Free Things to Do in California For Locals

Your 2024 California list. Everything that local Californians should try at least once. 

Last week we discussed why New Year’s Resolutions are a bad idea, and provided a few alternatives instead. This week, we’re offering one more alternative idea: a 2024 list. You don’t have to do everything on the list, but the idea is to get out of your comfort zone and try something new. You might be surprised with what you learn about yourself or your family. This list is a great opportunity to bond with loved ones. 

You’ve likely lived in your state for years; but have you ever actually experienced everything the state has to offer? If you live in California, then you already know that there is plenty to do in your state, and maybe even your own city. We know sometimes money can be tight, so keep an eye out for free attractions happening locally. Free events on Facebook can be few and far between, so until you manage to see another one on your social media feed, we have a few ideas for you. Spend an afternoon doing one of the items from your state’s list, or take a weekend trip to visit friends or family in another city and check off multiple items at once.

California 2024 List

Take A Walking Tour  (San Francisco) 

San Francisco has a great walking tour provided for free by the San Francisco City Guides. These guides know their San Francisco history. You’ll learn so much about the city. They will spill the tea about the Japanese Tea Garden, share some secrets about the Pacific Heights mansions, and even recommend a few great local places to grab dinner. 

Tour the State Capitol Building (Sacramento) 

The Capitol Building offers free tours every hour from 9AM-4PM. They have plenty of interesting things to see, including an early 20th century replica of the government offices. You’ll be able to learn more about how the state’s early government worked. If you have kids, this is a great tour for your family. It could even be a good opportunity to start talking about the structure of government. 

Watch Live TV (Los Angeles) 

There are so many TV shows that are recorded in Los Angeles, such as Dr. Phil or even Jimmy Kimmel. Usually the shows are sold out, but sometimes they have free tickets. If there is a show you really want to see live, check out their website and follow their instructions to win free tickets. Who knows? Maybe you’ll even win a car on the Ellen DeGeneres Show.

Find Out How Craft Beers Are Made (Chico) 

The Sierra Nevada Brewing Co offers a free tour of their brewhouse. You will be able to smell some of the hops that they use, learn about brewing, see some of the packaging process, and even get to try some of their best beers. If you’ve never had the opportunity to learn how craft beer is brewed, you should definitely take this tour! This is the perfect idea if you’re visiting a friend.

A Pacific Costal Highway Road Trip (California) 

This road is incredibly iconic and well known. It is a gorgeous view with the coast line on one side, and million-dollar homes on the other side. You can start your drive in Santa Cruz, San Diego, or anywhere in-between those cities. You will not be disappointed. There are plenty of areas to stop and get some food. Be sure to try something new and go to a restaurant that doesn’t exist in your city.

Learn How Fortune Cookies Are Made (San Francisco) 

The Golden Gate Fortune Cookie Factory makes about 10,000 fortune cookies every day. Along with traditional fortune cookies, they also make ones with unique flavors and toppings. They offer tours of their factory every day. The factory is located in Chinatown, so after the tour, you can go to a nearby restaurant for some delicious food. If you don’t have allergies, consider ordering something at random.

Go for A Hike in Griffith Park (Los Angeles) 

There are so many sight-seeing options at this park. You could hike during the day and get a beautiful glimpse of Los Angeles from above the city. Want to see the Hollywood sign? For safety and environmental reasons, you can’t get close enough to touch the sign, but there are a few paths that will walk you right past it. Alternatively, you could go to Griffith Park at night, to see the city and stargaze.

2024 is a new year, so this might be a great opportunity to try new things you’ve never had the opportunity to do. Hopefully this list at least provides you and the family a few ways to stay entertained this new year without breaking the bank. Check out this Matador article with 12 things to do in California for more ideas. Or, if you’ve found other free things to do in California, let us know by leaving a comment at the bottom of the page. Make sure to include the city, too! 

Have family or friends in Texas? Send them a link to our article Free Things to Do in Texas For Locals

At Net Pay Advance, we know that sometimes money can be tight, especially after the holidays. If you find that you have unexpected expenses or bills due before your next paycheck, let us help. Apply for a fast online payday loan today.

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