You want to visit New York City and are wondering when the best time to go is? The month of April, when the weather becomes more pleasant and spring returns, could be the right time for you to discover the Big Apple in an original way. Climate, major events, visits, activities... In this post, I offer a broad overview of what your trip to New York City could look like in April 😊
New York climate in April
From the beginning of April onwards, temperatures rise, the sun reappears in New York City, and the days get longer as the month progresses (as they do throughout the entire Northern Hemisphere). Mornings and evenings are still fairly mild, with an average temperature of about 12°C, but the weather improves and the temperature rises a few degrees during the day.
With the sun often shining, the days are generally quite pleasant and it is a good time to resume outdoor activities. From mid-April onwards, it is not uncommon for temperatures to average 20°C at the height of the day ☀️
In April, the sun rises for an average of 14 hours per day, with an average daily sunshine of 12 hours. As the days get longer and the weather gets milder, vegetation starts to bloom again, and both New Yorkers and tourists flock to the parks to enjoy the first warm rays of the sun.
You don't necessarily need to bring warm clothes for this stay, but you should absolutely bring an umbrella, as rainy days are quite common – which is the case almost all year round in this city, anyway. In April, it rains on average 8 days in New York ☔
As for the water temperature, it remains below 10 degrees, so it will definitely not be the right time to enjoy the beaches of New York just yet! 🥶
Book your activities in New York City! 🗽
You are travelling to the City That Never Sleeps and are still wondering what the best activities in New York City are? Whether you like cultural visits, family outings or romantic activities, New York is a dynamic city where anything is possible 😀 You can, for instance, visit Rockefeller Center, go out and get some fresh air in the parks, or, for the bravest, take a helicopter flight 🤩 Just remember to book your activities in advance to be sure that you’’ll be able to do them once you get there there.
What to see and do in New York City in April?
If you're travelling to New York in April, the pleasant early spring weather and low rainfall are perfect to enjoy a lot of sightseeing. But as you might expect, visiting New York City means making concessions – there is so much to see and do throughout the year that you won’t be able to do everything in one short stay.
So, if you're going on a trip to New York City in April, you'll have to make some choices. Naturally, you'll have the opportunity to see any must-see sites in the Big Apple 🍏
In particular, you will be able to:
- Discover the most beautiful panoramic views of New York City, by going to one of the great observation platforms located on the roofs of some of New York's iconic buildings: the Top of the Rock at Rockefeller Center, the Empire State Building observatory, or The Edge. A visit to New York is not complete without at least one of these visits! Plus, on a clear day with good weather and temperatures, you can really enjoy a breathtaking view 🤩
- Visit the best museums of New York: if you are visiting one of the biggest cities in the United States, you can't miss its many museums! Whether it is the Met, the MoMA, the Guggenheim Museum, or any of the many other must-see museums in the city – you’re sure to find one that will spark your curiosity. There are also many lesser known, yet sometimes much more original museums just waiting for your visit 😉
- Take a tour of the city's must-see monuments. The Brooklyn Bridge, Grand Central Terminal, St. Patrick's Cathedral, the Statue of Liberty, the Flatiron Building... all of these must-see buildings are more than worth a closer look during a visit to the United States – and you will have already seen them from the observation platforms! 🙂
- Attend a Broadway musical. While in New York in April, I really recommend reserving at least one afternoon or evening to go to one of the great Broadway shows 😀 The most popular musicals of the moment will leave you with an unforgettable memory, and other Off-Broadway shows might also prove interesting. You can even take the opportunity to tour the vibrant Broadway road! That’s an awesome activity to do with your family 😉 Remember to book your tickets in advance though, so that you don’t end up without any ticket on D-day.
- Go watch a game. Whether you like sports or not, attending one of the major sporting events in New York could well be the highlight of your stay. American football, basketball, baseball, ice hockey... New York City has world-class teams in many sports, and watching a game at the Madison Square Garden or the Yankee Stadium will leave no one indifferent. Here too, remember to book your tickets beforehand to make sure you will have seats 🙂
All these activities are part of the great classics during a visit to New York City. But let's focus on a few particularly interesting activities that are available in the early spring. With the start of spring in April and the weather getting milder, there are also many activities to discover, and some visits become particularly interesting at this time of the year 😄
Admire the Cherry Blossoms
If there's one ephemeral event you can only attend in April (and sometimes early May), it is the Cherry Blossom Festival. This festival is held in various places in the city. Cherry blossom is a highly anticipated time of year in Japan, but it is also widely celebrated in New York.
