What to do on Saturday in New York City: 50 great ideas

Explore outdoor markets, see Broadway shows on the cheap, and discover other ideas for what to do on Saturday.

  • Photograph: Jakob Layman

    What to do on Saturday in New York City: 50 great ideas

    1. Browse the Brooklyn Flea

  • Photograph: Jolie Ruben

    What to do on Saturday in New York City: 50 great ideas

    2. Eat your way through Smorgasburg

  • Time Out

    What to do on Saturday in New York City: 50 great ideas

    3. Stroll around Central Park’s Conservatory Garden

  • Photograph: Dominic Perri

    What to do on Saturday in New York City: 50 great ideas

    4. Tour a new Queens brewery

  • What to do on Saturday in New York City: 50 great ideas

    5. See a Broadway matinee for cheap

  • What to do on Saturday in New York City: 50 great ideas

    6. Snag free admission to the Jewish Museum

  • Photograph: Lizz Kuehl

    What to do on Saturday in New York City: 50 great ideas

    7. Cut loose at Mister Saturday Night

  • What to do on Saturday in New York City: 50 great ideas

    8. Pay what you wish at the Guggenheim

  • Photograph: Jolie Ruben

    What to do on Saturday in New York City: 50 great ideas

    9. Have a great breakfast taco at Whirlybird

  • What to do on Saturday in New York City: 50 great ideas

    10. See free music at BAMcafé Live

Photograph: Jakob Layman

What to do on Saturday in New York City: 50 great ideas

1. Browse the Brooklyn Flea

Take advantage of your day off by checking out our ideas for what to do on Saturday, including stops at lush gardens, classic museums and more. For other NYC essentials, consult the 50 best New York attractions and our continually updated guide to the greatest things to do this weekend in New York City.


1
25. Rummage in the sunshine at the Brooklyn Flea

Browse the Brooklyn Flea

This Kings County bazaar hosts hundreds of vendors selling antiques, vintage clothes, records, art, jewelry and more. On Saturdays, the Flea hunkers down in its original location, outside of Bishop Loughlin Memorial High School (between Clermont and Vanderbilt Aves, Fort Greene; 10am–5pm; Apr–Nov); on Sundays, it sets up shop along the Williamsburg Waterfront (110 Kent Ave at North 8th St, Williamsburg; 10am–5pm; Apr–Nov). In the cold season, the Flea escapes indoors to One Hanson Place (1 Hanson Pl at Ashland Pl, Fort Greene; Sat, Sun 10am–5pm; Dec–Mar). If you feel peckish while you’re shopping, look out for vendors like Blue Marble and Whimsy & Spice. brooklynflea.com; free.

2
Smorgasburg

…or eat your way through Smorgasburg

Piggybacking on the runaway success of the Brooklyn Flea, founders Eric Demby and Jonathan Butler unveiled this food-only market—a glutton’s paradise packed with up to 100 vendors. Along with Greenmarket stalls and flea stalwarts like Porchetta, the gastro-bazaar features a flurry of side projects from restaurant-world vets. On Saturdays, visit the original hub on the Williamsburg waterfront (27 North 6th St between Kent Ave and the East River; Sat, Sun 11am–6pm, Apr–Nov); on Sundays, check out its more recent outpost at the Tobacco Warehouse in Dumbo, under the shadow of the Brooklyn Bridge (26 New Dock St at Water St; Sun 11am–6pm, Apr–Nov). In the winter, you can find some Smorgasburg vendors in the Winter Flea in Fort Greene (One Hanson Place, 1 Hanson Pl at Ashland Pl; Sat, Sun 10am–6pm through December, 10am–5pm Jan–Mar). brooklynflea.com; free.

3

Stroll around Central Park’s Conservatory Garden

  • Free

The skinfest in the Sheep Meadow isn’t the only thing worth eyeballing in Central Park come spring. The Conservatory Garden is a flowering paradise, with some varietals like the Lenten rose blooming as early as mid-March. For an extensive tour, download the Central Park Conservancy’s Bloom Guide from its website and rent a bike from Bike & Roll.

  1. Fifth Ave, (at 105th St)
More info
4

Tour a new Queens brewery

Queens, a borough that was full of beer makers before Prohibition, returns to its frothy roots with its first full-scale brewery in decades. The 30-barrel brew house SingleCut Beersmiths has a taproom outfitted with lagering tanks on the brewery floor, a stage for live music and refillable growlers for purchase ($15–$30). SingleCut hosts free tasting tours each Saturday, when you can sample the brewed-in-Astoria beers, including the 19-33 Lagrrr!, a German pilsner, and the PNW Mahogany Ale, a hoppy red ale. Free.

