As the biggest city in the nation and one of the world’s most important centers for everything from finance to fashion, New York City is a hot spot for tourists from around the globe. Bustling with diverse cultural life and a vibrant youth scene, The Big Apple is one of the most exciting destinations for college students.
Not to mention the fact that NYC’s vibrant nightlife is almost unparalleled (they don’t call it The City that Never Sleeps for nothing!). Contrary to what you may have heard, New York attractions can be enjoyed on a college budget. So check out our list of the top places to visit in New York for college students!
Save on Attraction Admission
With a New York City Explorer Pass®, you can visit some of these great attractions all while saving up to 50% on combined admission vs. paying at the gate.
The New York City Explorer Pass® gives you the flexibility to create your own itinerary, so you can choose from dozens of top attractions and create a vacation tailored to your interests.
Madame Tussauds Wax Museum
This contemporary attraction is one of the most popular sites for students visiting New York and it’s conveniently located right in bustling Times Square.
The wax statues of your favorite celebrities (from Bieber to Obama) are so life-like that you can fool your friends with photo ops!
Getting In: Madame Tussauds New York tickets are available as an option with the New York City Explorer Pass.
Dave & Buster’s
This restaurant, bar, and the action-packed arcade is NYC’s prime place to eat, drink, and play. Dave & Buster’s features over 200 video games, fantastic American bar food, and an endless drink menu—what else could a college student ask for?
Getting in: Dave & Buster’s features a variety of options, from just dining or just playing games to combo packages with savings.
The Metropolitan Museum of Art
Whether you’re an aspiring artist or not, you can’t miss out on The Met! This world-class art museum houses over two million works of art and is the most-visited attraction in New York!
Ellen’s Stardust Diner
In the heart of Times Square, Ellen’s Stardust Diner is a great place to stop before (or after) your night on the town.
Getting in: Ellen’s Stardust Diner is open to the public.
NYC Food Tours
What college student wouldn’t be interested in a tasting tour of New York?
Because NYC offers such an abundance of delicious cuisine, you can choose from a number of specified tours—like the World Famous Sweet Tooth Tour or the East Village Variety Tour.
Getting in: Food on Foot Tours tickets are an included attraction choice on the New York City Explorer Pass.
Central Park TV & Movie Sites Tour
This comprehensive tour is the best way to see some of the most iconic Central Park spots from all your favorite TV shows and movies.
On this guided tour, you’ll get to see recognizable featured in Trainwreck, Home Alone II, Breakfast at Tiffany’s, When Harry Met Sally, The Smurfs, and lots more.
Getting in: Central Park TV & Movie Sites Walking Tour tickets are an included attraction choice with the New York City Explorer Pass.
St. Mark’s Place
For chic and cheap shopping, you can’t beat St. Mark’s Place in East Village. This shopping mecca attracts a young, eclectic crowd, as New York University is quite nearby.
Getting in: St. Mark’s Place is open to the public.
Dubbed New York’s most bizarre attraction, Ripley’s is the perfect spot for college students seeking a little off-beat fun.
Come face-to-face with strange relics like shrunken heads, and brace yourself for “sideshow wonders” like “The Incredible Lizard Man.”
Getting In: Ripley’s Believe It or Not! NYC admission is available on the New York City Explorer Pass.
Museum of Modern Art (MoMA)
The MoMA is the most influential modern art museum in the world, featuring iconic and influential pieces like Van Gogh’s “Starry Night.”
No trip to NYC is complete without a visit to this celebrated attraction, especially if you’re an art-lover!
Getting in: Museum of Modern Art (MoMA) tickets are available on the New York City Explorer Pass®.
If you’re like most college kids, you’re too cool for mainstream music. Lucky for you, Other Music, a small but overflowing shop in the hip East Village, has a heaping collection of alternative records and relics to peruse.
Getting in: Other Music is open to the public. Check their site for upcoming events.
Museum of Sex
You’d be hard-pressed to find a subject college students are more enthusiastic about. This progressive museum addresses a wide range of topics once considered taboo in order to present and preserve the history, evolution, and cultural significance of human sexuality. They also promote safe-sex practices.
Getting in: Museum of Sex tickets are available on the New York City Explorer Pass®. Please note: visitors must be at least 18 years of age.
Can’t live without your newest “iGadget?” At the Apple Store on Fifth Avenue, you’ll get lost in a world of cutting-edge featuring all your favorite Apple products.
Remember, if you want to save big bucks on admission when visiting NYC, scoop up a New York Explorer Pass and save up to 50% vs. paying at the attraction. You can even use it on your smartphone!