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Free Things to Do in Grand Rapids with MAP

Free Things to Do in Grand Rapids with MAP

Looking for free things to do near Grand Rapids, Michigan? If you’ve got a library card, you can checkout a Michigan Activity Pass – and we’ve found dozens of FREE places you can go with that pass!


Have you heard of the Michigan Activity Pass?! If you live in Michigan, this one printable pass can get you FREE admission (or cheap tickets) to over 400 venues across the state, including museums, cultural destinations, National Parks, state parks, campgrounds and more!

You can print the Michigan Activity Pass from the comfort of your own home. Click here for detailed, step-by-step instruction guide that will show you how to check out these passes.

To organize the 440+ locations you can visit with a Michigan Activity Pass, we’ve organized our list by nearest major city. There may be some overlap between regions, since I’m somewhat unfamiliar with Michigan geography. If you’re looking for something fun to do in another area of Michigan, please click here to see our complete Michigan Activity Pass list.

This list includes free stuff to do in Muskegon, Newaygo, New Buffalo, Niles, Saugatuck, Sawyer, South Haven, St. Johns, St. Joseph, Stevenson, and Whitehall.


Click here to view our list for other Michigan cities!


Duck Lake State Park – FREE

This day-use park includes a towering sand dune with opportunities for fishing, hiking, swimming and picnicking. Spend the day here FREE with your Michigan Activity Pass!

Fire Barn Museum – FREE

Discover the history of Muskegon firefighting from the late 1800’s to today! The Fire Barn showcases equipment, photographs and uniforms.

Hackley & Hume Historic Site – $2 off

Visit the homes of Michigan’s most notorious lumber barons. These homes were constructed in the late 1800’s and guided tours are available. You’ll get $2 off up to four tickets with your Michigan Activity Pass!

Lakeshore Museum Center – FREE (or $3 for non-residents)


Discover the rich history of Muskegon County through interactive exhibits and galleries. If you live in Muskegon County and have a Michigan Activity Pass, you get FREE admission! If not, admission is just $3 with your MAP pass!

Muskegon Heritage Museum – 50% off 

The Muskegon Heritage Museum preserves and shares the area’s history through photos, artifacts, working machinery and live demonstrations. Some of the coolest artifacts you’ll find here include a working 1893 steam engine powering 9 vintage machine tools, a Brunswick bowling pin setter and an original 1918 Raggedy Ann doll!

Muskegon State Park – FREE

Explore three miles of shoreline along two lakes and a winter luge run! The Winter Sports Complex is a fun diversion in the winter months. You can visit free for an entire day with your Michigan Activity Pass!

P.J. Hoffmaster State Park – FREE


Enjoy a FREE day exploring three miles of Lake Michigan shoreline, towering dunes, and the Gillette Visitor Center. Be prepared for adventure with the Dune Climb Stairway and an extensive network of hiking and skiing trails.

Scolnik House of the Depression Era – FREE

See life during the Great Depression at this soft-touch house museum.

USS Silversides Submarine Museum – FREE

This museum showcases military history and technology. While you’re there, you can tour the USS Silversides Submarine and the USCGC McLane for a reduced price. With your Michigan Activity Pass, tours are just $10 per adult and $5 per children.


Newaygo County Museum & Heritage Center – FREE

Explore Newaygo County’s history with exhibits showcasing the Native American, logging, agricultural and industiral history of the area. Exhibits include Gerber and Gangsters & Bootleggers! The museum also includes a military room and a museum store!

Newaygo State Park – FREE

This stunning campground and day use area overlooks Hardy Dam Pond from the top of a 20-foot tall embankment. The pond is a six mile flooding of the Muskegon River. You can visit FREE for a whole day with your Michigan Activity Pass!

New Buffalo

New Buffalo Railroad Museum – FREE

You can view three stalls of the original 16-stall roundhouse, the coal tower and the replica Pere Marquette depot. Pere Marquette and Pullman artifacts are on-site, including a restored WWII Pullman sleeper car and a C&O box car! Interactive children’s activities are also available. Enjoy a free guided tour with your Michigan Activity Pass!


