10 Things to Do in New York in June

With the arrival of summer, New York becomes an ideal place to spend time outdoors. Art, music, sport, gastronomy... Discover all there is to do in New York in June!

Luisa María Lugo

Luisa María Lugo

11 min read

10 Things to Do in New York in June

Manhattan skyline | ©Patrick Tomasso

Winter is also wonderful in New York, but New Yorkers are known for making the most of the good weather. That's why there are so many things to do in New York in June, as this is the month when summer begins.

Many tourists also decide to visit the city at this time of year. Are you part of this group? Then don't forget to find out which events are held and which ones you have the opportunity to attend. Below, I'll tell you about them in detail.

1. Get to know the best restaurants in NY at the Taste of Times Square

A typical day in Times Square| ©Arpan Parikh
A typical day in Times Square| ©Arpan Parikh

Would you like to do some gastronomic sightseeing in New York? If so, I have the perfect activity for you if you're in New York in June. The Taste of Times Square is one of the city's most popular food festivals every year.

One of the goals of the food festival is to showcase what makes each restaurant special. By sampling their dishes, diners feel more confident and are more likely to choose a business.

There are many surprises at the festival, the main one being live music to make the atmosphere more enjoyable for attendees. The Taste of Times Square has a website with information on the dates of the festival.

Participating restaurants

The best restaurants in Times Square are offering their special menus at fixed, affordable prices for citizens and tourists. Participating businesses include the following:

  • Barbetta.
  • Becco.
  • Le Rivage.
  • Sake Bar Hagi.
  • Toloache.

Book a food tour of Manhattan

2. Get into a museum for free with the Museum Mile Festival

Taking advantage of the Museum Mile Festival| ©annulla
Taking advantage of the Museum Mile Festival| ©annulla

Did you know that a section of NY's Fifth Avenue is known as Museum Mile? Exactly, it's the area from 104th Street to 82nd Street, and some of New York 's most famous museums are located here.

In addition to museum tours, the Museum Mile Festival features outdoor activities ranging from food to live music. This festival is one of the most anticipated by New Yorkers, so if you're visiting the city when it takes place, it's not to be missed. Every year it is held in June and, although the date varies, it is usually held on a Tuesday.

The time it is possible to start visiting the participating museums is from 6pm. Without a doubt, this is a great opportunity to visit the city's best-known museums. The festival deserves to be among the best things to do in New York in June.

Participating museums

There are 9 museums participating in the Museum Mile Festival and they are the following:

  • Cooper - Hewitt National Design Museum.
  • Museum of the City of New York.
  • El Museo del Barrio.
  • Metropolitan Museum of Art (MET).
  • Museum for African Art.
  • National Academy Museum and School of Fine Arts.
  • Neue Galerie New York.
  • Solomon R. Guggenheim Museum.
  • The Jewish Museum.

Buy tickets for New York museums

3. See creative costumes at the Mermaid Parade

Visiting Coney Island| ©Tony Hisgett
Visiting Coney Island| ©Tony Hisgett

The beginning of summer is a special occasion for many people and in New York they celebrate it in different ways. One of them is the Mermaid Parade in which thousands of people participate. Is there a dress code? Yes! Those who want to participate must dress up as mermaids, no matter if they are women or men.

Most of the costumes you see at this event are handmade. So exciting is the parade that they spend time making their own costumes, so you're sure to see several that look amazing.

If you prefer a different costume, there are other accepted options: sailors, cuttlefish, pirates and others related to the sea.

How can I attend the Mermaid Parade?

The Mermaid Parade takes place on Midsummer's Day - what can you do if you want to attend? If you are visiting the Big Apple in June, find out when the solstice is and determine if it coincides with the days you will be in the city.

The Parade is held on Coney Island, a peninsula just south of Brooklyn, NY. Having a great beach makes it the perfect setting for a mermaid themed event. Something else I would like to add is that Coney Island is a great place to visit, it is full of attractions.

Book a tour to Coney Island from Manhattan

4. Take part in one of the most colourful parades during Gay Pride Week

People in the Pride Parade| ©David Huisken
People in the Pride Parade| ©David Huisken

Gay Pride Week begins in the last days of June and many New Yorkers make a big celebration of it. The parade is attended by an average of 500,000 people each year, including tourists in the city.

Many buildings are decorated to show their support for the community and the streets are full of colour. The Pride Parade runs for several kilometres and, when it ends, attendees have a big celebration.

In addition to the Pride Parade, many other activities take place in New York City during Gay Pride Week. Check the NYC Pride website for dates and dates.

