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Best things to do with Kids under 10 in New York City

15 Jun 2011  Love to experience NYC tourism with my kids and husband!
4.5 of 5 stars based on 6 votes

We live on Long Island and love to take our three kids ages 5, 7 and 10 all over the five boroughs to do things. People often ask us what are our favorites and this is what I would like to share.

  • Explore locations featured in this Trip List: Bronx, New York City, Brooklyn
  • Category: Best of
  • Traveler type: Culture, Sightseeing
  • Appeals to: Families with small children
  • Seasons: Spring, Summer, Fall
  • 1. Bronx Zoo
    Bronx Zoo, Bronx, New York

    You can do this in three hours if doing half or most of the zoo. It may take foour or five hours to do everything. Consider a membership (premium is great as it includes all extras like a total experience ticket) if you are also going to do the Aquarium, Prospect Park Zoo, Central Park Zoo and/or Queens Zoo. Get here at opening for best parking and head to monorail and/or children's zoo before 11:00 for avoiding lines.

  • 2. Central Park Carriage Ride
    http://www.centralpark.com/guide/activities/horse-drawn-carriages.html

    We did this last summer with the kids and they loved it. It is nice an short, about twenty minutes, and only costs $50 for the whole family. You just meet oneof the many horses at the south end of Central Park and there is usually no wait.

  • 3. Circle Line Sightseeing Cruises
    Circle Line Cruises, New York City, New York

    We did the half island 2 hour tour about two or three years ago when the kids were all under 8 and they still loved it. My husband and I loved it and talk about doing the full island tour wth just us and friends. Kids loving being on a boat and the person narrating kept us interested. They sell snacks and drinks on board but you can bring your own.

  • 4. Rockefeller Center
    Rockefeller Center, New York City, New York

    Last year (the same day we did the carriage ride in Central Park) we did the Top of the Rock, the rink bar for ice cream and pina coladas, the Nintendo Store (pic with mario, a highlight!) and the Lego Store. We all loved it. Consider eating at the rink bar as well. We made the mistake of going to a TGIFridays nearby and found the prices much higher than normal Fridays.

  • 5. New York Aquarium
    New York Aquarium, Brooklyn, New York

    We are members so we head there about twice a year. It is a nice 2-3 hour experience. Look ahead to see the sea lion show (usually at 11:30) and go early when it opens at 10:00 to avoid crowds and get great parking. (membership includes four parking passes at the level we purchased.)
    Don't miss other feedings and the touch pool. Food can be purchased (seems like the same vendor as Bronx Zoo, some healthy options as well) or brought in.

  • 6. Statue of Liberty
    Statue of Liberty, New York City, New York

    This list is not in any particular order as this would probably be the thing you should have to see if visiting NYC as a tourist. We took the boat from Battery Park an headed over one morning for a nice walk around the island. We did not go in. It was 2006 and the 9/11 stuff still made security tough, and with 3 kids, one being an infant, we opted to just see it up close, but not go in. We do plan to take the kids back int eh next year or so and visit the top. If you are in for a one time NYC trip I would recommend this. They do sell food on the island but you can bring your own.

  • 7. subway and cab ride

    Not sure why my kids thought this was "SO COOL!" but they did. A year later and my son still talks about the train underground. Use each at least one on your trip (get pics) as it will be remembered!

  • 8. American Museum of Natural History
    American Museum of Natural History, New York City, New York

    Wish we could go here every year, it's that great! The giant whale is always a highlight as well as the dinosaurs. It's great to have two adults with you if you have kids of different ages as my oldest daughter wants to read EVERYTHING and the youngest wants to keep moving. FUN and educational!

  • 9. Central Park
    Central Park, New York City, New York

    My kids love it here. We try to do something here every time we are in the city. The Zoo is small and fun and includes a nice Children's Zoo. (again, memebrship is great!, buy online ahead to save time) They love the playground (think it is called Hecksher?) and the carousel. They love just climbing rocks. And you must take a pic of them climbing rocks amid all the greenery with skyscrapers in the background. Hope to do boat rental at theboathouse in the future. Be sure to download a map before going as the paths can be confusing. And plan your food ahead of time because the neighborhood up here and can be tough to find food if you don't know where to look .

  • 10. Yankee Stadium
    Yankee Stadium, Bronx, New York

    OK so I am a Met Fan who married into a very serious Yankee family. My first trip to the new stadium was the second opening day with my girls and I was so impressed. They love it too. There is so much to eat and the place is beautiful. Consider the tour of the legends field and food at the Hard Rock Cafe. (Check online for tours on non game days as well...prices are HIGH for game tickets.) I may be a Met fan but I loe coming to this stadium.

  • 11. Citifield, home of the Mets
    http://mlb.mlb.com/nym/ballpark/citifield_overview.jsp

    As a Met fan I have to love this place. The new stadium is nice than the old one,although not as great as Yankee Stadium. I love the parking lots, much easier than Yankee. I love the dunk tank and mini ball field for the kids. (although there are lines, see about when it opens and get there early!) and I love the food. If you are a baseball fan, bring the kids and have a great day!

  • 12. Times Square
    Times Square, New York City, New York

    My kids love it here! We walk around and they have to visit the M&M store, Hershey Store and of course, the giant ToyRUs with a ferris wheel inside (it's huge, even a bit scary.) Make sure you get tickets for the ferris wheel early and plan your time around getting back for that time. Kids love the Bubba Gump Shrimp restaurant, and the entertainment that always seems to happen in the streets of Times Square.....living sculptures, singers, art exhibits, etc. Plan to stay around 3 hours just walking around. Harry Potter Exhibit is on our list this summer!