With 4th of July already behind us and summer in full swing, July will offer plenty of opportunities to soak in the sun and hang by the water before the brutal heat of August kicks in (because like it or not, it’s coming!).
Check out glorious rooftops, cool off at beaches and pools, traipse through fields of sunflowers and lavender (ok, those are a bit outside of NYC!), and much more with our recommendations of things to do this month:
1. Unlock your power at NYC’s Stranger Things experience, just in time for the release of Season 4, V2
With Stranger Things Season 4, Volume 2 just released, there’s no better time than now to travel to Hawkins yourself for the adventure of a lifetime. Journey through Hawkins Lab beside your favorite characters and even take a trip to the Upside Down. If you’re lucky enough to make it out, head over to Mix-Tape and chill at iconic spots like Scoops Ahoy, The Palace Arcade, Rink-O-Rama, and so much more! Grab your tickets today and unlock your power.
2. Get $10 martinis and a FREE coffee card at Hole in the Wall
We know New Yorkers live off their caffeine and cocktails, so we’ve partnered up with Hole in the Wall to create our Secret NYC Martini—a delicious reimagined espresso martini with a chocolate twist—for just $10! Order at any of the participating Hole in the Wall NYC locations until the end of July, and share to your stories tagging @secret_nyc and @holeinthewall to get a free coffee card, redeemable at any time. Learn more here!
3. Score tickets to Brooklyn’s soon-to-open new Arts District installations
The coolest new art experience is coming to a reclaimed warehouse in Brooklyn this July! Take in three jaw-dropping audiovisual installations that are breaking boundaries in the art world. From the “Limitless AI,” that uses algorithms and data to paint the walls of the warehouse, to “Séance,” a spine-chilling auditory adventure and “Flight,” the most heart-racing flight simulation, it’s sure to be an exhilarating experience like never before. Get your tickets now.
4. Devour unlimited tacos at this Taco & Tequila Festival
230 Fifth’s Taco & Tequila Festival is not to be missed this month! Admire the panoramic view while you enjoy unlimited tacos, nachos, Mexican hors d’oeuvre with tequila tastings and a great live DJ! Tickets are selling fast, so snag yours today!
5. Catch Stranger Things breakout star, Gaten Matarazzo, join the cast of Dear Evan Hansen
Stranger Things breakout star, Gaten Matarazzo, is returning to Broadway on July 19 in the Tony award-winning musical, Dear Evan Hansen. He will forgo his more familiar character of the goofy and loyal nerd when playing Dustin Henderson—leaving that to Zachary Noah Piser who stars as Evan Hansen—to take on the role of the sarcastic Jared Kleinman. Tickets for the production are now available, and you can get them here. Dear Evan Hansen will play its final Broadway performance on September 18, 2022, so don’t wait! Sponsored
6. Travel to another galaxy at the Fans Strike Back exhibition
Explore 600 official items from the Star Wars Universe collected by fans and displayed for fans at this otherworldly exhibit! It’s the perfect thing to do for the whole family, from the youngest Padawan to the wisest Jedi master. Tickets can be purchased here.
7. Join the waitlist and be the first to experience National Geographic’s Beyond King Tut Experience
Visit ancient Egypt at National Geographic – Beyond King Tut: The Immersive Experience. The mind-blowing exhibit will take you back in time to 3,000 years ago, where you’ll meet the boy king, the gods of the Egyptian underworld, and journey through the magic and mystery of Ancient Egypt. Join the waitlist and be one of the first to get tickets here.
8-12. Head to the beach
NYC is know for its notoriously hot and humid summers, which may be true for all over the tri-state but definitely seem worse when you’re surrounded by tons of sky-high buildings! Taking a trip to one of our lovely beaches is definitely one of the best ways to beat the heat, so check out our list of the 10 best beaches in NYC. Here’s a sneak peek:
- The People’s Beach at Jacob Riis Park, Queens
- Orchard Beach, The Bronx
- Rockaway Beach, Queens
- Brighton Beach, Brooklyn
- Coney Island, Brooklyn
13-16. Or take a dip in an NYC pool
NYC’s free public pools are now officially open for the season, but if you’re looking for something more high-end, there are tons of gorgeous private pools to check out too! Here are some of our favorites:
- Roosevelt Island’s stunning multicolored pool
- The Beach at Dream Downtown in Chelsea
- McCarren Hotel & Pool in Brooklyn
- Profundo Pool Club at the Ravel Hotel in LIC
17. Want more of a thrill? Check out Mountain Creek’s massive outdoor waterpark
Ride Zero-G, the tallest double looping thrill slide, or get the ultimate adrenaline rush from the Canyon Cliff Jump at Mountain Creek Waterpark this summer. The park is less than two hours from the city and makes for the perfect day trip! Read more here.
