The Best Things to Do in NYC with Kids

A complete guide to kids activities in NYC

Let’s face it: keeping your little ones entertained while traveling can be a challenge. But New York City is packed with fun for families, from its world-class museums and attractions to its many parks and playgrounds. So, if you’re wondering how to spend time as a family, here are the best things to do in NYC with kids.

The Best Kids Activities & Attractions in NYC

There are probably more cool things to do in NYC with kids than you think. Did you know that you can even take them onto a rooftop bar?

My tip: Check out these Fun Things to Do in New York City For Kids & Family:.

  1. 01

    Discover the Brooklyn Bridge Park

    Park in Dumbo
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    While NYC hustles and bustles, Brooklyn Bridge Park stands as a haven for both recreation and relaxation. Extending 1.3 miles alongside the East River, Pier 2 is an absolute treat for sports lovers, offering basketball, handball, and roller-skating arenas.

    If relaxation is more your vibe, Pier 3 provides a peaceful spot for reading or simply unwinding. But Pier 6 is where families truly flock, with the Water Lab and the city’s largest sandbox ensuring kids have an absolute blast. This is city leisure redefined!

  2. 02

    Ride the Carousel in Prospect Park

    Park in Park Slope
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    NYC always has a surprise up its sleeve, and the Carousel in Prospect Park just happens to be one of them. Boasting 53 beautifully crafted horses, dragon chariots, and a range of animals, this isn’t just a carousel; it’s a trip through time. So, while adults savor the charm of the past, children delight in the magic of the present. Hence, an experience here is like capturing the essence of two eras in one delightful ride!

    My tip: There are carousels in other parks as well. In Brooklyn Bridge Park you can find Jane’s Carousel and the Seaglass Carousel is in Battery Park. Before you take your kids there, be sure to check the opening hours as they differ from day to day. Compared to the SeaGlass Carousel at $6, kids can enjoy Jane’s Carousel at only $2. The SeaGlass Carousel, however, enjoys more popularity among kids for its surreal underwater-themed look.

  3. 03

    Walk the High Line

    Park in Meatpacking District
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    Transformed from a defunct rail line to an urban paradise, the High Line offers a unique blend of history, art, and nature. Spanning 1.5 miles, this elevated park attracts millions every year, especially during the blooming spring and summer months.

    As you walk, you’re treated to murals, art installations, and a fresh perspective of the city. And if the stroll ignites your appetite, the nearby Chelsea Market is a gastronomic delight waiting to be explored.

  4. 04

    Ride the NYC Ferry

    Cruise in Financial District
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    Once you’ve had your fill of DUMBO’s trendiness, hop on the NYC ferry bound for Wall Street. Not only is it a pleasant break from walking, but the views of the iconic skyline are absolutely mesmerizing. Priced at just $4.00, this ferry isn’t just transportation; it’s an experience, giving you the best of the city from the water.

  5. 05

    Treat the Family to Classic NY Pizza

    Pizza Spot in West Village
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    Most of us can agree that pizza is the culinary heartbeat of New York. And though everyone’s opinion on the “best” pizza differs, the city offers an abundance of delicious options. From long-time favorites like di Fara to modern classics like Paulie Gee’s, every bite is an experience.

    And here’s an idea: Why not transform pizza-tasting into a delightful family challenge? Let the kids weigh in, sample slices from different places, and crown your family’s favorite. With this, exploring the city’s pizzerias becomes not just about the food but also the shared memories you’re creating.

    My tip: Here you find the best pizza in NYC!

  6. 06

    Revel in the Views from the Top of the Rock

    Building in Midtown Manhattan
    Top of the Rock
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    Seeking unparalleled views of the iconic NYC skyline? Look no further than the Top of the Rock Observation Deck. While reaching skyward, this architectural marvel allows visitors to soak in vistas from three distinct levels: the 67th, 69th, and 70th floors.

    Sure, it can get crowded, but for a good reason. The unobstructed panoramas of landmarks, from the Empire State to the One World Trade Center, are awe-inspiring. It’s not just about seeing the city; it’s about experiencing it from a breathtaking perspective that both kids and adults will cherish for years. One side note, though: make sure your kiddos aren’t afraid of heights!

