Hi! I’m Mari! I’m a California native who’s been traveling nonstop since October 2015. I love sharing my travels with fellow wanderlusters and it means the world to me to be able to inspire others to get out there and enjoy life. I’m a seeker of good times, beautiful places, new experiences, and delicious food.
TOP 5 FREE THINGS TO DO IN NYC
A common misconception is that travel has to be expensive, but I love to prove that theory wrong. You don’t need to spend a lot to have a good time! There are awesome free things to do in every city, it just takes a little exploration, open-mindedness, and an adventurous spirit to find them.
New York City is one of my favorite cities in the entire world and it was also my home for two years. Living there really gave me time to discover and appreciate all of the unique places in the city and made me realize that some of the best moments are made by just walking around and taking it all in. Whether you’re on a budget or just looking for a new adventure, here are my top 5 activities not to be missed.
Check Out Grand Central Station – One of the first things you may notice about NYC is its undeniable, contagious, insane energy. There’s just this overall sense of excitement from the hustle and bustle, the mixture of cultures, the abundance of opportunities, and the amazing buildings that make up the city. Grand Central Station is a perfect place to experience this energy. Check out the iconic lobby with the turquoise ceiling and then find the “Whispering Walls,” where you can share secrets from across a hallway.
Visit the New York Public Library – I often joke that I’m a “Library Nerd,” because I love libraries. One of my favorite things to do in any city is check out the libraries. I find that they usually feature beautiful architecture, history about the city, interesting artwork, as well as being nice places to relax, use the bathroom, or charge your phone. The NY Public Library is a perfect example of how great libraries can be. Don’t miss the Rose Main Reading Room, which is my favorite spot.
Walk Across the Brooklyn Bridge – This one is by no means a secret, but don’t let that deter you from experiencing one of the best bridge walks in the world. I’ve walked it numerous times, during the day, at sunset, at night, both directions, and it never fails to impress. The views of the city are just unreal. It’s also a good excuse to head over to Brooklyn, which is a borough that shouldn’t be missed.
Ride the Staten Island Ferry – Want a free historical boat ride where you can see the Statue of Liberty and get epic views of the city? Look no further than the Staten Island Ferry! Departing frequently from lower Manhattan, this 25-minute ride let’s you see the sites without paying anything. Just hop on (note: the morning and evenings will have a lot of commuters), head to the right side of the boat for views of the Statue of Liberty and Ellis Island, and enjoy!
Enjoy Greenery on the High Line – As someone who loves being out in nature, one thing I realized from my time in NYC is that to prevent the city from feeling too much like a concrete jungle, regular missions to surround myself with greenery was necessary. The High Line is one of my favorite places to do that. Spanning from Gansevoort Street to West 34th Street, this park is built on an elevated former railroad track, offering green spaces to relax, a walkway free from cars, and unique city viewpoints.
Hope you enjoy these activities and that you discover your own free things to do! Make sure to check for free days at museums or botanic gardens, free summer concerts, and whatever other awesome thing are going on. Pack your own picnic lunch or grab a $1 slice of pizza, put on your walking shoes, and you’re good to go! Happy travels!
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