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Free Things to do in Montrose Houston: The Ultimate Guide

Free Things to do in Montrose Houston The Ultimate Guide

Montrose is known for its thriving arts scene, diverse population, and unique vibe. And the best part? You don’t need to spend a lot of money to have a great time here! There are tons of free things to do in Montrose that are perfect for anyone on a budget. 

We’ve put together a list of our favorite free activities in Montrose, Houston that are sure to keep you entertained and engaged. Whether you’re a local looking for new adventures or a visitor hoping to experience the city like a true insider, read on! 

Visit the Menil Collection

Visit the Menil Collection's Homepage
Image Source: Menil Collection Website 

The Menil Collection is one of our favorite visits in Montrose. It’s an amazing museum located right in the heart of the area, and admission is always free! 

Founded back in 1987 by John and Dominique de Menil, the Menil Collection is home to an incredible collection of art from all over the world that spans over 5,000 years of human history.

The artwork on display includes pieces by some of the most famous artists of the 20th century, such as Pablo Picasso, Henri Matisse, and Andy Warhol, as well as ancient art from Africa, the Pacific Islands, and the Mediterranean.

But the museum itself is a masterpiece too! It has this sleek and minimalist design that puts the focus on the artwork instead of the building. 

The galleries are spread out across a series of pavilions that are connected by peaceful courtyards and shady walkways, making it the perfect spot to soak up some art and serenity.

Visit the Menil Collection
Image Source: Una Lurencic on Pexels 

You can explore the galleries and exhibitions at the Menil Collection without spending a dime, thanks to the de Menil family’s commitment to making art accessible to everyone.

The museum is open seven days a week, and offers all sorts of educational programs, lectures, and events that are free and open to everyone.

On top of the permanent collection, the Menil Collection also has a rotating schedule of special exhibitions and installations that showcase some of the most exciting and innovative art from all over the globe.

Address1533 Sul Ross St, Houston, TX 77006, United States
Contact Information +1 713-525-9400
Social Media Facebook, Instagram

Explore the Buffalo Bayou Park

Explore the Buffalo Bayou Park's Homepage
Image Source: Buffalo Bayou Park Facebook 

The Buffalo Bayou Park is a massive 160-acre park right in the heart of Montrose. And the best part? It’s free to visit!

The park is situated along the banks of the Buffalo Bayou, a beautiful waterway that snakes its way through the city. So, whether you’re into jogging, walking, or biking, you’ll have an amazing backdrop to enjoy.

But that’s not all there is to do. The park has plenty of amenities and attractions to keep you busy, including playgrounds, picnic areas, and scenic overlooks. There’s even a skate park and a dog park if you want to bring your furry friend along.

Explore the Buffalo Bayou Park
Image Source: Buffalo Bayou Park Website 

Want to take it easy? No problem! You can wander through the many winding paths and trails or just find a quiet spot to sit and relax. But if you’re feeling more adventurous, you can rent a bike and explore the park’s many hidden corners and hidden gems.

Another popular attraction in the park is the Lost Lake, a tranquil pond surrounded by lush greenery and blooming wildflowers. You can take a stroll around the lake, or simply relax on the nearby benches and enjoy the peaceful surroundings.

Buffalo Bayou Partnership
Image Source: Buffalo Bayou Partnership Website 

For those looking for a more active experience, Buffalo Bayou Park offers a range of outdoor activities, including kayaking, paddleboarding, and canoeing. 

Although you need to pay to join the classes or tours, you can bring your own gear and head to the water free of charge.

Throughout the year, the park hosts a variety of free events and activities, including concerts, festivals, and outdoor movie screenings. 

Address1800 Allen Pkwy &, Memorial Dr, Houston, TX 77019, United States
Contact Information +1 713-752-0314
Social Media Facebook, Instagram

Party at the Miller Outdoor Theater

Party at the Miller Outdoor Theater's Homepage
Image Source: Miller Outdoor Theater Website  

If you’re looking for a great place to enjoy free entertainment in Houston, look no further than the Miller Outdoor Theatre in Hermann Park. 

This open-air theater has been a Houston institution since 1923, and has hosted everything from Shakespearean plays to ballets, musicals, and contemporary concerts.

One of the biggest draws of the Miller Outdoor Theatre is its schedule of free performances. 

Every year, the theater hosts a wide range of shows, ranging from classical music concerts and jazz performances to theater productions, dance performances, and much more.

