• man and child looking at a pond and the city buildings of NYC

7 Family-Friendly Activities In New York City You Don’t Want To Miss

Visiting New York City with your family and wondering what to do with the kids? Of course, iconic sites like the Statue of Liberty or the Empire State building are surely on your list, but there are plenty of other places and activities sprinkled throughout the city designed to delight kids of all ages. Here are just a few of the family-friendly activities in New York City that we recommend to guests again and again.

Catch A Broadway Show

Whenever you’re visiting NYC, there is sure to be a variety of kid-friendly shows playing on the Great White Way. Head to www.broadway.com to see what will be running during your visit, and book tickets in advance! At the time of posting, there are a ton of fantastic performances to choose from, including Wicked, The Lion King, Harry Potter and the Cursed Child, and Aladdin. (Looking for a convenient hotel near Broadway to stay? The Knickerbocker is on the corner of 42nd Street and Broadway, just two blocks south of the theater district.)

You’re probably already planning to go to Central Park, it’s one of the most famous parks in the world, after all, but do you know all there is to explore? The sprawling, 843-acre green space has a number of different areas and attractions to check out, including 21 playgrounds (you read that right), the Swedish Cottage Marionette Theater, 50 monuments, sculptures and fountains, and even a castle.


Of course, there’s the Central Park Zoo, too. See our animal lover’s guide to the Central Park Zoo here.

Visit A Kid-Friendly Museum

Some of our go-to museums that kids of all ages enjoy include the American Museum of Natural HistoryThe Metropolitan Museum of Art (there’s a family entrance to the left of the grand stairs on the plaza level and free family guides available), the Whitney Museum of American Art (look up its before-hours tours), and the DiMenna Children’s History Museum (which shares stories and exhibits about childrens’ lives in NYC through the centuries).

Ride The Nyc Ferry

See the city from a different point of view, plus get a ride in, by sitting on the upper deck of an NYC Ferry as it cruises the East River, passing under the Williamsburg, Manhattan, and Brooklyn Bridges. (It’s cheap, too, and children under 44 inches tall are free

Discover Countless Reads At The Children’s Library

Have a book lover in the family? Head to Brooklyn to visit the incredible Children’s Library at the Central Branch of the Brooklyn Public Library. The first-floor Youth Wing has designated spaces for all ages — from toddlers to teens — and performance space that hosts tons of events, many geared towards kids. (While you’re over there, there’s also the Brooklyn Children’s Museum.)

Spend Time At World-Famous Specialty Stores

A kid’s trip to New York isn’t complete until they’ve visited FAO Schwarz, the iconic — and seemingly larger-than-life — toy store at Rockefeller Center at 30 Rockefeller Place. Just two blocks away, you’ll also find the American Girl Place at 75 Rockefeller Plaza. Back down in Midtown, the Harry Potter Flagship Store stocks all sorts of magical things from the Wizarding World, including the largest collection of Harry Potter and Fantastic Beasts items found under one roof. The store lets visitors in via a virtual queue system. Add your party to the queue by scanning the QR code at the store entrance.

Hang Out In Bryant Park

One block over from The Knickerbocker and right behind the New York Public Library is Bryant Park offers a welcome green retreat in the heart of Midtown, complete with a carousel, Shake Shack, and a variety of free weekly and monthly programming (see more here). There’s always something happening on the park ground during the summer, and during the winter, you’ll find an ice skating rink and a bustling holiday market.

Discover More Of New York City

Looking for even more New York travel tips? Check out The Knick’s NYC Travel Guide for our curated recommendations of things to do in New York.

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