The High Line is situated on the west side of New York and is a public space with so much on offer year-round. Built on an old freight line, this non-profit project features numerous art installations, gorgeous gardens and food stalls. Walk along the wooden promenade, chill out on the steps and simply soak up a chill-out atmosphere in one of the world’s most frenetic cities.
Many tourists pay a lot to take river tours across to Staten Island and the Statue of Liberty, but we’ll let you in on a secret – there’s a totally free way to see the very same things. The Staten Island Ferry transports locals and visitors alike between Manhattan and Staten Island; all that’s missing is a tour guide, but you’ll still have the same exhilarating experience.
Housed in a strikingly unique curved building, the National Museum of the American Indian , explores the Native tribes and peoples of the Americas. They have a range of permanent and temporary exhibitions as well as varying public programmes. There are four permanent collections: one takes a look at 80 years of Native paintings, a second focuses on contemporary Native art, a third looks at original objects and artefacts; and a fourth looks at Native Americans’ involvement in the US Armed Forces.
Geek out in Brooklyn’s Williamsburg on a free guided tour of its Brooklyn Brewery . It gives you a chance to learn about an important part of Brooklyn’s business heritage, as well as finding out more about the science of brewmaking; you’ll also get to check out the brewhouse and the packaging hall.
If you want to find out more about New York’s immigrant heritage, head to the superlative St Patrick’s Cathedral , where you can join a free guided tour of the site. It opened in 1879 and is designed in a striking Neo-Gothic style, which truly stands out against its modern skyscraper neighbours.
One of New York’s key sights is one of the easiest to do; simply cross the Brooklyn Bridge from Manhattan into Brooklyn, and take in the skylines of Brooklyn and Manhattan. Spanning a little over one mile in length, the bridge opened in 1883 and is recognised as both a National Historic and New York City Landmark; it truly is one of the best free things to do in New York.
Totally free and totally iconic, a stroll around Central Park should be at the top of any New York itinerary, and best of all it can be enjoyed on any budget. At a whopping 863 acres, the park sits slap-bang at the heart of the city; often referred to as the green lungs of Manhattan, you can enjoy a picnic, yoga, stroll and more here, all totally free of charge and set against a beautiful backdrop. As this article proves, New York holidays don’t have to be an expensive luxury; there are plenty of free, interesting things to do here – after all, this is the city that doesn't sleep...