I have a website. How can I get people to visit? What can I do online FOR FREE that would drive more visitors to my site?

I'm not talking about SEO or META tags. What I want to do is get people to see my link and click on it, such as through link exchange programs and reciprocals.

Many boards and forums frown upon (and some forbid and get very angry) posting links in order to attract people, even if it is not a commercial interest.

How do I advertise a site? Is there any place I can add my link, or ask people to visit?