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    Catch a Kid-Friendly Broadway Show

    Broadway Show in Theatre District
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    Of course, Broadway shows might dent your wallet, but the experience? Absolutely priceless! And this is especially true for young ones witnessing the magic for the first time. However, the good news is that if you’re savvy, matinee performances or the TKTS Times Square booth might offer more wallet-friendly deals.

    Either way, the city brims with exciting shows that captivate kids and transport them into fantastical worlds. Consider classics like “The Lion King” or magical journeys like “Harry Potter & The Cursed Child”. The live renditions of beloved stories aren’t merely shows; they’re memories in the making. So, budget for at least one because it’s a NYC experience that is not to be skipped!

    My tip: Here you find the complete list of Broadway shows for kids in NYC.

  8. 08

    Explore the Magic of Grand Central Terminal

    Other Attraction in Midtown Manhattan
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    It’s not just a train station – it’s Grand Central Terminal. With 750,000 people bustling through daily, you might think it’s all about the rush. But look up. That celestial ceiling, with its beautiful zodiac designs, is a wonder.

    And though it might not be 100% astronomically correct – just ask Orion – it sure is a spectacle. Kids, especially those not yet into their astronomy homework, will be staring in awe. It’s a bit of the universe right in the heart of New York.

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    Let them explore some cool playgrounds

    Playground in Tribeca
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    New York is not only home to many parks, but also to many playgrounds! Chances are that where there is a park, there’s at least one playground! Central Park alone is home to more than 20 playgrounds and none is quite like another, giving your kids plenty of choices. So whenever you ask yourself what there is to do with children in New York, going to a playground is always a no-brainer.

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    Enjoy the spectacular views from a rooftop bar

    Rooftop Bar in Midtown Manhattan
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    Visiting a rooftop bar in NYC with kids? That’s not a problem! While it’s typically not allowed to take minors to rooftop bars in the United States, New York has some exceptions for you! Though you still cannot take your kids to rooftop bars at night, there are bars allowing kids throughout the day. This way you and your children can still enjoy a refreshing soda with amazing views of the city. One of the rooftop bars we recently discovered is Westlight in Brooklyn. More of our favorite rooftop bars you can visit with children are:

    • 230 Fifth in the Flatiron District (Monday-Friday from 4 to 6 pm and on weekends from 10 am – 6 pm)
    • Refinery Rooftop in Midtown Manhattan (Monday-Saturday: 11:30 am – 6 pm and on Sundays all day)
    • The Roof in Midtown Manhattan (Monday-Friday from 3 – 7 pm and on weekends from 1 – 7 pm)
    • Gallow Green in Chelsea (daily until 11 pm)
  11. 11

    Time Out Market

    Food Market in Dumbo
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    Are you and the family feeling hungry? If so, then head to Time Out Market in DUMBO. Imagine all the top-notch NYC restaurants but in one spot! Here you’ll find favorites like Jacob’s Pickles’ fried chicken and Fornino’s pizza, among many others.

    And for dessert? Dive into unique ice cream flavors at Sugar Hill Creamery. But it’s not just about food. The place offers stunning views of the East River, Brooklyn Bridge, and the iconic Manhattan skyline. Thus, a meal here is a treat for the taste buds and the eyes!

  12. 12

    Visit Strand Book Store

    Book Store in East Village
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    Strand isn’t just a bookstore; it’s a New York institution. With a massive collection of over 2 million books spanning 18 miles of shelves, this place is a paradise for readers. So, whether you’re hunting for a discount or seeking a rare edition, Strand has it all.

    But it’s not just the enormous amount of books that make this place special. The store often hosts engaging events, from readings by renowned authors to storytimes led by staff. In fact, there are even special appearances by beloved book characters, making it a literary haven for both kids and adults.

  13. 13

    Visit the Statue of Liberty

    Building in Lower Manhattan
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    A visit to the Statue of Liberty includes a ferry ride and access to Liberty Island, where you can visit the statue’s crown, the pedestal and the free Statue of Liberty Museum. Seeing the Statue of Liberty is a must for every visitor. With kids, exploring the island is the best option to see it. It’s not unlikely that you’ll spend several hours here with your kids. If you don’t want to visit the island but see the statue, you can read our full Statue of Liberty guide for more options.

