“The city that never sleeps” has received its name thanks to the many activities that it offers 24 hours a day, both to residents and visitors. But what happens during the end-of-the-year seasons? Well, more and more people choose to travel and learn more about other cultures and customs, which is why the Christmas celebration is one of the most special events in New York, due to its decoration and cozy atmosphere.
Hundreds of people gather at the main tourist spots in the city for the sole purpose of celebrating surrounded by snow, lights, lead soldiers and Christmas carols, as we have detailed in hundreds of Hollywood films that recreate this holiday.
If this is one of your plans during the end of the year, below we share 7 activities that you can do during the Christmas season, activities that will surely be very useful for you to take advantage of the time while visiting this huge city, been the Dyker Heights Christmas Lights Tour in New York one of the favorites of the families.
What to do at Christmas in New York?
The Big Apple and the other districts have plans everywhere, plans that start from the month of November to January, starting with the Thanksgiving Day by the famous Macy’s store, continuing with the turning on of the tree lights from Rockefeller Center to the iconic New Year’s Eve celebration in Times Square. In addition, dozens of windows of the best shops in the city are filled with color to illuminate the commercial corridors, but also excursions like the Night Tours in NYC turn out to be the most wanted ones.
Every year, it is expected to welcome around 7,000,000 visitors from different destinations around the world, who hope to have the best experiences of each New Year’s season.
1. The Rockettes
Year after year the Radio City Rockettes dress up to dazzle adults and children with their performance of the Christmas Spectacular, a Broadway event held at Radio City Music Hall. This show is full of glitter, costumes, Christmas music, and perfectly timed dancing.
- Date: From November 8 to January 5
- Place: Radio City Music Hall
2. Illumination of the iconic Belmont tree BID Arthur Avenue
In the district of the Bronx, you will be able to appreciate a neighborhood full of lights and food in the best Italian style, the little Italy is in the Belmont BID Arthur Avenue neighborhood where they, annually, light up one of the largest trees in the area, joined by Santa Claus and some good cookies with hot chocolate. This is one of the espectacles that you will see during the New York Christmas Lights Tour.
- Date: November 30
- Location: Belmont BID Arthur Avenue, Bronx
3. The nutcracker
This renowned play can be seen in 3 versions and in 3 different districts:
- Queens dress up in magic at the Salzburg Puppet Theater in the Flushing neighborhood, with a handcrafted puppet show presenting The Nutcracker in a play for all ages. ( Date: December 4 – Place: Salzburg Puppet Theater)
- Manhattan brings this classic to life at Lincoln Center Plaza with choreography and music based on the work of George Balanchine. ( Date: From November 29 to January 21- Location: Lincoln Center Plaza)
- Brooklyn opens the doors of the Kings Theater to present a new version of The Nutcracker, representing the traditions and cultures of the melting pot of this district with characters and scenes typical of this classic. ( Date: December 14 – Location: Kings Theater)
4. Times Square at New Years
This is one of the most anticipated shows by hundreds of spectators who yearn to see the ball fall from the Waterford Crystal Times Square just minutes before midnight on December 31st. People come to wait for hours in this place, because everyone wants to have the best location but there are so many spectators that the place becomes totally crowded, however seeing the famous sphere of lights fall excites more than one.
- Date: December 31
- Place: Times Square
5. Thanksgiving with Macy’s
The famous Macy’s Thanksgiving Day Parade is a classic New York event that kicks off Christmas. In this event dozens of giant balloons parade through the main streets of Manhattan joined by floats with Broadway musicals and celebrities. Starting at 9 am, one of the most important events in the country begins, passing through 77th Street and Central Park West to 34th Street and Seventh Avenue.
- Date: November 28
- Location: Manhattan
6. Dyker Heights
It is one of the best decorated places in all of Brooklyn, a complex of huge houses that since 1986 have been decorated from floor to ceiling, with thousands of lights and Christmas decorations that will dazzle anyone. Every year a new owner joins the tradition, because the atmosphere is such that everyone goes out a little more for Christmas than when they arrived. To learn more about this plan read about Christmas in Dyker Heights or you could participate on a Christmas lights in NYC.
- Date: December 1-30
- Location: Dyker Heights, Brooklyn
7. Rockefeller Center Tree
Lighting the Christmas tree at Rockefeller Center is quite a ceremony, as it is a tradition that has illuminated Rockefeller Plaza for more than 80 years. During the great ceremony, classic Christmas performances are performed with typical Christmas carols and musicals. It is also a perfectly romantic and emotional setting, because next to the tree there is an ice rink on which you can skate from October.
- Date: Confirmed annually
- Location: Manhattan
The list of plans goes on and on, New York offers activities for all tastes, budgets and for every day, in fact every corner of the city has something new to fall in love with and you can discover all this on a NYC night tour. Some of the events that you can enjoy these days are:
- Fireworks in Brooklyn to celebrate New Years.
- Enjoy the Lantern Festival on Staten Island.
- Walk through the illuminated Bronx Zoo.
- Train show in the Botanical Garden.
- Black Friday and Empire Outlet sales.
- Attractions at the Apollo Theater.
- Classic Twilight Tour of Staten Island.
- Illumination of the largest Menorah in the city.
- Presentation of the play “Scrooge’s Ghosts”.
Plan your trip and have the best Christmas of all, let yourself fall in love with the Christmas spirit, be part of a Brooklyn Christmas lights tour, take the time to visit each of the districts and enjoy their events. Make your hotel, transportation and excursion reservations in advance to guarantee availability.