New York City is the largest city in the United States and the 14th biggest city in the world. It is also a popular tourist destination, drawing visitors from across the globe to view the city’s iconic sights. There’s no need to overspend on a vacation to NYC. Instead, pick out some of these free things to do in New York City from our list: 16 free things to do in NYC. This will save you a ton of money.
New York City
is one of the busiest cities in the world and it is such an exciting city to visit. There is so much to do and so many sights to see, but it also is a very expensive city to live in or even visit. A lot of the “attractions” and things you want to see in NYC cost a lot of money and that can really make your trip exceptionally expensive. In fact, NYC is so expensive I wrote an entire post dedicated to finding ways to save money in New York City.
However, what most people don’t know is that there are a ton of really great things that you can do in the Big Apple that are actually completely free! If you plan to make a trip to New York City soon, try checking out some of these awesome and fun things to do while you are there that will save you a few dollars.
16 Free Things to Do in NYC
Like in most large urban areas, spending time in New York City can be an expensive affair. However, it doesn’t have to be pricey to vacation in NYC. These tips and tricks will help you get the most out of your visit to New York City while sticking to a small budget.
1. Visit Central Park: Central Park is one of the most famous parks in the United States and it is a really awesome experience. It’s so nice to just walk around and enjoy the fresh air and take in the city! There are many playgrounds within the park.
Make sure you have an idea of where you want to go within Central Park, otherwise you will be doing a lot of walking.
2. New York Public Library: With the world of technology today, books are just not appreciated as often as they should be. Visiting the New York Public Library is a neat experience and I would highly recommend checking it out! Not to mention, it’s completely free.
3. The Bronx Zoo on Wednesdays: Who doesn’t love to go look at the amazing animals?! You can visit the Bronx Zoo on Wednesdays for completely free if you want, however, donations are encouraged, no matter how little or how much you are able to donate.
The Bronx Zoo is much larger than people tend to expect. It’s 265 acres of parklands and habitats for 4000 animals.
4. The Staten Island Ferry: Although the Staten Island Ferry Full Tours do cost money, if you are simply traveling from Staten Island to New York it is a free ride for you. This is a great way to get a scenic view without the cost. If you’re not one for guided tours, this is a great way for you to see things on your own. You can see the Statue of Liberty this way.
5. Friday Afternoon at The New York Aquarium: Just like at the Bronx Zoo, Fridays after 3:00 PM is free admission at the New York Aquarium. Once again, donations are encouraged but not necessary! I personally love the aquarium, I prefer it over the Zoo but its personal preference.
6. Socrates Sculpture Park:
If you are one that likes to appreciate the arts and sculptures, this is a great place to visit for you. It is a park so it is completely free of admission, and some of the pieces at this park are truly spectacular.
7. Bronx Museum: Another place for those who love the arts! The Bronx Museum has so many amazing pieces of art and history. This is such a beautiful museum and it truly is a sight to see. If you are looking for something spectacular to see, the Bronx Museum is highly recommended and completely free of charge.
8. Kayaking at the Downtown Boathouse: On those hot Summer days a great way to spend the day is to go kayaking on the Hudson River! It’s a very intense experience if you’ve never done it before, but it really is a fun time…trust me!
9. Coney Island Boardwalk: A good way to spend the day with your loved ones is to walk around the Coney Island Boardwalk. There is always a ton of things going on from shopping, activities, and even entertainment!
10. Visit the Brooklyn Botanical Garden: If you’re someone that loves plants and nature, a great place for you to visit is the Brooklyn Botanical Garden! Everything is absolutely beautiful and it’s so nice to visit and soak up the nature around you.
11. Visit Bryant Park:
In the summer they set up free games for families to play.
Bryant Park NYC
During the winter months, they offer free ice skating. You do have to pay for the skate rental. Also, in the winter they set up tons of little shops. Window shopping is always free! The shops are adorable and tend to have really great stuff in them.
12. St. Patrick’s Cathedral: It is free to walk around and look at the church. On some days they even offer free tours. Overall, it’s impressive and worth stopping in.
13. Free concerts at the Bloomingdale School of Music: This non-profit community music school offers more than 80 free concerts a year.
14. Visit Chelsea Market: The Chelsea Market is a super cool building that’s fun to walk through. There’s a really good taco place in there too.
15. Walk the Highline: The Highline is so awesome! You can avoid traffic and enjoy awesome views.
The Highline in NYC
16. Check Out the Street Art:
NYC is full of great street art.
New York City is known as an incredibly busy city, and one of the biggest fashion capitals of the world, but I bet you didn’t know there is a completely different side to New York. There are so many sights to see and places to go in New York. Experience the whole city, not just the parts that you always hear about all the time! Continue researching your trip with our Travel Guide to NYC
Do you know of a free activity in NYC? If so, please leave your suggestion in the comments below!