Activities & Adventure 9 MINS READ

16 Best Things To Do In NYC This Weekend: May 2021

16 Best Things To Do In NYC This Weekend: May 2021

Activities & Adventure 9 MINS READ

With its range of postcard-perfect landmarks, picturesque views and delectable cuisines, the only question one should have about the city of New York is when can you visit again? 

It boasts an enviable range of historic staples and hidden gems, along with a food fare that’s so famously succulent, that one always eats well here. Even in these uncertain times, the age-stained Statue of Liberty continues to hold its flame up high, while the streets of Manhattan light up with teeming Christmas markets! 

Come weekend, and the city is out with a fresh batch of things to do and discover. You can spend Saturday evenings foraging through charming markets or bask in beautiful scenery over a classic American Sunday brunch. 

With a plethora of things to do in NYC this weekend, — and more to offer — be assured to have your visits filled with captivating views and fascinating adventures! 

Join us as we scour the sparkling streets of New York City for iconic locations, COVID 19-free attractions, and all other things to do in NYC this weekend. 

Note: Make sure to double-check COVID 19 precautions, protocols and operating hours before you visit any of these sites.

What To Do In New York This Weekend: Nov 2020

1. Head to a comedy club

Things to do in new york this weekend

We often forget that among the many things that the city of New York has given us are evergreen comical Broadway, binge-worthy sit-coms and of course, the widely-acclaimed Saturday Night Live. In fact, they say some of the best comedians in the world are from NYC. It’s no wonder then that the city is filled with vibrant comedy clubs that host top-notch stand-up gigs!

So, if you are in the mood to cackle with laughter, make sure to catch a show.  

While Comedy Cellar in Greenwich Village and The Knitting Factory in Williamsburg remain all-time favorites, Slipper Room Comedy Club in Lower East Side or The Jane Hotel in West Village are just as good. 

COVID safety measures:

  • Find out the capacity for every show.
  • Keep your masks on at all times.
  • Choose to go at a time when there are fewer people. 

2. Revisit a museum 

Museums in East Village, New York City

Being an epicenter of culture, history and politics, the Big Apple has many stories to tell. That’s probably why you will find century-old museums in every nook and cranny of the city.  

Talking about museums, one dare not miss out on the iconic Metropolitan Museum of Art. A popular site for historians, enthusiasts and curious tourists from all over the world, some believe it’s as old as the city itself. 

Then there’s the American Museum of Natural History and New-York Historical Society Museum — both a must-visit to understand the best way about humanities and histories. 

COVID safety measures:

  • Call the museum to check operating days and hours before your visit. 
  • Maintain a one-way route. 
  • Avoid touching hard surfaces. 

3. Visit The Rink at Brookfield Place 

The Rink in Brookfield Place

Head out to The Rink in Brookfield Place with your friends and family to enjoy an evening of classic NYC festivities! Tucked away in Lower Manhattan, The Rink is known for its scenic views of the waterfront and skyline. 

Here you can indulge in some fun family-friendly activities such as ice skating, free gift wrapping services, and art installations.  

COVID safety measures:

  • All activities are hosted outdoors. 
  • Young skaters can opt for a private skating rink that permits only 5 children at a time.
  • The main ice skating rink is bigger than most in the area, allowing more distance among visitors.  

4. Marvel At Macy’s Flower Show

 Lenox by Mello Tablescape flower decoration during famous Macy's Annual Flower Show in the Macy's Herald Square in midtown Manhattan

Taking place from May 2, 2021, to Sun, May 16, the iconic Macy’s Flower Show is the perfect way of welcoming springtime. The theme of the 46th edition of the event is “Give. Love. Bloom.”, and the show will feature artfully landscaped gardens inspired by the feeling of hope for a brighter year. Millions of colorful flowers, plants and trees from all over the world will be on display at Macy’s.

5. Get Your Creative Juices Flowing At The Frieze Art Show

The Shed building, in NYC

Art lovers, rejoice! From May 5-9, 2021 the Frieze Art Show will bring together over 60 high-caliber galleries at The Shed, alongside a line-up of talks. Some of the world-renowned art galleries that will participate in this year’s edition include Gagosian, Mendes Wood DM, and White Cube. There will also be an online program featuring Marina Abramović, Jessica Morgan, and Annabelle Selldorf.

