Snowshoe Trails at Bogus Basin Ski Resort, and taking a walk along the Boise River Greenbelt.
At many of these events, you can find an array of free music performances and other family-friendly activities. For example, downtown Boise’s Winter Garden aGlow lights up the city with over 40,000 twinkling lights and festive decorations during the holiday season.
The Idaho Snowshoe Trails at Bogus Basin Ski Resort offers a great way to get outdoors in the winter. Enjoy spectacular views of the Boise Valley from high up on the slopes or take a leisurely stroll along one of their groomed trails.
Hope You Enjoyed The Many Free Things To Do In Boise
We hope you enjoyed exploring the beautiful state of Idaho with these free things to do in Boise, ID. Have a favorite spot not on this list? Share it with us and we will add your suggestion to our growing list of awesome outdoor activities that can be enjoyed for free.