The best free activities in New York

Even though New York is undoubtedly an expensive city, it is always possible to discover the city and its monuments without paying a cent! New York is full of free activities and things to see, you just need to know where to look! With these free activities in New York, you can spend at least 4 days exploring the city while keeping a reasonable budget!

Best free activities in New York:

Central Park

Central Park is a must in NYC. It is, in fact, the most visited park by tourists. This 341-hectare green space offers New Yorkers and tourists the opportunity to enjoy some greenery in the urban landscape. The park is a great place to walk, read a book, or just have a picnic in mild weather. It has many paths to get lost in nature, in the heart of Manhattan, between bridges, gardens, monuments and lakes.

Grand Central Terminal Station

A visit to Grand Central Terminal is a must when visiting New York. One is simply amazed by the beauty of this place that is the largest railway station in the world. On the ceiling of the sumptuous station hall, 38 meters high, you can see 2500 sublime paintings by the artist Paul César Helleu.

In the middle of the hall, you will find the famous 4-sided clock, above the information panels, whose value is estimated between 10 and 20 million dollars. Go underground and discover the Whispering Gallery, a corridor near the Oyster Bar. You can whisper in one corner and the person in the opposite corner will hear you!

Brooklyn Bridge

Crossing the Brooklyn Bridge is absolutely fantastic! AND one of the most prestigious and most visited monuments in New York. This 19th-century bridge, nearly 2 kilometers long, spans the East River connecting Brooklyn to Manhattan Island and offers breathtaking views of the New York skyline. It can be crossed by car, bicycle or on foot.

High Line Park

In the 30s it was an overhead railway and gradually turned into a suspended park. The 2,3-mile High Line offers spectacular views of Manhattan and various attractions such as small gardens, sculptures… It is a favorite walk for New Yorkers and tourists alike. Built on abandoned railways in Chelsea (borough of Manhattan), this urban park is accessible to all for free. The park is open from 7am to 00pm every day.

Times Square

The best free activities in New York
New Year's Eve in New York -

Times Square is the image everyone has of New York, even if it is far from being the only aspect of this huge and diverse city! Definitely one of the places most famous and lively in the world, Times Square and the district of lights and theaters.

Located in the heart of Broadway and a true symbol of urbanism, Times Square is characterized by a large number of giant and bright screens, and shops of impressive proportions… His visit is one of the best free activities in New York.

The public library 

You can't miss this majestic building guarded by two lions. After a little security check (like in many public places in New York), you can find out about this one beautiful library you've surely seen in movies like “The Day After Tomorrow”. Entry is free and you can admire the reading rooms and its impressive architecture.

9/11 Memorial


Built on the site of the two towers of the World Trade Center, the 9/11 Memorial is a magnificent place for reflection. In the center of the park, two holes symbolize the foundations of the old towers. On the edges are the names of the people who died during the tragic events of September 2001. It is open every day from 7:30 to 21:00. You can also visit the 11/XNUMX Museum on the same site.

Attend the evangelical mass in Harlem

Attending an evangelical mass in New York remains one of the favorite activities of tourists. There are many churches where you can attend a Gospel mass in New York, Manhattan or Brooklyn. But it is undoubtedly in the Harlem district that the most suggestive ceremonies are found.

Harlem is full of churches that offer this wonderful experience. The smaller ones allow you to experience a gospel mass among the regulars, therefore an even more authentic experience, unlike the large churches of the tourist guides, full of tourists.

Staten island ferry


Another way to get stunning views of New York City without spending a single penny is to take the ferry from Manhattan to Staten Island. It's also a free way to get as close to the Statue of Liberty as possible as well Ellis Island. They want us 25 minutes to reach Staten Island from Manhattan. You will be able to enjoy one of the most beautiful views of the Manhattan skyline and on the Verrazano bridge.

The districts of Chinatown and Little Italy

Chinatown e Little Italy are probably some of the most unusual neighborhoods in Manhattan! You don't have to look for museums or historical monuments, but let yourself be guided by the colors and smells around to immerse yourself in an exotic atmosphere.