  14. 14

    Check Out Wave Hill

    Districts in Bronx
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    Wave Hill is the Bronx’s hidden gem. Yet, this estate isn’t just another park; it’s 28 acres of lush history and beauty. Wander through the woods or join a guided nature walk; either way, there’s plenty to see and do at Wave Hill.

    And always keep an eye on their event schedule. Whether it’s a hands-on art project or a lively family festival, there’s often something happening. And here’s a tip: If you’re an early bird on Saturdays, you can enjoy free admission before noon.

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    Celebrate the Arts at Lincoln Center

    Building in Upper West Side
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    In the city that never sleeps, Lincoln Center stands as a beacon of culture, creativity, and artistic expression. Spanning 16 acres, it’s not just an arts complex but a world of its own. At its core, the Josie Robertson Plaza captivates visitors with a dynamic fountain that seems to dance to its own rhythm.

    The center itself is a hub of musical mastery, from the harmonious melodies of the New York Philharmonic to the enchanting performances at the Metropolitan Opera. Here, children are in for a treat with tailored programs like Lincoln Center Kids and the immersive Very Young People’s Concerts. Whether you’re a lover of classical music, opera, theater, or dance, Lincoln Center has something to stir the soul.

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    Embark on a Walking Tour

    Walking Tour in Financial District
    Our Highlight
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    Walking tours in New York City are a great way to dive into its rich history and allow the kids to burn off some energy. For those who love theater, the Broadway Up Close tour offers fun tales about the famous Theater District and behind-the-scenes stories of shows like “Hamilton.”

    But if local history is more your thing, Big Onion Tours guides you through New York’s old days or takes you on a journey around neighborhoods like Chelsea. Whichever tour you choose, you’re in for some exciting NYC tales.

  17. 17

    Ride the tram to Roosevelt Island

    Other Tours in Midtown Manhattan
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    Want to know a little secret? Taking the Roosevelt Island tram offers one of the best views of New York City! Starting from the Upper East Side, the tram gives a short, fun ride over to Roosevelt Island. Once there, it’s a quieter place compared to the city’s hustle and offers lovely spots like the Four Freedoms Park. And the best part? The tram ride costs the same as a subway ticket!

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    Dive into the World of Snug Harbor Cultural Center

    Park in Staten Island
    Staten Island, New York: Pond in the New York Chinese Scholars Garden, a walled garden built in 1998 at the Snug Harbor Cultural Center and Botanical Garden.
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    Snug Harbor offers families both a cultural treat and fun adventures. As you explore, you’ll stumble upon the vibrant Staten Island Children’s Museum. Here, kids can get hands-on with interactive exhibits, join in some lively song and dance, or even craft something special.

    And don’t skip out on the Connie Gretz Secret Garden! Drawing inspiration from Frances Hodgson Burnett’s beloved tale, its maze-like paths promise a delightful wander. And if you’re around during winter, the Lantern Festival lights up the space, showcasing brilliant displays ranging from cheerful pandas to majestic dragons.

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    Ride the hop-on hop-off busses

    Bus Tour in Midtown Manhattan
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    If you’re planning to do sightseeing in NYC with kids, then the hop-on-hop-off buses will be the most convenient option. You won’t have to drag your kids along and ride the subway from A to B. This way they can simply enjoy the ride while learning about the highlights even when they’re tired. Make sure to secure a spot at the top – kids love it! During the winter months, make sure to dress your children appropriately. It can get a bit chilly inside the buses!

  20. 20

    See wild animals at New York's zoos

    Other Attraction in Bronx
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    Going to the zoo will always be a great activity for kids. There, they can admire wild animals like gorillas and tigers and even watch penguin or sea lion feedings. You should know that New York is home to more than just one zoo! Apart from the Bronx Zoo, there’s Central Park Zoo, Staten Island Zoo and a few more, giving you plenty of options!

  21. 21

    Enjoy yourselves at Luna Park and Coney Island

    Other Attraction in Coney Island & Brighton Beach
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    Inarguably one of the best things to do in NYC with kids during the summer is heading to Coney Island in Brooklyn! A great feature here is that you can combine a beautiful day at the beach with a visit to the adjacent amusement park, Luna Park. Speaking of, a lot of attraction passes include a ticket to Luna Park. Coney Island has the best beach in the area and is only one subway ride away from Manhattan. It’ll take you about an hour to get there. If you want to stay closer to the city, you can check out our favorite New York beaches for this year and make a choice from there!

