Attractions Not to be Missed in NYC at Christmas

Christmas is the most magical time of the year and no more so than in New York, USA.  The festive spirit and decorations can be found in abundance from the decorated large department store windows to the small pastry and chocolate shops.  Here are some top NYC Christmas activities not to miss while visiting New York at this magical time.

Top NYC Christmas Activities

Did you know that there has been a Christmas Tree at the Rockefeller Centre since 1931 and is sourced two years in advance? The 78 foot, 10 ton Norwegian Spruce is illuminated with over 45,000 lights.  For the tenth consecutive year the tree will be donated to Habitat for Humanity, a symbol of hope.

Rockerfeller Plaza NYC. NYC Christmas activities
Rockefeller Plaza NYC ©MDHarding

Radio City Music Hall Christmas Spectacular

America’s number one holiday show – Christmas Spectacular has been embraced as a Christmas tradition, entertaining generations featuring the legendary dance troupe The Rockettes, since there debut in 1933.  The show includes family favourites and skilled numbers such as “Parade of the Wooden Soldiers,” which sets the standard for the Radio City Rockettes style of precision dance, and “Living Nativity,” which takes audiences on an awe inspiring journey. Did you know you can also take a backstage tour and meet one of The Rockettes? Christmas Spectacular can be seen until January 2nd, 2017. One of the most spectacular of the top NYC Christmas activities not to be missed!

Radio City Music Hall Christmas Spectacular. NYC Christmas activities
Radio City Music Hall Christmas Spectacular ©Madison Square Garden

A Slice Of Brooklyn Christmas Lights Tour

Visit the Brooklyn neighbourhood of Dyker Heights, world famous for the most illuminated holiday display including animatronics, inflatables and the largest nutcracker.  The Christmas spirit really comes alive onboard A Slice Of Brooklyn Bus Tours – Christmas Lights Tour, where you get to visit a number of locations and hear the stories/meet the locals, sharing their top NYC Christmas activities spirit. Dates now extended till January 4th, 2017. Must be seen to be believed!

Christmas Lights in Brooklyn. NYC Christmas activities
Christmas Lights in Brooklyn ©MDHarding

Holiday Evening Cruises

Celebrate in style on-board one of the luxurious Hornblower Cruises with a festive holiday dinner cruise.  See the sights including the Statue of Liberty, Brooklyn Bridge and the Freedom Tower. The evening starts as soon as you step on-board with a refreshing glass of champagne.  There is a large selection of mouth watering treats at the buffet and a DJ so you can dance the night away. A festive highlight for the grown ups, or if you only have a short time and in need of some rest and relaxation, but would still like to see the dazzling lights of the Manhattan Skyline and the iconic Statue of Liberty?  The New York Water Taxi has a one hour Statue By Night cruise available.  This one hour tour allows you to see the sights from either inside or up on deck while enjoying a complimentary glass of champagne or cider.

NYC Holiday Cruise. top NYC Christmas activities
NYC Holiday Cruise ©MDHarding

The Ride

The Ride is not just another city bus tour, it is the most entertaining and hilarious bus tour ever!  With full floor to ceiling windows and front facing seats you won’t miss any of the action. There is live on-board entertainment, an informative bus (if you have seen Knight Rider the talking car, this is the talking bus) and a few surprises (sorry, no spoiler alerts).  Highly recommend!  The Holiday Edition of The Ride is available till January 8th 2017.

The Ride ©The Ride. top NYC Christmas activities
The Ride ©The Ride

Getting To New York, USA

We traveled with British Airways from Edinburgh connecting at the London Heathrow Terminal 5 hub.  It was a smooth transition and luggage was transferred all the way through to the final destination.  There is a number of optional seating, in-flight meals and pre-bookable services available. If traveling on-board one of the Boeing 747‘s, look out for the three rows of two seats at the back of the plane and also if you select seats on the right of the plane you may see the iconic New York skyline.

Accommodation In New York

New York has a large variety of accommodation available from luxury 5 star hotels to budget hostels.  On this occasion we stayed at the iconic Waldorf Astoria Hotel located on Park Avenue. Only a 10 minute walk to the Rockefeller Centre and the Radio City Music Hall.  If staying over on a Sunday, checkout the brunch!  (The hotel and flights are available as a British Airways holiday package).

Also don’t miss the great savings with the NYC CityPASS when visiting the top NYC attractions this holiday season, such as Top Of The Rock At Rockefeller Center, The Empire State Building, 9/11 Memorial & Museum and lots more!

Please note when travelling to the USA an ESTA may be required.

I hope you have enjoyed reading about the latest seasonal attractions in New York, USA.  If you have, don’t forget to share! As always we would love to hear from you.  If you have any comments, questions or perhaps you have experienced a seasonal attraction not mentioned here that you would like to tell others about.  Please do get in touch.

Whatever you decide to do this holiday season we hope you have a fantastic time enjoying these top NYC Christmas activities. Happy Holidays:) x

Thank you to British Airways, Waldorf Astoria Hotel, Madison Square Garden, A Slice Of Brooklyn Bus Tours, Hornblower Cruises, New York Water Taxi, The Ride and NYC & Company.

Disclaimer:  All the above comments and opinions are my own.

About MichelleDeansHarding


 Michelle has a love of travel and photography, which has currently taken her to six continents. Experiencing other cultures/history and food both independently and while working on-board luxury cruise ships. Discover more about Michelle, her enthusiasm for travel and photography via:

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