25 Fun Things to Do on a Rainy Day in NYC for Kids

PureWow Editors select every item that appears on this page,, and the company may earn compensation through affiliate links within the story You can learn more about that process here. Yahoo Inc. may earn commission or revenue on some items through the links below.

Read the original article on Purewow.

It’s raining, it’s pouring, your kids are bickering and you want to scream because the wet weather is making everyone a little stir crazy. Fear not: We came up with a list of 25 things to do on a rainy day in NYC that promises an exciting and fresh new experience, whether you’re flying solo, planning an impromptu date or hoping to entertain a whole brood. From pottery painting and origami to laser tag and espionage, here are our top picks.

The 15 Best Staycations NYC Has to Offer

Art Activities

1. The Painted Pot

  • Location: 200 7th Avenue, Brooklyn

  • Price: from $12 to $30

This cute pottery shop in the Park Slope neighborhood of Brooklyn offers workshops and classes for adults, as well as walk-in pottery painting for all ages. There’s skilled staff on hand to guide you if you need painting tips and when your masterpiece is complete, the shop will glaze and fire your piece. If you’re looking for a budget-friendly art activity that yields a handmade keepsake, this is the place to go.

2. The Craft Studio

  • Location: three locations in NYC (Upper East Side, Tribeca and Cobble Hill)

  • Price: from $29 per person

You can sign up for a class or workshop at The Craft Studio, but we highly recommend the drop-in crafting option, which is especially wonderful for kids but will appeal to artists of any age. There are materials available for a wide range of crafts—everything from slime and clay play to decoupage and sewing projects—and you can bring home whatever you make as soon as you’re finished. Walk-ins are welcome if tables in the drop-in studio are available, but it’s a safer bet to simply reserve a table online.

3. Taro’s Origami Studio

  • Location: Japan Village 2nd Floor, 934 3rd Ave., Brooklyn

  • Price: from $10 per person

Taro’s Origami Studio has a flagship store located in Brooklyn’s Industry City and it’s a very cool place to visit to see amazing origami installations and browse their wide selection of origami books and materials. Best of all, there’s a drop-in corner where kids and adults can try out the Japanese art form, and the (budget-friendly) cost of admission covers all the materials needed, plus guidance from their knowledgeable staff.

4. Children’s Museum of the Arts

  • Location: Pier 57, 25 11th Avenue, New York

  • Price: varies, but many events are free

Sadly, the Children’s Museum of the Arts—a non-profit dedicated to youth-oriented arts education—no longer has a physical space. They do, however, continue to offer a wide range of open studios for kids at Pier 57 which involve free and seriously cool artmaking activities. As for the grownups, you’re welcome to either watch or kick back in the cozy family waiting room while your kid gets creative.

5. Sugar Hill Children’s Museum of Art and Storytelling

  • Location: 898 St. Nicholas Avenue, New York

  • Price: free for children ages 0 to 8; $4 for youth ages 9 to 17; $7 for adults

There’s toddler time, storytelling hours, galleries, interactive art installations and a Studio Lab where kids of all ages can make their own art at this much-loved and blessedly affordable museum located in the namesake neighborhood, a historic cultural enclave in Harlem. In keeping with its mission to make early childhood arts education accessible to underserved communities, the cost of entry is either free or close to free, depending on the age of the visitors—but the engaging and immersive experience is highly valuable.

6. 81st Street Studio at The Met

Newsday LLC /Getty Images

  • Location: 1000 5th Ave., New York

  • Price: free

The 81st Street Studio is a space where children can discover the intersection of art and science with interactive exhibits. Highlights include a hands-on exploration of sound and a field scientist activity that involves a gallery adventure, complete with guided activities. There’s also a generously-sized and well-stocked children’s library in the space, which hosts storytelling time on Tuesday and Thursday mornings. And yep, it’s all free—just keep in mind that entry is on a first come, first serve basis.

Activities for the Whole Family

7. Puppet Works

  • Location: 338 6th Avenue, Brooklyn

  • Price: $10 per child, $11 per adult

This super neat Park Slope spot puts on professional puppet shows that will delight children of all ages and their parents, too. The performances are enthralling and the stories are thoroughly engaging. (The current show is an adaptation of Sleeping Beauty set to music by Tchaikovsky.) Oh, and the experience is a lot less expensive than a trip to the movies and way cooler, too.

8. New York Aquarium

  • Location: 602 Surf Avenue, Brooklyn

  • Price: from $26 per child and $30 per adult for non-members

The New York Aquarium is the oldest aquarium in the United States and it’s a very relaxing place to spend a rainy day. OK, if you have excited kids tearing through the place at breakneck speed, it’s slightly less relaxing. Still, it boasts over 500 species of marine life and 18 different species of sharks and rays, so there’s plenty of learning to be done here. What’s more, its location on Coney Island is just a short boardwalk stroll away from Nathan’s Famous, which means you can finish off your visit with one (or maybe two) of the best hot dogs around.

