Lightner Museum in St. Augustine is among the free museums you can visit Sept. 26, 2015.
Lightner Museum in St. Augustine is among the free museums you can visit Sept. 24, 2016. (Photo: Bonnie Gross)

Saturday, Sept. 24, 2016 is the day for budget travelers and museum lovers in Florida.

Many top attractions are free, even some attractions that normally charge $25 admission. It’s part of the nationwide Smithsonian Magazine Museum Day. All you have to do is go online and download your free tickets. (Two per household.)

Dozens of museums across Florida are participating. We’ve visited the following museums and gardens and can recommend them, but be sure to check out the full list and see what catches your interest.

Here are eight personal favorites:

Bok Tower and Gardens on the Lake Wales Ridge is actually on hilltop.
Bok Tower Gardens on the Lake Wales Ridge.

Ringling Museum of Art, 5401 Bay Shore Road, Sarasota, is the state art museum of Florida, with an impressive collection of European paintings, a circus museum and the spectacular bayfront house of John and Mabel Ringling. The ticket to tour all the facilities is usually $25 for adults.

Bok Tower Gardens, 1151 Tower Blvd, Lake Wales. These stunning hilltop gardens, designated a national historic landmark, are located in the beautiful Lake Wales Ridge area, where there are many places to hike, paddle and explore. Adult admission is normally $12.

Ah-Tah-Thi-Ki Museum, 34725 West Boundary Road, Clewiston. This Seminole museum has high quality exhibits and is located about an hour west of Fort Lauderdale off Alligator Alley. Currently, the museum has an exhibit on an era of Florida history that few people understand: The Seminole Wars. Adult admission is usually $10.

Historic Spanish Point, 337 N. Tamiami Trail, Osprey. Witness 5,000 years of history through a glass wall at this Indian midden at Spanish Point, and learn about the Palmer family’s profound impact on Sarasota County. General admission is usually $12 for adults.

Harry S Truman Little White House State Historic Landmark, 111 Front street, Key West. The modest cottage tells the story of a great president, and it’s fascinating. Adult admission is usually $16.

Lightner Museum75 King Street, St. Augustine. Eclectic with something for everyone, the Lightner is a fun spot. It’s full of collections of things: Some odd, some awesome. Adult admission is usually $10.

great stop in the Florida Keys. Admission is usually $12.

Zoo Miami, 12400 SW 152nd St, Miami. Rated the top zoo in Florida and one of the 10 best in the nation. Admission is normally $20 for adults.

Here’s more about Smithsonian Magazine Museum Day including where to download tickets.