The 46 Best Things to Do in Spring in NYC 2023
What to do in the spring in New York? We've got you covered!
For us, Spring in New York is the best time of the year. It’s finally getting warmer out and everything starts blooming. More than ever we are looking forward to enjoying springtime in New York with a cup of coffee and drinking it in the beautiful Central Park.
You may also like:
Even though Spring in New York is a very short season, there is a lot to explore and going on in the city. End of March, April and May are super exciting!
In this article, we show you the absolute best Things to Do in Spring in New York to make the most of your time in the Big Apple including the best events and tours. Don’t forget to check out my list of the 21 Best Spring Weekend Getaways from NYC if your itinerary allows it.
My TOP 46 Things to Do in Spring in New York
Here is a list of our favorite activities and tours you should do when you’re visiting New York during spring:
Marvel at the beautiful Cherry BlossomsOther Events in Park SlopeOur HighlightAdd to myNY added
You don’t have to fly to Japan to enjoy the breathtaking beauty of cherry blossoms. Did you know you can get this same experience during spring in New York? It’s true! In April, at the Brooklyn Botanic Garden, there’s a bloom of cherry blossoms each year. The event goes from April 1st until the end of the month, and visitors come from all corners of the Earth to view this event.
Not only are the cherry blossoms gorgeous, but the botanical garden itself is worth a visit as well. You’ll have a hard time believing that you see so many rare plants in the middle of New York City!
Macy’s Flower ShowOther Events in Garment DistrictAdd to myNY added
Florals are a natural part of spring but are groundbreaking when they’re presented by an iconic department store like Macy’s. Macy’s marquee stores in NYC present a two-week show that presents nearly one million trees, plants, and flowers to celebrate spring for both nature and fashion.
People from near and far flock to this exhibition each year, and it’s one of the best places to see awe-inspiring floral arrangements that are decorated according to a given theme. For example, the theme was outer space a few years ago, so arrangements had nods to stars, comets, planets, and more.
The Orchid ShowOther Events in BronxAdd to myNY added
The New York Botanical Garden supports over one million living plants in its extensive collection. It is truly a beautiful experience to explore the plant life in over 50 different gardens, giving you something to explore throughout each season. From exhibitions to the gift shop and hands-on experiences for kids this oasis of plants is a great day out for families!
The Botanical Garden has constantly changing exhibitions and displays various plants. Among the most important of them is the “Orchid Show”, which takes place every year in spring. This year, in an impressive greenhouse, you can admire the 20th Orchid Show from February until April.
This year the motto of the exhibition is “Natural Heritage”. Guest designer is artist Lily Kwong, who used art objects and her Chinese roots to inspire visitors to reflect on their own life stories for this exhibition. On selected Saturdays in March and April, there will be “Orchid Evenings” from 7pm to 10pm, where guests can enjoy the exhibition with music, food & drinks.
Have a Picnic in the Parks of New YorkPark in Midtown ManhattanOur HighlightAdd to myNY added
The parks in New York City are absolutely beautiful during Spring NYC. Our favorite places are Central Park or Battery Park which is the perfect location to enjoy a break from the busy city life. Spring is absolutely ideal for that because the temperatures are just perfect. Who has been to New York during Summer knows what we are talking about. Also, make sure that you don’t miss the cherry blossom throughout the city.
Plan a spring weekend getaway from NYCDay Trip in Outside of New York CityOur HighlightAdd to myNY added
There are many wonderful destinations near New York City that are worth visiting in the spring. Looking for some inspiration? Check out my of the 21 best spring weekend getaways from NYC here!
St. Patrick’s Day ParadeOther Events in Midtown ManhattanAdd to myNY added
The famous St. Patrick’s Day Parade, which is one of the oldest, attracts around 700,000 people annually who want to be part of the spectacle. The parade takes place either directly on March 17th or – if it is a weekday – on the following weekend. Destination of the parade is the St. Patrick Cathedral. At 11 a.m. on the dot, the parade starts moving north at 44th Street/corner of 5th Avenue.
Plan a cruise in springCruise in ChelseaOur HighlightAdd to myNY added
New York in the spring is amazing and there are lots of things to do outside.The trees in the parks of New York are starting to bloom, especially the cherry blossom in the Brooklyn Botanical Garden is impressive. So for me, there’s nothing better than experiencing the first signs of green from the river – and you can do that with spring boat tours.
