New York never sleeps. And with the non-stop pace of life in the Big Apple, many New Yorkers lead busy lives. It’s not uncommon to find locals eagerly waiting for the weekend to arrive so they can take a breather and do something fun outside their everyday routines. Fortunately, there are plenty of free things to do in NYC on the weekend that won’t leave your bank account crying in despair. There are so many excellent activities around town that you’ll wonder why you ever spend your time at home watching Netflix in your sweatpants. New York, Chicago, and Seattle are my favorite cities in the United States, and summer is the best time to explore these cities.
If you love exploring new places and keeping up with the local community, read on for a list of free things to do in NYC on weekends.
Events and Activities in NYC
NYC is one of the most eventful cities in the world. There are many things to do and attend here; you’ll be spoilt for choice. You can find a lineup of weekend events, from food festivals to outdoor concerts and sporting events. Here is a list of events in the city to help you decide what to do on the weekend
- The NYC Restaurant Week: This is a great time to try the best restaurants in New York at very affordable prices.
- The Armory Show: If you’re a contemporary art lover, the Armory Show is a can’t-miss event every spring. An essential part of the international art world, the show rotates between three cities yearly, with NYC being one of them.
- The Tribeca Film Festival: The Tribeca Film Festival is one of the best film festivals in the world and a place for emerging filmmakers.
- The American Open: If you’re a sports enthusiast, the American Open is a tennis tournament you don’t want to miss.
- The New York Comedy Festival: If you’re a comedy fan, the New York Comedy Festival is a great event to attend.
Free Sightseeing Tours
Sightseeing tours are a great way to receive a crash course in NYC history and culture. The best part is that you don’t have to worry about navigating the city’s confusing subway system. You can also choose from other tour types, including walking, hop-on, hop-off, boat, and combination. There are tour operators based on your interests.
Interested in learning more about the history and wanting to explore NYC’s rich and storied past, the Free Sightseeing Tour of NYC is great for you. You’ll learn about the city’s history, architecture and famous landmarks. If you’re a culture and art lover, the Free Culture Walking Tour of NYC will be right up your alley. NYC has some of the best museums and art galleries you can see through this tour.
Free Walking Tours
If you’re looking for a free walking tour of NYC, you can find a plethora of them on the streets of Manhattan. Most walking tours are led by volunteers who want to share their love for the city with tourists and locals alike.
- For an aesthete, the Art and Culture Tour of NYC is great. You’ll get to learn about the art history in New York and see the best museums and art galleries in town.
- For the foodies, the Food Tour of NYC is the best walking tour for you. On this tour, you’ll get to sample the best cuisine in New York and learn about the history of cuisines in the city.
- The walking tour of NYC’s history is a great choice for history buffs. You’ll learn about the history of New York and the rich culture that exists in the city. The walking tour of the 9/11 Memorial is a must for history buffs.
Free Concerts and Music Lessons
NYC is the place to be if you’re a music and art lover. There are so many music and arts events that you’re spoilt for choice. You can find free music concerts and lessons all around the city.
- For a classical music concert, you can visit the Metropolitan Opera House, one of the most famous opera houses in the world.
- The annual Jazz at Lincoln Center is a great event for jazz fans. For lovers of world music, you can attend many free concerts, such as those organized by the World Music Institute.
- For opera fans, you can visit the renowned Metropolitan Opera House.
Free Museum Visits
Museums are the best ways to learn more about history, culture, and art. If you’re visiting NYC on a budget, you can see the best museums in town for free.
- The Museum of Modern Art is a must for art and culture lovers. The Metropolitan Museum of Photography is a great place to visit if you love photography. The American History Museum is the best place for you if you’re fascinated with history and culture.
- The American Museum of Natural History is a great place to visit for lovers of nature. You’ll learn about the history of nature in the city.
- The Museum of Sports is an excellent place for sports enthusiasts to learn about sports in New York.
Free Yoga and Meditation Classes
If you’re looking to relax and meditate, Yoga is a great option. You can find free yoga and meditation classes in the city. The New York Downtown Center is a great place to visit for lovers of the ancient art and practice of Yoga. The Metropolitan Museum of Art hosts yoga and meditation classes for art and culture lovers now and then.
For sports enthusiasts, the Yoga in the Gardens at the New York Botanical Garden is a great place to unwind and relax. Free yoga classes are held at Central Park for lovers of nature.
Hit up a flea market or bargain bin sale
If you love sifting through second-hand items, you’ll love the flea market in NYC. You can find various items for sale, from vintage items to modern-day collectibles. If you’re visiting NYC on a budget, you can visit a flea market and find some great bargains. The best flea market to visit is the Greenwich Village Sunday Flea Market. You can also visit other flea markets in the city like the East Village Alternative Market, the Hell’s Kitchen Flea Market, and the New York City Outdoor Antique and Collectible Market.
Venture out on a food tour
If you love food and enjoy cooking, taking a food tour is a great way to learn about the cuisines of NYC. Through this tour, you can learn while sipping and tasting delicious food. You can find food tours exploring various cuisines, including Mexican, Chinese, Italian, Thai, and more. The best food tour in NYC is the NYC Food Tour, which is worth every penny. You’ll explore the city’s most delicious food, from pizza to bagels, hot dogs to pastries, and much more.
You’ll learn about the city’s rich culinary history, visit local food shops, and sample the best dishes in New York. You can find the food tour to suit your interests. If you’re interested in learning about pizza and its history, you can find a time to explore the best places to get pizza in New York.
New York City is a place where you can find things to do any day of the week. New Yorkers have an abundance of activities, from concerts and exhibits at museums to movies and spa services. It’s a city that never stops moving, so you’ll always find something interesting to do. If you’re visiting New York on a budget, the above shared free things to do in NYC will keep you busy and help you explore all the best the city offers.