Alright, the holidays are over, a new year has begun and everyone is fresh out of cash as another semester kicks off. So what is there to do to cure the boredom and keep yourself feeling like you’re getting the L.A. Experience?

Fear not, for there are a few solutions to this undying dilemma for the frugal spender that will help you have a great time in Los Angeles for a decent cost and won’t break the bank causing you to be stuck in the common room eating Ramen noodles and watching reruns of the “Family Guy.”

For those of you who are looking for completely free activities in and around Los Angeles, here are a few options to help satisfy that cabin fever itch.

Obviously, one of the best solutions is always the great outdoors. There are tons of hiking trails spread all throughout the canyons and beaches, as well as some inland at Griffith Park and Runyon Canyon. One of my favorites is actually located right off of Franklin Avenue, up Beachwood Boulevard. If you drive all the way to the top, you can find parking right near Sunset Ranch and a hiking trail that leads you all the way up behind the famous Hollywood sign.

Other options are the obvious day at the beach. But to mix it up, try checking out the local drum circle at Venice Beach that happens an hour before sunset every weekend ( Here you can participate in music created by your local community and probably walk away making a friend or two.

If you have a bike, roller skates, skateboard or even a good set of shoes, you can always cruise along the pathways that run all the way from Malibu down past Marina del Rey. If you don’t have a bike or skates there’s also plenty of places in the area to rent. One is Perry’s Café ( located right alongside the beach. They have all kinds of bikes, skates, boogie boards, available for rental as well as food and drink. Prices are based on an hourly or daily rate and can range anywhere from $8 to $25.

More inland, there are fun activities both day and night at museums and music venues. MOCA ( and LACMA ( offer free admission during the weekdays and there are free residencies at venues like the Echo (

You’ll always find something new here that’s eclectic and diverse, but after you sample the music and art, why stop there? Local comedy clubs offer the same satisfaction and a few laughs too. IO ( and UCB ( host weekly comedy events and are great places to check out improv, stand-up and cage matches held by up-and-coming and established comedians.

However, we all know that sometimes in order to have a little bit more fun, a few dollars are required, so for those willing to make the sacrifice for a few activities in the $10 to $30 dollar range, here are some ideas for you.

For group fun, there’s always the ever-so-popular bowling night. There are a few spots like Jewel City Bowl (, All Star Lanes ( and PINZ ( that offer bowling after 9 p.m. to midnight for around $7 total. This includes the game, shoes and the lane rental.

Also, there’s Moonlight Rollerway (, Skateland ( and Pickwick Gardens ( for both roller skating and ice skating that are always fun for friends or dates. Both activities have dollar days, games, live music and karaoke to keep the night fresh and entertaining for everyone.

If you spent last semester crunching for exams, why not spend the beginning of this one catching up on movies at the discount theaters in town like $4 matinees at Highland Theatres (

If you’re into taking classes on top of classes, there are places like Lomography in West Hollywood (, which offer workshops teaching you how to take quality pictures. You don’t even need a camera, and classes can cost as little as $15 for a roll of film, camera rental and the experience to walk around Los Angeles and send home photos to your folks to let them know their kid is having fun at school.