Free NYC Museums

by Staff

(Updated 11/06/2019)

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.

BRIC House. Photo: Liz Ligon

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.

Museum at Eldridge Street. Photo: Julienne Schaer


Museum at Eldridge Street Synagogue (pay what you will, 10am to 5pm, tours)

9/11 Memorial & Museum. Photo: Marley White


9/11 Memorial & Museum (5pm to close)
Morgan Library and Museum (J. Pierpont Morgan’s Library only, 3 to 5pm)
Staten Island Zoo (2 to 4:45pm, through Feb. 11, 2020)
Wave Hill (9am to noon)

Bronx Zoo. Photo: Julienne Schaer


Bronx Zoo (does not include admission to special exhibitions like the Butterfly Garden, Congo Gorilla Forest and JungleWorld)
Frick Collection (pay what you wish, 2 to 6pm)
Historic Richmond Town (suggested donation)
Museum of Jewish Heritage (4 to 9pm)
New York Aquarium (pay what you will, 3pm to close)
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 to October, 3 to 6pm; all day rest of year)
Van Cortlandt House Museum
Staten Island Zoo (2 to 4:45pm)

Brooklyn Children's Museum. Photo: Julienne Schaer


Brooklyn Children's Museum (2 to 6pm)
Museum of Arts and Design (pay what you will, 6 to 9pm)
New Museum (pay what you will, 7 to 9pm)

First Thursday of the Month
Museum of Chinese in America


Courtesy, The Museum of Modern Art


Asia Society (September to June, 6 to 9pm)
Brooklyn Botanic Garden (March to November, before noon)
Japan Society (6 to 9pm)
Morgan Library and Museum (7 to 9pm)
Museum of Modern Art (MoMA) (5:30 to 9pm)
Museum of the Moving Image (4 to 8pm)
New York Hall of Science (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
Frick Collection (6 to 9pm, except September and January)
Neue Galerie (6 to 9pm)
The Noguchi Museum

The Jewish Museum. Photo: Alex Lopez


The Jewish Museum
New York Botanical Garden (free grounds pass, 9 to 10am)
Solomon R. Guggenheim Museum (pay what you will, 5 to 8pm)
Wave Hill (9am to noon)

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

The Morgan Library and Museum. Photo: Graham Haber


Brooklyn Children's Museum (4 to 7pm)
The Morgan Library and Museum (J. Pierpont Morgan’s Library only, 4 to 6pm)
New York Hall of Science (10 to 11am)
Queens Botanical Garden (April to October, 9 to 11am; all day rest of year)

Brooklyn Botanic Garden. Photo: Tagger Yancey IV


Brooklyn Botanic Garden (December to February, Tuesday to Friday)
Queens Botanical Garden (November to March, Tuesday to Sunday)