👉 And these are the 9 best cruises in spring.
Celebrate Earth Day in AprilOther Events in Midtown ManhattanAdd to myNY added
A tribute to nature and our wonderful planet Earth – this is celebrated in New York on April 22nd. Where? Everywhere with a whole host of events in parks, beaches and everything our favorite outdoor town has to offer. Earth Day is used here in New York to be conscious of the impact each of us has on nature.
Therefore, there are many ways to get involved and to discuss the topic of “ecological footprint”. One of the most popular events is held at the Union Square Park, where local bands play at a block party. There are delicious, environmentally-friendly snacks and stands from environmental organizations that present many interesting campaigns.
Easter Parade & Bonnet FestivalOther Events in Midtown ManhattanAdd to myNY added
New York City is adorned with around 300 brightly painted XL Easter eggs. The famous Easter eggs can be seen everywhere in the city centre and are also a popular photo motif. The annual Easter Parade, the Easter Parade & Bonnet Festival, moves from 49th to 57th Street.
Frieze New York (May 17 – 21, 2023)Other Art & Culture in Hudson YardsAdd to myNY added
For art enthusiasts, one of the best things to do in spring in NYC is attending Frieze New York. It’s hosted on The Shed at Hudson Yards and features works from over 1,000 artists and 200 international galleries.
There are many other fun things to do at the festival as well, such as sitting in on one of the famous panel discussions, soaking in the breathtaking views of The Vessel, and most importantly – immersing yourself in many imaginative outdoor and indoor projects.
Photo by Casey Kelbaugh. Courtesy of Casey Kelbaugh/Frieze
Enjoy a Broadway MusicalBroadway Show in Theatre DistrictAdd to myNY added
Let’s be honest, there’s no wrong time of the year to see a Broadway musical. However, spring is an excellent time to look for new releases. And the best part is that there are so many Broadway theaters in New York City that you have many options for different productions at any given time. Perhaps you’d like to catch a recent Disney musical or the latest release that everyone’s talking about.
In order to help you out, we’ve created an overview of the absolute best Broadway shows in NYC in spring!
Be part of the Memorial Day Parade (May 29th, 2023)Other Events in FlushingAdd to myNY added
The parades take place – on the last Monday in May – in all five boroughs, with the Little Neck Douglaston Parade in Queens not only being the largest in New York, but also the largest nationwide. Little Neck is the start and Douglaston the finish of the parade. In Manhattan there is surprisingly only a small Memorial Day Parade. It starts at Dyckman Street and Broadway in Inwood, the most northern district of Manhattan.
Fleet Week (May 24, 2023 – May 30, 2023)Other Events in Hell's KitchenAdd to myNY added
Though it’s only officially been a celebration since 1982, Fleet Week has been a beloved spring activity in New York for many years before that. The week is hosted by the United States Marine Corps, Navy, and Coast Guard each year and features active military ships that are deployed in overseas missions to dock in a variety of big cities for one week.
After the ship is docked, the crew enters the city and visits tourist attractions. At scheduled times, the public can enjoy a guided tour of the ship, and demonstrations by the Blue Angels usually accompany this event.
Free Exhibitions At Little IslandOther Attraction in Meatpacking DistrictAdd to myNY added
Just as the name suggests, the exhibitions at Little Island each year are 100% free. This initiative works to revitalize the entertainment and art sector of NYC by celebrating the creativity of local artists and the spirit of all people. This festival lasts for four weeks each spring and features many live performances from dancers, choreographers, poets, comedians, composers, and other musicians.
My tip: Here you find the Best Art Exhibitions in New York City and click here for the Little Island event calendar.
Let's celebrate Cinco de MayoOther Events in BronxAdd to myNY added
What St. Patrick’s Day is to the Irish, Cinco De Mayo is to the Mexicans. El Cinco de Mayo (Spanish for “May 5”) is a commemoration of the victory of the Mexican army led by General Ignacio Zaragoza during the Battle of Puebla on May 5, 1862 against the clearly superior French Expeditionary Force.
