New York City is one of the world’s most exciting city. It is famous for sparkling lights, Broadway plays, fine dining, and the likes. This high-class reputation discourages many budget travelers, but fear not! You can still enjoy the best of New York City without spending a dime. Just follow this guide of 6 free things to do in New York City.
1. Head to one of New York City's beautiful parks
While NYC is known for its towering skyscrapers and iconic skyline, the city has done a fantastic job of maintaining parks. The most historic park in the city is Central Park, a massive green space that you can spend hours, if not days, exploring. No matter how many times you visit Central Park, you will always see something new. Make sure to check out some of Central Park’s most legendary sites like Strawberry Fields and Bethesda Fountain.
2. Window shop on Fifth Avenue
Those of us traveling on a budget are probably not planning to actually buy anything on Fifth Avenue, but you can still enjoy all of the glitz and glamor. The shops on Fifth Avenue are truly spectacular and worth a visit, even if you are just pressing your nose against the window.
3. Catch a street performance
Why pay for a Broadway show when you can skip the lines see a live performance for free? Almost every park and corner in NYC houses a street artist, but for the best free performances, head to Washington Square Park on a sunny day. The park comes to life with artists playing jazz, singing, dancing, and more. If you are lucky, you will even catch a performance by Washington Square Park’s famous Piano Man.
4. Explore New York City's famous holiday scene
If you are lucky enough to be in the city during the holiday season, enjoy it. Check out the holiday-themed window displays on 5th Avenue, the Christmas tree at Rockefeller Center, and the holiday markets at Union Square and Bryant Park. It is all free and all fantastic!
5. Check out the summer street fairs
Not coming during the holiday? Well there is plenty of seasonal fun for those coming during the warm-weather months as well! They are hard predict, but if you walk around NYC long enough (especially around 3rd and 4th Avenue), you are guaranteed to come across a pop-up street fair. These fairs are always full of music, food, and more.
6. Visit the 9/11 Memorial and Museum after 5pm
The 9/11 Memorial and Museum is a powerful experience, but it costs a hefty sum. Because they wanted to make the story of 9/11 available to everyone, the 9/11 Memorial and Museum is free from 5pm until closing every day.
New York City does not have to be expensive
New York City is famously expensive. It has one of the highest costs of living in the world. But if you stick to this list and seek out other free adventures, you can enjoy everything the city has to offer without burning a hole in your wallet.
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