You have a wide variety of options and adventure opportunities when it comes to fun cheap things to do in Kansas. This place is heaven for those looking for inexpensive adventures. There are plenty of cheap things to do in Kansas City as well as the state. Here are some of the top activities in which one can participate while on a vacation or a holiday.
To get a quick glimpse of cheap and free things to do in Kansas, browse through the below slides:
Budget Vacation in Kansas: Fun & Inexpensive Things to do… from Rental Trader Inc
- Top 13 Fun, Free and Cheap Things to Do in Kansas
- 1. Visit Strataca – The Underground Salt Museum
- 2. Visit Oz Museum: Unique Attractions in Kansas
- 3. Explore Monument Rocks: Appear Manmade But Are Natural
- 4. Coronado Heights Castle: Spanish Colonial Castle
- 5. The Big Well: Largest Hand-dug Well
- 6. Ride the KC Streetcar
- 7. Explore the Crown Center
- 8. Fountains: KC’s Pride
- 9. Explore Wichita Gardens: Like A Paradise
- 10. Kansas State Capitol: Dome Tour!
- 11. Tallgrass Prairie National Reserve
- 12. Explore Spencer Museum of Art: 45000 Pieces Of Art
- 13. Flint Hills Discovery Center
Top 13 Fun, Free and Cheap Things to Do in Kansas
Kansas offers a variety of fun and affordable activities for visitors to enjoy. Some popular options include visiting the Flint Hills, exploring the state’s many museums and historic sites, and taking a hike or bike ride on one of Kansas’ beautiful trails. Additionally, Kansas is home to several state parks and nature preserves, offering opportunities for camping, fishing, and wildlife viewing. Other budget-friendly activities include visiting farmers’ markets and local festivals and taking a scenic drive through the state’s picturesque countryside. Whether you’re a history buff, outdoor enthusiast, or simply looking for a fun and affordable way to spend your time, Kansas has something to offer everyone.
1. Visit Strataca – The Underground Salt Museum
This museum is home to special salt crystals. It consists of 65-stories under the ground. The city of Kansas sits on a massive salt mine with the veins stretching all the way to New Mexico from the city. Visitors can participate in an underground tram tour of the salt museum.
The unusual and incredible aspect of this site is that the museum houses a 250-million-year old salt crystal. A living bacterium was also discovered in the year 1998. A team of geologist and two biologists discovered the bacterium in a drop of seawater trapped within the salt crystal near New Mexico.
Although bacteria can undergo hibernation, surviving this long was incredible for everyone. This mine also stores thousands of Hollywood films and government records. The museum also hosts “Murder in the Mine” dinner theatre occasionally.
2. Visit Oz Museum: Unique Attractions in Kansas
This museum has a wonderful collection of all things “Wizard of Oz”, right in the heart of the city of Kansas. You don’t have to wait for a tornado to take you away to this magical land. You can visit the Oz museum right in the heart of Kansas City. Established in 2004, utilizing a large grant, the museum does everything right to celebrate the famous 1939 movie.
The collection comprises thousands of artifacts related to Oz like playbills, board games and Baum’s series. The museum has a wide range of displays that bring scenes from the Judy Garland musical to life. It consists of a room painted as Dorothy’s black & white farmhouse. It transforms into a lit room where you can take a few steps down the yellow brick red.
Since the establishment of this museum, several small businesses have flourished in the surrounding area. The entire experience of being here seems nothing less than magic or like Alice in Wonderland. This has made the Oz Museum one of the best Kansas road trip destinations.
3. Explore Monument Rocks: Appear Manmade But Are Natural
These rocks are large chalk formations that reach up to 70 feet high. They appear as if they were made by humans. Carbonates such as limestone can be found in the seaway. This implies that there were abundant calcareous algae in the waters previously. The rocks here are treasured for being prehistoric remnants.
These rocks are also referred to as Chalk Pyramids. These seem like huge stones bearing a unique shape. As the formations are iconic, they were named as the first national natural landmark in America. Visiting this place is undoubtedly one of the top fun cheap things to do in Kansas.
4. Coronado Heights Castle: Spanish Colonial Castle
In 1881, a mysterious Spanish coin was discovered near Lindsborg in Kansas by a college professor. This led to the beginning of the legends of the visit by Francisco Vasquez de Coronado, a Spanish explorer. The subsequent discoveries confirmed the stories further.
Coronado is believed to have visited during the 1540s on his hunt for the fabled “Seven Cities of Gold”. This was based on a Portuguese myth and the stories drove adventures throughout the world in the quest of wealth.
Coronado was inspired by a Franciscan priest and he set off with hundreds of soldiers and Native American guides in 1541. He covered 4,000 miles but all he could find were native huts. Scholars have for long debated whether Coronado completed his mission or not whereas some believe that the entire story has been fabricated.
Coronado Heights Castle reminds one of an old fortification located on top of the hill in a park. It was built in the 1930s under a Works Progress Administration project marking the region where Coronado is said to have gazed over the flatlands.
