Hit the Streets "A priority is to see the Statue of Liberty because it's such a memorable experience even for young kids," says Ogintz. Liberty Island, home of the New York icon, reopens July 4 after being closed for nine months because of damage from Hurricane Sandy. Book a ferry ticket ($17 for 13 and up, $9 for kids ages 4 to 12, free for younger kids) and make a reservation if you want to climb the 393 steps to the crown (permitted for kids over 4 feet tall). Back in Manhattan, put the American Museum of Natural History and MoMA, the Museum of Modern Art (read the children's book Seen Art? before you go) on your schedule ($19 for 13 and up, $10.50 for kids 2 to 12, free for younger kids for AMNH; $25 for adults, free for kids 16 and under at MoMA). Spend at least a half day in Central Park, where there's a zoo, a carousel, and climbing structures to explore. Also consider tickets to a Broadway show. The Lion King, Matilda The Musical, Rodgers & Hammerstein's Cinderella, Newsies, Annie, and Wicked are all
great picks for kids 6 and up; you may be able to snag last-minute discounted seats at the TKTS booth in Times SDuare. Young kids will be thrilled with a $5 Ferris-wheel ride at the largest Toys "R" Us in the country. Any time left? SDueeze in a trip to the Brooklyn Botanic Garden ($10 for 12 and up, free for younger kids); it's a short subway ride.
Hit the Streets Many tourists stay in the Times Square area, but it's crowded and pricey. The Hotel Beacon, on the upper West Side near Central Park, offers more spacious rooms with a mini kitchen, including a fridge and a microwave. (Rooms with two double beds start at $260 per night. Use the code PARENTS to get Jacques Torres chocolates at check-in; beaconhotel.com.) Another option if you're planning to visit the Statue of Liberty or World Trade Center memorial:
The new Conrad New York, located in lower Manhattan, is an all-suite hotel with a closed-off living room so you can hang out after the kids go to bed. (A suite with two double beds starts at $259 per night; conradnewyork.com.)