Family Vacation in New York City, New York City, Family Vacation, Trip, Travel

Is New York City a Good Family Vacation? Kid-Friendly Attractions in the Big Apple

Though at first, you may frown upon the idea of having a family vacation in the concrete jungle, you may be surprised at how delightful of a time you could look to have in New York City. On family trips, you are looking for attractions that will keep the kids happy while ensuring that you have a good time yourself. With that said, New York is sure to be such a treat for the entire family.

 

There are some amazing landmarks and museums in New York which makes it one of the most rewarding cities to visit as a family. Coupled with the various sights of historic and cultural significance, you would be surprised by the numerous green spaces and waterfront public parks that are sure to delight visitors. Further to this, New York has some of the country’s best pizza, burgers and ice cream which can be a great treat for those kids who dream of a diet as such. 

 

There are some great parks and attractions intended for children, like the Gulliver’s Gate, which showcases the miniature city, including miniature versions of yourself which you can pick up at the gift shop. It is sure to captivate the imaginations of any visitor, with detailed illustrations such as the painted ceiling of Grand Central Station.

 

There are truly endless amounts of things to do in New York. Soon you will come to the realisation that your earliest doubts with regards to New York city being a good destination for a family vacation were far from the truth. 

 

In fact, we do recommend that you add New York City to your family’s bucket list of the places you want to visit. 

 

With everything the city has to offer, you may be wondering as to whether a family trip to New York City is worth it? After all, you may want some more information on what makes New York City so great for families before you decide for yourself if a family trip to the Big Apple is completely worth it or not. 

 

 

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Is Visiting New York City Worth it for Families?

 

New York City is a metropolis for art, fashion, food and theatre, all of which amount to great attractions for adults. However, that being the case, there are some spectacular attractions which make the city a rewarding experience for children too. Apart from the fact that you get to see huge skyscrapers, there are some amazing attractions such as Madame Tussauds which can be very appealing to children and adults alike. 

 

Though you may shrug away the idea of planning a family trip to the Big Apple, you may come to realise that a visit to the city can be nurturing, rewarding and motivating for many children. The fanciful life of one day living in a great city such as New York may come upon the minds of the young ones; it’s never too early to inspire them towards a path of independence and success. 

 

To simply answer the question, is New York City worth it for families? The simple answer is yes. There is so much to experience, from informative sights such as the Empire State Building to more entertaining venues such as Luna Park. It is also a great destination to experience art and culture, which can make a family trip to New York very educational. Plus, the food in New York truly makes it a delight for anyone, regardless of their cravings. 

 

All in all, you are sure to have a great time experiencing the city. If you don’t come from a big city, this can be a great treat for the children who get to learn a little bit more about big city life. 

 

So before you go second-guessing yourself, wondering whether New York City would be a good pick for a family vacation, keep reading this word to word as we point out to you, the various attractions of New York City which makes it such a popular destination amongst families. 

 

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Kid-Friendly Attractions in New York

 

If aren’t convinced yet, you will be after you come to the realisation that New York City has some amazing attractions which makes it an appealing destination for families. 

 

Here is our pick of the 10 best kid-friendly attractions in New York City.

 

1. Intrepid Sea, Air and Space Museum

 
This floating museum on a WWII aircraft carrier. It showcases some of the most famous air and spacecraft in the world. If your children love history and you are a little bit of a history bug yourself, a visit to the Intrepid Sea, Air and Space Museum can be a thrilling experience. 
 
 
This National Historic Landmark is sure to provide an educational experience, which will nurture the children about the great wars of the past. It is sure to provide for a rewarding memory. The museum offers a level of slow-paced excitement and fun that is varied to simply going to an amusement park. There are all sorts of things you can learn on your family vacation and this museum is a great example of everything you have the opportunity to absorb and experience from a trip to New York. 
 
 
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2. Bronx Zoo

 
The Bronx Zoo in New York is the largest urban zoo in the country. With 265 acres of animals and attractions, you will most certainly have to plan your day out to figure out what programs you want to catch. 
 
 
From the big cats to breakfast with penguins, there are shows that will captivate the minds of the young ones. There is a Children’s Zoo farmyard where you and the children can feed donkeys, sheep and goats.
 
