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Exploring Brooklyn on a Budget: What to Do at Low Cost (or Better Yet, for Free!)

Any trip to NYC deserves some time spent in Brooklyn. Brooklyn really is a city within itself, with so many fun vibes and cool things to do and see. There are many awesome neighborhoods to explore – Williamsburg, Dumbo, and Brooklyn Heights, just to name a few. Whether you’re coming for a day across the bridge or planning a longer stay, you’re bound to have a wonderful time!

It’s always a challenge to find affordable things to do while visiting NYC, so here are some suggestions of cheap (or better yet, free) things to do while you’re in Brooklyn! Get your trip started by booking a hotel that suits your needs, and let the exploring begin in beautiful Brooklyn!

Photo by personal friend, Josh Levinson

Parks & Strolls 

  • Walk the Brooklyn Bridge: Of course, no trip to Brooklyn would be complete without the classic walk over the 1.1 mile Brooklyn Bridge. Walk it at a leisurely pace and enjoy the many photo ops. Rest assured knowing that in 1884, 21 elephants crossed the bridge to prove to the public the bridge’s great strength! Price: Free!
  • Brooklyn Bridge Park: Spend a delightful afternoon in the Brooklyn Bridge Park! You can pack a picnic and relax while enjoying the gorgeous Manhattan skyline, or you can enjoy some of the park’s activities, such as seasonal film screenings, a swimming pool, and markets! Plus, it’s free!
  • Brooklyn Botanical Garden: Magically escape from urban vibes. Enter the Brooklyn Botanical Garden, one of the city’s most enchanting spots. Price: $15 for adults and $8 for students/seniors.
  • Jane’s Carousel: This was originally from an old amusement park in Ohio in the 1920s. The carousel now lives in Brooklyn with a view of the East River. Price: $2 per ride!
  • Enjoy cityscapes at Brooklyn Heights’ Promenade: This little nook of town is known to have the best views of the Brooklyn Bridge, the Statue of Liberty, and the NY Harbor.


Museums & Galleries 

  • Brooklyn Historical Society: Take a tour through Brooklyn’s 400-year old history at the Brooklyn Historical Society! Check out the beautiful historic building and one of the great exhibitions that share the charm of all that is Brooklyn! Price: $10 for adults, $6 for teachers and seniors. Free for kids and students (with ID!).
  • Mighty Tanaka: This hip gallery shows a true passion for art by featuring street artists and new artists. 
  • Browse Powerhouse Books: Make a visit to this huge independent bookstore. While it’s not technically a museum or gallery, it will certainly feel like it with so much to see. Window shopping is free!


Good Eats

  • Jacques Torres Chocolate: Grab a sweet bite at this chocolate emporium! Stand in awe as you see the chocolate chefs hard at work through the glass window.
  • Smorgasburg: Hit up this food market for a variety of gourmet and artisanal food vendors. Yum! 
  • Grimaldi’s Pizza or Juliana’s Pizza: Grab a classic New York pizza at one of the two top pizza spots in the city. The two battle for who has the best city in Brooklyn, so you might as well try both!


An adventure in Brooklyn lies ahead. Traveling on a budget is something that most of us keep in mind, so it’s always great to keep free/low-cost activities in the back of your head. Enjoy Brooklyn!

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