Visiting New York City in July

A Guide to Summer Weather, Events and More in Manhattan

4th of July fireworks in Manhattan
••• 4th of July fireworks in Manhattan. Getty Images/tobntno

Although many New Yorkers escape NYC during the heat of July, visitors don't have to worry about being lonely or having lots of things closed -- it's actually a very popular time to visit New York City. Many people come to the city to enjoy all the fun, free events that define summer in Manhattan. If you're not heading to the beach or a family picnic, the Fourth of July in New York City is a truly special holiday to experience in person, with amazing fireworks that can be seen from many different places in the city.

Many people also enjoy experiencing New York City Summer Restaurant Week when they visit in July. Although the dates vary each year, they frequently include at least a week in July. To combine sightseeing and RW, consider these picks for best Restaurant Week options near NYC sights.

July Weather

  • Average High: 85 degrees F (29 degrees C)
  • Average Low: 70 degrees F (21 degrees C)

July tends to be the hottest and wettest month of the year, so pack accordingly. It's pretty impressive how oppressive the heat can feel in New York City -- the "concrete jungle" does a great job of holding in the heat and even summer nights can be very steamy. You'll also want to plan for adequate protection from the sun when you visit New York City in the summer. It might not be the beach, but that doesn't mean you can't get a sunburn! Sunblock, hats, sunglasses and light layers will keep you protected, cool and happy.

You'll also want to make sure you stay hydrated -- traveling with a water bottle wherever you go is a great idea (tip: fill it with ice at your hotel at the beginning of the day and if it's the insulated type, you'll be able to enjoy cold water all day long).

What to Wear

  • Pack an umbrella
  • A light sweater or waterproof jacket (for keeping warm in the air-conditioned museums and stores)
  • Closed toe shoes, comfortable for walking and water-resistant if possible
  • A picnic blanket is great if you want to check out some of the free concerts and movies or just people-watch in Central Park with a picnic.

July Perks

  • Fourth of July festivities in New York City are fabulous and unlike anything you've likely ever experienced.
  • If it's not too hot, it can be the perfect time of year for New York's many walking tours.
  • There are many summer concerts and outdoor film festivals to see (most of which are free!).

July Cons

  • Subways and streets can be quite uncomfortable in the heat
  • It frequently rains

Good to Know

  • Drink plenty of water -- it's easy to get dehydrated when it's really hot. Carrying your own water bottle is ideal as previously mentioned, but there are water fountains available in most NYC parks. Be cautious about drinking too much alcohol when it's hot, as that can be very dehydrating.
  • If you want to go to any of the movies or free concerts in New York City parks, bring a blanket and pack a picnic dinner -- you can even bring some wine and beer if you're discreet. It's a great experience and truly gives you a taste of being a local New Yorker.

July Highlights/Events

As long as you don't mind the heat, July is a great time in New York City with lots to see and do.

Here are a few annual highlights that happen throughout the month: