Staycation: Cool Things to do in NYC this Spring Break


By Sinead Hunt


Visit the Bronx Zoo

While most people assume that visiting the zoo is an activity better suited to the summer months, late winter/early spring is actually a great time to visit! Besides avoiding the crowds and the heat, the cold weather allows you to view some of the zoo’s cold climate creatures, such as bison, sea lions and brown bears, in their preferred weather conditions. In addition, many exhibits, such as “World of Reptiles” and “Mouse House,” are indoors, and therefore open year-round. Not to mention, general admission is FREE for NYC college students, so it’s definitely an option worth considering. 


Visit the Museum of the City of New York 

The Museum of the City of New York is, without a doubt, one of my personal favorites in New York. Located on the Upper East Side (103rd and Fifth Avenue), the museum is easily accessible via the M4 bus. While you’re there, you can learn more about the history of this great city via their ongoing “New York at Its Core” exhibition, which details over 400 years of NYC history! Other current exhibits include “King in New York,” which chronicles activist Dr. Martin Luther King Jr.’s connection to the city, and “Beyond Suffrage,” a history of NYC women’s political activism. Admission is free with your Barnard ID, so be sure to check it out!


Go for a Hike

There are plenty of ways for students to escape Manhattan and explore nature without breaking the bank. Located on the beautiful Hudson River Palisades, the Lamont-Doherty Campus is home to over thirty miles of hiking trails. Columbia University provides a FREE shuttle from Morningside to Lamont, which operates Mondays through Saturdays. In order to catch the shuttle, simply head on over to 120th street in front of Teacher’s College (by the guard booth). Bear in mind, however, that while the shuttle conducts multiple drop-offs/pick-ups on weekdays, the Saturday schedule is much more limited, so be sure to check out the schedule online before you go!  


See a film!

Since 1970, Film Forum, located at 209 West Houston Street, has been a New York City cultural landmark. Today, Film Forum is the only independent non-profit cinema in New York City, presenting a diverse array of films not usually offered by commercial cinemas. Offerings for the week of spring break include a documentary on race in the American South entitled, “Do You Wonder Who Fired the Gun?” as well as “Hitler’s Hollywood,” a compilation of over 1000 Nazi propaganda films produced from 1933-1945. Tickets are $15 for non-members. 


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