By Rachel Galvin
Thinking about traveling with your family to the Big Apple? Wondering what to do? While this seems to be more of a great place for adults, there are places great for families, although waiting until children are a little older is probably preferred. Here are a few options.
- Metropolitan Museum of Art (www.metmuseum.org). From Egyptian temples to modern art, this is a great place to teach children about the art world. Ask about their family programs and free days. Exploreother museums nearby.
- American Natural History Museum (www.amnh.org). Look at fossils of dinosaurs; learn about whales or other creatures, see a film in IMAX or visit the planetarium. (While in the area, check out the Dakota Building (1 W. 72 St.). This 19th century landmark has been home to countless celebrities, including John Lennon, who died here. Nearby in Central Park, you will find “Strawberry Fields.”)
- Central Park Zoo (www.centralparknyc.org/visit/things-to-see/south-end/central-park-zoo.html). In the southeast corner of the park, birds fly free in the aviary while reptiles slither nearby safely behind glass. Monkeys preen on rocks in a serene man-made lake. Also look for a polar bear, snow leopard and other animals.
- Empire State Building (www.esbnyc.com). The 86th floor offers a great view. Bring quarters for a closer look.
- NBC Studio Tour (www.nbcstudiotour.com). See a behind the scenes look of some of the shows filmed here and be part of the action. Wear a jacket. It is very cold in here! Right next door is Radio City Music Hall (www.radiocity.com).
- Times Square. Experience the excitement of the Great White Way. Visit M&M World (1600 Broadway) and the Hershey’s store across the street.
- New York City Library (www.nypl.org). Visit the free exhibit “Why Children’s Book’s Matter,” about the history of children’s literature. On Fridays, from 1 to 2 p.m., in nearby Bryant Park, there are free fencing lessons. Call 212-382-2255 for info. Nearby are Grand Central Station and the Chrysler building.
- United Nations (http://visit.un.org) is currently closed from Sept. 21 to Oct. 7. They have a special tour for kids. Email firstname.lastname@example.org questions. Mail your postcards here; they have a post office near the gift shop.
- FAO Schwarz (www.fao.com). This is a must-see for kids of all ages! You can build your own doll, or a whole doll house. You can even play beautiful music with your feet on the full size piano, just like the movie “Big.” Look for the Zoltar.
- For a better view of the islands, check out the Circle Line Cruises (www.circleline42.com/new-york-cruises/home.aspx). Another great view is from the Brooklyn Bridge. See the nearby “Freedom Tower.”
Lodging is the most expensive part of a NYC trip. You can find food, gifts and even clothes that are very inexpensive. Do your homework, buy a book about the city that includes a good subway map. Look for discounts online. Bring your walking shoes and a camera. Take
the Big Apple by storm! See more at www.observernewspaperonline.com.
Metropolitan Museum of Art
Empire State Building
Freedom Tower (Ground Zero)