New York City

New York City Family Travel Guide – Activities, Restaurants, Hotels and Shows

New York City with kids can be a bit intimidating, but this wonderful city is brimming with fun activities, historical landmarks, diverse architecture, museums and major tourist attractions that the whole family can enjoy. With so much to see and do when you and the kids visit NYC, we put together our family friendly recommendations to help you plan out plan out your visit. This New York City family guide is sectioned off into categories which highlight some of our top choices along with links to our articles with the full list of recommendations and additional details.

Jump To: | Family Activities | Family Restaurants | Family Hotels | Broadway Shows | Family Travel Tips |


Family Activities in NYC

Planning your activities for your trip to New York City with kids can be exhausting as the city has so much to offer. Take into mind not to plan too much into each day and try to schedule your activities around the same part of NYC, otherwise your trip may seem rushed and your kids might lose steam half way through the day. Below are a few of our favorite family friendly activities that we recommend during your visit to NYC, along with a link to our complete list of things to do with kids in New York.

Family Restaurants in NYC

NYC is well known for its food and its culinary diversity. Having a meal in Manhattan with kids is almost an activity. Much like seeing a tourist attraction, there will be certain restaurants, eateries and carts that are on your must-do list when visiting. We put a list of family restaurant recommendations that offer up great food and a kid friendly atmosphere (for New York) that both kids and adults will love. Below are a few of our favorite family restaurants along with a link to our complete list.

Family Friendly Hotels in NYC

Traveling in New York requires a bit more planning when looking for a hotel room for the family. NYC hotels are typically a lot smaller than the average hotel room in other cities and finding accommodations for a family of three or four will have your choices whittled down a bit. Location can be a strong selling point for some families wishing to be in the heart of the action, while others may opt for a bigger room or quieter area in neighborhoods outside of the tourist hotspots. Below are three of our recommendations for family friendly hotels in New York City.

Broadway Shows for Kids & Family

Seeing a Broadway show is a perfect way to leave a lasting impression that your children will remember from their visit to New York City. Many of today’s Broadway shows are kid-friendly and have done a great job at appealing to children and parents alike. Below are three of our top show picks that the whole family would enjoy. Be sure to check the age minimum for each show before booking you tickets.

New York City with Kids Travel Tips

  • Start off your vacation planning by finding your family must-do’s and then piece them together without planning too much into each day and night. Try to plan your family activities in the same general part of the city to avoid running around with the kids with very little down time.
  • New York City can get quite expensive, so take advantage of the many free family friendly attractions, such as Central Park, that the city has to offer. Try to schedule in some free attractions and your family day will be packed with fun without spending too much.
  • Try not to make reservations for attractions or tours unless it is absolutely necessary. This may rush the family through their visits to other attractions, weather could impact your plans and it just puts undue pressure on everyone when they should be enjoying their time together.
  • With the large number of attractions, sights and entertainment choices available for families in New York City, it can be easy to schedule in way too much each day. Make sure not to pack your itinerary with so many activities that the kids will be worn out by the afternoon.
  • New York’s many museums have activities and programs for families that will have your kids enjoying the museum as much as you are. From scavenger hunts, workshops, age appropriate activities, family guides and more, the museums have put a lot into having the kids engaged, entertained and educated during their visit. Look into the family programs ahead of your visit to get the most of your time there.
  • Using the subway system is the best way to get around NYC with kids that are not in strollers. Grabbing an unlimited ride MetroCard may be the way to go if you are visiting for a week or so and kids that are 44 inches and under ride for free on the subways. Watch out for express lines as they skip some stops along their route and that might be the stop you need. Be sure you and the kids wear comfortable shoes as you will be walking around quite a bit.
  • If you are driving in to town, look up parking garage rates ahead of time as parking your ride in NYC is pretty expensive. We recommend checking sites like or even calling the hotel you will be staying at to ask what the best parking garages are close to the hotel. Some hotel employees will even tell you what garage they use to valet your car and then you can bring it there yourself and pay the public price, which is much cheaper.
  • Venture outside of Manhattan to one of the other New York City boroughs to experience all the other family friendly activities, sights, shopping and restaurants that New York has to offer. Walk across the Brooklyn Bridge, go on some rides at Luna Park in Coney Island, take a scenic boat ride on the Staten Island Ferry, explore the New York Botanical Garden and so many more family fun things to do.

We hope our New York City with kids vacation guide and travel tips will help you plan that perfect getaway for you and the kids. As you can see there is plenty to see and do in NYC, so check back here as we will keep all our family friendly lists up to date with all that the Big Apple has to offer. If you have any questions or know of any suggestions, please feel free to contact us or leave a comment.

New York City with Kids

Photo Credits: School of Rock by Matthew Murphy | The Lion King by Brinkhoff Mogenburg | Wicked by Joan Marcus | One World Observatory Sky Pod by One World Observatory | 9/11 Museum by Jin Lee | Lombardi’s Pizza by rheanvent and Los Tacos No.1 by Garrett Ziegler via license | Ess-a-Bagel from Daniel Castillo | The Halal Guys by Gina Sales | AKA United Nations by Preferred Hotels | The Tuscany by St Giles Hotels

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