  22. 22

    Tantalize Your Taste Buds at Smorgasburg

    Food Market in Midtown Manhattan
    Food Market
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    Brooklyn’s Smorgasburg is a must-visit for families with hungry kids in tow. Sure, Williamsburg is your winter weekend spot, but in the summer, options expand to Prospect Park and the World Trade Center.

    It’s a bustling market where children can choose from a myriad of tasty options — think pizza slices bigger than their heads, gooey grilled cheese, or playful ice cream creations. Plus, with vendors rotating each season, there’s always something new to try!

  23. 23

    Spend a Day Out at Queens County Farm Museum

    Other Events in Queens
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    Imagine a place where city sounds fade, replaced by the gentle bleating of sheep and the soft clucking of chickens. That’s the Queens County Farm Museum for you. As the oldest continuously farmed site in New York, this serene countryside haven invites families to step into a world of farm delights right in the heart of the city.

    Engage with friendly barnyard animals, hop onto tractor-pulled hayrides exploring the 47-acre expanse, and if you come during the harvest season, enjoy a playful corn maze, choose a pumpkin to take home, or dare to walk through the haunted house.

  24. 24

    Experience the City from Above at One World Observatory

    Building in Financial District
    Our Highlight
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    Offering an unparalleled view from the nation’s tallest building, One World Observatory is a must-visit for families, tourists, and locals alike. A quick ascent on one of the fastest elevators in the world sets the tone for the experience. Upon reaching the top, visitors are greeted with a captivating two-minute video showcasing New York City’s iconic landscape.

    The City Pulse on the 100th floor offers an interactive exploration of NYC’s landmarks, while the Sky Portal provides a unique real-time view of the streets below. It’s a breathtaking journey that appeals to the entire family!

  25. 25

    Let them play at Chelsea Piers

    Other Attraction in Upper East Side
    Visitors around the sea lions area at Central Park Zoo Manhattan New York USA
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    If you are looking for truly fun things to do in NYC with your kids, then Chelsea Piers Sports and Entertainment Complex by the Hudson River is the place to go. The giant sports village gives you plenty to do. The indoor activities offered here include indoor climbing, mini golfing, bowling, outdoor driving, ice skating, swimming, and more. There are also activities catered specifically to adults – fun for everyone!

  26. 26

    Watch a parade

    Parade in Upper West Side
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    Many of the world’s most famous parades take place in New York City. Whether it’s children or adults, everyone gets excited to see giant floats, balloons, and costumes in the streets. The largest parade held in New York is the annual Thanksgiving Parade, but even smaller parades can be a lot of fun for kids in NYC. There are even parades in which anyone is invited to participate. Those parades include the Easter Parade, Mermaid Parade, and Halloween Parade for example.

  27. 27

    Experience nature at a botanical garden

    Other Attraction in Bronx Park
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    For families, a visit to a botanical garden is quite refreshing. Kids of every age will enjoy the fresh air, green space, and marvel at all the different plants and installations. In New York, you can either visit the New York Botanical Garden in the Bronx or the Brooklyn Botanic Garden. Both locations host family-friendly events throughout the year that can make your visit even more exciting.

  28. 28

    Defy gravity at iFLY

    Other Tours in Outside of New York City
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    If you want to do something a little more special with your kids in NYC, one of the most amazing experiences you can do is stop by iFLY. The indoor skydiving hall will make you feel what it’s like to fly. Who hasn’t dreamed of flying when they were kids? Here, you can actually experience it! I’ve done it twice already and loved every second of it. The closest iFLY is located in Paramus, NJ, a 50-minute ride from Midtown Manhattan. Before or after iFLY, you can also take your kids to the Garden State Plaza Mall close by to do some shopping.

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    My favorite thing to do in NYC with kids during winter: Ice skating!

    Christmas Market in Midtown Manhattan
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    Depending on the season, you can either choose to go ice skating or cycling with your kids in NYC! During the winter season, New York offers you a handful of spacious ice skating rinks. Alternatively, you can ride a bike pretty much anywhere in the city. When visiting New York with kids, however, avoid Manhattan’s busy streets. Instead, head to Governors Island or Central Park where you have no cars, more space, and nature.