  1. 19-33 37th St, (between 19th and 20th Aves), 11105
  2. 1pm–7pm
More info
5

See a Broadway matinee for cheap

This classic weekend-afternoon activity allows plenty of time to explore the Theater District. Even better: Rush tickets to Broadway and Off Broadway shows are available for as little as $20 apiece. Go to the theater’s box office on the day of the performance to check. Same-day discount tickets are also available at the TKTS Booth in Duffy Square (W 47th St and Broadway). At the TKTS Booth in Downtown Brooklyn (One MetroTech Center, at the corner of Jay St and Myrtle Ave), you can nab tickets for matinee shows on the day before the performance. More centrally, TDF has added a “Play Only” window at the Duffy Square booth under the red steps. All booths accept credit cards. For hours and details, visit tdf.org/tkts.

6

Snag free admission to the Jewish Museum

The Jewish Museum, housed in the 1908 Warburg Mansion, contains a fascinating collection of more than 26,000 works of art and artifacts. A two-floor permanent exhibition, “Culture and Continuity: The Jewish Journey,” examines how Judaism has survived and traces the evolution of modern Jewish identity. The reason for the fee waive? Saturday is the Sabbath, so some parts of the museum (children’s exhibits, the in-museum café, audio tours) aren’t available. There’s still plenty to see, however—especially since you’re not shelling out the $12 you’d have to the rest of the week. $12, Saturdays free.

  1. 1109 Fifth Ave, (at 92nd St)
  2. Mon, Tue, Sat, Sun 11am–5:45pm; Thu 11am–8pm; Fri 11am–4pm.
More info
7
Mister Saturday Night

Cut loose at Mister Saturday Night

Justin Carter and Eamon Harkin’s bimonthly party, held at spaces throughout the city, is devoted to the outer reaches of house, disco and techno. The duo’s ethos is one of community and coming together, along with, of course, hard-grooving fun. Past guest DJs have included Four Tet, Greg Wilson and Floating Points. Click here to read our interview with Carter and Harkin. Locations vary; visit mistersaturdaynight.com for more information. Prices vary.

  1. Two Sats/month 10pm
8

Pay what you wish at the Guggenheim

  • Critics choice

From 5:45 to 7:45pm, the Gugg’s regular admission price is reduced from $18 to whatever the hell you want. Frank Lloyd Wright’s concrete edifice became the home of the eponymous philanthropist’s collection in 1959; today, the iconic spiral is considered as much a work of art as the paintings it houses. (It’s also one of our top 50 New York attractions.) In addition to pieces by masters such as Manet, Picasso and Chagall, the institution holds the most Kandinskys in the U.S., as well as one of the largest collections of Robert Mapplethorpes in the world. $22, seniors and students with ID $18, members and children under 12 accompanied by an adult free. Sat 5:45–7:45pm pay what you wish.

  1. 1071 Fifth Ave, (at 89th St)
  2. Mon–Wed, Fri, Sun 10am–5:45pm; Sat 10am–7:45pm
More info
9

Have a great breakfast taco at Whirlybird

An indie musician and an Ecuadoran chef are the unlikely masterminds behind this Williamsburg café, which sells only coffee and Austin-inspired breakfast tacos. We prefer the No. 1: a mound of fluffy scrambled eggs laced with Oaxacan cheese and (for a buck more) piquant nibs of chorizo. They come wrapped in a crisp and tender griddled corn tortilla, then topped with a tangy, slow-simmered tomato-and-bell-pepper salsa. A topping of crumbled jalapeño-flavored potato chips provides texture and a gentle burn. For more great egg breakfasts, click here.

  1. 254 South 2nd St, (between Havemeyer and Roebling Sts)
  2. Mon–Fri 8am–8pm; Sat, Sun 9am–8pm
More info
10

See free music at BAMcafé Live

  • Free

Need a cheap date idea? Look no further than free Friday and Saturday night concerts at the bohemian BAMcafé. Performers span a range of genres—jazz, R&B, world beat, pop—and the acoustics are excellent. The one drawback? It’s popular, so show up early to snag a seat, or you’ll have to snuggle by the bar. Find out who’s performing at bam.org. Free.

  1. 30 Lafayette Ave, (between Ashland Pl and St. Felix St)
  2. Fri, Sat 9 or 9:30pm
More info

  1. 1–10
  2. 11–20
  3. 21–30
  4. 31–40
  5. 41–50

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