No city in the world has more or better fun things to do in NYC. In addition to world-class museums – the city is home to amazing events all year long. Here is a curated list of unusual things to do to help you uncover what’s happening best in the city.
1 – Try indoor skydiving at iFLY Westchester
Experience the thrill of skydiving without any of the danger. iFly Westchester is a themed wind tunnel for indoor skydiving. So there is no jumping, no bad weather, no danger, just a jolly good time to spend with your friends of family!
2 – Balance your mind and body at Aire Ancient Baths
In an industrial building from 1808, the AIRE is an experience of sensations that runs through different thermal baths, massages as well as other experiences which you will find absolutely delightful!
3 – Spend an afternoon at Modern Pinball NYC
Pinball games are old school, but challenging and always fun to play. Experience the fun and excitement of dozens of vintage and modern pinball machines at Modern Pinball NYC and learn about the science of pinball.
4 – Get a tattoo at Bang Bang
Located in NYC on the lower East Side, Keith “Bang Bang” McCurdy is considered one of the most successful tattoo artists in the industry. Many superstars such as Rihanna, Cara Delevingne, and Justin Bieber have all been tattooed by him.
5 – Earn your freedom and “Escape the Room”
Solve a series of puzzles and riddles using clues, hints, and strategy to complete the objectives at hand. Get out of the room on time and earn your freedom. You have 60 minutes max, so be quick!
The Escape Rooms of Clue Chase are suitable for everyone and fun is guaranteed! It is rated as one of the top things to do in NYC by Tripadvisor.
6 – Visit the Museum of the Moving Image
The Museum of the Moving Image is a media museum located in Astoria, Queens in a former building of the historic Astoria Studios. It houses a comprehensive collection dedicated to educating the public about the art, history, technique, and technology of film, television, and digital media.
7 – Cheer for the Knicks at the Madison Square Garden
The Knicks are one of the NBA’s original teams and have played in New York City since 1946. Watching a basketball game featuring the New York Knicks at Madison Square Garden is one of the best & fun things to do in NYC. Check out the matches at Madison Square Garden.
8 – Support the Giants at the MetLife Stadium
If you’d rather experience an American football game, head to the MetLife Stadium – home to the New York Jets and New York Football Giants. Located in located in East Rutherford (New Jersey), you will be amazed by the size of the stadium, 82,500 seats. Find out when is the next match at at MetLife Stadium.
9 – Have an unforgettable baseball experience at the NYC Yankee Stadium
Emblematic baseball team, the NYC Yankees will show you the soul of the American sports culture as well as the enjoyment it creates all around it!
10 – Join a scavenger hunt
Explore a whole new side of New York City during a scavenger hunt. Visit many of the iconic landmarks and have fun with your friends. Find the best Scavenger Hunts!
11 – Explore the history of organized crime at the Museum of the American Gangster
The Museum of the American Gangster is a two-room museum located at 80 St. Mark’s Place in the East Village in Manhattan. In this building that was once one of Manhattan’s most notorious speakeasies, you’ll find the most emblematic figures of American prohibition period such as Al Capone. Learn more about NYC’s darkest part of history.
12 – Watch & listen to the New York Philharmonic Orchestra
Founded in 1842, the New York Philharmonic is by far the oldest symphony orchestra in the United States and one of the oldest in the world. It plays a leading cultural role in New York City, the United States, and the world.
13 – Fly on a helicopter and be stunned by the view of NYC
Tours by helicopters are one of the most famous and fun things to do in NYC, specially for first time visitors. It is the most thrilling way to see NYC’s top landmarks, the Hudson river and its bay. Soar high above NYC skyline and enjoy the panorama.
14 – Hunt ghosts at the Ghostbusters Firehouse
Are you a fan of the mythic Ghostbusters saga? You may want to check out the Ghostbusters’ HQ then. Hook and Ladder 8, the building used for the exterior shots, is a working firehouse that has been around for more than a century. The firehouse is located at 14 North Moore Street at its intersection with Varick Street in the Tribeca neighborhood of Manhattan.
15 – Watch an outdoor film at Bryant Park
If you are in NYC during summer, spend an evening at HBO Bryant Park Summer Film Festival – one of Manhattan’s most-loved outdoor cinema events.
16 – Admire the spectacular view on Manhattan over the Hudson
The observation deck of the One World Observatory offers dramatic city views that turn magical at sundown. The visit to this observation deck offers a unique 360-degree view of the city. One World Observatory is also the tallest of the three most famous observation decks, which includes the Top of the Rock and the Empire State Building.
The One World Observatory offers the most impressive technological features for its visitors, with a mix of virtual reality, video guides and theater shows. Thanks to its location in Lower Manhattan near the 9/11 Memorial, the One World Observatory also offers fantastic views of the Statue of Liberty, Ellis Island and the harbor.
Because the One World Observatory is the newest, crowds can get a bit larger at this location, but the timed tickets ensure that you will probably never experience an unreasonable crowd size.
17 – Admire street art in Bushwick
New York City is a mecca for graffiti and street art, making it a very attractive playground for artists from around the world. Bushwick in a working-class district on the north side of Brooklyn where you admire amazing street art. Check how Barry McGee made this mural on Brooklyn. Watch Barry McGee’s Brooklyn Mural from Jason Schmidt on Vimeo. Discover NYC’s street art scene with a walking tour starting from 20$.
