Free NYC Museums

Arts & Culture

by nycgo.com staff, 12/31/2014

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These New York City museums are either always free, free on specific days of the week or free for select hours. Find one near you, and take advantage of their generosity.

Note that this takes into account general admission only; certain events and special exhibitions may still require a fee. 

For hours and prices of more NYC museums and institutions, see our Schedules and Admissions page.

Always Free
African Burial Ground Memorial Site
BRIC House
The Bronx Museum of the Arts
Federal Hall National Memorial
The Federal Reserve Bank
General Grant National Memorial
Hamilton Grange 
The Harbor Defense Museum
The Hispanic Society of America
Irish Hunger Memorial
Leslie–Lohman Museum of Gay and Lesbian Art
Museum of Biblical Art
The Museum at the Fashion Institute of Technology
National Museum of the American Indian
The New York Public Library Stephen A. Schwarzman Building
New York Transit Museum Annex & Store, Grand Central Terminal
Queens County Farm Museum
Scandinavia House: The Nordic Center in America
Snug Harbor Cultural Center & Botanical Garden (grounds and botanical garden only)
Socrates Sculpture Park
Soldiers and Sailors Monument
Theodore Roosevelt Birthplace

Sometimes Free
The following museums typically require paid admission but open their doors for free on specific days or times—though again, some do charge for admission to specific events or sections. Be sure to consult their websites or call ahead if you hope to see a specific exhibition.   

Mondays
Museum at Eldridge Street (10am to noon, tours)

Tuesdays
9/11 Memorial & Museum (5pm to close, best to reserve two weeks ahead)
The Brooklyn Botanic Garden

Morgan Library and Museum (McKim Rooms only, 3 to 5pm)
Wave Hill (9am to noon)

Wednesdays
Bronx Zoo (pay what you will for grounds access; does not include admission to special exhibitions like the Butterfly Garden, Congo Gorilla Forest and JungleWorld)
Museum of Jewish Heritage (4 to 8pm)
New York Botanical Garden (free grounds access; does not include entry to the Enid A. Haupt Conservatory, special exhibitions like the Orchid Show and Holiday Train Show, Everett Children’s Adventure Garden, Rock and Native Plant Gardens or Tram Tour)
Queens Botanical Garden (April through October, 3 to 6pm; all day rest of year)
Staten Island Zoo (2 to 4:45pm)

Thursdays
Brooklyn Children's Museum (3 to 5pm)
Museum of Arts and Design (pay what you will, 6 to 9pm)
Museum of Chinese in America
New Museum (pay what you will, 7 to 9pm) 

Fridays
Asia Society (September through June, 6 to 9pm)
Historic Richmond Town (1 to 5pm)
Japan Society
(6 to 9pm)
Morgan Library and Museum (7 to 9pm)
Museum of Modern Art (4 to 8pm)
Museum of the Moving Image (4 to 8pm)
New York Aquarium (pay what you will, 3pm to close; 4pm to close in summer)
New York Hall of Science (September through June, 2 to 5pm)
The New-York Historical Society (pay what you will, 6 to 8pm)
Rubin Museum of Art (6 to 10pm)

First Friday of the Month
Children’s Museum of Manhattan (5 to 8pm) 
Neue Galerie (6 to 8pm)
The Noguchi Museum

Saturdays
The Brooklyn Botanic Garden (10am to noon)
The Jewish Museum
Museum of American Finance

New York Botanical Garden (free grounds pass, 9 to 10am)
Solomon R. Guggenheim Museum (pay what you will, 5:45 to 7:45pm)
Wave Hill (9am to noon)

First Saturday of the Month
Brooklyn Museum (5 to 11pm)

Third Saturday of the Month
El Museo del Barrio

Sundays
Frick Collection (pay what you will, 11am to 1pm)
The Morgan Library and Museum (McKim Rooms only, 4 to 6pm)
New York Hall of Science (September through June, 10 to 11am)
Queens Botanical Garden (April through October, 4 to 6pm)
Studio Museum in Harlem

Seasonal
Brooklyn Botanic Garden (November through February, weekdays)
Queens Botanical Garden (November through March, Tuesday through Sunday)

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check-out date

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