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Top Family-Friendly NYC Activities

Polina Roze
Senior Concierge, New York Marriott Marquis
Polina Roze
Senior Concierge, New York Marriott Marquis
1535 Broadway

Polina Roze, Senior Concierge of the New York Marriott Marquis (©Jeff Zaruba)

There is plenty to do in NYC if you’re traveling with kids, from roller coasters in Brooklyn to camels in the Bronx. Here, Polina Roze, Senior Concierge of the New York Marriott Marquis (1535 Broadway, 212.398.1900), shares her top recommendations for all.

The Bronx Zoo (©Wildlife Conservation Society/Julie Larsen Maher)

Most visitors will pay a visit to the Statue of Liberty, Empire State Building, etc. But what are the three other “must-visit” locations visitors should check out with the family? The American Museum of Natural History is first on my list. Look up in awe to see a gigantic whale in the Milstein Family Hall of Ocean Life. Visit the Discovery Room, where kids can solve scientific puzzles and explore fun games. Don’t forget to check out the IMAX movies and the Hayden Planetarium in the Rose Center for Earth and Space. Families can spend the day at the Bronx Zoo, watching keepers feed sea lions and penguins; taking a camel ride and exploring exhibits, such as the Congo Gorilla Forest; and seeing the Madagascar! attraction, which showcases unique wildlife from that island. Finally, Luna Park in Coney Island, Brooklyn, will bring you back to the Golden Age of Coney Island. Enjoy the beach, boardwalk, Cyclone roller coaster, and don’t miss biting into an authentic hot dog from Nathan’s Famous.

Rose Center for Earth and Space (Courtesy American Museum of Natural History)

What itinerary would you plan for a family to have the perfect day in NYC? Take a New York Water Taxi or a New York Waterway’s East River Ferry to DUMBO/Brooklyn Bridge Park Pier. If you prefer, you can walk across the iconic Brooklyn Bridge right into the heart of DUMBO—an artsy, trendy neighborhood: Even the mega-burger classic Shake Shack recently opened up in the ‘hood. Other eateries include one of the top pizzerias in the country, Grimaldi’s; Jacques Torres Chocolate; and The River Café, situated directly under the Brooklyn Bridge.

Are there any neighborhoods in NYC that are family-centric? The Upper West Side of Manhattan is famous for its access to Central Park, excellent shopping and restaurants. One of my all-time favorites, Cafe Lalo, serves international desserts and tasty fare any time of the day. 

What are your favorite events in August?  August is a great time to try out a gourmet lunch or dinner find during NYC Restaurant Week. August also hosts the beginning of the US Open tennis championship in Queens. See the best tennis stars at Arthur Ashe Stadium. Summer’s not over yet!