18 – Get your music fix at the mythic Cotton Club in Harlem
Cotton Club is a legendary nightspot in the Harlem district and one of the most famous jazz venues of the city, delivering some of the greatest music legends of the Jazz Age such as Duke Ellington or Louis Armstrong among many others. Jazz music experiences from 16$.
19 – Laugh out loud at the iconic Comedy Cellar
Founded in 1982, the Comedy Cellar is a comedy club situated in Manhattan (in the heart of Greenwich Village) where many top New York comedians perform. Discover the greatest stand up comedians (and underground talents) and have a great night
20 – Discover Harlem and attend a gospel mass
Harlem is a neighborhood in which the religious life is very strong, specially in the black community. Gospel masses and the energetic singing of its choirs have become famous worldwide.
21 – Watch a famous Broadway show
Broadway is the bright beating heart of the NYC’s performing arts scene. Watching a Broadway show is an experience like no other, fun guaranteed. There is no better place in the world to watch worldwide famous musicals, such as Aladdin, The Phantom of the Opera, The Lion King, Wicked, The Book of Mormon, Jersey Boys, and many more!
22 – Watch hilarious Drunk Shakespeare
A New York Times critic’s pick, drunk Shakespeare brings comedy central’s ‘drunk history’ to the stage. Join five professional New York actors, one of whom has had at least 5 shots of whiskey.
23 – Stroll on Chelsea Market
Located in lower Manhattan, West Chelsea has fast become one of the most chic residential neighbourhoods in New York. Chelsea Market is an enclosed collection of retail shops and restaurants in the historic National Biscuit Company complex. Eat your way through the Chelsea Market and enjoy a unique shopping experience.
24 – Try the legendary Di Fara Pizza
Are you looking for an experience that excites your taste buds? Di Fara is a typical family owned and operated pizzeria and regarded as one of the best pizzerias in New York City.
25 – Taste the best burgers at J.G Melons
A great burger is a beautiful thing, as simple as it is delicious. Established in 1972, the J.G Melons firm was called a few times the best burger in the city by famous frequenters such as the restaurateur Danny Meyer, or even best burger in the world by previous NYC Mayor Michael Bloomberg.
26 – Taste the best steak in the US at Peter Luger
Peter Luger’s Steakhouse, located in Brooklyn, serves one of the most delicious and iconic slabs of meat that you can get anywhere on the planet. If you are a meat addict and visiting NYC for the first time, this is a must-try.
27 – Enjoy the famous pastrami at Katz Delicatessen
Katz’s Delicatessen is a kosher-style delicatessen located on the Lower East Side in Manhattan. Established in 1888, this is arguably the best place in the city for a pastrami sandwich.
28 – Explore Manhattan’s Chinatown
Located in lower Manhattan, Chinatown disctrict is a highly populated neighborhood that draws foodies and tourists to its numerous Asian restaurants and unusual attractions from karaoke bars to cute shops. Chinatown is also a true New York story, the American Dream in action. The are many cheap walking tours that guide you to Chinatown, Soho and Little Italy.
29 – Visit Ripley’s Believe it or not
Ripley’s Believe It or Not NYC is home to a rare collection of some of the most unbelievable artifacts and thrilling exhibits from around the world. It is an interactive exhibition of over 500 bizarre exhibits with interactive experiences, divided in over 20 themed gallery.
30 – Experience the best speakeasy bars of NYC
Although the Prohibition era is over, this doesn’t mean you can’t enjoy the thrill of secret bars with hidden entrances. If you’re looking for a truly unique night out in New York City, check out those 2 speakeasy bars and have fun!
Live in Marie Antoinette’s quarters in Le Boudoir
Created by the owner of “Chez Moi” Le Boudoir is a Marie Antoinette themed bar. To get in, you will need to find the hidden door at 135 Atlantic Avenue near Henry Street.
Drink a unique cocktail at Attaboy bar
Attaboy bar is an intimate, semi-hidden craft cocktail bar located on the Lower East Side. The cocktails range from familiar standards to unique creations that are among the city’s best. To get in you’ll have to ring the buzzer at 134 Eldridge St (look for a window marked with M&H Tailors and Alterations) and pray they have space for you.
31 – Party like an animal at Output club
New York’s vibrant techno scene is not to be missed. Opened in 2013, Output club quickly established itself as one of the best and most respected clubbing venues in New York.
32 – Finish your night at Brooklyn Mirage
After partying til sunrise at Output club, why would you have to stop the party? Join the other party adepts at Brooklyn Mirage – a huge complex decked with thousands of plants! The Brooklyn Mirage owns a KV2 Audio System designed to keep your senses sharp!
33 – Find Wafels & Dinges’ Waffle truck and enjoy sublime waffles
“All the world is a wafel, and all of us are merely Dinges.”
Wafels & Dinges rules over the food truck scene in New York. This canary-yellow food truck travels around the city, dispensing ethereal waffles and rich toppings.
34 – Visit the Museum of Sex
The Museum of Sex, also known as MoSex, has showcased fascinating exhibitions exploring the art, science, and the study of human sexuality. It’s probably the most stimulating museum in New York! 🙂
If this list is not enough, there are other hundreds of activities to do!
Enjoy the best of NYC!
If you are interested in visiting unusual places outside the city, check out our list of 29 best Day Trips from New York City.
Don’t hesitate to leave a comment below if you have other unusual things to do in NYC. Share the fun!
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