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The Best Free and Budget Friendly Attractions in New York City

Visit some the most iconic attractions of the Big Apple can get pretty expensive when you start adding them up! That is why we came up with this budget friendly guide for you to visit all the best places New York CIty has to offer for free. This way you can save money for your favorite paid attraction or trying one of the city’s many bakeries latest creations.

Brooklyn Brewery Tours: They offer free tours on the half hour from 12:30 PM to 6PM on Saturdays and 12:30 PM to 4PM on Sundays. Just make sure you are wearing closed toe shoes.

Brooklyn Bridge in New York City

Brooklyn Bridge: Walk across the iconic bridge connecting Brooklyn and Manhattan.

Chelsea Galleries: If you like enjoying artwork this is the place to go for a gallery crawl. All galleries are free to enter.

Strawberry Fields Forever Memorial in Central Park NYC

Central Park: Visit the Strawberry Fields Memorial, where John Lennon was killed in 1980. Feed the ducks at The Pond. There are a lot of activities that go on around the year in Central Park, such as free events and walking tours. Do not forget to visit the Belvedere castle, the Pond and the little bridge.

City Hall: It is the home to NYC’s government. Guided tours go to the cupola-topped marble hall and the governor’s room. Reserved tours take place on Thursdays at 10AM and first-come, first-served tours are Wednesday at noon.

Fashion Institute of Technology Museum: NYC is known for its fashion and if you like the Fashion Week, this museum is perfect for you! It features exhibits by students and a collection of the country’s first gallery of fashion.

Grand Central Station in New York City

Grand Central Partnership Walking Tours: Two historians lead this free 90-minute walking tour at 12:30pm every Friday, hitting places like Grand Central Terminal’s ‘whispering gallery’ and the Chrysler Building.

High Line Park NYC

High Line Park: It is a park built on what used to be an elevated railroad track, with amazing views of the Hudson River, and the city skyline as well as public art installations.

Trinity Church and St. Paul’s Chapel: They offer free guided tours Monday through Friday at 2PM.

The Wall Street Bull

Charging Bull: No one can leave the city without taking a photo with the most well known bull statue in the world. 

Whitney Museum of American Art*: The museum has Pay-What-You-Wish tickets available at the admissions desk on Fridays from 7PM to 9:30 PM.

The Guggenheim Museum*: The museum has Pay-What-You-Wish tickets available at the admissions desk on Fridays from 5:45 PM to 7:45 PM with a line forming 30 minutes in advance.

Metropolitan Museum at night. MET New York City

MET (Metropolitan Museum of Art)*: The regular $20 ticket fee is a suggested price. So pay as much as you can afford.

American Museum of Natural History*: The regular $23 admission price is a suggested price, So pay as much as you can afford.

Museum of Modern Art: During UNIQLO Free Friday Nights admission is free, every Friday evening from 4PM to 8PM. 

The Frick Collection*: The museum has Pay-What-You-Wish tickets available at the admissions desk on Wednesday from 2PM to 6PM.

The Cloisters*: The regular $25 ticket fee is a suggested price. So pay as much as you can afford.

The Jewish Museum: In observance of the Sabbath, admission is free on Saturdays.

New York Public Library: It is a beautiful building in the inside. It is really rich in architecture and a beautiful place to visit when you are near Times Square. They offer free tours from Monday through Saturday at 11AM and 2PM.

Time Square raining in New York City

Times Square: It is perfect to get inspire by all the billboards, tourists and the colorful and vibrant lights.

Jazz at Barbés: If you like Jazz, Barbés in Brooklyn is the place to go! They offer live jazz every night of the week, with a strong $10 suggested entry.

Brooklyn Botanical Garden: Entrance is free on Saturdays from 10 AM to noon. From December through February it is free during the weekdays as well.

Rockerfeller Ice Ring

The Rockefeller Center: It is free to walk around, watch some winter ice skating and maybe catch a glimpse of one of the many shows recording an outside clip.

New York Botanical Garden: Entrance to the grounds only is free all day Wednesday and on Saturday from 9AM to 10AM.

Oculus: The Oculus is a new transit hub at the rebuilt World Trade Center site in downtown Manhattan. The Oculus is a train station, plaza and shopping mall adjacent to the memorial site for the September 11, 2001 terror attacks.

World Trade Center and 9/11 Memorial: The memorial is open daily from 7:30 AM to 9PM.

The Bronx Zoo: On Wednesday the zoo offers General Admission by a pay-what-you-wish donation.

Statue of Liberty New York City

Staten Island Ferry: It is the perfect option to see the Statue of Liberty and the New York Skyline. The ferry cuts across the New York Harbor and the ride is totally free. If you want to go to the Statue of Liberty you have to take a different ferry but it cost $18.50 for adults and that does not includes the ticket to go to the crown, which you have to reserve long in advance.


Vessel is a structure and landmark that was built as part of the Hudson Yards Redevelopment Project in Manhattan. It opened on March 15, 2019. It is a new landmark in New York City with a high demand from tourists. It is meant for people to walk up the stairs to the top but if you have a disability or you are a senior you can take the elevator. It is free to enter but you need to make reservation beforehand online. Tickets are made available for two week time periods so plan accordingly. If you run out of luck and there is not more tickets available you can go every morning at 9:30 AM and hope to get a ticket. You can climb the 150-foot spiraling sculpture’s tangle of interlocking stairs as long as you come in pairs or groups. Tickets were previously free but now they cost $10.

*These museums have suggested admissions but the amount that you pay is up to you, they ask to be as generous as possible as this money is to fund the arts. Pay what you wish admissions are available only at the ticket counters.

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