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    Work together at an escape room

    Other Events in Chelsea
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    Escape rooms are an adventure for the whole family! You’ll need to solve a mystery by working together as a team. Oftentimes, I’ve noticed kids do better than adults in the themed rooms. Escape games are some of the most exciting things to do with kids in NYC and a visit typically takes about 1.5 hours, including one hour for the game itself. You’ll find escape room companies all across the city, all of which offer unique missions.

Kids museums in NYC

Even though we mostly assume that kids will easily get bored in museums, it’s not always entirely true. They may not appreciate art like adults do yet, but there are museums in New York that are specifically designed to cater to children. In the same vein, many museums nowadays incorporate a high degree of interactivity and immersion, making it all the more attractive to kids. Below are some of the best museums in New York for kids.

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    01 Explore the New York Transit Museum

    Ever wondered how New Yorkers got around in the early 1900s? The New York Transit Museum in Brooklyn offers a unique glimpse. Housed in an old subway station, it’s a true adventure for kids and adults alike.

    Hop on board vintage subway cars, with some dating all the way back to 1903, and check out the old ads – they’re a trip! Explore the driver’s cabin, see how subway signs have changed, and delve into a world of subway photos through the ages. And don’t leave without hitting the gift shop. It’s packed with cool transit-themed goodies for everyone.

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    02 Learn Foodie History at the Museum of Ice Cream

    New York City has no shortage of attractions, but the Museum of Ice Cream is truly one-of-a-kind. More than just a museum, it’s an edible fantasyland. Imagine diving into a pool filled with rainbow sprinkles or sliding down the longest indoor slide in the city.

    The exhibits are interactive and designed to be both educational and entertaining. You’ll get to learn about the fascinating history of ice cream, how it’s made, and the countless flavors from around the world. And the best part? You get to sample the delights along the way. So, grab the kids and get ready for some unique NYC fun!

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    03 Madame Tussauds

    Located in Midtown Manhattan, Madame Tussauds is one of the most loved museums by children. It lets you wander through room after room where you meet wax-figure celebrities, movie characters, and other childhood heroes. All of them are deceptively real-looking! Kids get a real kick out of Madame Tussauds! When you’re traveling as a family, this is also a great place to take memorable and funny photos.

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    04 Learn Something at the Rose Center for Earth and Space

    Housed in the famed American Museum of Natural History, the Rose Center for Earth and Space is an ode to the wonders of our universe. It’s home to the incredible Hayden Sphere, a visual spectacle that captures the imagination. Within its walls, families have the chance to travel through time, discovering the 13-billion-year history of the universe.

    Detailed exhibits give insights into planets, stars, galaxies, and the cosmic phenomena that shape our understanding of space. And the space show “Worlds Beyond Earth” offers a riveting narrative about the cosmos. This center is a testament to humanity’s endless curiosity and the vastness waiting to be explored.

  5. Metropolitan Museum of Art

    05 Feel the Magic at the Metropolitan Museum of Art

    The Metropolitan Museum of Art is like stepping into different parts of the world and history all at once. Imagine going from seeing ancient Egyptian art to exploring a Frank Lloyd Wright-designed home in just a few steps. Trust me! Your kids will love it, especially if they’ve read “From the Mixed-Up Files of Mrs. Basil E. Frankweiler.”

    For a seamless family experience, use the dedicated entrance on the plaza level, bypassing the usual hustle. Be sure to enhance your visit with complimentary Family Guides, transforming the museum experience for young explorers. And whatever you do, don’t miss out on enriching storytime sessions at the Nolan Library.

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    06 Museum of the Moving Image

    At the Museum of the Moving Image, children can enjoy immersive multimedia exhibitions and interactive experiences. The audio and visual components will occupy kids for quite some time and teach them about the history, creation, and impact of digital media. All this is topped by an extensive collection of video games. The museum has been adding new features over the years, increasing their popularity substantially.

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    07 SPYSCAPE Spy Museum

    While learning about the world of spies at SPYSCAPE, kids will be solving puzzles, taking quizzes, and completing a variety of challenges that make them feel like true spies. The motto of this museum is learning by doing! At the end of the visit, everyone will learn what kind of spy they’d qualify for based on the results of various challenges that are saved onto an RFID chip inside a bracelet.