5. The Big Well: Largest Hand-dug Well
The US is home to the largest hand-dug well which has been converted to a museum. This giant well in Kansas is boasted to be the largest hand-dug well; dug by cowboys and farmers with just picks, shovels, a pulley, roped and a half-barrel. They were paid 50 cents to a dollar per day for the task.
The well is indeed enormous, and it measures 32 feet wide and 109 feet deep. It became a popular stop in 1939 and still remains popular for tourists and visitors in Kansas City. Millions of people have purchased tickets to take a journey into the well to explore. Some visitors throw a coin, lucky items, or a shoe at the bottom. The well-celebrated its one-millionth visitor in 1956.
The town hired cleaners in the 90s for cleaning the bottom of the well. They found approximately $1,200 in coins. A tornado destroyed the entire town in 2007 including the visitor center at the site of the well. There were just a few buildings left. The town was later rebuilt into an environment-friendly little town. Wind turbines and solar panels were set up with help from the television show Planet Green. This led to the recovery of the town.
The civic bodies spent three million dollars in 2012 for constructing a museum associated with the well. This allowed visitors to descend the spiral staircase into the well and enabled exhibits to be built showing the history of the town and its rebuilding.
6. Ride the KC Streetcar
The 2.2-mile KC Streetcar is absolutely free and riding in it will help you discover some of the most vibrant districts of the Downtown. This route includes 16 stops which are as diverse and interesting as the former. This activity is one of the top fun cheap things to do in Kansas.
7. Explore the Crown Center
The Crown Center is a favorite entertainment district that has something for every visitor. You get to experience great dining, points of attraction and restaurants here. You can check for budget-friendly options and enjoy live music. Exploring Crown Center is one of the most popular fun cheap things to do in Kansas.
8. Fountains: KC’s Pride
Kansas take immense pride in being called the City of Fountains. It is home to over 200 majestic fountains. You will find them everywhere from major landmarks in the city to quaint neighborhoods. Do not forget to explore the newly renovated J.C. Nichols Memorial Fountain near the Country Club Plaza. It is one of the most spectacular and popular fountains in the city. The fountains can be seen just by walking around the city and so they are mostly free. This is the reason they top the cheap things to do in Kansas list.
9. Explore Wichita Gardens: Like A Paradise
Exploring this botanical garden must be on the top of your things-to-do list while in Wichita. It seems like a paradise and is open to visitors all year long. There are over 30 themed gardens for you to explore. You can walk into the educational and imaginative Children’s Garden where you’ll experience the Monster Woods exhibit, or you can simply watch the kids play around the treehouse.
The Shakespeare Garden will take you through flowers and plants that represent the Elizabethan Era. The Koi pond pavilion and the Butterfly gardens are not to be missed. The 4,000 species of plants and the sculptures further add to the beauty of the landscape. If you are looking for fun cheap things to do in Kansas, then this must be a part of your list.
10. Kansas State Capitol: Dome Tour!
This Capitol covers about 20 acres in the heart of Topeka. It is treasured by architectural enthusiasts. The building has been constructed in the French Renaissance style. It was completed in 37 years after the first stone was laid in 1866.
The visitors, today, can enjoy tours and public exhibits. The sculptures, murals and regular programs are quite unique and captivating. You can take a free Dome Tour for an incredible experience. This is ideal for visitors who have the stamina to walk up 296 steps to get a close-up view of the dome.
11. Tallgrass Prairie National Reserve
If you have never experienced the majestic Tallgrass Prairie, then you need to visit this reserve. The Kansas Flint Hill has less than four percent of the original 170-million acres of land that used to be tallgrass prairie. This is one of the only places in the US to experience it and you can either opt in for a self-guided tour or take a bus tour. You can even hike the area. Special events are also available throughout the year.
12. Explore Spencer Museum of Art: 45000 Pieces Of Art
What makes this museum unique is the fact that it is the only art museum in the state that is home to over 45,000 pieces of art forms. The collection is displayed at the University of Kansas in Lawrence. The collections include Native American, Latin American, European, Asian, and African art, among others. The changing exhibitions focuses on various artists. If you are a connoisseur of art, then you will love exploring this museum.
13. Flint Hills Discovery Center
This is one of the most interactive centers in Kansas. It focuses mainly on the history of Flint Hills that offers a deep lesson on the American fundamentals of pop culture, inventions, wildlife, and nature.
This museum is home to part culture and part science exhibits. You must catch the Immersive Experience Theater where you can feel the winds blowing your hair as you watch the movie on the evolution and history of the area. Don’t miss stepping on the rooftop terrace to experience panoramic views of the city.
Wrapping Up Kansas Budget-Friendly Things to Do
I hope you enjoyed our sampling of cheap things to do in Kansas. There is no doubt that Kansas attracts visitors from all over the world. It has plenty of options to explore and visit. If you own a property in the region, then you should consider listing it as a vacation rental on Rental Trader with a simple signup process. On the other hand, if you are a traveler, you can choose from a wide list of properties listed on Rental Trader to book the best one of your choice.