Free & Almost Free Things To do in Newport News

There's no need to break the bank when visiting Newport News. There is plenty of activities and attractions that are free or almost free around the city. If you're looking for the most affordable things to do for you and your family, you'll want to add these to your itinerary.

Free

U.S. Army Transportation Museum

This museum located at Joint Base Langley-Eustis is devoted entirely to the history of transportation used by the U.S. Army, from the horse-drawn early days of colonial times to the vehicles used in the modern day. Admission is entirely free, but donations are accepted and appreciated!

The Mary M. Torggler Fine Arts Center

Located in a gorgeous 83,000 square-foot building at Christopher Newport University, this brand new fine arts center offers a magnificent gallery for major art exhibitions, an interactive gallery for children, a community art gallery, classes, workshops, camps, and more. All exhibitions are free and open to the public!

Self-Guided Driving Tours

Take yourself and your family in the car and take a trip out on your own time on a self-guided driving tour. Stop by the many art and sculptures found throughout the city. If you're a history buff, head out to the many homes, battle sites, fortifications, monuments and artifact collections on the Civil War Driving Tour. Take a listen to our audio driving tour and take a drive around Newport News while listening to stories, music, and sound effects at each spot.

Explore Our Parks

Whether you're hiking through nature, strolling on the beach, bird watching, or taking the dog out for some exercise, the parks of Newport News are the places to be. A visit to Newport News Park, Riverview Farm Park, the Noland Trail, and others is completely free! Newport News Park itself has 30-miles of trails and a 5.3-mile long bike path along with golf courses, archery, fishing, and campgrounds. It's easy to spend an entire day in this 7,711-acre oasis!

Ride Along the Bike Trails

In Newport News, our bike trails range from leisurely to challenging, but all with scenic views. There are six bike trails, whether mountain or road biking, that can be found throughout the city. You can find an interactive and printable map on our bike trails page to start planning your ride today!

Go Fishing

Whether Freshwater or Saltwater, our seven public boat ramps and three modern marinas make getting out on the water in Newport News a breeze. Free Saltwater fishing piers are located at Hilton Pier and King-Lincoln Park as well as Denbigh Park. You can enjoy Freshwater fishing at Lee Hall and Harwood Mills Reservoir.

Hunt for Our LoveNN Rocks!

We're spreading the LOVE thoughout the city with our hidden rocks around our favorite landmarks. Take a stroll around City Center, Newport News Park, Brooks Crossing, or elsewhere and see if you can spot one of these painted rocks. Be sure to share it on our LoveNN Rocks Group if you find one!

Almost Free

The Mariners' Museum - $1 Admission

Filled with fascinating stories, captured in priceless artifacts that celebrate the spirit of the open sea, The Mariners' Museum is one of the largest and most comprehensive maritime museums in the world. With this in mind, Congress designated it as America's National Maritime Museum. For only $1 admission, guests can explore their own history with the Museum's world-class collection and discover how we are all connected to the water.

Peninsula SPCA & Barnyard -$3 Admission

If you're an animal lover, this place is for you. The SPCA not only offers shelter and adoption for the community's homeless pets, they also host the Barnyard, a petting zoo where you can get up-close with llamas, goats, turkeys, and more. This local favorite is $3.00 and completely free for children 3 years old and younger.

The Newsome House Museum & Cultural Center - Suggested $2 Donation

This restored 1899 residence of the African-American attorney J. Thomas Newsome and his wife, Mary, pays homage to his legacy and is one of the timeless historic fixtures in the city. It is now a venue for exhibitions on African-American history and culture, special events and other functions and is listed on the Virginia Landmarks Register and the National Register of Historic Places. 

James A. Fields House - Suggested $3 Donation

Re-opened in January of 2022, this house has seen it all: starting as a primary residence and law office for Virginia delegate, James A. Fields, that turned into the first black hospital in Newport News. Now, this house promotes the historical, educational, and cultural legacy of African-Americans in Hampton Roads. Suggested donations are $3 for adults, $2 for students, seniors and military and free for ages 12 and under.

Events

From the Summer Concerts at Port Warwick to the events downtown at The Yard District, many events thrown by the City of Newport News have free admission! Keep an eye out on our events page for upcoming events throughout the year!

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