If you want to have a fun outing with your family, without breaking the bank, here are a few great free activities to do with your family in the New York tri-state area.
There are three different ferry rides that you can take across the river, each of which are free. They can all be accessed from one of the Piers near Wall Street.
The first is the Ikea Ferry that takes you from lower manhattan across the River to the Ikea store in Brooklyn. It is free on weekends. We took this one a few weeks ago. The ferry was air-conditioned, clean and while full, not jam packed either. When you get to Ikea you can shop, picnic by the water-front and let your kids play in their great play-space. The Brooklyn Ikea is known for having a great big play-space. The boat ride itself was quite a treat for the kids – and very relaxing for us adults. Check here for more information on ferry times and location.
There is also a free ferry from lower mahnattan to Governor’s Island. Governor’s Island is a beautiful Island where you can rent (or bring your own bicycles), enjoy large parks and a beautiful waterfront view of Ellis Island and the Statue of Liberty. It is open to the public Friday through Sunday and on holiday Mondays. During the summer they often have many different festivals and activities for adults, families and children. Visit the Governor’s Island website for hours and the exact ferry location. This is a beautiful day’s outing with your family.
The Staten Island Ferry is another free ferry that takes you from Lower Manhattan to Staten Island. Once on Staten Island you can visit the beaches or walk around the waterfront. Again this ferry is free but it is a much, if you are travelling with small children, it larger and more crowded ferry than the Ikea ferry.
Since Kosher restaurants and food stands aren’t so easily accessible from the Islands and ferrys, you might want to pack your own Kosher lunches and snacks – which happens to be another great way to save money.