A few weeks ago, I met up with John of Frugal Rules and his lovely wife in New York City. I love being so close to the city as it’s allowed me to meet up with blog friends a few times and have a few fun experiences.
We only live about 15 miles from the city in New Jersey, and it takes us about 35-45 minutes to drive in depending on traffic. A train ride is about 45 minutes as well and only around $16 round trip.
Normally people think of pricey pricey pricey when it comes to NYC, but there are honestly a lot of really fun and free activities you can do that won’t break the bank.
1. Walk Around Central Park
Every time we take the twins to the city, we walk around Central Park with the stroller. Just recently, since Bean is walking, we let him out the stroller to run around and he had an absolute ball. He loved seeing all the dogs in Central Park and seeking out any puddle that was close to him.
Central Park is beautiful and it’s always so incredible that it’s surrounded by such massive buildings. It really never gets old. And, of course, the best thing is that it’s 100% free.
2. Window Shopping
New York has some of the best window displays around. I love looking at them and just walking down 5th avenue to see everything. Around the holidays, the windows are even more incredible, and even if you aren’t in a shopping mood or don’t want to buy anything, just looking at all the fun things in the window can be a really great time.
3. Free Museums
New York is of course home to some of the world’s best museums. If you look at this list you can see which museums are free. Many of them are free at certain times. For example, the Museum of Modern Art is free every Friday from 5-8pm. We haven’t taken advantage of this because that’s right around when we put the kids to bed, but once they get a little older (and learn how to listen better), we plan to take them to more and more free museums.
4. Flea Markets
I love flea markets, and New York is home to so many of them. The most famous one is Brooklyn Flea so you’ll have to travel a little bit to go and see it, but it’s absolutely worth it. You never know what you’re going to find and with a city as diverse and culturally rich as NYC there could be some good gems just waiting to be uncovered.
Have you ever been to NYC? What other free activities are there to do?
18 responses to “4 Amazing Free Things to Enjoy in NYC With Your Family”
I haven’t been to NYC in years!! I hope that changes sooner rather than later!
You should come!!
Hubby and I love to take a day off, leave Will at home and just walk Central Park. It’s not only free and great exercise, but it’s crazy just how many things there are to see in the park and the views that you get from all over. You could easily spend all day in the park and not get bored.
I totally agree it’s so nice!
I remember being in NYC with my theater group back in high school. We found an old flea market type table and I bought an old book for, like, fifty cents. Thought it was so cool to have something like that from the big apple.
That is awesome! Love flea markets!
I have some friends who are currently living in NYC. I saw their FB pics that during every weekend they usually went to the museum and do some window shopping.
That’s awesome – so much to do for sure!
I went to NYC just a couple of weeks ago for a whirlwind business trip. I found myself with a few hours to spare and decided to walk from my hotel in Times Square to a shop in Soho. Most people would take the subway, but it was a great walk and I got to see so many sights! It was almost like a scene from a movie, panning across the entire city, but in slow motion. I was walking pretty fast because I wanted to beat a rainstorm, but taking that walk and poking around in the parks and window shopping along the way would have made for a great daylong adventure!
I love that – there is so much to see!
Jimmy Fallon and SNL are free! You just have to plan a little further ahead for those freebies! Also, checking out the big hotels are free usually, just walking around the lobbies to see all the cool stuff inside! I’ve also been fortunate to score free broadway tickets as well!
Very cool – and great tip about the hotels too!
I love NYC, but I haven’t been in almost 5 years now. We do live fairly close to Washington D.C. though, and we love frequenting the free museums and historic sites in our area as well.
Yes Washington DC is awesome too!
People watching and watching street performers (well, it’s rude to make that free- if a street performer makes you stop, you owe them a buck.) I’ve seen the most amazing acrobats, jugglers, and some decent buskers in New York City.
That’s true but passing by, free entertainment. 🙂
A lot of people are fascinated by Grand Central, and it’s free to walk inside and take your own little tour. Same thing with visiting the public library. Another good trick is to take the Staten Island Ferry to see the Statute of Liberty. An actual tour probably costs like $15, but this ferry is free and you get some really nice views along the way. Then you can just hop back on to head back to Manhattan.
That’s a great idea – Maybe I’ll try that with the twins. 🙂