 
If you are looking for a slow trail, you can jump on the Monorail which takes you through a ride around the zoo. If you and the kids prefer more of an adventure, you can try your hands at the aerial ropes course or the 400-foot zip line which runs over the Bronx River. This is great if you are travelling with older children. 
 
 

3.  Empire State Building

 
Probably the most recognisable landmark in the United States, this 102-story skyscraper is a must-visit for families visiting New York. 
 
 
You will have the chance to glance at the beautiful city landscape from the observation deck. The children will be left in awe by the sheer size of the building. 
 
 
The site is very popular, hence you could expect to have to stand in line to buy tickets. However, the sights from the top are simply worth the wait. If you would like to jump the hassle of staying in line, you can book your tickets online in advance or consider the VIP Express pass which comes at double the price. 
 
 

 

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4. American Museum of Natural History

 
There are over 150 years of history and scientific discovery on showcase at the museum. Some of the exhibits are tech-driven which can be rather appealing to children. Coupled with this, the 3D experiences that the museum offers is sure to provide your whole family with an informative and educational trip that is sure to be enriching. 
 
 
From the towering T-Rex skeleton to the huge blue whale model, you are sure to catch some amazing things on exhibit at the museum. You even have a chance to put together a dinosaur skeleton and even track earthquakes using a digital seismograph. 
 
 
All in all, you are sure to have a rewardingly educational experience; something you should most certainly include on your list of things to do in New York. 
 
 

5. FAO Schwarz

 

When FAO Schwarz closed down in Fifth Avenue after almost 80 years in operation, the kids were disappointed to state the least. This huge toy store was home to some of the most amazing toys with a 28-foot clock tower and marvellous toy soldiers from the ’80s and ’90s. 

 

The shop was brought back to life at the Rockefeller Center and has been more popular than ever. If you are visiting the Big Apple with children, take them to FAO Schwarz, they will love you more for it. 

 

Kids love shopping as much as adults, especially when it comes to toys. No trip to New York would be complete without a visit to this great store. Once again, your children will love you more for it. 

 

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6. Statue of Liberty

 

The kids must have heard about and seen this amazing landmark from school. Hence imagine how great it would be to actually see this great monument in person. Even if you are travelling with teens, the Statue of Liberty is sure to thrill those who look to climb up to the crown of Lady Liberty. 

 

The climb to the crown is surely one that is meant for the whole family. However, you do have to be at least 48 inches tall to embark on this adventure.

 

If you are considering the climb to the crown of this majestic monument, be sure to book well ahead of time. Tickets get sold out months ahead of time. 

 

Follow this link to be directed to the website to reserve your tickets.  

 

7. Gulliver’s Gate

 
This 50,000 square foot space is a miniature world of tiny taxis, streets, people and buildings. The cars actually move and the streets are lined with tiny people. 
 
 
Miniature things are home to children, from toys to dollhouses to Legoland. Gulliver’s Gate is sure to provide an exciting opportunity for the children to experience something they have never experienced before. 
 
 
You even have the chance to spot Spiderman preparing to leap from the Brooklyn Bridge. To add the icing on the cake, grab yourself the miniature versions of your family from the gift shop before you leave. It is sure to be a rewarding and memorable experience for the whole family. 
 
 
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8. Luna Park

 
Located a bit out of the way from midtown Manhattan in Coney Island, Luna Park is sure to be a treat for those who are looking for a nice amusement park to include in their family vacation. 
 
 
With a variety of thrill rides, you can grab a hot dog and enjoy the day with the kids. There are rides for both the older children and the young ones. From carousel rides and swings for the younger children, the older ones can try the scarier rides such as the Cyclone, which is a historic wooden roller coaster. 
 
 
Luna Park is sure to provide a day filled with entertainment and laughs. 

 

9. New York Transit Museum

 
This small museum near Brooklyn’s Borough Hall is an old subway station. You enter the museum just the way you would enter the subway. 
 
 
It is a great place to spend some time with the children, who would love the space to run around and play the subway driver. The vintage subway train at the museum is amongst one of the exhibits, there are also city buses and the museum covers more than a century of mass transit in New York. 
 
 
Make sure to get your hands on a nice souvenir to remember your family vacation to New York. 

 

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10. Eateries: Serendipity 3

 
Eateries are plentiful in New York City. However, if you keep an eye out, you would find some amazing places to eat that will not only attract the hearts of the young ones but will also take you to your childhood days.
 