6. Plan a day in Coney Island

Coney Island in NYC

Coney Island is NYC’s go-to hangout spot for a lazy afternoon by the beach. You’ll find tourists cozily soaking in the sun and sipping on cheeky Pina Coladas, as children keep themselves busy building sandcastles. In winters, however — particularly this year — things are different. The island gets isolated and rather quiet, although making it a great option to wander off to from the city’s heaving crowds! 

No matter what time of the year, you can bank on the island to keep you entertained with its endless list of things to do in New York.

We also recommend grabbing some beers at Coney Island Brewing Company, taking a stroll across the Atlantic Ocean Boardwalk, and experiencing the ocean breeze.

If you’re looking for a comfortable weekend home this holiday, also check out the best rates on CuddlyNest.

COVID safety measures:

  • The number of visitors is regularly recorded. 
  • The Coney Island Wiener Stand remains closed. 
  • All waterparks and water slides remain closed.

7. Reconnect with wildlife 

Bronx Zoo in NYC

Much has been spoken about the neon glitz and glamour of New York City, but a lesser-known fact is that it is also home to some of the world’s most unique zoos and animal parks! 

The Bronx Zoo, Staten Island Zoo and Queens Zoo are among the best ones. You can plan a day observing a variety of unusual species and watch live performances.

Some zoos in NYC are also known for hosting special events with celebrities. So, ensure that you call them up to find out more details before leaving the house. 

COVID safety measures:

  • Most zoos have opened single-way paths for visitors.
  • Visitors are permitted in a limited capacity.
  • Visitors must purchase tickets in advance. 

Free Things To Do In NYC This Weekend: November 2020

8. Walk along the Brooklyn Bridge

Brooklyn Bridge is one of the outdoor free things to do in NYC

With the bustling Brooklyn Bridge quieter than usual, now is a good time to take a gentle stroll here and soak in the city’s picturesque skyline. Grab a cup of coffee and head to NYC’s iconic landmark that connects Manhattan with Brooklyn. You’ll find bicyclists enjoying a ride as other patrons capture stellar views from the bridge for their Instagram feed.

We also recommend visiting the Brooklyn Museum, which is NYC’s third-largest museum, while you are in the vicinity.

COVID 19 safety measures:

  • Choose to go at a time when there are fewer people. 
  • Maintain a distance of at least 6 feet.
  • Avoid touching walls and other surfaces.

9. Hang out at NYC’s iconic Central Park

Aerial view of Central Park, in New York City.

One of the best outdoor things to do in NYC this weekend to escape its crowded sidewalks is taking a quiet walk through the grassy lawns of Central Park. Arguably the most peaceful and picturesque haunt in the city, it is known for its sprawling playgrounds and hypnotic fountains! Along the way, you’ll also spot intricately designed statues, sculptures — and during the holiday season — a picture-perfect ice skating rink!  

We also recommend exploring the zoo and the mall in the area, along with the charming lake-view restaurant, Rock The Boat.

COVID safety measures:

  • Before you sit on a bench, carefully sanitize it yourself. 
  • Choose to go at a time when there are fewer people. 
  • Maintain a distance of at least 6 feet.

10. Revisit the Statue Of Liberty 

visit statue of liberty in NYC this week

Located in the Lower Eastern region, the Statue of Liberty continues to be among the most sought-after activities in New York this weekend. Steeped way back in American history, it stands tall at 305 feet, brimming with eager tourists! 

If you are looking for events and free things to do in NYC right now, hop on the Staten Island Ferry, from where you will be able to admire the statue free of cost.

While you are in the area, also plan a visit to Red Hook in Brooklyn, and board the widely-popular IKEA water taxi at Pier 11.

COVID safety measures:

  • The statue is currently admitting fewer visitors. 
  • All tickets can be purchased online.
  • Social distancing is being carefully followed.