In New York, that means one thing above all: tequila, margaritas and a lot of partying with the locals. Both in the countless Mexican restaurants and bars in New York is celebrated big, but also during the Cinco De Mayo Parade in Manhattan, which stretches from Central Park West 106th Street to 96th Street.
Attend A Performance At The ShedGallery in Hudson YardsAdd to myNY added
Spring in New York presents many opportunities to take in some local art and theatre. The Shed commissions original art for all audiences across all disciplines. It brings together emerging and established artists who range from classical to hip hop music, digital media to painting, literature to theatre, and dance to sculpture in an enormous moveable structure that works to support all types of artistic work under one roof.
The Shed is located where Hudson Yards and the High Line meet and borders the Gardens and Public Square.
Join the National Tartan Day Parade (April 15, 2023)Other Events in Midtown ManhattanAdd to myNY added
National Tartan Day celebrates the friendship between the USA and Scotland. This is officially on April 6 and, like St. Patrick’s Day, has a National Tartan Day Parade, which is the highlight for many. In 2023, Tartan Day will be held for the 25th time, heralding Tartan Week.
The famous National Tartan Day Parade will be held on Saturday, 15th April, 2023.
International Pillow Fight Day (April 1, 2023)Other Events in Greenwich VillageAdd to myNY added
The largest public pillow fight in the world takes place in New York City, of course. Usually beginning of April, you meet each other with pillows and teddy bears. Even if you do not have a pillow on hand, it will definitely be comical to watch. This is an international event where others will be participating in their city as well!
Enjoy a delicious burrito on National Burrito Day (April 6, 2023)Mexican Restaurant in Battery Park CityAdd to myNY added
Celebrate National Burrito Day in one the Mexican restaurants in NYC. One of our favorite spots is El Vez in Lower Manhattan. From 11 AM to 3 PM there will be delicious burritos for lunch. In addition, they serve one of the tastiest margaritas in Manhattan. What better way to spend the day and also have a view of the One World Trade Center.
My tip: here you find the best Mexican restaurants in NYC right now!
Bronx Night MarketOther Events in BronxAdd to myNY added
The Bronx Night Market is one of the best places to find foods that celebrate New York City’s most northern borough. Each spring, this event supports the Bronx’s food scene by offering world-class events that are affordable. Be ready to celebrate cuisine and culture, as it represents NYC’s diverse offerings and encourages people from all around the city to experience this borough.
You’ll find just about every type of food, from ice cream, latkes, and pastries, to tamales, soul food, and vegan options. There are also other types of local merchants and live entertainment.
Visit SUMMIT One VanderbiltBuilding in Midtown ManhattanOur HighlightAdd to myNY added
One of NYC’s newest Skyscrapers and one of the 30 tallest in the world is One Vanderbilt. The tower stands 1,401 feet above midtown Manhattan’s streets. It features an observation deck called “Summit,” which has mirrored floors and walls, a glass elevator, and an outdoor terrace.
The top four floors provide guests with an immersive experience that’s not found anywhere else in the world!
Visit one of the other amazing observation decks in NYC!Building in Hudson YardsOur HighlightAdd to myNY added
You know what’s really unique about New York? The view of Central Park from one of the observation decks! With the Top of the Rock, The Edge Hudson Yards and the SUMMIT One Vanderbilt you have three to choose from!
And then there’s the One World Observatory and the Empire State Building. No matter which observation deck you choose, you’ll have an amazing view over the city!
Enjoy springtime on Governors IslandOther Attraction in Outside of New York CityAdd to myNY added
After months of cold weather and being stuck indoors, take advantage of New York’s beautiful spring weather and head over to Governors Island for a day. If you’re unfamiliar, this famous Island is made up of 172-acres of land right in the middle of the New York Harbor. There are many activities here, such as bike rentals, a hammock grove, guided walking tours, lavender fields, historic photo walking tours, and more.
Spring on Governors Island is really beautiful when everything is blooming again!
Westlight NYCRooftop Bar in WilliamsburgOur HighlightAdd to myNY added
Springtime in New York means rooftop-bar season! There’s nothing like the Manhattan skyline, especially at night. If you’re looking for some nightlife during spring in New York, then find a local rooftop bar and enjoy a few drinks. And the best part is that there are many different bars from which to choose, so there’s an option for everyone.
