If you’re brave enough to head out in the wintery streets of New York this Christmas, you’ll be rewarded with the festive sights and sounds of one of the most iconically Christmassy cities on earth! Take a look at our top pick of activities that will have you feeling festive in no time…
If you’re looking for a bit of Christmas cheer for free, make sure you head over to Fifth Avenue to check out the holiday window displays, which are guaranteed to put you in the holiday spirit. Saks Fifth Avenue is the key player in the holiday window game and this year’s theme is “Land of 1000 Delights” – magical landscapes of colourful candy drops and festive clothing. There are animated elements to the holiday windows at Saks that you won’t want to miss – luckily, they play every 10 minutes between 5 and 11pm until the 2nd Jan so there’s plenty of opportunities to catch them.
Over at Bloomingdale’s, eight huge windows will be festooned with beautiful chandeliers created by a range of famous and talented artists. The chandeliers will be auctioned at the end of the festive season to raise money for charity. Make sure you wrap up warm so you can soak in all the windows of all the big stores, including Macy’s and Bloomingdale’s.
Winter Village at Bryant Park
There's plenty to do at Bryant Park's Winter Village. ‘Holiday Movies at the Porch’ invites you to come and watch some of the most iconic Christmas movies of all time like Elf and Miracle on 34th Street. Festive attire is encouraged, so you’ll want to choose your outfit wisely. The European inspired open-air market features kiosks that have something for everyone. Browse the range of artisanal goods, sample local foods and admire the glittering lights on the towering Christmas tree.
There is also an ice rink here, but you have to pay $20 to hire skates. If you’re planning on seeing some of the city’s main attractions too, save yourself money with our Central Park ice-skating ticket packages instead.
Ice Skating in Central Park
What could put you more in the Christmas spirit than an afternoon spent ice-skating around Central park? Enjoy views of this beautiful park (possibly transformed into a snow-covered winter wonderland at this time of year!) as well as the New York skyline towering around you as you spend an hour whizzing around the rink.
Combine your ice skating experience with a visit to the Empire State Building, Top of the Rock or the Hop-on-Hop-Off bus and get the best value. Pre-booking doesn’t mean you need to lose out on flexibility though – you will receive an open dated ticket for the rink that can be redeemed at any time during your holiday.
The Radio City Christmas Spectacular
The glamorous Rockettes from the Radio City Spectacular are guaranteed to get you in the Christmas spirit with their cheerful, up-tempo show that is sprinkled with just a smidge of Christmas magic. This is a great family-friendly show that transports you to Santa’s workshop – with dancing wooden soldiers, prancing reindeer and classic Christmas hits like ‘Rockin’ Around the Christmas Tree’ to sing along to.
This show is on a limited time run until the 1st January, so make sure you book your tickets early so you don’t miss out!
Union Square Holiday Market
This renowned holiday market is always buzzing; you can just feel the festive sprit in the air. If you’re looking to do some Christmas shopping, the Union Square Holiday Market offers something a bit different, with a selection of unique gifts handcrafted by local artists. Our top tip is to start by getting yourself a cup of hot chocolate (or a hot cup of apple cider if you fancy a Christmas tipple!) to keep you warm as you wander through the winding aisles, browsing the quaint wooden stalls.
There’s everything from beautiful jewellery, to one-of-a-kind artwork and sweet-smelling candles and soaps. This is also a great place for some lunch, with several street vendors serving up delicious food. We’d recommend ‘Meatball Obsession’ if you want to try “the number 1 ranked meatball in New York City”.
Rockefeller Christmas Tree
The Rockefeller Christmas Tree lighting ceremony took place last week and is a must-see if you’re visiting before January 7th. The 94-foot tall Norway spruce, adorned with around 50,000 sparkling lights and a Swarovski encrusted star taking pride of place at the top, is truly a spectacular sight to behold. Visit after dark to see the enormous tree in all its glory and partake in a New York tradition. Make sure you’ve got your camera ready as this is the perfect place to snap the ultimate selfie!
Click here, to view our range of New York attraction tickets and start planning an unforgettable holiday.
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