Niles History Center – FREE

The Niles History Center is comprised of both the Fort St. Joseph Museum and the Chapin Mansion in downtown Niles. The Mansion was built in 1882 and features American Aesthetic architectural styling. The Fort St. Joseph Museum is in the former carriage house of the Mansion and tells the story of Niles. Get FREE admission to the museum and a free tour of the mansion with your Michigan Activity Pass!

Saugatuck Dunes

Saugatuck Dunes State Park – FREE

This day-use park rests along a secluded 2.5 mile strip of Lake Michigan shoreline. The park offers fresh coastal dunes thhat soar over 200 feet tall. Visit for FREE with your MAP pass!


Warren Dunes State Park – FREE

Nearly 2,000 miles of recreational opportunities await at Warren Dunes. The park features three miles of shoreline, six miles of trails and dune formations that rise 260 feet above the lake! You can visit one whole day for FREE with your Michigan Activity Pass!

South Haven

Bailey Museum – FREE

Discover the history of Dr. Liberty Hyde Bailey and his family. Born in South Haven, Dr. Bailey was a renowned environmentalist. The grounds include a museum, gardens, nature trail and picnic areas. With your MAP pass, you’ll get free admission and a 5% discount in the gift shop!

Van Buren State Park – FREE

Enjoy one FREE day in Van Buren State Park! The park features one mile of sandy beach and high dune formations. Woodland trails, picnic facilities and more are available here – and the town of South Haven is only minutes away!

Van Buren Trail State Park – FREE

The multi-use Van Buren Trail covers a 14-mile stretch between South Haven and Hartford. The trail has a dirt and gravel surface. The Michigan Activity Pass gets you in FREE for one whole day!

St. Johns

Clinton Northern Railway Museum – FREE

Get FREE admission and 20% off gift shop purchases at Clinton Northern Railway Museum! This museum features a restored 1920 depot, a room-size model train layout, three historic rail cars that are currently being restored, a 1927 wooden caboose, a 1923 box car, a 1903 Railroad Post Office car and more!

Paine-Gillam-Scott Museum – FREE

This is the stately home of the Clinton County Historical Museum! It’s the oldest brick residence in the city of St. Johns. Enjoy free admission with your Michigan Activity Pass!

St. Joseph

Heritage Museum & Cultural Center – 10% gift shop discount

The Heritage Museum focuses on the local history of Michigan’s Great Southwest. Interactive exhibits appeal to audiences of all ages. Michigan Activity Pass holders receive a 10% discount on all gift shop purchases!

Krasl Art Center – FREE

Get FREE admission to the Krasl Art Center, which features quality art exhibitions, installations and events. Classes, camps, guest worskhops and other opportunities are also available. The center includes galleries, art studios, a darkroom, gift shop and a permanent collection of 38 sculptures.


Grand Mere State Park – FREE

Magnificent sand dunes, deep blowouts and one mile of Lake Michigan shoreline adorn this park. Three inland lakes are also here in an undeveloped natural area. Spend the day exploring this 985 acre wonderland for FREE with your MAP pass!


Michigan’s Heritage Park – $2 off

This living history attraction traces 10,000 years of Michigan history. Walk the half-mile trail and encounter costumed interpreters along the path. With your Michigan Activity Pass, you’ll get $2 off up to four tickets!

White River Light Station and Museum – FREE children

The station was built in 1875, just four years after the Great Chicago fire. The lighthouse was decommissioned in 1960 and opened as a museum in 1970. The beautiful lighthouse museum tells the story of the prominent lighthouse keepers, including Captain William Robinson and his family of 13 children. Climb to the top of the tower, explore the grounds or discover the stories in the museum. When you visit with a Michigan Activity Pass, you’ll get two free children’s admissions with each adult admission. You’ll also get 20% off one item in the gift shop!

Get more free stuff in Michigan!