Top 10 Free Things to Do in NYC

Tours Apr 17, 2020

Once you put your foot on the streets of New York, there are thousands of places you can visit. We’ve already mentioned how expensive can, even an average stay in this metropolis. Hotels, restaurants and bars can empty your wallet for just one day.

If you want to take all the best from your stay, fortunately in NYC you can do many things for Free!

Taking a walking tour or visiting some popular spots, will help you to know more about NYC spirit, blend in easily. You have the chance to explore the city and save money for further entertainments.

See our selection for Top 10 Free things to do in NYC and go for it!

The High Line

High Lane Park
Sue Waters

The High Line, today a beautiful elevated park, once was an industrial railway. It was used for deliveries of goods for West Side factories. Later on abandoned, it was restored and transformed into a park and walking line. Except exploring the city from a high point with a view of Chelsea, there are many activities to do for free. Stargazing every Thursday, you can take part of art and walking tours, meditate in group or dance.

Address: from Gansevoort Street to West 34th Street.

Hours: Winter – from 7AM to 7PM; Spring/Autumn- 7AM to 10PM, Summer – 7AM to 11PM

Visit MoMA

Bit Boy

Metropolitan Museum of Modern Art is quite a treasure, but it has $23 fee to enter it. Luckily every Friday MoMA offers free tickets to explore the museum, from 4PM to 8 PM. In MoMa, you can see the giants of modern art history – Roy Lichtenstein, Salvador Dali, Malevich, Matisse, Picasso, Andy Warhol and many more. You’ll be able to visit also on view temporary exhibitions of the most contemporary artists and artist from the 20th century.

Address: 11 W 53rd St, New York, NY 10019

Hours: Daily from 10:30AM- 5:30PM and free tour Thu – from 4PM to 8PM

Jump in a Public Pool

In NYC you can find several great swimming pools, big enough, offering a wide range of swimming areas. In the summer is hot, and you can spend you whole day in the water, saving money. Visit the Red Hook Pool in Brooklyn, as it’s big and suitable for children, serious swimmers and relaxing. In Brooklyn, you can also go to McCarren Park Pool or Douglas and DeGraw, with a wading pool. You prefer Manhattan swimming day- go to Hamilton Fish Pool. The largest pool in NYC is Astoria Park Pool.

Hours: Summer from June to Sept- 11AM to 7PM

Tips: Bring swimming suit and padlock, you cannot enter with food or drinks, pools are accessible for wheelchairs.

Take a Brewery Tour

Brooklyn Brewery

The so-called beer tourism is growing increasingly popular in the recent years. As the fans of craft beers grow, the breweries started to offer free tours and tastings of their products. You can visit the small, yet famous Chelsea Brewing Company and have a free sample beer, while walking around. Or you can try some of the beers of the Brooklyn Brewery, an internationally recognized bigger company. Be sure, it’s really fun and satisfying.

Address: Chelsea Brewing Company, Chelsea Piers

Address: Brooklyn Brewery, 79 N 11th St

Hours: Chelsea Brewing Company – Daily 12AM-1PM

Hours: Brooklyn Brewery – Mon- Thu from 5PM and Friday from 6PM to 11PM

Ride on a Ferry

Staten Island Ferry

If you love traveling on water, you can try the Staten Island Ferry, which runs daily to and from Manhattan. The ride is free and you will be able to take a look at the Statue of Liberty and the Ellis Island. The tour is perfect for taking pictures and shooting a video. Don’t worry about the free space, daily more than 100 trips at every 20 minutes are held and 5 boats run all the time. Catch the Ferry from Whitehall Street in Manhattan or from St. George on the Island. Yu can also take a walk on Staten Island once you get off.

Address: Battery Park, New York, New York, USA

Hours: Every 20/30 minutes. Daily from 7AM to 11PM

Go to the Public Library

NYC Public Library

The main branch of the NYC Public Library, hosted in the Schwarzman Building is a century old. It is one of the main points of interest in the city. The beautiful façade turns into even more amazing interior. Go to the Mina Reading Room to be amazed by its size and beauty of the murals. In the Library, you can take part of a free guided tour, every day from 11AM to 2PM or just walk around and sit down to read or do research. The Library offers an enormous archive of articles, prints, photographs and digital collection. You can also attend a free lecture or a public reading.

Address: Fifth Ave,New York 10036

Hours: Mon, Thu, Fri, Sat 10AM–6PM; Tues, Wed 10AM–8PM; Sun 1–PM

Visit the Federal Bank of New York’s Gold Vault

Federal Reserve NY

It has probably never crossed your mind, but if you visit the Federal Bank and sign for a guided tour, you can see a huge amount of the federal gold treasure. In the building of the Financial District of the Bank, created in 1920 are kept more than 6 500 tons of gold! This is the largest deposit of gold in the world and it will be one interesting tour. The tour is about 60 minutes in the hours between 9:30AM and 3:30PM. You need to sign in advance as the spots are limited.

Address: 33 Liberty St, New York, NY 10045

Hours: Daily, except Bank holidays from 9:30AM to 3:30PM

Cathedral St. John the Divine

Cathedral of St. John the Divine

The Cathedral St. John the Divine is one the oldest building in NYC. You can enter anytime to observe the Cathedral’s interior. Here are some thing you shouldn’t miss: the Keith Haring Triptych, the sculptures of Einstein, Lincoln, Columbus and Shakespeare, the largest rosette window in the US. Pay attention to the stained glass with modern images and scenes. Take e vertical tour to the roof.

Address: 047 Amsterdam Ave, New York, NY 10025

Hours: 7:30AM to 6PM every day

The Botanic Garden in Brooklyn

Brooklyn Botanic Garden

If you go to Prospect Park, you can also visit the Botanic Garden, which is free every Thursday and Saturday. Exploring the Botanic Garden is always interesting and there you can see the Rose garden, Shakespeare Garden or go to the Hill-and-Pond garden. Don’t miss the Japanese cherry trees in the spring. To join the free guided tour be at the front gate at 1PM. Visit their website to find out, which plants will be blooming this month!

Address: 990 Washington Ave, Brooklyn, NY 11225

Hours: Thu and Sat at 1PM for guided free tour

Walk the Parks

Prospect Park Brooklyn

People think New York is only concrete, skyscrapers and annoying traffic. In fact, there many great green parks to be visited totally for free. Go to Central Park to see a lot of points of interest and historic sites or to Prospect Park in Brooklyn and relax beside the huge lake. You can go the Zoo with your children in the Park or involve in some sports activities at the Parade Ground. If you want to go the second biggest park in NYC, visit Flushing Meadows in Queens. There you can take a look at the famous Unisphere, visit the skate park or the boating lake. There’s big area where you can have BBQ or picnic or you can go the playing fields with your kids.

Hours: Central Park – 6AM – 1PM

Hours: Prospect Park – 5AM – 1PM

Hours: Flushing Meadows – open 24/7

Don’t forget to visit the Brooklyn Bridge, Times Square, and the unforgettable Grand Central Terminal. Read more about the attractions and landmarks.

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