Gainesville is home to the University of Florida and one of the state’s most youthful atmospheres. Although this amazing town is located a little over an hour from the coast, there is still plenty of water in the area to enjoy. You can still find ways to enjoy most of the fun outdoor activities to do on the beach!

We know that Gainesville has a large student community in town looking to have some fun for little to no cost. That is why we at ALSANDER Gainesville have decided to share our list of the best fun things to do on a budget in Gainesville, FL. You might be new to the scene and looking for something to spice up your day. All you have to do to escape your boredom is get out and experience some of the activities on the following list:

Support the Florida Gators

Price: Free – $

The Florida Gators have a long tradition of supporting their sports teams. From singing “We are the Boys” to the “Gator Fight Song”, there are plenty of fun to join in on during Gator season. There are also marching bands that get the crowd going at the football games and create the best atmosphere in town.

The Gator sporting events are also filled with some of the best sports action you will find in Florida. The University of Florida has plenty of stellar talent to boast about. Not, only are our local athletes awesome, the competition also has some promising prospects. No matter if you’re in town to support the Gators or a different institution, you will be in for a show!

Visit the Florida Museum of Natural History

Location: 3215 Hull Rd, Gainesville, FL 32611

Price: Free – $$

The Florida Museum is free to members and students who attend the University of Florida. The permanent exhibits are free of charge to the public, but they do charge to see some of the other exhibits. It is an amusing place that does a great job of showing visitors about wildlife in the Florida area. There are also some limited-time exhibitions where you can learn about the nature of foreign animals and their natural habitats. You don’t want to miss out on a chance to learn about the most intriguing species on the planet.

Check out the University of Florida Bat Houses

Location: Museum Rd, Gainesville, FL 32611

The Bat Houses at the University of Florida are a big part of the Museum of Natural History. You just have to check out the largest bat houses in the world! The bats usually come out of hiding a little before sunset and put on a great show. It may sound a bit creepy to watch, but trust us, it is definitely a scene that will take your breathe away. You’ll be amazed at how beautiful thousands of bats going off into the night sky really is.

Discover the Kanapaha Botanical Gardens

Location: 4700 SW 58th Dr, Gainesville, FL 32608

Botanical gardens are some of the most extraordinary places you can visit. The Kanapaha Botanical Gardens in Gainesville do a great job of preserving nature and highlighting the beauty behind local and foreign plants. You won’t believe how big the Kanapaha Botanical Garden is! You can also enjoy the events the garden has to offer from time to time. 

Visit the Devil’s Millhopper Geological State Park

Location: 4732 Millhopper Rd, Gainesville, FL 32653

Price: $

This Floridian state park is a great spot to go out and spend a great day with your family and friends. Some of the terrains looks as if was a miniature rainforest in Florida. There is also plenty of wildlife to discover when you go out to the Devil’s Millhopper Geological State Park. The park is also perfect for campers and those who want to experience the outdoors in a different way.

Visit the Morningside Nature Center

Location: 3540 East University Avenue, Gainesville, FL 32641

Price: $

The Morningside Nature Center in Gainesville is an excellent place to go out and explore the wonders of nature in Florida. There is plenty of green land to snap some pictures of and enjoy. This spot is usually a host for student field trips and summer camps throughout the year.

Explore the 352 Walls Around Gainesville

In case you haven’t noticed yet, there are plenty of beautiful art pieces painted around the streets of Gainesville. Although the name can throw you off, there is only about 30 walls that have been painted around Gainesville. Nevertheless, these pieces of art are well worth the walk around town. It is a great way of discovering the artistic talent that is living within this Floridian town. All you have to do is visit the 352 Walls website and head over to the points of interest!

Hike Along La Chua Trail

Location: 100 Savannah Blvd, Micanopy, FL 32667

Price: $

Paynes Prairie State Park is not too far from Gainesville. It is an amazing spot to go hiking at La Chua Trail. There you will find plenty of spots to enjoy some of the most unique animal watching in Florida. There is a reason why this spot is popular to visit amongst the locals. Save yourself the wait and go find out why!

Visit the Depot Park

Location: 200 S.E. Depot Ave., Gainesville, FL, 32601

Price: Free

From the regular playground to the water park, there is plenty of spots where you can enjoy a nice day out. The park has great open areas and picnic areas where you can set up for the afternoon and relax after a nice long adventure. You’ll also love the Cade Museum at Depot Park.

Visit the Cade Museum for Creativity and Invention

Location: 811 South Main Street, Gainesville, FL

Price: $

If you have some extra cash, you might as well head on down to the Cade Museum while you’re at Depot Park. There hold some interesting exhibits including the Gatorade Sweat Solution. You’ll like to learn just how this famous drink came about and the studies that were performed to perfect the drink.

Visit the Harn Museum of Art

Location: 3259 Hull Road, Gainesville, Florida 32611-2700

Price: Free

This is a great spot to visit if you’re an art enthusiast. The Harn Museum of Art showcases African, Asian, modern and contemporary art, and photography. It is a great spot to find new and engaging exhibitions that will ignite your passion for learning. You’ll enjoy discovering some of the most unique art exhibits in the state of Florida.

Follow the Solar Walk

Location: 3349-3399 NW 8th Ave, Gainesville, FL 32605

Price: Free

Gainesville has its own scale model of the solar system. There you will get an idea as to how large our Solar System really is. The Solar Walk in town has a downsized model representing every planet in the Solar System in addition to the sun and Halley’s comet. Throughout your walk along 8th street, you will quickly find out that each model has a bit of information about the planet or star it represents. How’s that for some fun?


There is plenty of fun to join in on here in Gainesville. You just have to go out and find it! We want you to be able to have a great experience in town and discover new ways to enjoy yourself. Just remember to let us know how much you liked the activities on our list and share your favorite fun things to do in Gainesville in case we didn’t highlight it!

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