1. The American Museum of Natural History (AMNH)
Location – Central Park West at 79th Street, New York, NY
This is one of the best places in NYC for kids to concurrently learn while enjoying themselves. There is no chance of running out of things to see and learn about with 27 connected buildings holding 45 exhibition halls of permanent and limited edition exhibits.
Kids can enjoy amazing attractions like the dinosaur exhibition on the 4th floor, the Rose Center for Earth and Space which has regular space shows in the Hayden Planetarium. Another hit attraction for children is The Discovery Room, where the children get to be the scientist and let their imaginations go wild.
2. Bronx Zoo
Location – 2300 South Boulevard, Bronx, NY
The world’s largest urban zoo features more than 4,000 animals across 600 species from around the globe. The Bronx Zoo is has 265 acres of park area and natural habitats, overlooking the Bronx River.
Attractions include a wide variety and selection of rare and unique species of animals across the animal kingdom.
3. Baseball Games
New York Yankees
New York Mets
While both teams are from different divisions, there is plenty of talent-filled baseball to be seen during the long professional season that ends in October.
While attending a Yankee’s game, be sure to check out the memorials and monuments made for the former players that are etched in baseball history. These games are sure to be memorable moments for any Family outing while enjoying the outdoors.
Depending on the time of the game, you may get into town too early to drop your luggage off beforehand. There are now companies that let you stow your bags for short periods of time in NYC so that could be a useful option.
4. New York Hall of Science
Location – 47-01 111th Street Queens, NY
This is the perfect museum for families for many reason but mainly because visitors are encouraged to touch everything.
The New York Hall of Science has served more than seven million people since 1986. Its mission is to provide the utility and understanding of science and technology to children, families, and teachers by igniting their thirst for knowledge and offering them innovative, creative ways to learn.
5. FAO Schwarz Toy Store
Location – 767 5th Ave, Manhattan, NY
This popular tourist attraction is a must-see for families to enjoy together. This 150-year-old toy store is a fun family-friendly environment and home to one of the largest toy collections in the city.
In addition, their huge collection of new and vintage games, books, and displays make this store one of the most popular kid attractions in NYC. Regardless of age, there is fun for everyone in FAO Schwarz.
6. The Staten Island Ferry
Location – 4 South Street, New York, NY
Very popular activity, it is a 25-minute ride that provides a breathtaking vista of New York Harbor and a perfect view of the Statue of Liberty, Governors Island, and the Brooklyn Bridge, as well as Ellis Island.
It’s an amazing ride suited for young and old – and serves as both public transportation and a beloved attraction alike for New Yorkers and visitors.
7. The Queen Botanical Garden
Location – 43-50 Main Street, Queens, NY
Expanding across 40 acres of natural landscape, the garden has a large and varied collection of plants from across the globe. Some of the namely attractions include a Fragrance Walk, the Bee Garden, and the herb and wedding gardens. This is a great place for the entire family to enjoy and admire the beauty of nature.
Off-season entry fee to the Queens Botanical Garden is free every day from November to March. The HSBC Children’s Garden is a special hands-on program where kids can get up close and personal with plants, learn about nature, and see how the different seasons change the world.
8. Prospect Park
Location: 95 Prospect Park West, Brooklyn, NY
Prospect Park, in Brooklyn, offers over 500 acres of gardens and activities, in the heart of the city. With Brooklyn’s only forest, a zoo, a 60 acre lake and a yearly performing arts festival, there’s a lot to see. Activities include boating, skating, playing baseball, and horseback riding.
The Audubon Center has interactive and educational exhibits focused on plants and animals, and for slightly older kids, but still provides fun for all ages.
9. Governors Island
Location – 10 South Street #7, New York, NY
The 172-acre Governors Island is an amazing weekend destination for kids as well as for adults in New York. There are plenty of attractions for kids: free circus workshops at the Big Apple Circus, summer programs for kids, the Children’s Museum of the Arts Free Island Outpost Program, featuring painting and drawing, as well as all the National Park Service activities.
10. Children’s Museum of the Arts
Location: 103 Charlton Street, New York, NY
Families can explore the 2,000 square foot gallery to see the permanent collection, alongside whatever visiting artist is there at the time. There are regular workshops in the Media Lab and Sound Booth where kids can learn all about creating films, making voice-overs, and music and film appreciation.
At the drop in Clay Bar kids get to use a whole range of art supplies to make their own creations.
11. Rockefeller Center
Location – 45 Rockefeller Plaza, New York, NY
Declared a National Historic Landmark in 1987, Rockefeller Center is made up of 19 commercial buildings spread across 22. It is home to the famous NBC Studios and Saturday Night Live.
During the holiday season, the giant Rockefeller Christmas tree is quite the spectacle. The center also represents as a strong symbol of art and architecture that is admired by many for its style and majesty.
12. Other Ideas to Explore
- Dylan’s Candy Bar
- Coney Island
- Intrepid Sea, Air, and Space Museum
- Sony Wonder Technology Lab
- Broadway Shows
- Central Park
- Statue of Liberty
- New York Aquarium
- Empire State Building
Photo credit: The Official New York City Guide