9. Rock Climbing at Movement

  • Location: Long Island City, Queens and Harlem, NYC

  • Price: $34 per (all ages) day pass

The wildly popular rock climbing gym formerly known as The Cliffs is now under new ownership, but the name is the only thing that’s changed. Score day passes for the whole family and you will have access to many rock climbing walls, including less intimidating 10-15 foot ones for kids, plus all the materials and instruction required for a safe indoor scramble. Plus, the activity promises climbers of all ages and experience levels an exhilarating adrenaline rush and a decent workout, so it’s a great way to shake the rainy day blues.

10. Laser Tag at Area 53

  • Location: 53 Bridge Street, Brooklyn

  • Price: $40 per person

This throwback activity has survived the test of time—namely because it’s still as fun as you remember to run around in the dark with a laser gun. It’s also an excellent way to bond with the family, due to the teamwork involved, and everyone’s strategic thinking skills will get a boost in the process, too.

11. Urban Air Adventure Park

  • Location: 4422 2nd Avenue, Brooklyn

  • Price: $24 for kids under 5, $40 for basic attractions and 50% off for parent passes

Head to the Gowanus neighborhood of Brooklyn where you’ll find Urban Air Adventure Park, an indoor playground and trampoline park with attractions galore. There are climbing hills and walls, rope courses, bumper cars, trampolines, virtual reality experiences, dodgeball games and a seriously impressive playground structure that’s really more of an elaborate obstacle course. In other words, if you’re looking for a way to keep your kids entertained for hours on end without a TV binge, this spot is well worth the cost of admission.

12. Harry Potter New York

  • Location: 935 Broadway, New York

  • Price: varies

Harry Potter fans will be delighted by this immersive and truly magical shopping experience. Wands, books, robes and every other type of Harry Potter merch you can think of is for sale and the store’s design is so well-done it really does feel like you’re stepping into the book, which means that you don’t necessarily need to break the bank just to enjoy the experience. That said, we do recommend at least treating the brood to some butter beer before you return to the mundane muggle world.

13. Chelsea Piers

  • Location: 62 Chelsea Piers, New York

  • Price: varies

A whole host of indoor recreation is on offer at Chelsea Piers. There’s an indoor driving range for golf enthusiasts, drop-in gymnastics, batting cages, basketball, ice skating, indoor soccer, pickleball, a toddler gym…and the list goes on. Pick a sport (or several) and enjoy a full day of indoor fun at this prized Manhattan spot.

14. Brooklyn Bowl

  • Location: 61 Wythe Avenue, Brooklyn

  • Price: $30 per lane, per half hour for up to 8 guests; shoe rentals for $6

Brooklyn Bowl is strictly 21+ after 6 p.m. where there’s a DJ or live music most nights, but the daytime hours on the weekends are certainly suitable for a family affair. Whenever you go, it’s a pretty exciting place to bowl thanks to the rock ‘n roll theme and delicious grub by Blue Ribbon.

15. Hex and Company Game Cafe

  • Location: multiple locations

  • Price: from $10 per player

For a modest admission fee, you can enjoy unlimited weekday play time (there’s a three hour limit but only on the weekends) and access to the enormous selection of games at this popular gaming spot, which boasts three locations throughout Manhattan. If family game night at home has grown a bit stale (Scrabble again?!), this is a perfect place to breathe new life into the time-honored routine.

16. SlooMoo Institute

  • Location: 475 Broadway, New York

  • Price: from $48 per person

Here, an ode to the sensory joys of slime in the form of an ASMR oasis that kids of all ages will enjoy. A visit to SlooMoo provides an opportunity to make your own slime, which can be customized with a wide range of colors, sparkles and scents. It’s a creative (and somewhat sticky) DIY experience that promises loads of sensory fun and might just bring out the inner child of any grown-up who goes along for the ride, too.


17. Brooklyn Children’s Museum

  • Location: 145 Brooklyn Avenue, Brooklyn

  • Price: $15 per person

Hands-on cultural and nature exhibits, a colorful and oh-so sparkly sand box for sensory play, a seriously cool air maze and a ColorLab Art Studio where kids can get creative with guided art projects—all this and more is on offer, and for a very reasonable price of admission, at the Brooklyn Children’s Museum. In fact, there’s so much interactive fun to be had at this beloved institution that families could easily spend an entire rainy day exploring the place.

18. MoMa

  • Location: 11 West 53rd Street, New York

  • Price: free for children under 16; $28 per adult

A leisurely stroll through New York’s famous Museum of Modern Art is a lovely place for adults to spend a rainy day—and if you think it sounds a little too sophisticated (read: snoozy) for kids to enjoy, think again. MoMa has a whole bunch of resources designed to make an art museum visit engaging for the younger crowd, including kid-friendly audio, sensory experiences and guides with scavenger hunts and drawing activities. There’s also the Heyman Family Art Lab where kids and adults alike can engage in a wide range of hands-on creative activities.

