New York may not seem like a very toddler friendly destination. They city is dirty and very busy with a lot of hustle and bustle. This may not seem like an ideal place to take a toddler; however, there are a lot of secret toddler hot spots within New York City. You would be surprised.
1- American Museum of Natural History
The American Museum of Natural History is definitely a Rainy Day Friendly activity. Actually, it is perfect for a rainy day! Here you will view artifacts like dinosaurs and big blue whales with your young impressionable children. Your toddler will be thrilled with all of the exhibits at the American Museum of Natural History. There are also quite a few activities and programs that are geared towards families with young children. For example, there is story hour, and science and nature programs. The discovery center is also a great place with a ton of hands-on activities.
2- Central Park
Central park boasts over 800 acres of natural beauty that is perfect for an outdoor adventure for the entire family. The Central Park Zoo is especially a favorite among toddlers and even older children. There is a water exhibit at the Belvedere Castle and boat rides at the Loeb Boathouse. There is also a central park carousel, which your little ones will love. When the sun comes out in the summer, there is story time at the Hans Christen Anderson Statue.
3- Bronx Zoo
Who doesn’t love the zoo? Your toddler will be enamored with over 4,000 animals that call the Bronx zoo home. The zoo is a wonderful place for children of all ages. There is a big carousel and camel rides, which is very exciting for these small kids. Going to the Bronx Zoo takes up the entire day. If you want to visit a different smaller zoo, then take into consideration the Central Park Zoo.
4- Children’s Museum of the Arts
The Children’s Museum of the Arts is another wonderful museum to visit on a rainy day. There are a ton of creative hands-on activities at the Children’s Museum. The activities range from making collages to playing clay, which all help your develop your toddler’s mind. The Wes Studio has art activities that are interactive and geared towards kids who are 5 and under. The Wee Arts program also has drop in sessions for kids to participate in. Each hands-on session explores a different artistic element such as music, stories and even play doh!.
5- New York City Fire Museum
What toddler doesn’t love a trip to the Fire station! Of course that means that the New York City Fire museum is a hot toddler spot. This is of course another rainy day friendly spot. Here your toddler can learn all about the history of New York City’s Fire department. Children will be wowed by the stories of the fires that plagued New York in the early days and the kids are even allowed to set the fire alarms off. These fire alarms are not more than simple wooden rattles.
6- New York Transit Museum
The New York Transit Museum is a rainy day friendly activity. Lots of toddlers are obsessed with trains. Is yours? If so you shouldn’t pass up the opportunity to visit the New York Transit Museum. Here your toddler will be able to climb into many historic subway and train cars, be able to gas up and drive a bus and do much more. This museum is located in Brooklyn Heights can be easily commuted to from Manhattan. This is also a great spot to visit if you are planning to visit the Brooklyn bridge.
7- Children’s Museum of Manhattan
Children’s Museum of Manhattan is another rainy day friendly museum. Here the exhibits are often interchanged with others. It is very interactive and hands-on for the young explorer. During the summer months, there is an outdoor water-play area. Don’t forget to bring extra clothes and a towel!
8- New York Hall of Science
The New York Hall of Science is a rainy day friendly activity. There are over 400 exhibits at the New York Hall of Science, and half of them are hands-on. This is a great way to teach young children about science. There is a science playground that has fun exhibits featuring sound and balance. There is a specific preschool place for toddlers that has great engaging hands-on activities.
9- New York Aquarium
The New York Aquarium is another good rainy day activity. Who doesn’t like a good aquarium. This toddler-friendly destination is easily accessible through the subway. You take the subway to Coney island and you can enjoy the entire day at the New York Aquarium. There are over 10,000 marine life species that call the New York Aquarium home. Some of these include penguins and sea lions.
10- Brooklyn Children’s Museum
The Brooklyn Children’s Museum is also a rainy day friendly activity. This was the first museum ever to be created for the sole purpose of entertaining children. It was opened in 1899. There is an exhibit called Totally Tots, which is specifically for children who are 5 and under. This exhibit promotes literacy and development. Children will also have a lot of fun playing make believe in the grocery store in the neighborhood.