 
Serendipity 3 is a restaurant-cum-soda fountain that serves beautifully oversized sundaes and banana splits. You could enjoy a soothing hot chocolate or mochaccino and they serve everything from meatloaf to hamburgers. 
 
 
After a few hours spent walking around the city and sightseeing, places like Serendipity 3 is sure to treat the children and yourself. 
 
 
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Is New York City Expensive to Visit?

 

New York City can be a really expensive place to visit, but that being you can visit the city on a budget. You could look to spend about $239 a day on accommodation alone, which can be rather expensive. 

 

However, if you choose more reasonable accommodation to stay with, you could see yourself spending less. You can find yourself reasonably comfortable accommodation for $150 a night if you choose to rent a room or go through Airbnb. 

 

The major expense that you would have to keep in mind is shopping. There is so much to buy in the big city, that you could easily see yourself spending $500 a day on shopping. If you and your family have shopping in mind, it is recommended that you expect the costs involved. 

 

If you are travelling on a budget, you could save money by simply choosing the way you get to New York. For instance, instead of flying, you could look to take the bus. 

 

All in all, if you are looking to spend and money isn’t an issue for your vacation, then the sky is the limit to how much you could look to spend in New York. With so many places to eat, so much shopping to be had and amazing hotels you can stay with, the sky is truly the limit with how much you could look to spend. 

 

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How Much Does a Family Vacation to New York Cost?

 

For a family of four, you should look to spending anything between $6,400 to $7,800 for a week’s stay in New York. The cost of the vacation simply depends on where you are looking to stay and what you are looking to spend on. That being the case, the average cost for a family of four to visit New York City is about $6,900 for a week’s trip. 

 

The greater chunk of the costs of the trip is the flight that you would be taking. Hence if you are on a budget, you could look to save some money on your flights or simply opt to take the bus instead. You could look to save quite a bit of money if you choose to take the bus. For those of you who are looking for a bit more privacy when on the road, you could also drive to New York at a lower cost than flying. This gives you the added advantage of not having to spend on transportation within the city, which can be expensive if you prefer taking taxis everywhere. 

 

With regards to your meals, you should look to spending about $2,200 on food to feed the four people during the week’s stay. 

 

All in all, you can expect a visit to the Big Apple to cost you a pretty penny. The costs we have highlighted in this article are simply estimates. You could end up spending more based on your lifestyle and spending. 

 

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What is the Best Time to Visit New York?

 
The best time to visit New York City is between April and June and September and November. During this time of the year, you would find the least crowds and obviously the most pleasant weather. The temperatures are not too cold nor too warm. 
 
 
If you are travelling on a budget, the cheapest time to visit New York is between January and February. Surprisingly, the second cheapest time to visit the city is in the summer, between June and July.
 
 
You can also find half-priced room in business hotels which usually run empty during the weekend. Hence if you are on a budget, you could find yourself a great place to stay at affordable rates if you plan a visit to include the weekends.
 
 
December and January are the coldest times of the year, hence if you are travelling around this time of the year you should expect snow and frost.
 
 
If you are travelling in spring between April and June, you could expect some light showers, hence it is a good idea to carry an umbrella, just in case it rains.     

 

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Is New York a Good Family Vacation?

 
All in all, if you are not from a big city yourself, a family vacation to New York would provide you with the means of exploring and understanding big city life. It could work to inspire and motivate your children to want to live in the big city someday. 
 
 
As mentioned within this article, there are some amazing attractions which are sure to keep the whole family entertained. Surely, there is enough within this article to cover a week’s trip to New York. 
 
 
New York can be an expensive place to visit, even if you are only travelling within the country. Hence do keep this in mind when you are planning your trip. With everything said and done, if you do plan a family vacation to New York City, you are sure to find yourself surprised at how good of a time you end up having. 
 
 
Though at sight or upon initial thought, you may shy away from planning a family trip to the Big Apple, there is truly much this great city can offer your family. 
 
 
We hope that we helped you decide for yourself if New York City is the destination for your next family vacation. We hope reading this word to word has provided you with some useful insight into visiting New York, so you know as to whether a trip to the big city will be worth it or not. Trust me when we say this, you will be pleasantly surprised!
 
 
Happy Travels!

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