Nestled southwest of Los Angeles County, California, the exciting small city of Inglewood is in Los Angeles metropolitan area.
It was incorporated in 1908 and is home to more than 105,000 population based on the 2020 U.S. census.
It’s conveniently located near the best attractions in the dynamic city of Los Angeles, neighboring cities, Southern California shores, main highways, and Los Angeles International Airport or LAX.
That said, Inglewood is a popular destination among tourists and visitors.
If you’re curious about some of the free things to do in Inglewood, California, check out the following list below:
Discover Downtown Inglewood
On your exploration of Downtown Inglewood, you’ll come across many famous sites and buildings on different streets, like Manchester Boulevard, Market Street, and Florence Avenue.
Edward Vincent Jr. Park, Centinela Adobe, Inglewood City Hall, Inglewood Public Library, The Forum, SoFi Stadium, and Fox Theater can all be found downtown.
Plenty of excellent dining, shopping, and entertainment options are also available.
Stroll along the streets, admire the beautiful architecture of the buildings, strike poses for some snapshots, and enjoy the relaxing atmosphere.
Enjoy a Movie Outdoors through the Movies in the Park Series
Don’t skip the free Movies in the Park Series, one of the summer highlights in Inglewood.
The City of Inglewood hosts this event in various locations, including Edward Vincent Jr. Park, Darby Park, and Inglewood City Hall.
The public is invited to watch free movies, which start at dusk.
Don’t forget to grab your blankets, lawn chairs, and snacks.
If you’re good to go, head out for a memorable night of movies under the stars throughout the summer with your family.
Learn about Californian History at the Centinela Adobe
If you’re a history buff, check out the historic Centinela Adobe, located close to the San Diego Freeway.
Ygnacio Machado built this Spanish Colonial-style adobe house, also known as the La Casa de la Centinela, in 1834.
It was once the site of the 25,000-acre Rancho Aguaje de la Centinela, a land grant from Rancho Sausal Redondo to Antonio Ygnacio.
Called the “Birthplace of Inglewood,” Centinela Adobe is the city’s oldest building and one of the surviving homes in Los Angeles County.
The Historical Society of Centinela Valley maintains this landmark as a museum to preserve Inglewood’s rich beginnings and life during the Spanish Colonial era.
Visitors can view and admire its beautiful interiors and architecture, fascinating artifacts, and historical furniture by taking guided tours led by volunteers.
Join the Fun at the Hispanic Heritage Festival
Inglewood also celebrates the Hispanic Heritage Festival from September 15 to October 15.
This month-long celebration recognizes the rich heritage and contributions of Hispanic and Latino Americans.
The event includes a classic car show, live performances, a food court, vendor and information booths, interactive and carnival-style games, children’s activities, health screenings, and more.
This is also one of the best times to interact with the locals, join in the festivity, and enjoy the free fun-filled event.
Don’t miss the fun at the annual Hispanic Heritage Festival in Downtown Inglewood with your family and friends.
Check Out Beautiful Murals at Grevillea Art Park
If you want to discover the community’s art scene, stop by Grevillea Art Park.
Located along East Kelso Street in the heart of the city, the park sports a collection of murals perfect for art lovers.
The “History of Transportation” mural, which depicts the transportation history in the Centinela Valley, spans over eight feet high and 240 feet long, composed of 60 panels.
California artist Helen Lundeberg took three years (from 1939 to 1942), to complete this beautiful mural, the world’s largest petrachrome mural.
It’s a piece of mosaic art that’s made up of tiny colored stones darned together.
Originally in Edward Vincent Jr. Park, formerly Centinela Park, the mural was restored and moved to Grevillea Art Park, its current location.
As you stroll around Grevillea Art Park admiring the artist’s impressive work, you’ll find a helpful series of metal plaques that interpret the design, history, and story of the mural’s different panels.
Watch the Magical Lights at the Annual Holiday Tree Lighting
Inglewood’s Annual Holiday Tree Lighting is a must when you’re in the city for the holidays.
This event draws a huge crowd, including families and couples, who wish to witness the colorful Christmas tree, decorations, and lights every holiday season.
To spice things up, there’s live entertainment by a stellar lineup of performers, refreshments for everyone, and a special holiday visit by Santa.
Come with your loved ones to the Annual Holiday Tree Lighting, and don’t forget to take photos!
Pay Respects to Music Icons at Inglewood Park Cemetery
Inglewood Park Cemetery was established in 1905 and is located on East Florence Avenue.
This place includes the historic Chapel of the Chimes, built in 1949, the historic Grace Chapel, completed in 1907, and the Sunset Mission Mausoleum, the country’s largest mausoleum.
Likewise, it is home to the graves of famous persons who made significant contributions to the worlds of sports, theater, music, government, and more.
You can pay respects to music legends such as Chet Baker, Ella Fitzgerald, Ray Charles, and Etta James.
Other notable figures include actor Cesar Romero, actress Betty Grable, boxer Sugar Ray Robinson, former Los Angeles Mayor Tom Bradley, and more.
Wander around Inglewood Park Cemetery, reflect on life, enjoy the serene setting, and admire the beautiful gardens and architecture.
Remember the Civil Rights Hero at the Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr. Day Celebration
Inglewood hosts the annual Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr. Day as a tribute to the life and legacy of Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr., a famed civil rights leader.
Held in January, the birth month of Dr. King, the city marked the 39th year of commemoration in 2022.
Inglewood was one of the first cities in the nation to designate Dr. King’s birthday as an official holiday.