My Tip: Check out our article about the best rooftop bars in NYC.
Celebrate National Beer Day (April 7, 2023)Bar in Midtown ManhattanOur HighlightAdd to myNY added
Beer lovers this day is for you! On April 7, the US celebrates National Beer Day. Visit one of the countless beer gardens or pubs in New York and hit the most beautiful city in the world. Bottoms up!
My tip: these are our 50 Best Bars in Manhattan right now, these are the best bars on Bleecker Street and these are our favorite bars in the East Village!
Celebrate NYC Maple Fest (April 14, 2023)Other Events in Upper West SideAdd to myNY added
At the Grand Bazaar, everything revolves around the sweet maple syrup. Taste your way through the various tastings and make sure you’re hungry. What I find really nice about it? With the purchase any product you support the organizer, who donates the entire profit and you have a really meaningful souvenir that will remind you of your New York trip for a long time!
By the way: the Grand Bazaar NYC is the largest weekly market in New York City.
Cast iron architectureOther Attraction in SoHoAdd to myNY added
If you’re big into photography, then make sure to bring your camera to this neighborhood. SoHo fashion is some of the best fashion in the country and the art scene is top-notch as well. If photographing people isn’t your thing, then you also have the option of shooting the cast-iron buildings.
During the industrial revolution, cast-iron architecture was very popular as everyone was convinced that iron was much more substantial and fireproofed than steel. At the time, cast-iron fronts were built more often than normal wooden houses. These typical cast-iron buildings are the reason why so many producers decided to shoot their films or commercials on the streets of SoHo.
The fire escape staircases along with the architecture give the neighborhood its unique look. These beautiful buildings belong to SoHo similar to how yellow cabs belong to NYC.
It is Baseball Season!Sport Events in BronxAdd to myNY added
We are calling all sports fans! Spring marks the beginning of baseball season, which means your favorite New York teams, such as the New York Mets and New York Yankees, will return home. Regardless of which team you root for, home games begin live in February each year.
And the best part is that even those who aren’t baseball fans will appreciate spending time at Citi Field or Yankee Stadium, as both places offer high-end food that puts Cracker Jack and peanuts to shame!
Run the Brooklyn Marathon (April 23, 2023)Sport Events in WilliamsburgAdd to myNY added
The marathon in New York is one of the most famous and popular long-distance races in the world and attracts many New Yorkers and visitors to the city every year. And since 2022, Brooklyn is now also having its own marathon!
This means that New York has two different races over the distance of 42.195 kilometers to offer. The Brooklyn Marathon takes place in the spring, which is more interesting for the participants (btw: respect!), the New York Marathon starts in November, where it can be much colder.
Dinner At The MetMuseum in Upper East SideOur HighlightAdd to myNY added
Do you have a date this spring and are looking for somewhere fun and exciting to have dinner? Try no other than the Met. The Metropolitan Art Museum is home to several eateries where you’ll enjoy different types of cuisine. For example, on the ground floor at The Eatery, you’ll find a family-friendly restaurant that serves sandwiches, pizza, salad, soup, and more.
Then, there’s the American Wing Cafe, where you can enjoy some delicious coffee, beer, wine, and snacks. There are also other places such as The Balcony Lounge and Trie Cafe.
My tip: The Met is part of our list of the 36 Best Museums in NYC!
Visit The Statue Of Liberty MuseumMuseum in Lower ManhattanAdd to myNY added
If you’ve never been to the Statue of Liberty Museum, then take time this spring and go! Seeing Lady Liberty with your own eyes and seeing the history is a once-in-a-lifetime experience, and it’s one you don’t want to miss!
When here, be sure to make time for all three interactive galleries. Each tells a different story behind the statue’s history but does so in a thought-provoking way that inspires visitors.
Enjoy Manhattanhenge (May 29 + 30)Other Events in Midtown ManhattanAdd to myNY added
Twice a year, the sun sets at a specific angle. The streets and avenues of New York are set up as a grid. During this time, the sun will align perfectly in between the skyscrapers. This phenomenon is called Manhattanhenge and can be observed in May and July. Do not miss out on this one. What’s even just as astonishing is how many people show up and take pictures of this special occasion.
