Something happens to many of us when we have babies here in NYC. All of a sudden, the city that you fell in love with because of the lights, art and hustle becomes unrecognizable. Which makes it no wonder so many flee NYC the instant they inhale that first baby smell. But for those of us who stay? The rewards are endless. Sure, there are the obvious playgrounds and mommy-and-me classes in almost every neighborhood. But there are also hidden treasures sometimes in the least (and sometimes the most) obvious places around you.

Here are our top 5 insider parent treasures making our NYC parenting experience a little easier. Consider it a gift from us to you, mama.

1. Waterfalls in Central Park. While you might be thinking that you need to spend an entire weekend in the The Catskills for your family nature fix (and sometimes you just might), the truth is sometimes you might not just have it in you. Lucky for you, you only have to go as far north as the top of Central Park to enjoy some glorious man-made waterfalls and meditative nature hikes.

2. Equinox Sports Club. Wait what? Yep, you read that right. While you may have thought you’d have an excuse to extend that hold on the membership to your favorite sports club after maternity leave, turns out Equinox was thinking ahead even when you weren’t and created kids programming called For Kids Only. Available on the Upper West Side and Upper East side, For Kids Only is filled with classes for your kiddo while you take your favorite workout class. And if that wasn’t enough to get you back on the treadmill, For Kids Only also offers a preschool alternative competitive with some of the top in the city and is available for members and non-members alike.

3. The Subway. Sure, you may be cursing on the platform in the heat, but if you haven’t had your baby yet or have been too scared of germs to hop on with your babe, take a deep breathe and let it go because for the price of a subway fare, your baby will be entertained by some of the best performers in the world: New Yorkers.

4. IDNYC. No we’re not talking about your New York license. We’re talking about all of the special perks you get just for being a New Yorker. Yep, get into the top museums and cultural institutions like the MOMA, American Museum of Natural History and the Bronx Zoo for FREE by registering for your NYC id (also free)!

5. NYC Moms. When you first enter babyland, meeting other parents can be intimidating and can bring back memories of dating in this big old city. But one of our favorite secrets about NYC? It’s being surrounded by awesome moms in plain sight! Whether you’re a tiger mom who’s ready to enroll her baby in Cello lessons at one, a natural parenting mom who’s into the organic life all-day everyday or our favorite mom who always offers a glass of wine at play dates, there’s a mom nearby for you here in the city. In our opinion, the best playdates involve all of these moms in one room together because just sticking to your own kind is boring. We do live in NYC after all.

*We are so grateful when brands support our content and community. This post was sponsored by Equinox. Find out more about For Kids Only at equinox now!