You can enjoy this beautiful natural spectacle in some of the city's green spaces, such as:
- The Brooklyn Botanical Garden is where thousands of people come to watch the trees' blossoming, and Japanese culture is also celebrated with traditional and modern costume parades, demonstrations of traditional Japanese arts and martial arts, and tea tastings.
- The Bronx Botanical Garden, one of the city's most flowery gardens, is truly beautiful at this time of year.
- The Queens Botanical Garden is also worth a visit: in addition to the cherry trees, many Asian plants and flowers are on display for the occasion.
- Central Park, the city's largest and most famous park. A beautiful April day is the perfect time to have a picnic here😉
- Riverside Park, along the Hudson River, where you can admire more than 700 cherry trees in full bloom 🌸
Don't forget to bring your camera! 📸
Have you thought about a tourist pass? 🎫
Is this your first time in New York City? Are you planning to discover the city's must-see activities? If so, I highly recommend buying a tourist pass! The New York CityPASS is a pass that grants access to 5 major tourist sites, and you can even choose between different activities (2 fixed activities + 3 activities to choose from a list). Remember to book your pass in advance so as to enjoy it serenely once you're in the Big Apple! 😉
Visit the city's most famous neighbourhoods
Since the weather is mild and rainfall is low at this time of year, April is the perfect month to discover the most picturesque corners of the city – before tourists return en masse. It is particularly enjoyable to make beautiful discoveries while strolling through the streets of various districts.
Here are some of the neighbourhoods to discover:
- SoHo, short for South of Houston, a neighbourhood that has been a gathering place for many artists since the 1960s, is a must-see today if you like fashion and architecture 😀
- Greenwich Village, located next to SoHo, is considered by most visitors to be the most beautiful neighbourhood in New York City. It is also known as “The Village” because of its atmosphere, which contrasts with many other parts of the city, but also because it is one of the few places where the street pattern is not gridded. Here too, artists have shaped the neighbourhood since the 1960s.
- Chinatown is Manhattan's famous Chinese neighbourhood. Upon entering this place (which is home to around 150,000 people), visitors will feel as if they had been transported to Asia. The atmosphere is unique, and it is of course the perfect place to try Chinese food as well as the food of many other Asian countries 😋
- Upper East Side and Upper West Side are the two neighbourhoods that border Central Park, in the heart of Manhattan. With their very privileged location, these two neighbourhoods are obviously very posh. If you're a shopper, you'll definitely want to discover these areas. They are also home to some of New York's greatest museums, and it is there that many celebrities live. In fact, if you can afford it, the Upper East Side can be a very nice place to stay in New York 👍
Looking for accommodation in New York City? 🛏️
You have planned your entire stay in New York for next April, but you are still wondering where to sleep in New York City? No worries, there is no shortage of accommodation in this huge US metropolis 😉 If you plan ahead, you're bound to find accommodation that suits you, whether it's a hotel or an Airbnb! No matter what, remember to book your accommodation well in advance so that you can enjoy the best rates possible. Accommodation prices are high in the City That Never Sleeps! 🙂
Other major events
- The Easter Parade, which takes place on Easter Sunday, usually in April. This large parade, which runs from 78th Street to 57th Street via Fifth Avenue, is a must-see event in April – especially if you visit New York with your family 😊
- Earth Day is an annual event to promote environmentally responsible behaviour. It is celebrated in New York City with concerts, exhibitions, tastings and educational workshops in Union Square. It is also the occasion for Earth Hour, a major mobilisation that takes place in thousands of cities around the world, and during which all public buildings and monuments turn off their lights 🌎
- The New York International Auto Show is a major ten-day event held at the Jacob Javits Convention Center, in Manhattan. It usually takes place just before Easter weekend. It's a chance to see upcoming technological innovations and all the new creations from the biggest manufacturers before they even hit the market.
- La Greek Independence Day Parade, where New York's Greek community comes to celebrate their independence by marching down Fifth Avenue in folk costumes. It's the perfect opportunity to enjoy a good meal in many of the city's Greek restaurants.
- The TriBeCa Film Festival is a film festival founded by Robert de Niro, where every year around 500,000 people come to see screenings of short and feature films. In addition to these screenings, there are also workshops and lectures on a variety of topics related to the 7th art 🎥
We’ve come to the end of this article! I hope it has met your expectations, and that you now know if going to New York in April is the right choice for you. In any case, whether it’s in April or at any other time of the year, the best advice I can give you is to book the tickets for your activities as soon as you can!
Also, if you eventually decide to travel to New York a bit later, I suggest you read my article about New York in May! 😉