According to Farmers Almanac these are the exact dates:
- May 29, 2023: 8:13 pm (half sun)
- May 30, 2023: 8:14 pm (full sun)
Don't miss New York International Auto Show in AprilOther Events in Hudson YardsAdd to myNY added
They say it’s the most important event in your automotive calendar. If you love cars and everything else that comes with it, you will enjoy the New York International Auto Show. The set up is just as impressive as the fancy cars. Clearly an event you shouldn’t miss.
Eat At The Time Out MarketFood Market in DumboAdd to myNY added
If you’re looking for a new place to eat during spring in New York, check out The Time Out Market. Here you’ll find a diverse roster of bars and restaurants that are complemented by unique cultural experiences. Visiting this market will allow you to taste all of the classic New York dishes, from tasty pizza to hot pastrami sandwiches and much more. In fact, you’ll even find NYC’s best Thai food here as well.
Women's History MonthOther Events in Harlem & Washington HeightsAdd to myNY added
If spring puts you in a social mood, check out one of the many events in NYC related to Women’s History Month. This annual time is perfect for paying homage to one of many locally-owned businesses either owned by or catering to women.
You’ll find panels, parties, and movie screenings, among other events. There’s been Art + Feminism, Wikipedia Edit-a-Thon, A Day Without a Woman, and vast discounts at local businesses in years past.
Five Boro Bike Tour (May 7, 2023)Other Events in Upper West SideAdd to myNY added
Participants meet for the “Five Boro Bike Tour” to cycle through all 5 boroughs in New York. The riders will be riding 40 miles in total. Driving through the city without traffic is only possible once a year when America’s largest cycling event takes place.
The “Five Boro Bike Tour” can almost take an entire day and takes place throughout the Big Apple, including all five city districts. The 32,000 attendees are routed through the streets of Manhattan, through the green and blossoming Central Park, Ride across five big bridges, roll through the Brooklyn and Queens scene districts, and the Bronx to end up in the pedals and head for Staten Island. The atmosphere is similar to running events: Breathtaking.
Walk the High LinePark in Meatpacking DistrictOur HighlightAdd to myNY added
There are few parks as unique as the High Line. Even though the park is open year-round, The High Line really shines during the warmer months, especially in the spring. The elevated freight rail line was repurposed as a public green space that opened in 2009 and now offers amazing views of the city, as well as a place to relax and unwind.
Its plant life is based directly off what was growing there while it was abandoned, giving this park a unique and interesting atmosphere! The High Line stretches from The Meatpacking District all the way to Hudson Yards-34th Street.
Classic Harbor Line: Sunset SailCruise in ChelseaOur HighlightAdd to myNY added
Enjoy a relaxing and romantic sailing cruise with your sweetheart. Most New Yorkers agree that one of the best things to do in spring in New York is taking a boat tour around NYC. These cruises are available during the day or evening hours, so you have the option to sail the seas while the sun is out or even while it is setting. There are many from which to choose, so decide what you want from the sailing experience and choose someone who offers just that!
My tip: These are the best cruises in NYC in Spring.
Smorgasburg Food MarketFood Market in WilliamsburgAdd to myNY added
Smorgasburg Food Market is one of the hottest open-air food markets in New York City. People come here to meet, eat, drink and enjoy the view of the Manhattan skyline on the East River Waterfront during the warmer months. Smorgasburg means “a mixture of food” and offers a huge selection of small stalls. The main spot for Smorgasburg is in Williamsburg, Brooklyn and is very popular among the locals. It’s more of an experience and it’s always a great time with friends.
Wine-tasting with a View during Spring in NYC: Rooftop RedsOther Attraction in DumboOur HighlightAdd to myNY added
The only problem with this beautiful view of the NYC skyline? It just happens to be interrupted by NYC’s only rooftop vineyard!
Located in Brooklyn, Rooftop Reds is actually the world’s first commercially viable urban rooftop vineyard. That means in addition to getting a wide-open view of the NYC skyline, you’re also supporting one of the most innovative wine projects in NYC.
And what would a glass of wine be without a great pairing? Rooftop Reds has this covered with a wide selection of gourmet cheeses to start the meal, then a partnership with nearby pizzeria Il Porto. If you’ve got a bold wine, pair it with Al Diavolo Pizza for a spice-forward blend.
Enjoy A Drink with a View at Grand BanksSea Food Restaurant in TribecaOur HighlightAdd to myNY added
Grand Banks is a celebrated oyster bar that’s aboard a historic wooden schooner named the Sherman Zwicker. This place offers one of the best spring waterfront dining experiences in all of New York City. And did we mention that this boat was inspired by the “oyster barges” that used to float along Manhattan’s waterfront during the 18th and 19th centuries?
This is one of my TOP 3 spots in the city!
So, here you’ll enjoy dining on sustainably sourced oysters and see what dining out was like a few hundred years ago.
Honorable William Wall opens end of spring!Cruise in Lower ManhattanOur HighlightAdd to myNY added
The Honorable William Wall, affectionately called “Willy Wall”, is the floating clubhouse of the Manhattan Yacht Club. The clubhouse is anchored in New York Harbor north of Ellis Island from May to October. What is so special about it? It’s definitely an insider’s spot, which not only gives you a great view of Ellis Island and of course the Statue of Liberty – you can also enjoy the sunset from here.
Affordable Art FairOther Events in ChelseaAdd to myNY added
Spring isn’t just an excellent time to get outside and enjoy nature; it’s also a great time to do a bit of spring cleaning. After you finish, if your walls seem bare, head on over to the Affordable Art Fair and snag some high-quality art at low-end prices.
This annual event returns to NYC each year at the Metropolitan Pavilion in Chelsea, where you can view contemporary works that range in price from $100 up to $10,000.
Bike Month (May 2023)Other Events in WilliamsburgAdd to myNY added
Did you know that each spring, in May, there’s an annual Bike Month in the city? It’s the country’s largest charitable bike ride that boasts over 32,000 participants along a 40-mile ride. And did we mention there are no cars in sight?
What is Bike Month all about? To ride as many miles as possible by bicycle through New York City. This event is especially popular among New Yorkers in the spring, because on the one hand you get to see the city from completely new perspectives, and on the other hand you do something good!
At the very end of Bike Month, there are various prizes to be won. For example, the team and also individuals with the most miles ridden will be awarded.
Celebrate the opening of Flipper's at The Rink (usually in April)Other Attraction in Midtown ManhattanAdd to myNY added
New York has a new attraction to offer: Flipper’s at The Rink! It’s a roller skating rink at Rockefeller Center that you can visit from April to October. This means that Rockefeller Plaza now has something to offer all year round, in addition to its famous Rockefeller Ice Rink.
Go shopping at Woodbury Common OutletDay Trip in Outside of New York CityAdd to myNY added
Shopping addicts will have their money’s worth in Spring too. You can either stroll the city’s streets or take a trip to the Woodbury Common Outlet Center. You will not only find many famous brands at lower prices, but also a large food hall with a wide selection of different sweet and savory dishes.
You can already save money on your way to the outlet, because the bus ride is included in some of the New York Sightseeing passes, for example the New York Pass.
The 50 Absolute Best Things to Do in New York (90+ pages)
We’ve chosen the 50 best spots, events and activities to showcase the full diversity of New York City. Even after more than 20 visits, the city never gets boring for us. And with our recommendations, you’ll have a really good time in New York, too, and you’ll have plenty left for your next visit. If you’re not planning a trip yet, you’re sure to get wanderlust after perusing this list!
If you want to visit several observations decks, attractions and tours in New York, check out the New York sightseeing passes. You can save up to 60% on the ticket price!
To find out which New York Pass is the best for you, check out my New York Pass Comparison.
Photos of New York During Springtime
Events during Spring in NYC
As mentioned earlier springtime in New York means that there are a lot of things going on in the city. Head over to our monthly guides for detailed information on events in Spring in NYC.
The 32 Best Things To Do In NYC In April 2023
The 38 Best Things To Do In NYC In May 2023
The 52 Best Things To Do In New York In June 2023
You may also like:
I'm a true New York fan! Not only have I visited the city over 20 times but also have I spent several months here at a time. On my blog I show you the best and most beautiful spots of the city, so that you have a really good time! You can also find lots of insider tips in our New York travel guide. Also check out my hotel finder for New York!
Leave a Reply