New York Week: Tips from A Local

I interviewed Amanda, a mother of two and long-time resident of New York City, for a list of her favorite off the beaten path activities with kids in New York City.

When visiting a city like New York, deciding what to do can be overwhelming. With almost 500 square miles of city, the Big Apple is intimidating, and it can be easy to stick to the tried and true favorite kid-friendly activities, such as the Statue of Liberty, the Children’s Museum and Zoo, etc.

Granted, those places must experienced — but NYC offers a plethora of kid-friendly activities in addition to these usual suspects.

Photo Credit Tomas Fano on Flickr.

Wollman Park in Central Park

It goes without saying a trip to the Big Apple isn’t complete without a visit to Central Park, but how many visitors are aware that there is an amusement park hidden in the trees? During the summer months, Wollman Park is turned into Victoria Gardens, which features an array of kid-friendly rides and games, as well as several entertaining shows, including clowns, magicians, and more! In the wintertime, the Gardens are converted to an ice skating rink, so there’s fun to be had all year round.

Homer’s World Famous Malt Shop

If you’re looking for a restaurant that caters to the young, as well as the young at heart, then Homer’s is your destination of choice. Located in the Upper West Side, Homer’s has all the classic food you enjoyed as a kid, and your kids will love it too, like scrumptious donuts, vast ice cream sundae options, and good ol’ grilled cheese sandwiches.

Don’t be afraid of the inevitable sugar rush — Homer’s has a full arcade of kid’s games and an air hockey table, sure to wear out your little ones.

Photo Credit Wally Gobetz on Flickr.

The Chelsea Piers

Looking to wear out those youngsters, perhaps after indulging in some treats at Homer’s? Look no further than the Chelsea Piers. A large sporting complex located on the Hudson, your family will love the wide variety of options presented here: batting cages, basketball courts, an ice skating rink, a bowling alley, a golfing range, indoor courts for soccer, and more. There’s also a Rollerblade shop that allows you to rent skates and embark on the sidewalks along the Hudson River.

West Side Kids

West Side Kids, another gem located in the Upper West Side, stocks their shelves with toys geared to stimulate your child’s intellect and imagination. This quirky toy store does not carry electronic toys, so be warned this is not your go-to place for the latest video game.

West Side Kids has their products organized by age group, making it easy to find the perfect toy for all ages. The helpful staff is available for questions and is great at recommending toys.

The Gazillion Bubble Show

The Gazillion Bubble Show is an amazing 75 minute presentation that will stun and please everyone in the family. Featured on Letterman and Oprah, the Gazillion Bubble Show showcases lasers, special effects, and pure bubble artistry. Audience members are pulled on stage and encased in bubbles, sometimes as many as 18 at a time!

The show has set 11 Guinness Book of World records, and the bubble artist’s talents are sure to be a hit with your kids.

Relevant Links:

Ciao Bambino recommended New York family hotels

New York with kids – holiday activities

New York with kids – tips from a local

New York with kids – top 5 kid-friendly excursions

New York museums kids – 7 great options

New York family vacation – best online resources

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