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    08 MoMath (Museum of Mathematics)

    In my opinion, the Museum of Mathematics is one of the best kids museums in NYC. Nobody needs to be a math genius to come here. You don’t even have to be enthusiastic about math at all. You’ll still be amazed by the wonders of math. Where else can kids (and adults) ride a bicycle with square wheels? It’s fun to explore the many phenomena throughout the museum that can be explained using math.

  9. Intrepid Sea, Air and Space Museum

    09 Intrepid Sea, Air & Space Museum

    The Intrepid Sea, Air & Space Museum is a true kid favorite. The family-friendly museum offers exhibition and hands-on experiences. The coolest part? It’s a real aircraft-carrier called Intrepid. The museum showcases several different types of aircraft and space crafts from the Airforce and Navy. It’s a maritime museum that caters to families making it a great kids museum.

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    10 New York Hall of Science (NYSCI)

    NYSCI is located in Flushing, Corona and is a wonderful museum for kids in New York because of its science and technology center that houses a 3D theater. In total, there are more than 450 hands-on exhibits on biology, physics, and chemistry. Way to make science fun! The museum was specifically designed to cater to families.

  11. Museum of Illusions

    11 Museum of Illusions

    This is one of the most fun museums in NYC for kids right now. It’s a pop-up museum that will make you question your sense of reality with optical illusions. The museum guarantees a great time, lots of laughter and the funniest photos. The exhibits will stimulate your cognitive abilities in a way that it will be hard for you to believe your eyes.

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    12 Brooklyn Children's Museum

    New York is home to several children’s museums, like the Manhattan Children’s Museum, the Brooklyn Children’s Museum, and the Jewish Children’s Museum. Out of the three, the Brooklyn Children’s Museum is the largest one and, more interestingly, the oldest one in the world! When thinking about the best things to do in NYC with kids, you can never go wrong with a children’s museum. The name says it all!

  13. 13 National Geographic Encounter

    The National Geographic Encounter takes you on a breathtaking journey through the depths of the Pacific Ocean. The immersive technology used here allows you and your children to witness nature like never before. Simulating an experience like getting to whales and playing with sea lions right in the heart of New York is entirely possible.

NYC shows for kids

See a Broadway Show

NYC shows for kids

There are plenty of family-friendly shows in New York, some of which are considered Broadway shows and others that are considered Off-Broadway shows. Not surprisingly, however, kids typically love Disney musicals like The Lion King, Aladdin, and Wicked the best.

You can certainly never go wrong with one of those, regardless of the age of your children. Nevertheless, there are kid-friendly shows in New York beyond Disney musicals. Harry Potter and the Cursed Child, The Blue Man Group and The Gazillion Bubble Show are all shows that kids are likely to enjoy.

Here you find all kid-friendly Broadway shows in NYC.

Kids stores in NYC

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    01 Visit the America's Oldest Toy Store in America

    Ever heard of a toy store with a dancing piano? Welcome to FAO Schwarz, the iconic New York toy destination that’s been around since 1862. After a brief hiatus, they’ve made a comeback at Rockefeller Plaza, and it’s bigger and better than ever.

    Yes, you can relive that magic moment with the dance-on piano, just like Tom Hanks did in the movie ‘Big.’ But that’s not all. From classic toys to today’s favorites, this place has got every toy you could want. And what’s more is that you can join in on daily activities – there’s everything from book readings to magic shows. It’s not just shopping; it’s an experience!

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    02 Stop by Lego's Flagship Store

    In a city bursting with landmarks, how about one focused on toys? But NYC’s LEGO Flagship store isn’t just a store – it’s an imagination playground (and it is just a few steps from FAO Schwarz). Wander amidst life-sized LEGO marvels and revel in the intricate designs.

    And the best part? Its prime location opposite the majestic St. Patrick’s Cathedral means you can mix childlike wonder with some cultural immersion. So, when in Midtown with kids, make sure to stop by the LEGO store. It’s a treat for the young and the young at heart.

    My tip: There is also a flagship store near Flatiron Building – and here you find the best toy stores in NYC.

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    03 Spend the Afternoon at the Harry Potter Store

    Regardless of your Hogwarts house allegiance or lack thereof, the Harry Potter Store promises a uniquely amazing afternoon. Spanning two floors, this shop captures the magic of the wizarding world in every corner.