Book a Gay Pride tour of New York City

5. Enjoy the music at the SummerStage Festival in Central Park

SummerStage Festival in Central Park| ©CP Thornton
SummerStage Festival in Central Park| ©CP Thornton

Among the best things to do in Central Park is this diverse music festival starting in June at Rumsey Playfield at 72nd Street and Fifth Avenue. This place is perfect if you want to see musical events, dance and even recitals.

Many of the performances are free, which is one of the reasons why it's one of the most anticipated festivals. Different genres of music are presented, from electronica to classical music. You can also eat at the stalls nearby while you enjoy the show.

Book a tour of Central Park

6. Outdoor movies with the Bryant Park Film Festival

Bryant Park Film Festival on a summer evening| ©NYC again
Bryant Park Film Festival on a summer evening| ©NYC again

So far we've seen several events happening in NYC during June and there are still more to come (I was serious when I said that New Yorkers are very active in the summer). Another activity unique to the sixth month of the year is the Bryant Park Film Festival.

People take advantage of the summer and have a fun time outdoors. Be sure to bring your food and drinks and don't forget a blanket or a portable chair to watch the film in comfort.

And if you're still hungry for more, check out the best film and series locations in New York.

Film festival schedule

Films start around 8pm, sometimes as early as 9pm. Bryant Park is only 5 minutes away from the famous Times Square if you make the walk.

Want to get a good spot to enjoy the show to the fullest? If so, I recommend arriving between 5pm and 6pm. While the film starts you can stroll around and discover other attractions within the park.

The Film Festival is held every Monday in June and their website publishes which films will be shown.

Book a TV and Film Tour in New York City

7. Show Hispanic Pride at the Puerto Rican National Day Parade

Puerto Rican National Day Parade| ©Benjamin Kanter
Puerto Rican National Day Parade| ©Benjamin Kanter

Many Puerto Ricans live in New York and are very proud of their origin and culture. In honour of these millions of citizens, the Puerto Rican National Day Parade has been created and takes place on the second Sunday in June. It starts at 11 a.m. and may end at 5 p.m. or a little later.

Fifth Avenue welcomes Puerto Ricans and others who want to join in this great event. People of all nationalities attend, it is a great opportunity to show Hispanic pride. Expect Puerto Rican costumes, music, fun and more.

The parade is attended by millions of people and many more watch it at home on television. Many celebrities of Puerto Rican origin attend, such as Ricky Martin, Marc Anthony, Jennifer Lopez, among others.

8. Experience the excitement of the NBA Playoffs

the Madison Square Garden|©Mike_ww
the Madison Square Garden|©Mike_ww

Between April and June, the NBA Finals are played, so if you are a basketball fan and you are lucky enough to have one of the two New York teams qualified, one of the best plans you can make is to buy tickets for one (or more) of the playoff games. However, I recommend that you do so well in advance because tickets literally fly.

In fact, the closer you get to the day of the game, the more expensive tickets will be. The average price for NBA tickets is around 150 €, although you can buy them from 50 € for less interesting games and with seats far from the court. You can find all the information in this post on How to buy NBA tickets in New York and preciost.

The playoffs are best-of-seven games, and the only two teams to have won after the regular season and playoffs will play each other, so if the New York Knicks or the Brooklyn Nets have qualified, you can't miss the opportunity to see an NBA game live in New York in June.

Useful information

  • Where: Madison Square Garden or the Barcleys Center.
  • When: In June. Dates vary, but are usually planned in advance.
  • Price: from €50, although it varies depending on the game and the seat you choose.

Buy your NBA tickets

9. Opera in the Park for those who prefer classical music

Waiting for the Opera Performance| ©Joe Shlabotnik
Waiting for the Opera Performance| ©Joe Shlabotnik

Unlike the other music festivals that take place in New York in June, Opera in the Park has no set venue. The performance of classical music, blues, jazz and more can be enjoyed in Bryant Park, Central Park or other locations.

This event starts in mid-June but there is no set date, it changes every year. To see the performances you can bring your drinks and food, and have a good time that will add to your holiday experience.

And if you're a music lover but not into the classical style, I recommend checking out the best places to hear music in Harlem.

Book a tour of jazz venues in Harlem

10. Attend free Shakespeare plays in the park

Delacorte Theater|©Lukas
Delacorte Theater|©Lukas

One of the most anticipated events in New York in June is Shakespeare in the Park. This event features plays written by Shakespeare. Watching Romeo and Juliet or Hamlet under the Big Apple night sky is a unique experience.

