If you love Christmas as much as I do, New York might be the best place to spend the most wonderful time of the year and to get into your festive spirit! However, Christmas in New York is magical, and there are so many things to do, so it may be challenging to choose from!
So here is a list of 20 of the most Christmasy things to do in New York during the winter holidays:
What to do for Christmas in New York
1. Go to Rockefeller Center Christmas Tree and skating rink
Probably the first thing that comes to my mind when I think about Christmas in New York is the Christmas Tree at Rockefeller Center and the iconic skating rink. It’s one of my favorite things to do in New York this time of the year, and I love skating there and listening to Christmas music! The only problem with Rockefeller Center is that everybody wants to be here, so it gets so crowded. Skip the weekends and try going during the week if you want to have the skating rink more for yourself!
2. Skate at Bryant Park Winter Village
The ice skating rink at Bryant Park is one of the most famous skating places in New York during the holidays! However, reserving your ticket online is easier to avoid crowds. After skating, visit the beautiful Christmas Market and sip from a delicious hot chocolate.
3. See the Dyker Heights Holiday Lights
The easiest way is to book a bus or walking tour and immerse yourself in a complete holiday experience.
4. Embark on a holiday-themed cruise.
With hot cocoa and carols, what could you possibly not like?
5. See a Christmas Show
There are so many Christmas shows worth watching in New York, but Radio City Spectacular is undoubtedly one of the most famous.
6. Skate in Central Park
The skating rink in Central Park – Wollman Rink, is another iconic place where you can skate during the holiday season. Be sure again to reserve your ticket in advance.
7. See the Holiday Window Displays
If you walk down 5th Avenue from Central Park, you can pass by some of the most beautifully decorated store windows in New York. Stop by Bergdorf Goodman, Tiffany, Saks Fifth Avenue, and Macy’s.
READ MORE: 10 Festive Christmas Trees I love this year
8. Listen to Christmas Carols in an old church
St. Patrick’s Cathedral on 5th Avenue has beautiful Christmas concerts and service.
9. Drink hot chocolate in Bryant Park
There are many places where you can have a Christmassy hot chocolate in the city, but my favorite was in Bryant Park. You can also have a box of hot chocolate to take home for you or your friends.
10. Visit the oldest toy store in the United States
When you go to see the Christmas Tree at Rockefeller Center, stop at Schwarz FAO too, the oldest toy store in the United States (functioning since 1892).
11. Meet Santa Claus at Macy’s
Definitely an experience your kids will love!
12. Enjoy the fantastic views from One Vanderbilt
This was our favorite experience during our last visit to New York! It’s beautiful no matter the season or time of the day, but this time was special because of the snow that started to slowly fall while we reached the top!
13. See a Christmas Wreaths exhibition
While walking in Central Park, stop by to admire the annual exhibition of imaginative and unusual Christmas Wreaths at the Arsenal Gallery in Central Park.
14. Explore Central Park in the snow
No matter the season, Central Park has its charm, but it gets even more beautiful on a wintery, snowy day.
15. See the Saks Fifth Avenue Light Show
It takes place every day during the holiday season, every 10 minutes from 5 PM to 11 PM.
16. See the Holiday Train Show at the Botanical Gardens
The Holiday Train Show features miniature trains in a miniature recreated New York with more than 190 scaled buildings and famous city landmarks.
17. Get a tour of Grand Central Station
Book a walking tour of the Grand Central Station and visit the Christmas Market inside the station.
18. See A Christmas Carol at Merchant’s House Museum
The show runs every day except Mondays all month of December! Bonus point: you also get the chance to visit this beautiful historic house and see how a wealthy family lived here in the 19th century.
19. Have a Lax Bagel while seeing a gingerbread houses exhibition
Every time we go to New York, we have this new tradition of stopping by Essex Market in the Lower East Side and having a bagel, especially the Lax bagel, which is my favorite! Because it was the holiday season, we also got the chance to see a gingerbread houses exhibition!
20. See the sunset from the Edge on Christmas Day
We wanted to check the Edge and found the perfect occasion – on Christmas Day, when not so many things are open in New York. Seeing the sunset from the outside observation deck was a beautiful thing to do on our Christmas trip!
What are your favorite things to do for Christmas in New York? Let me know in the comments below!