19. American Museum of Natural History

  • Location: 200 Central Park West, New York

  • Price: pay what you wish admission for residents of NY, NJ and CT

Museums can be costly, but if you live in the tri-state area, you’re in luck—the American Museum of Natural History will let you in for free (or with a small donation if you choose). It’s also a major center of research and a place brimming with educational exhibits on all things related to the natural sciences. With its dinosaur halls, mammal displays, ocean life exhibits, gemstone rooms and more, there’s so much to discover and learn at this treasured institution.


  • Location: 928 8th Avenue, New York

  • Price: from $37 per child and $44 per adult

Novelty museums are a dime a dozen in NYC these days, but they don’t all live up to the promise of being a place where you actually learn something. SPYSCAPE is an exception to the rule that provides guests with an immersive experience packed with fascinating educational content about all things espionage. There’s a self-guided tour featuring numerous exhilarating challenges (read: interactive games) that cover every aspect of the highly secretive spy world, whilst imparting plenty of historical information for context. You will also be given a personalized spy profile based on how you handled said challenges, and they can actually be repeated as many times as you want if you’re not pleased with your performance or just want to spend some more time out of the rain.

21. Brooklyn Museum

  • Location: 200 Eastern Parkway, Brooklyn

  • Price: free for all visitors the first saturday of every month; general admission always free for children ages 0 to 19; general admission $20 per adult; additional fee for ticketed admissions

The Brooklyn Museum is a worthy destination for adults seeking an art museum experience that doesn’t necessarily cater to little kids. That said, the upcoming exhibit “Artland” looks like a candy-colored feast for the eyes and all of the collections—period rooms, ancient African and Egyptian art, mid-century modern design and more—are truly fascinating. Plus, there are numerous family-friendly places nearby, including the Brooklyn Children’s Museum, so you can just add an extra stop to your itinerary if you have younger people to please.

22. Museum of Ice Cream

  • Location: 558 Broadway, New York

  • Price: from $25 per person

Remember what we said about novelty museums not always really earning their right to the title? Well, the Museum of Ice Cream is one such example. While there is some effort made, mostly at one specific stop of the tour, to introduce people to the history of ice cream as well as unique flavors from all around the world, it’s easily missed—particularly if you’re visiting with sugar-crazed kids who can’t wait to get their next free sample. Still, the elaborate decor in each room, the art installations and yes, the tons and tons of tasty ice cream all make this SoHo spot well worth a visit. There’s also a sprinkle pit that will delight kids and adults looking to take Insta-worthy selfies, and the largest indoor slide you’ll find in NYC. (We just wish you could speed down it more than once.)

23. Museum of Illusions

  • Location: 77 8th Avenue, New York

  • Price: family discount rate of $95 for two children and two adults; individual tickets for $23 per child and $29 per adult

Yet another novelty museum, but one that is, in fact, fairly educational and pretty interesting—the Museum of Illusions is a small space in Chelsea that’s bursting at the seams with interactive exhibits dedicated to every type of trompe l’oeil you can think of. There’s a gravity room that will make you feel seriously off balance (in a fun way), another room that’s designed to make you look like you’re climbing up the walls like Jamiroquoi when someone snaps a photo, and countless other exhibits that will make you feel like you’re Alice in Wonderland. The science behind every illusion is well-explained, though, so there’s education to be had amid the wild fun and the experience is totally family-friendly—just keep in mind that the place gets quite packed and rather claustrophobic on the weekends.

24. Color Factory

  • Location: 251 Spring Street, New York

  • Price: $48 per person

Color Factory is a funky art museum in SoHo featuring 14 different interactive art exhibits, including a confetti-filled park, a glittering golden room with a dance floor and DJ, a colorful exhibit illuminating NYC scenes and an aesthetically-pleasing ball pit not unlike the aforementioned sprinkle pit at the Museum of Ice Cream. There’s plenty more art to be seen and it is all a feast for the senses, having been designed by a talented team of contemporary artists and creatives as an ode to color.

25. The Noguchi Museum

  • Location: 9-01 33rd Road, Long Island City, New York

  • Price: $16 General Admission; free for children under 12

This institution is a museum founded by and dedicated to the work of prolific Japanese-American artist Isamu Noguchi and there’s no shortage of things to see. The galleries and exhibits feature many different mediums, including sculpture, paintings, photography and more. After taking a thorough tour, head up to the open studio—a space where both children and adults can make art inspired by their visit with the guidance of a professional.

15 Things to Do on a Sunday in NYC That Are Anything But Boring