Free Family-Friendly Things to Do in Plano

Updated: 5/1/2024

Welcome to Plano, Texas, where adventure and entertainment come at no cost! From scenic parks to cultural experiences and everything in between, Plano offers a wealth of activities that won’t put a dent in your wallet. Whether you’re a local looking for budget-friendly fun or a visitor eager to explore without spending a dime, you’ll find plenty of options to keep you entertained. So, lace up your walking shoes, pack a picnic, and get ready to discover the best free things to do in Plano. Join us as we uncover the hidden gems and vibrant experiences waiting for you in this charming Texan city!



Two major parks in Plano offer great opportunities to connect with the outdoors. Oak Point Park and Nature Preserve is 800 acres and has 3.5 miles of concrete trails and five miles of soft trails along Rowlett Creek. Arbor Hills Nature Preserve is a 200-acre park with hike and bike trails, a two-mile walking trail and stunning views of the prairie and forest. Man’s best friend needs to get out and about as well, so bring your furry companion and check out Jack Carter dog park, the Dog Park at Bob Woodruff Park, or Windhaven Meadows Dog Park. You can view a complete list of City of Plano parks here.

Plano also has more than 82 miles of recreational trails open to the public. Chances are there’s a trail near you. Get trail information here including downloadable trail maps. Biking is also a great way to see Plano. You can even find the routes on Google!

The lake at Oak Point Park & Nature Preserve is open for kayaking, canoeing and stand up paddle boarding from dawn to dusk. Bring your own canoe, kayak, or stand up paddle board and see Plano’s largest park from a new perspective, for free!

Carpenter Park Skate Park combines popular street-style skating and bowl skating features. This new skate park features some of the most extensive and unique skate features in all of the Dallas-Fort Worth Metroplex. Skaters will enjoy one of the largest bowls in the area as well as various sized ramps, rails, stair sets, and ledges. It’s free to use and open from 5 a.m. to 11 p.m.


There are plenty of walkable areas around Plano to bring the kids for a family afternoon. The Downtown Plano Arts District holds something for everyone… shopping, dining, and history. Unique and one-of-a-kind shops and restaurants line the brick street. McCall Plaza frequently hosts live music events. Also in downtown is Haggard Park with a beautiful gazebo and pond.

Legacy West and The Shops at Legacy are also great places to spend a few hours. Window shop by walking the urban developments that feature a wide variety of upscale shopping from clothing and jewelry to home furnishings and specialty items. Baccus Plaza at the Shops at Legacy also includes the popular Trails in Legacy sculptures, which depict a cattle drive along the Shawnee Trail, a route on which Texas longhorns were driven before and just after the Civil War. Nestled in the middle of the Granite Park corporate business center sits a 30,000 square foot restaurant park called The Boardwalk. With restaurants of all types, a casual family-friendly atmosphere, entertainment, and an amazing waterfront view, The Boardwalk is the perfect place to relax.


Th Interurban Railway Museum brings Plano transportation history back to life. Once a vital part of the Texas Electric Railway that ran between Denison to Waco from 1908 to 1948, the Interurban is one of the original electric cars that ran on the tracks through Plano. Next to the station is car 360, one of the original cars that carried mail and passengers. This is the only station remaining between Sherman and Dallas. The facility also includes an area that houses a colorful display of Plano history.

Explore our website for more attractions, dining options, live music, and events.

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