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Free Things To Do In NYC

catch up on these free activities all year long

Everyone thinks that if you are visiting or live in New York City then you think that you have to save for months just to enjoy a good time in NYC but that isn’t always the case. No matter where you are you can always find something interesting to do and you can do it for free too. Learn a little city or world history, enjoy a little culture and learn more about the history of your city.

#1 Castle Clinton

free things to do in NYC

Castle Clinton was built originally to keep the British invasion out of Manhattan in 1812, over the years the fort has changed drastically since the 1800s. The fort was the base of where New York city historically begins. Now this fort has remained as a historical landmark to where our country has seen millions of visitors over the years. This is a fantastic location to bring the family or if you are wanting to douse yourself with a little extra American history.

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#2 New York Aquarium

free things to do in NYC
photo by JULIE LARSEN MAHER

This is one of the great aquariums in the country – right up there with the San Diego Zoo! When you are in New York and you have a love of the sea or are traveling with your family this is a fantastic place to visit! They have hundreds of exhibits of beautiful marine life, preservation programs, you can even see sharks here! But this is just one of many of your options to exhibit choices around New York City. There are dozens of museums that have free entry for certain ages or day, many of them are free every day!

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#3 Williamsburg Art & Historical Center

free things to do in NYC
photo by Williamsburg Art & Historical Center

The “WAH” Center’s mission is to value history and to have a vision for the future. Founded in 1996, Yuko Nii founded “WAH” as a non-profit to promote art, diversity – both personally and artistically, and to create a bridge between local, national and international artists, the acronym WAH in Japanese translates to “peace” “unity” or “harmony”. Open only Friday through Sunday this is a great place to have a diverse experience within the artistic world of New York City.

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#4 The Museum at the Fashion Institute of Technology

free things to do in NYC
photo via thevintagetraveler

Take a tour through history’s greatest and worst fashion choices! If you ever look around at what people are wearing and ask yourself “what were they thinking” (“them” being the designer) well this museum is a whole building full of those put-on display. From the “greats” of fashion history to some of the trends that quickly faded from time. This is the place to be! The admission to the Museum is totally free and is open to the public to ask questions, many times you will also find a future fashion student sketching throughout the museum – it is worth asking them what they are working on – it might be something big in the future!

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#5 Brooklyn Brewery

free things to do in NYC

Who wouldn’t want to sit outside while sipping on a nice brewsky! This Brewery used to be seen as a scary stretch of warehouses but now Brooklyn’s Northside of the borough has turned around to be a cultural destination. There are always events going on and what better way to really enjoy this brewery than with a tour? You can book a “small batch” tour so you can see the ins and outs of making these delicious beers.

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#6 The Downtown Boathouse

free things to do in NYC
photo by Carla Alferez

If you have ever seen a movie based in New York there is a very good chance that you have seen the famous downtown boathouse in one of those movies. The Boathouse is an all-volunteer based, a nonprofit organization that is dedicated to giving free access to the public to have some outdoor fun in the harbor of New York City! You can kayak, boating classes and all kinds of community programs that were designed to bring people together who all have the love of water.

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#7 Bronx Zoo

free things to do in NYC
photo by Christopher Postlewaite

The Bronx Zoo is one of the gems of NYC. You can always spend a day at the zoo but this zoo is a different animal. There are always events going on, education classes and hands-on training to show you and your family the great and amazing animals that are housed here.

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#8 The High Line

free things to do in NYC
photo by Shutterstock

The High Line isn’t just a park, it is an entire experience. Once a freight train track these once abandoned train tracks have now been converted to a public park where you can walk through gardens, see street acts, taste food from vendors and food trucks and you can do it all while enjoying the great outdoors in a way that only New York can do it. Converting something that was forgotten and abandoned and turned it into something beautiful.

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#9 Ping Pong in Bryant Park

free things to do in NYC
photo by http://blog.bryantpark.org

There is live entertainment all over New York City. Street dancers, musicians, artists there is no lack of talent in the Big Apple. Are you looking for a different kind of entertainment? Try watching or even playing Ping pong in Bryant Park! Located on the street side of 42nd St and 6th Ave you can spend the afternoon enjoy a friendly or highly competitive game in the park.

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#10 The Creek and the Cave

free things to do in NYC
photo by idktonight.com

The Creek and the Cave are where the founding of comedy in Long Island really started. What used to be a dive bar is now the “gem of the Queens of Comedy”. Here you can play ping pong, enjoy food, drinks, local stand up comedians or some big names in the world of comedy! Definitely not a place to miss!

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