One of the reasons this event is so popular is that tickets are free. The performances take place in the Delacorte Theatre, which is located in Central Park, in the open air. Behind it is a pond and Belvedere Castle. This backdrop makes the performances wonderful.

When are the performances?

Performances begin at the end of May, run through June and end in early August. Those wishing to purchase tickets to the plays should look for them at the box office of the Delacorte Theatre on the day of the performance. If you have a free morning during your holiday, line up with the following in mind: although the box office opens at noon, everyone goes to the theatre earlier in the day. The first weeks of June are a good time to go to Shakespeare in the Park. Being the first performances, there are not many attendees.

How to get to the Delacorte Theatre?

You can take the B, C or 6 lines on the New York City underground. The 81st Street entrance is the closest to the theatre. Other options are Fifth Avenue or 79th Street. If you are not yet familiar with this means of transport, I invite you to read our guide to the New York underground.

New York weather in June

A picnic in the New York summer| ©Mason Dahl
A picnic in the New York summer| ©Mason Dahl

Now that I've told you about the events in New York in June, let's take a look at some other important points. The first is the city's weather during that month. In general, the weather is pleasant, as summer is just beginning. The first few days are alternately hot and cold, with rainfall about 8 days a month.

At the beginning of June, the average temperature is 22-24°C, although in the early mornings it can drop to 15°C. As the days go by, it gets cooler and cooler. As the days go by, the weather will warm up, making it ideal for outdoor activities. These are also helped by the fact that the sun rises before 6am and sets after 8pm.

To complete this point, here is a chart comparing the weather in New York in the different seasons:

  • Winter
  • December - March
  • Weather: Rain, humidity and snow
  • High 2ºC
  • Minimum -5ºC
  • Spring
  • March - June
  • Climate: Warm with some rainfall
  • High 26ºC
  • Low 5ºC
  • Summer
  • June - August
  • Climate: Hot and high humidity
  • Maximum 28ºC
  • Minimum 15ºC
  • Autumn
  • September - November
  • Climate: Cool and dry
  • Maximum 24ºC
  • Minimum 5ºC

How many tourists do you see in NY in June?

Enjoying Summer in Central Park| ©Harry Gillen
Enjoying Summer in Central Park| ©Harry Gillen

Every year, more than 50 million people from all over the world choose New York as their tourist destination. Summer (including June) is the most popular time for tourists to spend their holidays there, especially for those who can handle the heat.

Even though there are a lot of tourists, the city has the resources to accommodate them all. So you can be confident that you'll find plenty to do.

Prices in New York in the summer

Doing the maths| ©Karolina Grabowska
Doing the maths| ©Karolina Grabowska

One of the most expensive periods in the Big Apple is the summer, especially in July and August. By June prices have not yet all gone up, but you are likely to find some goods, hotels and even flights at higher prices than in spring.

Prices that are common in summer start to drop at the end of September and rise again at Christmas. Christmas is also a season when the city receives a lot of tourists.

Pack your suitcase for New York in June!

Ready to Travel| ©Alexandr Podvalny
Ready to Travel| ©Alexandr Podvalny

Since it's summer, I recommend packing light, breathable and light-coloured clothes, which are cooler. If you pack long trousers, make sure they are made of thin fabrics.

Shorts, shorts, dresses and skirts are also fine. Other essential items of clothing and items of clothing for the trip to NY are as follows:

  • Light and comfortable shoes: I recommend thick soles, thin soles are uncomfortable if you walk a lot.
  • Hat or cap, sun cream and sunglasses.
  • Jumper or thin cardigan in case there is air conditioning where you go in. Also ideal for early mornings in June.
  • Blanket to sit on in the park.

Summer can also bring rainy days, so it's a good idea to pack a few items of clothing in case it rains during your visit. Pack an umbrella, a waterproof coat and waterproof footwear.

Alternative plans for rainy days in New York City

Natural History Museum| ©6sqft
Natural History Museum| ©6sqft

In case it rains, here are some alternative plans that are just as fun:

  • Visit a museum.
  • Enjoy the Big Apple in the rain, walk near your place of accommodation.
  • Go to a Broadway musical.
  • Visit historic buildings, one you'll love to see is Grand Central Terminal or the New York Public Library.
  • Go to a cathedral or church and marvel at its design.
  • Times Square and Herald Square are full of shops, so why not take advantage of New York's rainy days to do some shopping?

This guide will help you make the most of your visit to New York in June - have a great trip!