At this important event, the community reflects its commitment to freedom, equality, and mutual respect.
Thousands of people gather in Downtown Inglewood for this celebration.
It features a commemorative parade, live entertainment, children’s games, arts and crafts, food trucks, shopping at various vendors, and more.
Spend a Family Day at Edward Vincent Jr. Park
In the northern section of Inglewood lies Edward Vincent Jr. Park, a beautiful haven within the city’s suburbs.
The park stretches over 55 acres with plenty of features perfect for spending quality time with family and friends, including your furry friends.
These include several picnic areas, playgrounds, and sports facilities, such as full basketball courts, tennis courts, softball fields, and soccer fields.
There’s a pool complex with a swimming pool, a training pool, and a wading pool.
You’ll also find an outdoor amphitheater and the Veteran’s Memorial Building, built in 1934.
Enjoy strolling around Edward Vincent Jr. Park and its charming green spaces or playing games with your family and friends.
Listen to Your Favorite Music at the Taste of Inglewood Big Game Festival
If you love Latin, Soul, and R&B music, you should check out the concert extravaganza called the Taste of Inglewood Big Game Festival.
It attracts thousands of locals and visitors from the Greater Los Angeles region and other places.
Apart from great music, the three-day festival also features vendors, food trucks, special guests, and more.
The Taste of Inglewood Big Game Festival takes place in February.
The best part of this festive event is that it’s free to attend!
Invite your family and friends to take advantage of the three days of entertainment!
Other Things to Do Nearby
Explore the California Science Center
If you’re a curious traveler or traveling with kids, the California Science Center is an excellent destination.
It’s been around since 1912 and has changed names a few times over the years before opening as a science center in 1998 with a 245,000-square-foot complex.
It’s home to various special and permanent exhibitions, including Fire! Science & Safety, Air & Space, Life! Beginnings, and Roy A. Anderson Blackbird Exhibit And Garden.
The center is also home to the space shuttle Endeavour, an iconic orbiter that successfully traveled to space and back 25 times.
Whether you like the natural world, space, technology, engineering, art, culture, or engaging activities, there’s something that suits your preferences.
Open 362 days a year, the center offers free admission to permanent galleries and Endeavour and keeps visitors, especially the kids, occupied for a few hours.
If you’re ready to go to the California Science Center, you can find it on Exposition Park Drive, 15 minutes northeast of Inglewood, following Interstate 110.
Stroll along the Boardwalk at Venice Beach
Those who want to experience one of the most iconic beaches in Southern California should head to Venice Beach.
Located eight miles west of Inglewood, this famous destination offers many attractions and activities you’ll enjoy with your family.
These include strolling along the oceanfront boardwalk, cycling on the bike path, playing paddle tennis or beach volleyball, and people-watching.
Venice Beach draws various kinds of people, including surfers, sunbathers, athletes, street performers, musicians, artists, hippies, and bodybuilders.
You can also watch the pro skateboarders’ scene at the skate park and take a self-guided tour of the eye-catching murals.
Many trendy shops and food options are available if you’re in the mood for window shopping and looking for something to satisfy your sweet tooth.
Get out to the great weather, sand, and ocean and experience the laid-back and eclectic LA lifestyle at Venice Beach!
Attend the Manhattan Beach Concerts in the Park
If you love great live music, why not take advantage of the free Manhattan Beach Concerts in the Park?
This annual, summer-long event is held at Polliwog Park on the corner of Manhattan Beach Boulevard and Redondo Avenue, around 6.9 miles from Inglewood.
You can enjoy listening to summer music, from jazz to country, performed by many of Southern California’s premier bands or artists.
Bring your blankets, lawn chairs, and picnics to make the most of this free summer concert series with your family and friends.
At the Manhattan Beach Concerts in the Park, you may want to arrive earlier because seating is on a first-come, first-served basis.
See Fascinating Artworks at the California African American Museum
If you’re interested in history, culture, and art, try exploring the California African American Museum within Exposition Park, around seven miles from Inglewood.
The museum is an excellent place to learn more about African Americans’ historical, cultural, and artistic heritage.
It was founded in 1977, focusing primarily on California and the western United States.
It contains a growing collection of thousands of artworks, artifacts, and historical documents and is home to a research library with more than 20,000 volumes.
Besides the permanent exhibits, you can also check out its traveling exhibits with interesting new things on display.
The California African American Museum also holds learning programs and workshops featuring music, film, and fine arts that might interest you.
Immerse Yourself in Art at the Hammer Museum
For budget-conscious travelers who love art, the Hammer Museum, simply called by locals the Hammer, is not to be missed.
It opened to the public in 1990, and its affiliation with the University of California, Los Angeles, finally began in 1994.
At the museum, take your time browsing through various impressive artworks by talented artists.
Immerse yourself in the space of art and creative ideas with old and modern artworks, interactive exhibits, collections, film screenings, and art talks.
Collections include the Armand Hammer Collection, the Franklin D. Murphy Sculpture Garden, and the Grunwald Center Collection.
The best thing about this museum is its exhibitions and programs are completely free to all visitors.
You can find the Hammer Museum at the corner of Wilshire and Westwood boulevards in Westwood Village, 9.6 miles from Inglewood.
Inglewood is a small yet lovely city with numerous attractions, some of which are free.
With its proximity to the dynamic Los Angeles and West Coast beaches, this place is one of the great places to visit in California.
If you’re looking for a new travel destination, try this city and enjoy these free things to do in Inglewood, California, with your family.