It's no secret that a Walt Disney World Vacation cost a lot of money and take diligent planning. After spending money on airfare, hotels and park tickets...you may want to know how to spend a day that is a little lighter on the wallet. This is why I LOVE Disney Springs\u00a0( or Downtown Disney as many of us still like to nostalgically refer to it)! Even locals like us love to enjoy a casual afternoon meandering around the Springs. Sure, they re-vamped it with increased shopping and restaurants,\u00a0much of which is higher end. But with free parking\u00a0and no admission\u00a0fees, it is an affordable way to breathe in some Disney magic without splurging on a Disney park ticket. The Springs is one of my favorite spots to take my kids because of the number of free activities available to enjoy. If you are looking for a budget-friendly day at Walt Disney World without a park ticket, here are some recommendations for fun, free things to do with kids at Disney Springs.\u00a0 Build and Race At The Lego Store Lego is so iconic and probably the numero uno toy in my house. My family considers it a treat to just go inside this store. You can kill a ton of time at The Lego Store without actually purchasing a thing. There are multiple Lego and Duplo stations throughout the store for kids to enjoy, photo ops with Disney figures made out of Lego and amazing Lego creations on display\u00a0( including my favorite...Cinderella's Castle made out of Legos). But the real highlight is the ability for kids to participate in Lego car races outside. This generally is only happening on nice days and I haven't seen it occur as much in the evening, but if you are there on a nice day in the afternoon, expect a crowd of kids in this play area and take part in the fun. Josiah prepares his car to launch at the Disney Springs Lego Store, one of the great free things to do with kids at Disney Springs Have an Impromptu Photo Session Grab a camera and have an impromptu photo shoot! Disney Springs has so many fun statues, walls and fun spots to take a picture! Kids love the fun T-Shirt photo op near the Hanes T-Shirt store in the Marketplace area of Disney Springs. Tucked behind the Days of Christmas store at Disney Springs is the perfect Disney Photo op for your Christmas card. Build a Lightsaber... This might be Josiah's favorite. You don't have to buy the lightsaber, but he enjoys heading into the Star Wars store and building one. Or a Mr. Potato Head. There is no shortage of accessories that kids can play with at Once Upon a Toy to build their perfect Mr. Potato Head. Josiah built a cute little Spudtrooper at the Once Upon a Toy Store. You can obviously purchase your creations to take home, but fiddling in the store is free. Wash Your Hands At Basin So, this may be more for mama. But, my kids enjoy it, too.\u00a0\u00a0 Basin has a huge set of sinks in the middle of their store where guests can try out some of their amazing scrubs in delectable scents. We always try to go in to wash our hands. Can't get to Basin? Check out this cool post on how to make your own Basin-like DIY sugar scrub from my Disney blogger gal pal Erin. Get a Free Sample at Ghirardelli Ghirardelli Soda Fountain and Chocolate Shop at Disney Springs Sometimes when you walk by the Ghirardelli store, they are handing out free samples. If they are not outside, you may get lucky if you quickly pop inside. Cause I don't turn down free chocolate... Watch Them Make Chocolate at The Ganachery\u00a0( and Candy Apples at the Candy Cauldron) Can you tell I have a sweet tooth? My kids love watching the chocolatiers at the Ganachery\u00a0make candies and see the apple confections being made at The Candy Cauldron. Who doesn't love watching Candy Apples get made at the #candycauldron!? . . . . . #disneygram #disneylife #flipflopweekend #instadisney #disneysprings #disneysnacks #candyapples #visitorlando #wdw #waltdisneyworld #waltdisneyworldpassholder #floridagirl #floridafun #disneymagic #instagood #instadelicious #disneyfan #disneypic #disneyside #disneyfood #orlandodoesntsuck #igers_orlando #upsideofflorida . A post shared by Keri|Florida Blogger (@flipflopweekend) on Jul 31, 2017 at 10:21am PDT You can view the Candy Cauldron from the outside window. At the Ganachery,\u00a0 you have to step inside. It smells amazing in there... so not a hardship. Take A Boat Ride Sure, you can rent one of the cool amphicars\u00a0near the Boathouse at Disney Springs, but it's $125 which just isn't an everyday thing for us. ( It's totally on my Disney #bucketlist, though!) A post shared by Keri|Disney Blogger (@disneyweekendwanderers) on Apr 16, 2018 at 8:08pm PDT As an affordable alternative, simply tool around on the free water ferry. My kids always love taking the boat. It's a fun, free way to be outside and get great views of Disney springs. FYI, Different docks head to different locations.\u00a0 You can either go from one side of Disney Springs to the other or (and my personal favorite) catch a ferry to go resort-hopping at the Disney Springs resorts. You are able to access both Port Orleans Resort, Old Key West and Saratoga Springs The Disney Springs Water Taxi is a completely free way to spend some time enjoying Disney Springs Check Out Live\u00a0Entertainment It seems to be around every corner at Disney. Solo musicians, dance troupes, school choirs abound for free, live entertainment. You can check out Irish dancers at Raglan Road or catch small bands playing in the corner areas of various restaurants. Josiah and I enjoyed an afternoon refreshment in the outdoor seating area at Splitsville, while listening to live music at Disney Springs Search For Hidden Mickeys Yep. You can find hidden Mickeys all over at Disney Springs! There are a bunch in World of Disney and (spoiler alert) Josiah appreciated finding one in the ceiling. Hidden Mickey in the ceiling at World of Disney! #disneysprings . . . . . . #hiddenmickey #hiddenmickeys #disneytips #disneyfun #disneyparks #disneylove #disneyphoto #disneyfan #wdw #disneyday #annualpassholder #disneygirl #disneyig #waltdisneyworld #ilovedisney #disneylife #disneygram #happiestplaceonearth #disneyaddict #disneyblogger #disnerd #disneyforever #disneyigers #wdwbde #igers_wdw #disneypics #disney #wdwresort #mickeymouse A post shared by Keri|Disney Blogger (@disneyweekendwanderers) on Dec 22, 2017 at 5:27pm PST P.S. If you or your kids are into look and find, Hidden Mickeys can be a blast to look for throughout your vacation! Pack an updated field guide for your trip! Meet the famous Coca-Cola Polar Bear This is such a fun, free meet and great that is always available at Disney Springs. You can find him on the second floor of the coke store. Once you go into the entry, take an immediate right and you'll be in the line. Sometimes we have to wait a few minutes for them to open again, but it's generally never a lengthy wait. Jessie adores the Coca-Cola Polar Bear, so stopping by to say hi to him is frequently on our list. She always has to give him a kiss on the nose. Meet the @cocacola polar bear @disneysprings! One of the great #free experiences for kids! . . . . . #cocacola #disneysprings #disneyspringsorlando #momtogs #documentyourdays #treasuring_little_memories #disney #instadisney #disneymagic #aroundorlando #polarbear #disneygram #disneyfamily #ilovedisney #fun_in_florida #visitorlando #wdw #igers_orlando #loveflorida #orlandoflorida #floridafun #waltdisneyworld #momblogtribe #kidsforreal #instakids #disneyig #disneyfan #igers_wdw #magicofchildhood A post shared by Keri|Disney Blogger (@disneyweekendwanderers) on Dec 26, 2017 at 12:39pm PST If in the midst of this fun, you find you are getting hungry and need a quick nosh, Blaze Pizza is an affordable option that my kids love! Have you been to Disney Springs? What's your favorite, budget-friendly activity? Pin to Share! Here are some other posts you may be interested in: How to Beat The Heat at the Magic Kingdom The Best Disney Autograph Book for Character Interactions How To Spend a Day At The Animal Kingdom with Kids, Without FastPasses Love Disney? Click here to Join my Facebook group for all things Disney!