18. Camp under the stars on Governors Island
Treat yourself to this lovely glamping experience on NYC’s perfect island getaway: Governors Island! Over the years, Collective Governors Island Luxury Camping Retreat introduced plenty of new and exciting amenities that included “live music nights, tarot readings, crafting, morning yoga, bike rentals, chair massages, plenty of lawn games, campfires and cocktails” throughout the season—but this year, the experience is offering even more incredible amenities than years prior. Find out more here!
19-23. Take in an enchanting concert by flickering candlelight
Fever’s popular Candlelight Concerts are better than ever this summer! With tons of dazzling concerts to choose from, there’s sure to be one you’ll love. Here are a few of our favorites:
- Candlelight: A Tribute to Amy Winehouse at The Williamsburg Hotel
- Candlelight: Featuring Vivaldi’s Four Seasons and More at Church of the Heavenly Rest
- Candlelight Jazz: Legends of R&B at The Williamsburg Hotel
- Candlelight: Beethoven’s Best Works
- Candlelight: A Tribute to Taylor Swift at The Williamsburg Hotel
Check out the full range of concerts here.
24. Grab tickets to Banksy: Building Castles in the Sky Exhibition
Explore over 20 years of the enigmatic artist’s work at this new museum-style exhibit in NYC. Admire over 100 original and verified Banksy pieces from Banksy of England banknotes, rare t-shirt and vinyl cover designs, sculptures, and more. Scoop up your tickets here.
25. Jump into NYC’s favorite 90s sitcom at The Friends Experience
Ever wanted to be a part of the iconic friend group? Well now you can, when you check out The Friends Experience in NYC! Step into your favorite scenes with remarkable set recreations, tons of photo-ops, and even a functioning Central Perk. Buy your tickets today.
26-28. Take in sultry tunes under the stars at NYC rooftops
This Concerts Under The Stars series will set you back in time with unique vintage sounds in beautiful star-lit venues. Experience the work of impressive musicians by NYC’s finest while sipping a martini in a jazz-age vibe. Don’t miss:
- Sinatra Under The Stars At 74Wythe
- Parlor Particular: An Alluring Evening of Variety & Burlesque
- Rooftop Dinner & Bossa Nova: A Cozy Evening of Brazilian Jazz
29. Embark on an astrological journey at Moonrise
Bushwick’s best nouveau circus is sure to wow you with its incredible acrobatic and aerialist acts. Discover your inner moon goddess and sip on uniquely crafted cocktails for a fabulous night out. Grab tickets here. You can even check out their Birds of Paradise and Lunar Cocktail Experience for even more enchanting experiences.
30. Explore NYC’s first-ever floating park ‘Little Island’
Located at Pier 55, this $260 million project is complete with incredible green spaces, pathways, performance venues, and food and beverage options. Whether you go to ‘Little Island’ morning or night, you’ll be sure to catch incredible views of the NYC skyline and Hudson River. Not to mention, there’s tons of exciting free events happening at the park all summer long. Find one that interests you here!
31. See a concert at Bryant Park
See programs like the New York City Opera, American Symphony Orchestra, Joe’s Pub and the Classical Theater of Harlem at Bryant Park’s Picnic Performances this month. No advanced tickets are required this year. See here for the full schedule.
32. Hop Aboard NYC’s first-ever floating Mexican restaurant
You read that right! This buoyant restaurant serving up delicious Mexican fare is literally in the Hudson River. Cruise around and enjoy the sunset views over the city skyline during your meal, and cheers your friends amongst the beautiful backdrop before you sip on one of their many agave-based spirits. Read more here.
33. Hang out at Pier 17
From booking a backyard for the day or jamming out at a rooftop concert, there’s so much to do at Pier 17 this July. See more here.
34. Learn all about Virgil Abloh at the Brooklyn Museum’s newest exhibit
The Brooklyn Museum just opened an awe-striking new exhibition honoring the late Virgil Abloh and all of his incredible achievements. Get a closer look at the influential artist and designer’s work with never-before-seen material from Abloh’s archive, tracing back two decades. Learn more here.
35. Take a spin on this massive go-kart raceway near NYC
Showboat in Atlantic City is your answer for a fun-filled day. Take a spin on one of their 30 state-of-the-art electric karts at their indoor racing facility. See more details here.
36. Stop by Hudson River Park for their new pop-up performance series
Among 260+ other free events Hudson River Park is hosting this summer, they just announced an exciting new pop-up performance series. The series started on June 29th, and musical performances will continue to go on throughout July. Read here.
37-41. Take in skyline views at these stunning NYC rooftops
Nothing beats a drink in hand and a skyline in sight. Here are some of our favorite rooftops around the city:
- Go for a dip in the pool at Somewhere Nowhere
- Escape to the Hamptons right in the city at this beachy-themed bar
- Dine on Eataly’s rooftop and see their seasonal decor
- See panoramic views from Roosevelt Island’s Panorama Room
- Take advantage of the best happy hour deals at The Ready Rooftop
Check the entire list here and adventure to one of these fantastic rooftops across the city for the most unbeatable scenery and not to mention, refreshing cocktails!
