NYC’s Official Destination Marketing Organization and Convention and Visitors Bureau Spotlights Free and Affordable Activities
New York City Tourism + Conventions, the official destination marketing organization and convention and visitors bureau for the five boroughs of New York City, is spotlighting a selection of free and affordable experiences for visitors to enjoy this summer.
“New York City offers something for everyone, no matter your interests, the length of your trip or your budget—there is more to see and do here than in virtually any other city in the world,” said Fred Dixon, President and CEO of New York City Tourism + Conventions. “During the summer months, NYC is buzzing with street festivals, outdoor dining and cultural offerings, in addition to beautiful parks, beaches and green space. We invite visitors to take advantage of the value of a summer visit to NYC and enjoy the many fantastic free and affordable activities on offer across all five boroughs.”
Select activities include:
Free Annual Events
SummerStreets returns on select Saturdays this summer, offering miles of open streets to play, walk and bike. The program comes to Queens and Staten Island on July 29; Manhattan on August 5, 12 and 19; and Brooklyn and the Bronx on August 26.
From August 10–20, the 48th annual Harlem Week will highlight the neighborhood’s rich cultural heritage, with celebrations including live music, dance performances, dining offerings, shopping and more.
Take the subway (just $2.75 one way) to Brooklyn for the West Indian American Day Carnival, which kicks off August 31. Festivities culminate in the parade on September 4.
Celebrate the 50th Anniversary of Hip-Hop
Hip-Hop started in New York City 50 years ago, on August 11, 1973. Celebrations include free concerts such as “Birth of a Culture,” Grandmaster Flash and Friends in the Bronx’s Crotona Park on August 4, and BRIC Hip-Hop 50th Anniversary Weekend on August 11–12.
Beatstro, the hip-hop inspired Mott Haven restaurant, offers a menu blending Southern comfort and Puerto Rican cuisine. Visit for happy hour from 4–8pm or a Beats n’ Brunch on weekends.
Join expert dance instructors for free Dance in Times Square Ailey Extension classes, including a hip-hop workshop and a Hip-Hop 50th Anniversary Celebration on August 10.
NYC Restaurant Week Returns
NYC Restaurant Week® is back! The biannual dining program returns this summer through August 20 with hundreds of restaurants across the five boroughs offering prix-fixe menus for lunch and dinner. A full list of participating eateries available at nyctourism.com/restaurantweek.
Go Island and Beach Hopping
Surrounded by water, the City is a collection of islands. All five boroughs are connected by the NYC Ferry, which costs $4 one way.
Brooklyn’s beachfront Coney Island neighborhood is perhaps best known for its boardwalk, with its Cyclone and Thunderbolt roller coasters, the Wonder Wheel, other amusement rides and games, and Nathan’s Famous hot dogs.
Pay a visit to Manhattan’s new public park, Little Island, which offers free access to waterfront views, interactive art, performances and events.
Another summer favorite is Governors Island, a car-free island with walking and biking paths, a hammock grove and food trucks. Governors Island Arts’ free events and workshops take place on the third Saturday of each month, through October.
Hop on the free Staten Island Ferry from Lower Manhattan and soak in views of the Statue of Liberty before visiting South Beach and Midland Beach. These waterfront neighborhoods offer beaches, a 2.5-mile boardwalk and a fishing pier.
Outdoor performances are a summer staple in NYC. Central Park’s beloved Shakespeare in the Park will feature performances of Hamlet, on view for free at the Delacorte Theater through August 6.
Enjoy free concerts in parks across all five boroughs with Capital One City Parks Foundation SummerStage, with performances spanning a wide variety of musical genres.
BRIC Celebrate Brooklyn! is celebrating its 45th season at the Lena Horne Bandshell in Prospect Park. Still to come in this year’s lineup are free shows by The Wallflowers (July 27); Jorge Drexler (August 3); The Head and the Heart (August 24); and more.
Catch a free movie, with outdoor screenings by Film at Lincoln Center now on view through September 1; Flicks on the Beach in Coney Island with a lineup including films for the whole family to enjoy; and Movies With A View on Thursdays through August 24 in Brooklyn Bridge Park.
Immerse Yourself in Public Art
NYC is one of the world’s great culture capitals, from unrivaled museums and galleries to the extraordinary public art programming found citywide.
The Public Art Fund brings free, contemporary art exhibitions to the public, with works currently on view in NYC parks, on JCDecaux bus shelters and in transit hubs including LaGuardia Airport, Newark Liberty Airport and Moynihan Train Hall.
Midnight Moment brings public art to 92 of Times Square’s iconic digital billboards from 41st to 49th Streets each night from 11:57pm to midnight. This summer’s program features artists Victoria Fard (July 1–30) and Scott Eaton (August 1–31).
Seaport Arts displays exhibitions throughout The Seaport in Lower Manhattan. This summer, see Hip Hop at 50 by Janette Beckman (on view through October 31); Fragments of the Dreams: A Surrealist Vision by SuperRare (through July 29); and more.
New York City’s economic recovery continued in 2022 with over 56 million travelers arriving in the City—a 72.5% increase over 2021. This activity marks the return of 85% of the City’s record 2019 visitation levels. The City remains on track to welcome 63.3 million visitors in 2023.
Visit nyctourism.com for all there is to see and do in New York City.