Josh Sorenson on Pexels
Image Source: Josh Sorenson on Pexels 

Some of the most popular events include the Texas Music Festival Orchestra and the annual Children’s Festival. Other popular events include the annual Shakespeare Festival, and for dance enthusiasts, the theater’s “Dance Under the Stars”.  

The Miller Outdoor Theatre has an “Open Captioning” program, which provides live captioning of all performances for deaf or hard-of-hearing audience members. The theater also has a special area for wheelchair seating and offers audio description for visually-impaired guests. 

The Miller Outdoor Theatre is open year-round, but its busiest season is during the summer months. During this time, the theater offers an extended schedule of free performances, with multiple shows per week. 

Anna Guerrero on Pexels
Image Source: Anna Guerrero on Pexels 

One of the best things about Miller Outdoor theater is the beautiful outdoor setting. The theater is surrounded by green space and is the perfect spot for a picnic or a relaxing afternoon. 

Many people bring blankets and chairs and enjoy a picnic before the show. You can also walk around Hermann Park before or after the performance and explore the gardens, fountains, and other attractions.

Address6000 Hermann Park Dr, Houston, TX 77030, United States
Contact Information +1 832-487-7102 
Social Media Facebook, Instagram

Drop by Westheimer Road

Drop by Westheimer Road's Homepage
Image Source:  Loopnet Website 

Some of the most popular things to do when you drop by Westheimer Road are window shopping, visiting local parks and farmers markets, attending festivals, and appreciating the unique architecture. 

Westheimer is home to high-end boutiques and eclectic vintage stores. Even if you don’t have any money to spend, it’s worth taking a stroll down the street to admire the window displays and get a sense of the local fashion and design scene. 

Memorial Park, which features miles of hiking and biking trails, a golf course, and a fitness center and the River Oaks Theatre, a historic movie theater that has been operating since 1939 and features an art deco design are must sees.

Try timing your visit to the Houston Greek Festival, which takes place in October and features traditional Greek food and dance performances.

Take a Look at the Rothko Chapel 

Take a Look at the Rothko Chapel's Homepage
Image Source: Rothko Chapel Facebook 

The Rothko Chapel in Montrose, Houston is a peaceful and meditative space that is open to the public, free of charge. You can admire art, attend lectures, meditate, walk around, attend some shows, or even volunteer for some community activities. 

It’s known for its stunning collection of paintings by abstract expressionist Mark Rothko. The fourteen large, dark canvases are displayed in a serene environment that encourages quiet contemplation.

Take a Look at the Rothko Chapel
Image Source: Rothko Chapel Website 

The Rothko Chapel regularly hosts lectures on spirituality, human rights, and the arts. It also hosts free concerts and musical performances which feature a range of musical styles and genres, 

If you enjoy time to yourself, you can admire the outdoor sculptures and the reflecting pool. The space is designed to be a sanctuary for people of all faiths, and offers a peaceful respite from the hustle and bustle of daily life.

Address3900 Yupon St, Houston, TX 77006, United States
Contact Information +1 713-524-9839
Social Media Facebook, Instagram

Marvel at the “Houston is Inspired” Mural 

Marvel at the “Houston is Inspired” Mural's Homepage
Image Source: ABC13 Website 

The “Houston Is Inspired” mural is a vibrant and colorful mural located in the heart of the city’s bustling Midtown district. It was created in 2013 by Houston-based artist Mario E. Figueroa Jr., also known as GONZO247. 

This impressive mural spans over 190 feet in length and features a stunning array of Houston landmarks, including the iconic skyline, Space Center Houston, the Houston Zoo, and many more.

It was commissioned by the Midtown Management District as part of a larger effort to revitalize the Midtown area and promote local arts and culture. 

The mural is meant to showcase the diversity and vibrancy of Houston, featuring a range of landmarks and cultural icons that represent the city’s rich history and unique identity.

Marvel at the “Houston is Inspired” Mural
Image Source: Greater Houston Partnership Website

Aside from being a popular spot for Instagram-worthy photos, there are plenty of free things to do around the mural. 

Visitors can take a leisurely stroll through the nearby Midtown Park, which offers beautiful green space and stunning views of downtown Houston. 

In addition, the mural is just a short distance from many of Houston’s other popular attractions, including the Museum District, Hermann Park, and Discovery Green. 

These areas offer plenty of free things to see and do, from exploring world-class museums to taking a relaxing walk through one of the city’s many beautiful parks.

Address313 Travis St, Houston, TX 77002, United States

Check out the University of St. Thomas

Check out the University of St. Thomas' Homepage
Image Source: University of St. Thomas Website 

The University of St. Thomas is home to a wealth of artistic and cultural treasures, from its stunning architecture to its impressive collection of art and artifacts. And the best part is many of these treasures can be enjoyed for free.

