A weekend away in New York City can be an expensive getaway. With hotels being no less than $200/night, Broadway shows charging a minimum of $100 per ticket, and drinks at swanky bars costing enough to feed a family in Asia for a month, there are not a lot of ways to experience Manhattan on a budget.

Luckily, there is Brooklyn, a more spacious, culturally diverse, and in my opinion, a more interesting suburb of New York City. Everything seems to be better in Brooklyn. It’s cheaper, greener, funkier, and is filled with awesome restaurants, boutiques, markets, museums, and beautiful parks. And for those looking to experience NYC on a budget, Brooklyn offers some fantastic activities absolutely FREE of charge.

Catch a Concert in Prospect Park

In the summer, Brooklyn’s Prospect Park plays host to Celebrate Brooklyn! Festival, a series of summer concerts that draw artists from all around the world. The festival is produced by the Brooklyn Information & Culture Center and often features some great bands and performers. Celebrate Brooklyn is considered the city’s foremost summer cultural attractions and one that you absolutely can’t miss if you are visiting NYC in the summer.

Take a Stroll Across the Brooklyn Bridge

Brooklyn Bridge is possibly one of the most beautiful and most famous bridges in the US and it offers great views of lower Manhattan. It’s a perfect place for an afternoon stroll as you make your way from Manhattan back to Brooklyn after a day of sightseeing in the city. If you are not exhausted after you reach Brooklyn, continue your walk along the Brooklyn Bridge Promenade for a chance to see admire beautiful views of the east River. The Promenade, part of Brooklyn’s first Historic Preservation is bordered by beautiful homes and grand mansions that help make this one of the most picturesque and romantic spots to hang out in the city.

Brooklyn Bridge. Photo via by Dylan Magaster

Peruse the Stalls at the Brooklyn Flea Market

The Brooklyn Flea Market is the mecca of Brooklyn-based foods and houses over 100 flea vendors and more than 30 food vendors. Entrance to the market is free, but ofcourse the goodies sold inside are not. A visit to Brooklyn Flea Market is as much about the experience as it is about the purchases themselves. With great food options and a mix of vintage and original designer stalls, it might be hard to walk away empty-handed.

Admire the Natural Beauty of the Brooklyn Botanic Garden

Admission to the Brooklyn Botanic Garden is free on all weekdays from mid-November through February, so there are no excuses not to visit this beautiful 52-acre botanic garden in the heart of Brooklyn.

Brooklyn Botanic Garden. Photo via by Newyorcanka

Enjoy a Free Night of Culture and Art at the Brooklyn Museum

Target First Saturdays is an evening of eclectic free art and entertainment that takes place on the first Saturday of every month from 5 to 11 p.m. Activities range from live music and dance performances to guided tours and arts and crafts workshops with each event being organized around a different and often very unique theme.

What are some of your favourite free things to do in Brooklyn?