Fun Things To Do In NYC This Weekend: Nov 2020

11. Dig into Hershey’s Chocolate

Hershey's chocolate world in times square in nyc

Hershey’s Chocolate is a classic dessert that everybody with a sweet tooth should have in their arsenal. Head to Hershey’s Chocolate World in Times Square to indulge in the world’s widest variety! Don’t forget to sample decadent choco-filled brownies or chocolate cookies, and wash it down with the creamiest milkshakes!  

You’ll also find a gigantic candy machine, as you dig into freshly-baked bread and cakes at the bakery section. 

Note: If you are looking for what’s there to do in Times Square this weekend with your kids, we highly recommend this one!

COVID safety measures:

  • The venue is operating on reduced capacity.
  • Entry tickets are available online
  • Visitors can opt for free-timed tickets. 

12. Explore NYC’s High Line 

High Line in NYC

Manhattan’s famous High Line is an artistically designed, elevated park that sits on an old railway line and overlooks the Hudson River. Furnished with manicured grass, comfortable seating and ample space to lounge, this is the perfect place to stretch your legs and unwind at. 

Surrounded by an array of charming eateries and shops, the High Line also features some of the most eclectic art installations in the city. 

COVID safety measures:

  • Events, restaurants and bars remain shut. 
  • Visitors can opt for free-timed entry.
  • Limited entry and exit points for more space. 

13. Plan an evening at The Greens, Pier 17

A couple watching the sunset over the East River, in NYC.

The Greens at Pier 17 is famous for its vibrant drinking and dining events in NYC. This year, however, it is offering a new experience with a socially distanced restaurant along with manicured lawns turned into tiny cozy cabins. There’s live music, DJ sets, and, of course, tantalizing views of the East River Waterfront.

Don’t forget to also sample Christmas cocktails and festive bites and at The Greens. 

COVID safety measures:

  • All cabins must be booked in advance, and for not more than 90 minutes.
  • All cabins are carefully sanitized between each reservation.   
  • Patrons have to opt for contactless payments.

NYC Events This Weekend: May 2021

14. Catch the Say Their Names Installations 

art installation and events in NYC

The Public Theatre Facade in East Village in NYC is showcasing visually-striking installations, dedicated to victims of police brutality and white supremacy such as George Floyd. The installation, which is free of cost, features works of 10 artists and is also streamed live for online audiences.   

COVID safety measures:

  • Choose to go at a time when there are fewer people. 
  • Maintain a gap at least 6 feet.
  • Keep your masks on at all times.

15. Witness NYC’s street art

Art installations and events in NYC right now

If you are an art enthusiast who’s still in election mode, one of the best things to do in NYC this weekend is heading to witness the city’s enthralling artworks across the streets of Soho! You will witness gigantic murals that illustrate various aspects of American politics and real-world issues such as the Coronavirus.  

The creators of the wall art are also hosting a fundraiser with the aim to curate more murals, and make this among major NYC events today. 

COVID safety measures:

  • Choose to go at a time when there are fewer people. 
  • Maintain a social gap of at least 6 feet.
  • Keep your masks on at all times. 

16. Enjoy a free self-guided tour at Industrial City, NYC 

Things to do in NYC right now

Mulling over what to do in NYC this week? You might want to check out Industrial City that is hosting a free walking tour, featuring 14 captivating murals by local artists. The art pieces intricately depict all major events that have taken place in 2020, including the Coronavirus, self-isolation, and racial disparity in the country.

COVID 19 safety measures:

  • Visitors must scan the QR code to receive notes and the map. 
  • The route is sprawled across three courtyards to maintain social distance. 
  • Additionally, visitors must maintain a social distance of at least 6 feet at all times.

Here’s the city of New York in all this glory! An endless array of best events and things to do in NYC this weekend will keep you entertained, while its world-renowned restaurants will make sure you are well-fed. You can bank on the Big Apple for keeping you amused, excited and always wanting for more! So be sure to never be disappointed by the city — even amidst the pandemic. And if you are especially someone traveling for happy places, the city of New York is the place to be.

While you continue rediscovering the beauty of New York, also keep an eye out for exciting travel deals in 2021!     

Read more