One of the best days on the summer calendar is Independence Day. If you want to have a really special 4th of July, head to the Big Apple. Take advantage of one of the many New York Attractions that the city is famous for.
If you’re looking for New York 4th of July Weekend 2019 ideas, check out some of these local activities and fun things do in New York in July, including…
- Statue of Liberty at Ellis Island
- Luna Park at Coney Island
- Macy’s 4th of July fireworks
- NYC Harbor Cruise
- and more…
Save on Admission to Popular Attractions
Regular admission to a number of these attractions are available on the New York City Explorer Pass.
Choose as you go from dozens of New York attractions & activities and save up to 50% off combined admission vs paying at the gate.
Please note, some of these special July and 4th of July weekend events may be separately ticketed and not available on the New York City Explorer Pass.
Macy’s 4th of July fireworks
July 4, 2019
Macy’s will launch over 40,000 fireworks for a 25-minute show. This year is their 43rd annual fireworks show! The fireworks will be set off from Brooklyn Bridge and four barges on the lower East river. For the best view of the fireworks over the Manhattan skyline, head to Brooklyn Bridge Park in DUMBO, Brooklyn Heights Promenade, or Frank Sinatra Park in Hoboken, NJ.
Insider tip: Pack a picnic, beverages, a football, and some games to play with friends and get there early to score a good spot.
Getting In: The Macy’s 4th of July Fireworks are free to watch.
The Statue of Liberty & Ellis Island
There’s no better way to celebrate Independence Day than visiting one of the most iconic symbol of American freedom.
Visit both Liberty Island and Ellis Island to see the Statue of Liberty up close and explore the Ellis Island Immigration Museum.
These activities are likely to be extremely popular during the holiday season. Be sure to make any reservations you might want to make for pedestal tickets, etc., far in advance. However, the 4th of July falls on a Thursday this year, so crowds may be split between the weekends on either side.
Getting In: Statue of Liberty Ferry tickets are available as an option with the New York City Explorer Pass.
Head to Coney Island for some festive, boardwalk-style fun. This place has been delighting summer travelers for generations, and is sure to please you and your family.
Relax on the beach, ride the roller coaster, and play some carnival games. Then, enjoy some classic, fried-fare and a Nathan’s Famous hot dog for an All-American day on the boardwalk.
See if this will be the year that somebody breaks the record for the most hot dogs consumed in 10 minutes in Nathan’s Famous 4th of July Hot Dog Eating Contest. It has been a 4th of July tradition since 1916!
Insider tip: Get the best views of the fireworks on the boardwalk between West 10th and West 12th streets or, take a spin on the Wonder Wheel.
Getting In: The fireworks are free to watch. Luna Park tickets are available as an option with the New York City Explorer Pass.
Enjoy the Outdoors
A great way to see the city — from big ticket attractions to hidden gems — is to hop aboard your very own bicycle. You’ll get a local’s perspective on the city and be able to tailor your explorations to suit you interests.
Check out a New York bike rental, strap on a helmet, consult a map, and start exploring the city like a true New Yorker.
New York has expanded their bike lanes in many parts of the city, so getting around on two wheels is easy in many areas.
Many New York attractions are bike accessible, so as hang onto the lock that comes with your rental. Then, stashing your bike during a visit to a museum or restaurant will not be not a problem.
Getting In: New York City bike rentals are available as an option with the New York City Explorer.
New York SummerStage
This popular free NYC event is beloved by locals and visitors alike — those who know about it, that is.
Taking place in Central Park, SummerStage offers a wide variety of music and dance performances that everyone will enjoy.
On the weekends around the 4th of July this year, you’ll see performances that run the gamut from contemporary Jamaican to house music to soul and more. Keep in mind that although most events are free, some do require tickets.
If you want to explore the park after enjoying a bit of these free performances, consider a guided walking tour, which will highlight the most important landmarks and sites of this iconic urban park.
Getting In: SummerStage events are free to attend. Central Park Walking Tour tickets are available as an option with the New York City Explorer Pass.
4th Annual Freedom Fest @ South Street Seaport
July 4, 2019
This amazing musical event is the perfect way to really immerse yourself in local NYC happenings.
Featuring an expert DJ who’ll provide a variety of musical stylings, plus a full summer barbecue buffet and an open bar (!), this is the place to party this 4th of July. Keep in mind that it’s a bit pricey, so you may want to consider this event if you have a hefty budget.
This event actually kicks off an entire season of music in the Seaport District, so if you’re visiting later in the month, be sure to check out their schedule as well.
If you want to explore the area more during another time, a must-see attraction in this neighborhood is the iconic Brooklyn Bridge. Take a guided tour across the bridge to get some fresh air and exercise, too.
Getting In: Brooklyn Bridge & DUMBO Tour tickets are available as an option with the New York City Explorer Pass. The Freedom Fest is separately ticketed and is not included with the Pass.
One way to beat the often horrible July heat in NYC is to get out on the water.
Hop aboard a sightseeing cruise for some excellent chances to get the perfect Insta. And, you know, to actually see a lot of the city, too!
A Landmarks Cruise will focus on big picture buildings and major highlights.
Getting In: Landmarks Cruise tickets are both available as options with the New York City Explorer Pass.
America’s Favorite Summer Pastime
What better way to celebrate our nation’s birthday than with an afternoon enjoying America’s favorite summer sport? Though the Yankees aren’t playing on the 4th itself, they are playing against the Toronto Blue Jays throughout June and July.
Love baseball, but simply don’t have time for a game? Take a guided tour of Yankee Stadium to see this the many facets of this historic arena — including Derek Jeter’s retired number.
Getting In: Yankee Stadium Tour tickets are available as an option with the New York City Explorer Pass. New York Yankees ball games are separately ticketed and are not included with the pass.
Remember to Save on Attraction Admission
There you go – plenty of fun ideas for things to do in New York in July to help you plan your 4th of July weekend itinerary.
Remember, many of these great ideas are included on the New York Explorer Pass, where you can save up to 55% on combined admission vs paying at the gate.
We really hope you consider adding a few of these popular options to your upcoming plans. Enjoy!