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Q: Fun things to do in NYC with a 7 year old ( Answered,   3 Comments )
Subject: Fun things to do in NYC with a 7 year old
Category: Arts and Entertainment > Restaurants and City Guides
Asked by: r2-ga
List Price: $15.00
Posted: 09 Aug 2003 12:19 PDT
Expires: 08 Sep 2003 12:19 PDT
Question ID: 241822
I am taking my 7 year old boy to New York City for  3 days amd I would
like a list of fun things to do with him.  SOme could be "educational"
(go to a zoo)  others could be just FUN (helecopter ride, virtual
reality).  Price is really not a consideration.
Subject: Re: Fun things to do in NYC with a 7 year old
Answered By: missy-ga on 09 Aug 2003 22:35 PDT
Hi r2!

When looking for fun things to do with a 7 year-old, I find it's
helpful to see what a 7 year-old thinks is cool.  As luck would have
it, I have one of those running around the place, so I dragged him
away from his game for a few minutes and asked him what he would like
to see and do if he had the chance to go to New York for a weekend. 
Now, Ernie's not a seasoned traveller just yet, but he knows what he
likes, and he had a list.

"The place with the dinosaurs!  And...and...that zoo in Parasite Eve! 
And the Statue of Liberty.  What was the name of that island in X-Men?
 That place, too!  And the art museum!  Where are they going to eat?"

OK, so Ernie likes the basics, and it all ultimately comes down to
where to find the food.  But it's a good starting point.

Are there any 7 year-olds on the planet who don't like dinosaurs?  If
yours still has a first name relationship with our very old friends,
he'll enjoy the American Museum of Natural History, which plays host
to, among other things, more than ONE MILLION vertebrate fossils,
including an apatasaurus and a triceratops.  Currently, there is also
a special exhibition about chocolate, which runs through September

(I caught the Chocolate exhibition last summer at Chicago's Field
Museum, and it was outstanding.)

The American Museum of Natural History

Next on Ernie's list is "that zoo in Parasite Eve" - The Central Park
Zoo.  Opened in August of 1988, the Central Park Zoo has earned rave
reviews from its nearly one million yearly visitors.  Carefully
planned to lead visitors through various habitats to visit with more
than 1400 animals, the Central Park Zoo also helps in conservation
efforts for red pandas and the rare and endangered tamarin monkey.

If your little guy likes to pet the animals too, the Tisch Children's
Zoo is right there to satisfy the craving for warm fuzziness.

The Central Park Zoo

You can't go to New York City without paying a visit to Lady Liberty. 
"Liberty Enlightening the World" has graced New York Harbor since
1886, and has become one of the most recognizable symbols for our

When I visited her in 1987, I was astounded by the view from the
observation deck in the Crown.  Alas, since the devastation of
September, 2001, the statue itself is no longer open to visitors, but
the grounds still are, and provide an interesting view of the statue
as well as of New York City.  Ellis Island National Monument is
included as part of the Liberty Island park (thus handling both the
Statue of Liberty and X-Men requirements nicely), and houses an
incredibly informative museum :

Statue of Liberty

Ellis Island

Statue of Liberty Facts

Ernie loves art museums, but he's not accustomed to having more than
one at a time - we have only one in Toledo! - so he didn't have any
idea where he'd want to start.

Personally, I'd choose the Brooklyn Museum of Art for its outstanding
Egyptian collection.  The collection is organized along a timeline
beginning in 1350 BC (Nefertiti's era), and extends through the reign
of Cleopatra VII (yes, *that* Cleopatra).  My own 7 year-old is a
great fan of mummies and sarcophogi; if yours shares the fascination,
he'll be enchanted here:

The Brooklyn Museum of Art

Thus concludes the resident 7 year-old's NYC wish list.  But!  I have
more to add for you:

For pure fun and a great way to satisfy your sweet tooth, try the
10,000 square foot candy oasis, Dylan's Candy Bar.  Dylan's is home to
thousands of candies from all over the world, and also boasts one of
the largest collections of vintage Pez dispensers!

Dylan's Candy Bar

In Central Park, Belvedere Castle beckons with spectacular views of
the park, a nature observatory...and it's a *castle*!  How cool is

Belvedere Castle

Tour the Big Apple like a real bigshot - in a helicopter!  Why not? 
Catch one of six different helicopter tours, from Liberty Helicopter
Tours.  Reservations for parties of five or less are not required, but
they are recommended if you're on a schedule:

Liberty Helicopter Tours

For a different look, a Hudson River cruise may be just the thing. 
Spirit Cruises offers several different cruises to choose from, all
with a gorgeous view of New York's skyline:

Spirit Cruises

For a screming good time, hop on Coney Island's world famous Cyclone
in Brooklyn.  Coney Island is the first and longest running urban
amusement park, with a history stretching back to the 1880's, and is
home to rides for both kids and adults, a circus sideshow, and the
famous Coney Island Boardwalk:

Coney Island

Broadway, anybody?  At seven, your son is at the perfect age to be
introduced to the theater!  Appealing to just about everyone is
Disney's Lion King, with Beauty and the Beast following close behind:

The Lion King

Beauty and the Beast

If Disney isn't his thing, why not start him off with a classic?  My
own children were introduced to Broadway theater this past January,
with The Phantom of the Opera, and they loved it.  Our resident 7
year-old was a little nervous at first, but quickly became engrossed
in the story and now pulls the cast recording out at every

The Phantom of the Opera

Oh wait...we forgot the food, didn't we?  Highly recommended,
particularly for a signature specialty called Frrrozen Hot Chocolate,
is Serendipity 3.  Serendipity 3 offers an extensive menu, the
occasional star sighting, and a chocolate themed gift shop just for

Serendipity 3

For more information and ideas, why not give these New York tourism
guides a look:

NYC Tourism

I Love New York - New York City Weekends

Great places to take children in New York City

Ernie Recommends:

NickJr. New York City Insider

I hope you've found this information helpful!  If you need further
assistance, please just ask and I'll be glad to help you.


Search terms:  [ "New York" with kids ] and the names of the museums
and zoo.
Subject: Re: Fun things to do in NYC with a 7 year old
From: aht-ga on 09 Aug 2003 12:38 PDT

There is a wonderful website from New York Magazine that includes a
summer fun guide for kids (or rather, activities for kids). They've
put a lot of work into it, so there should be a lot of options for
your three days:

I hope this helps you. As there was little effort required to find
this page, I will leave it up to you to decide if this is sufficient
as an answer, before I post it as the Answer. If you are looking for
personal recommendations, then perhaps another Researcher with "on the
ground" experience taking kids around NYC can help you.
Subject: Re: Fun things to do in NYC with a 7 year old
From: seedy-ga on 10 Aug 2003 05:03 PDT
Dear R2:

To add to Missy's thorough answer, I would suggest the Rose Center for
Earth and Space's Hayden Planetarium which is located at the American
Museum of Natural History. This fabulous building and exhibit is
satisfying for both adults and children. You can see the building and
get information about the exhibits and reservations at

A ride in a horse drawn carriage (hansom cab) through Central Park is
another activity which is stimulating and interesting to youngsters.
You can pick up the ride at the corner of 59th Street and Fifth Avenue
(across from the Plaza).

Hope you and your 7 year old have a fabulous time in the City that
never sleeps.

Search Strategy:  When I was seven....56 years ago...

Subject: Re: Fun things to do in NYC with a 7 year old
From: vintner-ga on 10 Aug 2003 11:33 PDT
(I wrote this yesterday, and forgot to post it.  Probably some doubled
links.  Argh.  Anyway, you'll have no shortage of stuff to do.)

Lucky boy.  New York is a great place for kids.  I'd check out the
pages given already, and see as
well.  If you choose Just for Kids (fourth selection) on the search
list, you'll get a number of options.

From personal experience, I'd highly recommend Central Park and the
Central Park Zoo ( ), the
Children's Museum of Manhattan ( ) and FAO
Schwarz ( ).

The Statue of Liberty is always impressive to see, although no more
going up.  Ferry fees are $10.00 for adults, and $4.00 for kids. 
Hours for that are 9:00am - 6:15pm in the summer.

At some point you MUST go up the Empire State Building.  Bring a
camera.  That's 9:30 - midnight, adults $11.00, children $6.00. 
That'll get you to the top; there's also an audio tour - they give you
a walkman, and it's 20 minutes of explaining what you're looking at
and a bit of history.
There's a great flight simulator, Skyride, in the same place that
virtually zips around NYC.  You can get a combo package - Skyride and
a lift to the top for $20/$14. is the building homepage.  You can buy tickets online,
which might help, since I guarantee there will be lines onsite (15-20
minute wait).

One of my favourites when I was young was Forbidden Planet.
Comics, models, science fiction stuff, monster masks, bouncing glowing
putty things, weird neon slinky tube things, holograms...  Lots of
items that are officially Cool when you're young.

If you check your Manhattan map beforehand, it'll be a lot easier to
plan an efficient trip.  You could spend a month doing different
things every day in NYC, so pick first, rather than wandering around. 
If you haven't been to New York before, you may be surprised at how
exhausting it is.  Don't plan too many events!

Depending on when you're going, the temperature and humidity may be
silly.  It's nice to have a water bottle with you, although street
vendors are just a step away.  Unless it's raining, don't take your
umbrella; they'll appear on the street within moments of the first
drop.  5 bucks will cover that (or $3, if you like to haggle). 
Sunscreen is handy.  The subways are air-conditioned, and very
convenient to get around.  If you're lost, ask someone.  New Yorkers
love to show off their mastery of public transportation, and they'll
be happy to help.  Immediately ask someone else, because people will
happily point you in the opposite direction rather than plead

If you're travelling with a 7 year old, or even wanting to stay on the
town all day, you'll need these sites:

As modern as NYC is, when nature calls, you'll be surprised how far
away the bathrooms are.  It's getting better, with plenty of Starbucks
and bookstores picking up the slack, but if you know what to look for
ahead of time, you won't run into any panicked situations.

Good luck.  There's more than enough to do, so don't feel like you
have to see it all this trip.  You're always welcome to return!

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