    Parents often rave about its enchantment, but the Butterbeer Café is a particular hit among kids. Still, even if you’re not shopping, the ambiance is worth the visit. But a word to the wise: resisting the charm of the chocolate frogs might prove challenging!

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    04 Get your personal M&Ms

    M&Ms World at Times Square is extremely impressive! Here your kids can find the largest selection of M&Ms they will ever get to see which makes this one of the best candy stores in NYC. The M&Ms here come in all colors and packages you could possibly imagine. Kids simply love exploring every level of the store. One of the best things you can do with your kids in New York is head to the M&Ms factory inside the store. Your little ones can choose to have their personal M&M’s made. It’s a cool and at the same time delicious souvenir!

  5. Shopping

    05 American Girl Place New York

    This store is every little kid’s dream! The number of dolls in this New York kids store is unparalleled. Your children can even choose to create their own doll, which is what’s most special about this store. Even when traveling without kids, getting a customized souvenir here will make their eyes glow! There’s even a café you can have tea, brunch, lunch, and even dinner at.

6. Enjoy the spectacular views from a rooftop bar

NYC rooftop bars with kids

Visiting a rooftop bar in NYC with kids? That’s not a problem! While it’s typically not allowed to take minors to rooftop bars in the United States, New York has some exceptions for you! Though you still cannot take your kids to rooftop bars at night, there are bars allowing kids throughout the day. This way you and your children can still enjoy a refreshing soda with amazing views of the city. One of the rooftop bars we recently discovered is Westlight in Brooklyn. More of our favorite rooftop bars you can visit with children are:



  • 230 Fifth in the Flatiron District
    Monday-Friday from 4 to 6 pm and on weekends from 10 am – 6 pm
  • Refinery Rooftop in Midtown Manhattan
    Monday-Saturday: 11:30 am – 6 pm and on Sundays all day
  • The Roof in Midtown Manhattan
    Monday-Friday from 3 – 7 pm and on weekends from 1 – 7 pm
  • Gallow Green in Chelsea
    daily until 11 pm

Fun Day Trips from NYC With Kids

Kids discounts

When thinking about things to do in NYC with kids, you do have to consider the cost of attractions and activities. There is no doubt that traveling as a family is expensive. That’s why it’s very important to plan ahead and inform yourself about discounts for kids. Depending on the age of your children, they may be eligible discounts and, in the best case, free admission!

Sightseeing passes for kids

Especially if you’re visiting New York for the first time, you probably will take advantage of one of the many different attraction passes to save some money. All attraction passes offer a discount for kids, the deciding factor being age. All children below the ages stated in the table enjoy free admission!

You don’t know which attraction pass would make sense for your trip? Try out our savings calculator and you’ll find out in just a few clicks!

FREE admission for kids

Each attraction in New York has different regulations, which is why it can be a pain to perform the necessary research. To help you out, we’ve listed some popular attractions, where kids under certain ages will enjoy free admission. This list should help you know where to save money with kids in New York.


  • 9/11 Memorial Museum: ≤ 6
  • American Museum of Natural History: pay what you wish
  • Brooklyn Children’s Museum: ≤1
  • Intrepid Museum of Sea, Air, and Space: ≤4
  • Madame Tussauds: ≤2
  • MoMA: ≤16
  • MoMath: ≤2
  • Museum of the Moving Image: ≤3
  • New York Transit Museum: ≤1
  • New York Hall of Science: ≤1
  • SPYSCAPE: ≤2
  • Whitney Museum: ≤18


Zoos & Gardens

  • Bronx Zoo: ≤2
  • Brooklyn Botanic Garden: ≤12
  • New York Botanical Garden: ≤1
  • Queens Botanical Garden: ≤3
  • Staten Island Zoo: ≤2


  • Hop-on-hop-off buses by Big Bus: ≤4
  • Hop-on-hop-off buses by GrayLine: ≤2
  • Circle Line Cruises: ≤2
  • Water Taxi: ≤2

Do you have another cool idea or a tip on what to do in NYC with kids? Please let me know and I’m happy to add your suggestion!!

Profilbild Steffen Kneist
About the author

I'm a true New York fan! Not only have I visited the city over 25 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!

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