What Ages Get in Free to NYC Museums, Zoos, Amusement Parks

History roars to life at the American Museum of Natural History and kids under age 2 can see it for free. Photo by Marley White/courtesy AMNH
History roars to life at the American Museum of Natural History and kids under age 2 can see it for free. Photo by Marley White/courtesy AMNH
3/3/24 - By Jody Mercier

The best things in life may be free—but for families used to the high cost of living in NYC, that sounds like crazy talk. That's why we've pulled together this list of free times to visit NYC museums, gardens, and zoos with little ones in tow.

Bookmark this list of when your kids are eligible for freebies at New York City's best family destinations, from tourist hot spots like the Statue of Liberty to all of the New York City's top museums for kids and the best zoos and gardens, too. We've included a few of our favorite picks in nearby locales, too.

Note: Some places may ask for proof of age. Looking for a 100% FREE outing? Check out our roundup of no-cost admission hours for all-ages at NYC museums and our list of 101 free things to do in NYC with kids.


Free Admission for Under Age 2

American Museum of Natural History
Museum of Chinese in the Americas
Museum of Mathematics
New York Botanical Garden
New York Hall of Science
New York Transit Museum
Staten Island Museum

Free Admission for Ages 2 and Under

Bronx Zoo
Central Park Zoo
Museum of the Moving Image
New York Aquarium
New York City Fire Museum
Queens Zoo
Rye Playland
Six Flags Great Adventure & Safari
Staten Island Zoo

RELATED: Free Art and Play Space Opens at The Met

NYC museums with free admission for kids: Statue of Liberty Museum
The Statue of Liberty museum on Liberty Island offers visitors a new way to engage with the Statue of Liberty. Photo by Jody Mercier

Free Admission for Ages 3 and Under

Queens Botanical Garden
Statue of Liberty: Includes ferry ride, but only children taller than 4 feet are allowed to access the crown!

Free Admission for Ages 4 and Under

Intrepid Sea Air & Space Museum
New-York Historical Society and Dimenna Children's History Museum

Free Admission for Ages 5 and Under

Historic Richmond Town
Empire State Building
Museum of Food and Drink
One World Observatory
Snug Harbor
Top of the Rock
Spyscape: New York's Spy Museum
Wave Hill

RELATED: NYC Restaurants Where Kids Eat for FREE

NYC museums with free admission for kids: 9/11 Museum
The 9/11 Memorial & Museum offers age-appropriate programs for children. 

Free Admission for Ages 7 and Under

National September 11 Memorial & Museum

Free Admission for Ages 8 and Under

Sugar Hill Museum of Art & Storytelling

Free Admission for Ages 11 and Under

Brooklyn Botanical Garden
El Museo del Barrio
Guggenheim Museum
Morris-Jumel Mansion
Mount Vernon Hotel and Museum

Free Admission for Ages 12 and Under

The Cloisters
Metropolitan Museum of Art
The Morgan Library & Museum
Queens Museum

Free Admission for Ages 16 and Under

Museum of Modern Art

Free Admission for Ages 18 and Under

Cooper Hewitt Museum
The Jewish Museum
Museum of Arts and Design
The New Museum
Whitney Museum of Art

Free Ages 19 and Under

Museum of the City of New York
Brooklyn Museum

Free for All Ages

American Folk Art Museum
The Bronx Museum of the Arts
National Museum of the American Indian
Queens County Farm Museum: The museum does charge admission during large public events.

This post was originally published in July 2013 and has since been updated.

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