Your kids have taken
every intro-to-art tour in all five boroughs, and they know
by heart all the words sung by Bachosaurus rex at CarnegieKids.
For a new twist on the same old subjects, try one of these off-site
excursions, offered by New York’s top cultural institutions.
>> Go Back To Medieval Times. Kids 4 through 12 explore
medieval art and architecture in hourlong programs at the
Cloisters, the Metropolitan Museum of Art’s Fort Tryon
Park branch in northern Manhattan (1 p.m., first Saturday
of the month, free with museum admission; 212-923-3700; metmuseum.org).
Don’t miss the medieval festival in September, when
queens and armored knights on horseback stroll the park. Take
in the antiquated atmosphere by watching jousting matches
and puppet shows from hay- bale seats.
>> Travel The World. For families who want more far-flung
adventure, the American Museum of Natural History organizes
curator- and scholar-led journeys to study other cultures
and the natural world. Take a Tanzanian safari on the Serengeti
with an expert naturalist, or catch an overnight train ride
to a ranch in the Canadian Rockies for a little horseback
riding, river rafting, and glacier hiking (212-769-5700; discoverytours.org;
starting at $2,695 for children and $3,895 for adults).
>> Explore New York’s Waterways. Parents and
kids over 11 can circumnavigate Manhattan on the South Street
Seaport Museum’s thirties-era tugboat, the W.O. Decker
212-748-8786; $125 per person for four hours; $180 for six
hours). Not for landlubbers, the four-to-six-hour journey
starts at the Seaport Museum, and tours locations from Randall’s
Island to the Brooklyn waterfront, where you’ll maneuver
through the Gowanus Canal and hear how Hell’s Gate got
>> Soak Up Lower East Side History. On the Tenement
Museum’s new “Lower East Side Stories Tour”
(kids $10; adults $12), your family will stroll the lively
neighborhood’s culture-steeped sidewalks with museum
educators and longtime neighborhood residents. Visit “Hat
Street” at present-day Confucius Plaza, where Jewish
merchants once sold Chinese bachelors colorful headwear; discover
what it meant for African-American kids to fly “Jewish
airplanes”; and browse the old and new stores lining
Orchard Street (tenement.org;