What To Do On A Rainy Day In New York?

December 12, 2023

You’re visiting the Big Apple, and you’re ready to explore - but the weather in New York City has turned wet! Don’t worry - we’ve got plenty of ideas for what to do in NYC on a rainy day. Whether it’s springtime or the height of summer, don’t get caught unprepared for a sudden shower!

Read on for our best New York City rainy day activities to do solo, on a date, with friends or with your family!

Where can I go on a rainy day in Manhattan?

When you’ve got big plans to explore Manhattan but the weather has other ideas, it can seem difficult to think of what to do.

But there are many New York City rainy day activities that take place inside and show you the best of Manhattan! Here are a few examples of places to go, as well as more information on our amazing RiseNY experience!

Museums and Observatories

One of the best things to do on any day in our amazing city (and not just when you’re looking for rainy day activities in NYC!) is to visit a museum. 

You can try the Metropolitan Museum of Art, which is the largest art museum in the United States. It’s situated near Central Park - and handily, it’s also close to the American Museum of Natural History and the Guggenheim Museum. Visitors can see works across 5,000 years of art from cultures all over the world, fabulous insects and dinosaur skeletons, as well as much more! 

If you’d like to visit an observatory, you can try the One World Observatory or the Haupt Observatory in the New York Botanical gardens. See the stars in amazing detail or stunning plants from across the globe.


If there’s one thing New York is known for, it’s our food! From hot dogs to New York-style cheesecake, there’s something for everyone in a restaurant in Manhattan. Try a slice of famous New York-style pizza, a Waldorf salad or a delicious baked bagel with everything on it! 

Comedy clubs

Looking for a laugh when it’s raining outside? You’re in luck! New York has some very famous comedy clubs to keep you occupied when you’d rather be indoors. From the notable Comedy Cellar to the Gotham City Comedy Club and more, you can spend an afternoon or an evening laughing with some of America’s best comedic talent. 

Where can I go on a rainy day in Times Square?


Of course, you can always visit RiseNY, our new attraction in NYC just moments from Times Square. Get a three-in-one ticket that takes you on a soaring journey through NYC’s history! 

Enter a replica of the old City Hall subway and journey from 1904 to now in our NYC documentary, narrated by Hollywood actor Jeff Goldblum. Explore seven interactive galleries with artifacts and memorabilia from leading NYC museums like the Rock & Roll Hall of Fame. Finally, fly over NYC’s iconic skyline on a soaring flight simulation ride complete with 4D technology! Read our guide on things to do in Times Square if you want to make a full day of it.

We’d love to have you visit - why not book a ticket now

The Lincoln Center

Around 25 minutes’ walk from Times Square (and along Broadway), there’s the Lincoln Center for the Performing Arts. Here, you can see performances by the New York City Ballet, the New York Philharmonic Orchestra, the Metropolitan Opera and many more outstanding organizations. It’s a must-see for lovers of culture, music and dance - so add it to your rainy day in NYC ideas list!

Grand Central Station

If you’ve traveled into NYC, you might have passed through our city’s amazing Grand Central Station. You might know it from some of your favorite movies - it’s been a filming location for fantastic films like The Avengers, The French Connection and many more! 

Even if you’ve not passed through, Grand Central’s main terminal is an awe-inspiring sight. Just 13 minutes’ walk from Time Square, it has stunning architecture and a hustle and bustle you just won’t find anywhere else. Best of all, it’s an entirely free rainy day NYC activity!

The Museum of Broadway

Learn about the history of musicals and shows on Broadway in this fantastic museum. From costumes to music and more, you can explore some of the many shows that have graced the halls of theaters on one of New York’s more famous streets. 

How do you get around NYC in the rain?

When it’s wet outside, you don’t want to be walking across the city dodging puddles. Thankfully, there are a few ways to get around that keep you dry!

Try one of our subway lines to get around Manhattan when it’s wet. Get yourself a subway map and explore NYC without getting rained on. You can pay with cash, credit or debit cards - a single ticket costs $2.75 per trip, or you can buy an unlimited travel Metrocard for one week or more. 

You can always try one of our famous yellow taxi cabs. These are usually in higher demand when the weather’s not as nice, but you’ll feel like a real New Yorker when you’re in one! Bear in mind, some taxis don’t accept cards, and it’s more expensive during rush hour.

You can also try a hop-on, hop-off bus tour to get around. These usually stop at all the tourist hotspots in the city, meaning you spend less time running around in the rain!

Tips for Staying Dry and Comfortable on a Rainy Day in New York

Our top tips for staying dry and comfortable on a rainy day in New York:

  • Bring a compact, lightweight umbrella that can fold into your bag, just in case you get caught in a shower
  • Bring one pair of waterproof, comfy shoes for walking round in and some quick-drying socks  
  • Try packing a lightweight raincoat that can go over any sweaters you might be wearing
  • Ensure your bag is waterproof! You can even buy a waterproof pouch to go in your bag just to be sure your valuables won’t get wet
  • Check the weather before you go out - or just enjoy a traditional rainy day in New York!

Book your tickets to RiseNY now