You can see a variety of architectural styles, from the Gothic Revival-style Chapel of St. Basil to the modernist Moran Center. It’s a great place to take a leisurely stroll and learn about the history and significance of each building.

The university has plenty of green spaces too, including the beautiful tree-lined walkways of the academic mall and the tranquil Chapel Garden!

Check out the University of St. Thomas
Image Source: University of St. Thomas Website

It also has an extensive art collection featuring works by famous artists such as Salvador Dali, Rembrandt, and Pablo Picasso. You’ll find these in the Fine Arts Building, which hosts exhibitions and events throughout the year with free admission!

The university also hosts soccer, basketball, tennis, and track and field events for free. 

If you’re not into sports, the university also offers lectures, concerts, poetry readings, jazz concerts, and guest lectures by renowned scholars free of charge. 

Address3800 Montrose Blvd, Houston, TX 77006, United States
Contact Information +1 713-522-7911
Social Media Facebook, Instagram

Enjoy Hermann Park

Enjoy Hermann Park's Homepage
Image Source: Hermann Park Website 

Hermann Park, located in the Montrose area of Houston, is a beautiful 445-acre urban park that has a lot of free activities you can enjoy.

Hermann Park features the McGovern Centennial Gardens which has a rose garden, woodland garden, garden mount, and sensory garden. The Japanese Garden with its beautiful pond, waterfall, and a variety of Japanese-inspired landscaping is a must see. 

Another fun and unique way to explore Hermann Park is by hopping on a pedal boat and cruising around the picturesque McGovern Lake. If you’re in the mood for some exercise, you can join one of the park’s free fitness classes for yoga, Zumba, and tai chi. 

Enjoy Hermann Park
Image Source: Hermann Park Website 

For a peaceful retreat, you can head to the Mary Gibbs and Jesse H. Jones Reflection Pool. This 280-foot long pool boasts a stunning water feature and beautifully landscaped surroundings that are perfect for a leisurely stroll.

If you love hiking, you should check out the Hermann Park Trail, a 2.8-mile trail that offers stunning views of the park’s beautiful gardens and green spaces. You can head on over to the Mary Gibbs and Jesse H. Jones Reflection Pool to cool off after!

Address6001 Fannin St, Houston, TX 77030, United States
Contact Information +1 713-526-2183
Social Media Facebook, Instagram

Go to the Contemporary Arts Museum Houston

Go to the Contemporary Arts Museum Houston's Homepage
Image Source: Contemporary Arts Museum Houston Website 

The Contemporary Arts Museum Houston which has been around since 1948 and has become a staple of the Houston art scene, attracting visitors from all over the world. You can find it in the heart of the Museum District and enjoy some free programs within! 

Their exhibitions showcase a diverse range of contemporary art from both emerging and established artists. If you’re looking for a more hands-on experience, check out their free workshops where you can create your own works of art.

CAMH also offers free film screenings of everything from documentaries to experimental works, and often include discussions or Q&A sessions with experts in the field. You can attend the free artist lectures as well.

Address5216 Montrose Blvd, Houston, TX 77006, United States
Contact Information +1 713-284-8250
Social Media Facebook, Instagram

Look around Local Farmers Markets 

Look around Local Farmers Markets' Homepage
Image Source: Erik Scheel on Pexels 

Montrose is a vibrant neighborhood that is home to several farmers markets (Tips for Houston farmers market shoppers) which are home to local farmers and artisans who grow their own produce. The best part? There are plenty of things you can do for free!

Many farmers markets have live music or other entertainment, so you can enjoy some free entertainment while you browse and look around. There’s usually loads of free samples of fruits, artisanal cheeses and homemade jams

Look around Local Farmers Markets
Image Source: Montrose Marketplace Website

Chat with the vendors and farmers and learn a lot about the local food scene, discover new recipes, get free tips and advice on how to grow your own fruits and vegetables at home. You can also often find free seed packets or other gardening supplies.

Here are some of our favorite farmers markets in Montrose: 

  • Farmers Market at Bridgeland
  • Farmers Market at Imperial
  • Kaiser Farmers Market
  • Memorial Villages Farmers Market
  • Rice University Farmers Market
  • St. John’s School Farmers Market
  • The Woodlands Farmers Market at Grogan’s Mill
  • Tomball Farmers Market
  • Urban Harvest Eastside Farmers Market
  • Westchase District Farmers Market
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