In Chinatown, in addition to the Confucius statue, you can go to Edward Mooney House. It is a house built around the year 1785, which constitutes various architectural styles. The Columbus Park, the only park in this area. You've probably already seen it in the Gangs of New York movie. 

Chinatown and Little Italy, being close to each other, can be easily visited in one day. If you are lucky enough to be in New York in September, you shouldn't miss the great party of Italian immigrants: San Gennaro, patron saint of Naples. For 11 days, Mulberry Street and its surroundings are animated by religious ceremonies or gastronomic competitions!

Discover street art in Bushwick


All street art lovers can discover different graffiti in the Bushwick neighborhood a Brooklyn. Among other things, it is possible to see the works of eminent artists such as Banksy, Blu, Shepard Fairey and Above and many others. All you have to do is stroll the streets of this neighborhood where art is honored in all its forms!

Visit the museums of New York

New York has several museums that you can access for free. You can visit the Museum of Natural History, Museo in Brooklyn and Public Library of New York, for example, without spending a single cent.

The secret to visiting the best museums in New York without paying is to carefully read the conditions of access. The main museums of the city organize special days and evenings where admission is free. For example you can visit the Museum of Modern Art free every Friday from 16 to 20 pm, but you have to queue up as free tickets cannot be purchased in advance.

In some museums, such as the Metropolitan Museum of Art, the entrance ticket is a recommended amount, which means that you will be allowed to enter whatever amount you decide to pay.

Bronx zoo

With the same concept as the MET (you pay what you want), it Zoo of Bronx opens its doors for free on Wednesdays from 10am to 17pm. It is one of the largest urban zoos in the world with over 4000 animals, including Congo gorillas, Siberian tigers, Nile crocodiles, and California sea lions. This zoo has managed to recreate habitat conditions close to those of origin.

St. Patrick's Cathedral

St. Patrick's Cathedral is a Gothic church dating from the 3920th century. This cathedral impresses not only with the beauty of its architecture, but also with its size. It also has a 8 pipe organ and rosette made by Charles Connick and measures XNUMXm in diameter.

New York Aquarium 

The largest aquarium in New York is located at Coney Island. It is open for free on Friday afternoons from 15pm. The place is magical and ideal for watching sharks, Florida starfish, beavers or watching the sea lion show.

Chrysler Building

The best free activities in New York
Chrysler Building New York –

Impossible not to see the elegant Chrysler building in the Midtown neighborhood. Admission is free! Even if you can't get to the top of this building, the entrance hall is sufficient consolation: marble everywhere, the artwork on the ceiling and the elevators in precious wood.

The history of this building is as incredible as its architecture: built at the time of the race to the tallest skyscraper, the architect had a 58-meter arrow added in just 90 minutes to beat its competitor!

Wall Street Bull

Symbolically, the Wall Street Bull is a must when visiting the Financial District di Manhattan. The sculpture is located in the middle of Broadway, near Bowling Green Park, a short walk from Wall Street.

Federal Reserve Bank in New York

Do you want to see a real vault full of gold? Sign up for a guided tour of the Federal Reserve Bank in the Financial District of Lower Manhattan. During the visit, you will be told all about the role of the Federal Reserve in the economy and you will be able to admire the interior of a magnificent building that occupies an entire block of Liberty Street, between Nassau Street and William Street.

Kayak al Downtown Boathouse

Have you ever wanted to row on Hudson with the beautiful Manhattan skyline in front of you? At the Downtown Boathouse it's possible and it's completely free! This non-profit organization, run by volunteers, organizes free kayak tours on the Hudson. The Downtown Boathouse is located at Pier 40 and Pier 96 in Manhattan, Saturdays and Sundays from 09:00 to 18:00. Free lessons are organized on weekdays in the summer.

With these free activities in New York, you will always have something to do without breaking the bank. So, take advantage of these free spots to discover the Big Apple.

Buona visited!

The best free activities in New York
Districts of New York - Manhattan -
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