Photo: Gideon

6. Free Transportation

Europe’s canal lined streets can be seen for free, by bike.

Barcelona (Bicing), Lyon (Vélo’v), London(OYBike), Call a Bike (Berlin, Frankfurt), Copenhagen/Helsinki (CIOS), Seville (Sevici) are among the cities that have hopped on board an almost-free program that allows tourists to pick up and drop off bikes at designated locations.

Fees are minimal, and the first half-hour of use is often free. The new Velib bikes in Paris, for example, cost only 1 Euro per hour.

7. Free Churches

Europe’s churches are rich repositories of history, and entrance is usually free.

Westminster Abbey in London is the final resting place for generations of British monarchs, and its Poet’s Corner commemorates famous British writers.

The view alone at hilltop Vyšehrad is worth paying for. The Cathedral of Saint Paul and Peter, as well as the Vyšehrad cemetery, contains the remains of many famous people from Czech history.

The Vatican Museum, home of the Sistine Chapel, is free on the last Sunday of each month. Entrance to Saint Peter’s Basilica is free, providing visitors with access to several famous art works as well as the Popes’ tombs.

Tourists can take sanctuary at Notre Dame de Paris, the Gothic masterpiece of stone lacework made famous by Victor Hugo. Free organ recitals are held on Sundays at 4:30 p.m.

Photo: Sven Lindner

8. Free Gardens

Europe’s public gardens are more than rows of trees and flowers. They can be outdoor community centers and art exhibitions.

Hungary’s Margaret Island is a green oasis in the Danube, between Buda and Pest. A joggers’ track around the outside of the park encircles themed gardens, soccer fields, swimming pools, and a petting zoo.

Bloemenmarkt, in Amsterdam, is the only floating flower market in the world. The flower stalls, awash with exotic colors and varieties, are perched on houseboats.

The Glasgow Botanic Gardens is internationally renowned for its glass houses and exotic collection of tree ferns from Australia as well as plants from several continents.

There are events scheduled throughout the year, including art exhibitions, plant sales and guided tours.

9. Free Festivals

The largest free open air festival takes place in July, in Ghent, Belgium. The event features pop music, folk, rock ‘n’ roll, hiphop, jazz, and R’n’B on all the city squares. Visitors can also enjoy theatre, comedy, exhibitions and boat trips on the river Lys.

The Copenhagen Jazz Festival is held over ten days in July. Performances take place on the streets as well as in cafes, city parks, and event centers.

10. Free Tours

Although the activity is not actually free, visitors pay whatever they think is appropriate for guided walking tours that last about three hours. The tours were recently introduced in Pragueand Berlin.

Do you know some free activities in Europe? Please share by leaving a comment below.

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