Skagit Valley Tulip Festival, Washington
Photograph by Gabe Palmer, Alamy
Bikers ride through tulip fields in bloom in Washington State's Skagit Valley. Every April, the Skagit Valley Tulip Festival features street fairs, art shows, concerts, and more.
Alamo, San Antonio, Texas
Photograph by Brad Swonetz, Redux
The 18th-century Alamo, originally built by the Spanish as a home for missionaries, is most famous for its role in the Texas Revolution. The mission was the site in 1836 of Davy Crockett and Jim Bowie's last stand against Mexican Gen. Santa Anna's troops.
Idiotarod, New York
Photograph by Gregory Bull, AP
Dressed as Boy Scouts, competitors in the Idiotarod push their shopping cart through the streets of New York. In a spoof of the famous Alaskan Iditarod race, the Idiotarod pits teams of runners who must push and pull a decorated shopping cart from Brooklyn to the Lower East Side in Manhattan.
Bat Viewing, Texas
Photograph by Jeff Haynes, AFP/Getty Images
In summer, crowds gather at the Congress Avenue Bridge in Austin, Texas, to watch Mexican free-tailed bats take off for nighttime feeding. The bridge is home to 1.5 million bats, the largest urban colony in the world.
Philadelphia International Cycling Championship
Photograph by Joseph Kaczmarek, AP
Cyclists climb the Manayunk Wall during the Philadelphia International Cycling Championship, a 156-mile single-day road race that draws hundreds of spectators.
Route 66 Mother Road Festival, Illinois
Photograph by RWP / Alamy
A sign on Route 66 touts the "Mother Road," the most famous highway in the U.S. The annual Route 66 Mother Road Festival celebrates the route's heyday.
Salk Institute for Biological Studies, California
Photograph by J. Scott Smith, Corbis
A stream of water flows through the central courtyard of the Salk Institute for Biological Studies in La Jolla, California. The striking center was designed by Louis I. Kahn.
First Friday Art Walk, Denver
Photograph by Blaine Harrington III, Corbis
The first Friday of every month brings visitors to Denver's Art District on Santa Fe for gallery exhibitions, musical performances, and other free attractions.
Lobster Festival, Maine
Photograph by Bridget Besaw, Aurora
A volunteer steams lobsters at the Lobster Festival in Rockland, Maine. The annual August celebration features, music, crafts, and contests.
U.S.S. Constitution, Boston
Photograph by Kathryn E. Macdonald, U.S. Navy/Getty Images
The U.S.S. Constitution sails into Boston Harbor during a Battle of Midway commemoration. Old Ironsides, the world's oldest commissioned warship afloat, is open for free guided tours.
National Elk Refuge, Wyoming
Photograph by Ted Wood, Aurora
The National Elk Refuge in Jackson, Wyoming, is the winter home to the largest elk herd in the U.S. Visitors can view the elk from a car, on foot, or on a horse-drawn sleigh ride.
Staten Island Ferry, New York
Photograph by Donovan Reese, Getty Images
New York's Staten Island Ferry, which transports more than 20 million passengers each year between Manhattan and Staten Island, offers free views of the Statue of Liberty (above), Ellis Island, and the New York City skyline.
National Lentil Festival Parade, Washington
Photograph by Dean Hare, Moscow-Pullman Daily News/AP
Young gymnasts perform on a float during the National Lentil Festival Parade in Pullman, Washington. The annual festival celebrates the locally grown legume.
Tenement Museum, New York
Photograph by Beth Keiser, AP
Visitors get a look at a tenement apartment untouched since 1935 as they tour the Tenement Museum in New York. The Lower East Side museum offers free lectures on immigration, history, and urban America.
Art Deco in Miami, Florida
Photograph by Nikreates/Alamy
The Avalon Hotel in Miami's South Beach is one of the neighborhood's art deco attractions. South Beach attracts sun seekers year-round—and architecture buffs during January's Art Deco Weekend.
Fremont Street Experience, Las Vegas
Photograph by Amy Harris, Corbis
The JaneDear Girls, a country band from Nashville, performs at the Fremont Street Experience in Las Vegas. The attraction covers five blocks and features concerts and light and sound shows.
Pike Place Market, Seattle
Photograph by George Rose, Getty Images
A central city attraction, Seattle's Pike Place Market has been in operation since 1907. It features fresh produce, meat, fish, and cheese, as well as antique shops, booksellers, and gift shops.
Millennium Park Ice Rink, Chicago
Photograph by Charles Rex Arbogast/AP
Ice skating enthusiasts brave temperatures in the teens as they skate under the Chicago skyline on the Millennium Park Ice Rink.
Dead Horse Point State Park, Utah
Photograph by Don Smith, Getty Images
Admission to Dead Horse Point State Park (above, at sunset) is free for Utah residents with library cards. The statewide program applies to all Utah parks.
Rock Climbing, Boulder
Photograph by Aurora Photos/Alamy
A rock climber heads up an outcrop above a river in Boulder, Colorado. The Boulder-based Women's Wilderness Institute holds free women-only clinics.
Winter Carnival, Steamboat Springs
Photograph by Larry Pierce, Steamboat Ski & Resort Corp./AP
The Winter Carnival in Steamboat Springs, Colorado, is a unique mix of Wild West and winter sports. Here, a person clinging to a snow shovel is pulled by horse through downtown.
Base Camp Outdoor Theater, Colorado
Photograph by Gus Gusciora/Mountainfilm in Telluride
Part of the Mountainfilm festival in Telluride, Colorado, Base Camp features free outdoor films—no matter the weather.
Tournament of Roses Parade, California
Photograph by Gus Ruelas, Corbis
The University of Southern California marching band takes part in the Tournament of Roses parade in Pasadena, California. The New Year's Day event was first held in 1890.
Dog Beach, San Diego
Photograph by David Smith, Alamy
Dogs are allowed off-leash on several beaches in San Diego, California, including the North Beach Dog Run in Coronado (above).
Getty Center, Los Angeles
Photograph by PCL / Alamy
Visitors to the Getty Center in Los Angeles peruse an exhibition in the soaring museum space. Admission to the Getty is free every day.
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