What to do in Dundee for free: Your ultimate guide!

What to do in Dundee for free: Your ultimate guide!

Dundee is the perfect destination for anyone who loves history, art, and culture. It’s Scotland’s fourth-largest city with an exciting mix of modern architecture and historical landmarks. You can explore museums like the Broughty Castle Museum or take in the art at The McManus Art Gallery and Museum. If you love shopping, then check out The Overgate Centre – one of Scotland's biggest indoor shopping malls with over 100 stores under one roof. You'll discover on your visit why the city makes the top 12 on the 2021 list of the 'Places To Enjoy A Short Getaway In Britain', by readers of Condé Nast Traveller UK magazine.

In this blog post we list:

  • The best places to visit for no charge at all
  • Show all places on an interactive map to help you locate each place easily.

Dundee has many options for things to do today. There are museums like The McManus Art Gallery and the Broughty Castle Museum or if you fancy some time outdoors, parks like Camperdown Country Park and Baxter Park.

Things to do
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    Museums and Galleries

    Is Dundee Worth Visiting?

    Dundee is located in the east of Scotland and is worth visiting not just because of its rich history and beautiful architecture but because the east side of Scotland gets the sunnier weather! The city has plenty of things to see and do including many museums, art galleries, and local parks. Dundee is also home to some great restaurants and bars, making it the perfect place to spend a weekend getaway.

    Below we list some of the museums and art galleries that you can enter for free. Be sure to check them out on your visit.

    things to do in dundee today

    The McManus Art Gallery and Museum

    The McManus Art Gallery and Museum is the perfect place for anyone who loves art. It’s home to paintings, sculptures, prints, drawings, and photographs from artists all around the world. Their collections include fine and applied art, archaeology, history of world cultures, and natural history. With different exhibitions on throughout the year, check their website for details of what's on when you're in town.

    Dundee Contemporary Arts

    Dundee Contemporary Arts is the perfect place to discover, enjoy, and learn about contemporary art. They're an international hub of creativity in the heart of Scotland’s sunshine city. The galleries are home to some of the most exciting exhibitions in the country, while the creative studios offer unique opportunities for learning and engagement with artists. There are two galleries, a print studio, a two-screen cinema, a learning and public engagement program, and a café to enjoy.

    Mills Observatory

    Have you ever wanted to see the stars up close and personal? Mills Observatory is a place where people can come together and enjoy the night sky. Situated on Balgay Hill, the public-owned observatory has a fully computerised telescope that can locate 30,000 objects in the night sky. You won’t find another experience like this anywhere else!

    History and Culture

    what to do in dundee for free

    Broughty Castle Museum

    The castle museum is a great place to visit to learn all about this 15th century fort. You can explore the medieval tower, see how it was used as a fortress and discover what life was like for people who lived there. The museum also has an extensive collection of art from the Orchar Collection and offers great views across the River Tay for some picture opportunities.

    Walks and Nature Trails

    what to do in dundee today

    Camperdown Country Park

    The stunning neo-classical Camperdown House is the centrepiece of this expansive park, which covers an area of over 400 acres and houses 190 types of trees. A popular spot for locals as well as visitors alike, it's open year-round with many activities available to keep you busy all day long! The park is the largest public park in Dundee and can be found 3 miles from the city centre.

    Broughty Ferry Beach

    A fantastic sandy resort, Broughty Ferry has a wonderful summer beach that attracts thousands of people. In the winter it becomes one of Scotland's best beaches for migrating waders and dolphins can often be seen in the River Tay from this great outdoor spot! The esplanade has a range of activities on from April to October to keep the kids occupied in the summer months.

    free things to do in dundee

    Monikie Country Park

    Monikie Country Park has so many things to do! Whether you want adventurous land or water activities, Monikie's got it. They offer team building sessions and RYA courses for any level of experience - including the kids who will love their adventure play park with slides galore (and parent-free hours). The park has beautiful woodlands, with plenty of space to explore on foot or by bike, and is one of the best places for choices of activities available in the local area.

    Baxter Park

    Baxter Park is a 37-acre park which was designed by Sir Joseph Paxton between 1862 and 1863. The park is included in the Inventory of Gardens and Designed Landscapes in Scotland and it features a Category A-listed pavilion as its centrepiece. The park was refurbished in 2003 through a £3.25 million grant awarded through the Heritage Lottery Fund and received further funding to the tune of £5 million years later.

    Barnhill Rock Garden

    For those who want to escape the hustle and bustles of city life, head out for some relaxation at Barnhill Rock Garden. The gorgeous green space with its panoramic views across the River Tay where you can spot some seals or dolphins on a clear day. The garden is a public park that extends over two hectares and it's located on part of a former nine-hole golf course in the area.


    Use the map below to locate all the best things to do in Dundee mentioned above to create your itinerary for your trip. We’ve also added places in the city to eat that offer good food at a decent price for breakfast, lunch, and dinner.

    Open Google Maps to see distance information between locations and directions on how to get to each place.

    Please note...

    All outdoor activities including walking involve a degree of risk. The walks are recommended due to the features of each forest but this may change over time and further research is required before undertaking any activity. The weather can also impact the surface and general conditions of each path so please keep yourself updated with the weather forecast before setting off to enjoy your walk!

    Other Blog Posts from Dundee

    We write lots of blog posts from each area of free activities to do. Have a look at our blog posts from the city of Dundee by clicking the links below:


    Dundee Blogs


    Cycling Routes in Dundee


    Forest Walks near Dundee


    Local Delicacies and Souvenirs from Dundee

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