42. Catch Lady Liberty napping across the river
The beloved “Reclining Liberty” installation that was lounging in Morningside Park last year has found a new resting spot in Liberty State Park. Check out the enormous and beautiful Lady Liberty taking a little nap and even join her! See here for more details.
43. Kayak for free at Brooklyn Bridge Park
Every Wednesday, Thursday, and Saturday through the end of September this summer you’ll be able to walk up to the Brooklyn Bridge Park Boathouse Pier 2 for free kayaking. The sessions only run for 20 minutes but the views are worth it and at the end of the day, it’s a free activity! So why not? Learn how to make your reservation here.
44. Explore this stunning lavender farm on Long Island
Make some time to stop & smell the lavender this July. Lavender By The Bay is a lavender farm on the East End of Long Island that offers the perfect weekend visit out of the city. Typically, it’s in full bloom from mid-June through July, so stay updated on their Instagram so you can plan a visit right when they are their most vibrant. Currently, they are in the middle of their English bloom, a bit smaller than their French bloom, which has just started to show its color! Read more here.
45. Or pick summer sunflowers in New Jersey
Nothing says summer quite like getting lost in a field of sunflowers, and being able to take some home! Happy Day Farm in New Jersey is opening its sunflower field for the summer on Saturday, July 9, to those looking to come out and pick their own fresh flowers. And honestly, even if you decide not to take any home (though, why wouldn’t you?) the sight of a sunflower field alone is worth the visit. Find out more details here.
46. Roam one of NYC’s many art exhibitions
There’s so much beautiful art in NYC to explore, see some of the best exhibitions and installations on display now here.
47. Throw your hands up on a thrilling ride at Coney Island
Deno’s Wonder Wheel Amusement Park and Luna Park on Coney Island are both open for the season and ready for all you adrenaline junkies. Be sure to take a ride on the newest thrill coaster called The Phoenix, their biggest investment ever. The coaster rises 68 feet tall and goes up to 34 mph, and is called The Phoenix because of the way its suspending carts mimic flying as passengers’ feet dangle in the air. Read more here.
48. Or try out the world’s longest, tallest & fastest single-rail coaster in nearby NJ
Six Flags Great Adventure, located just over an hour from NYC in neighboring New Jersey, debuted their newest roller coaster last year…and it broke THREE World Records in the process! Called the “Jersey Devil,” the colossal coaster tops out at 13 stories, speeds along at up to 58mph, and carries riders over 3,000 feet of track. Find out more here.
49-51. Grab a bite at an outdoor food market
If one thing’s for sure, New Yorkers know how to eat! And with summer weather here, your next delicious bite to eat is at one of NYC’s open-air food markets. See our favorites below:
52. Take in waterfront views at Gitano’s giant new beach club on Governors Island
Gitano’s Tulum-inspired paradise has relocated to Governors Island and rebranded as a fabulous beach club! Once called “Gitano Garden of Love,” it is now known as “Gitano Island,” featuring 12 truckloads of sand plus 500 tropical plants and palm trees to complete the beachy feel. See more here.
53-57. Cool off with NYC’s best ice cream shops
One of the best ways to beat the heat in NYC is by indulging in some delicious ice cream! Of course Mister Softee is a classic, but here are some of our other favorite spots to grab a cone:
- Mikey Likes It, Lower East Side & Harlem
- Whipped Urban Dessert Lab, Lower East Side
- Van Leeuwen’s, Multiple Locations
- Tipsy Scoop, Kips Bay & Williamsburg
- Milk & Cream Cereal Bar, Little Italy
58. Take an outdoor yoga class in Bryant Park for free
Whether you’re a yogi or someone more inclined to say “Namast-ay at home,” Bryant Park’s amazing free yoga classes are worth attending. And, for the first time in two years, they are finally returning to the Midtown green space! These hour-long classes focus on healing and stress reduction. They will continue all summer long through August 24. Read more here!
59-63. Take in the views at NYC’s most stunning waterfront dining locales
The best (and coolest) place to be in the summer is on the water (Manhattan is an island, after all). From eating on historic boats with insane views of the sunset to checking out secluded seafood hotspots on NYC’s smaller surrounding islands, these are some of our favorite spots for a breezy cocktail and bites:
- Grand Banks, Pier 25 in Tribeca
- Watermark Bar, Pier 15 in South Street Seaport
- Baylander Steel Beach, Harlem
- City Vineyard, Pier 26 in Tribeca
- Anable Basin, Long Island City
64. Make a custom 1-pound Reese’s Peanut Butter Cup in Midtown
Devour 1-pound of your very own Reese’s Peanut Butter cup at the Times Square Hershey’s Chocolate World. The “dedicated Reese’s experience” lets you choose from a variety of fillings, including marshmallows, cookie crumbles, even potato chips, to make the most delicious monstrous cup of your dreams. Learn more here.
65. Catch an outdoor movie
One of the most nostalgic and entertaining ways to spend a summer night is definitely enjoying an outdoor movie. With that, here are all the NYC parks hosting free movies this summer!
Also published on Medium.