The Completed Guide To Christmas In New York City!

I love New York City, and I especially love it during the holidays season! Christmas in New York is the most beautiful time to visit the city!

Today I wanted to share all of the best festive activities that you can do in New York City during November-December for Christmas!

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Going to Christmas markets is one of my favorite things to do on a Christmas vacation.

Even though most of them are expensive and usually I don’t buy anything there but local food, I still love the festive vibes at the market, window shopping through the market’s booths, and enjoying the local food that is sold there.

Here are the best Christmas markets to visit in New York City:

Bryant Park’s Christmas market – I’ve been to this Christmas market before and loved it! there are many festive booths, delicious food, a HUGE Christmas tree and a ice skating rink!

  • Dates: October 31 – January 5th
  • Opening hours: Monday-Friday 11am – 8pm; Saturday-Sunday 10am – 8pm
  • Location: Bryant Park, 40th to 42nd Street between 5th and 6th Avenue

Grand Central Terminal Holiday Fair – This is also a special Christmas market that is located inside the Grand Central Terminal (if you don’t know what the Grand Central is it’s the main train station in New York City).

What I like about this Christmas market is that it’s an indoor market, which is great for rainy/ very cold days.

At the market you can find clothing, bath and body products, toys, holiday items and more!

  • Dates: November 18th – December 24th.
  • Opening hours: Monday-Friday 10am – 8pm; Saturday – 10am – 7pm; Sunday – 11am – 6pm
  • Location: Grand Central Terminal, Vanderbilt Hall (42nd St. and Park Ave.)


Union Square Holiday Market – This is a larger market in the downtown area of Manhattan.

In the market you’ll find unique items such as hand-blown glass housewares, eco-friendly bags and accessories, crafts, holiday items and more!

And like in any Christmas market around the world, there is also delicious local food and sweets!

  • Dates: November 21st – December 24th
  • Opening hours: Monday-Friday 11am – 8pm; Saturday 10am – 8pm; Sunday 11am-7pm
  • Location: Union Square at 14th Street

Renegade Craft Fair – This is the world’s largest curated exhibition of independent crafts. It features many craft makers, artisanal food and drinks, great music and great vibes! Renegade hosts fairs all over the world throughout the year, and come to New York three times a year, each time at a different place, so always check online where they are located.

  • Dates:  December 21st – 22nd
  • Hours: 11am – 5pm
  • Location: Brooklyn Expo Center, 72 Noble St., Brooklyn

Go Ice Skating!

Even though I suck at ice skating, it’s still fun to watch others and enjoy the holiday vibes.

But if you like ice skating, or if you are like me and you like to spend a few minutes watching others, here are the best Winter ice skating rinks in New York City:

Ice Rink at the Rockefeller Center – located right in the center of Manhattan, when everything around is fully decorated for Christmas, below the big Christmas tree, the Rockfeller Center’s huge ice rink is a must!

Dates: Starting from October 12 the ice skating rink will be open everyday through April 2020.


  • Adults – $25 – $33
  • Children under 11 and seniors – $15
  • Skate rental – $13

PRO’S TIP: this ice skating rink is very popular, it’s best to come early in the afternoon and to avoid going there in the weekends.

Bryant Park’s ice skating rink – like I said earlier, there is a big ice skating rink in Bryant Park.

During the November-December it is near the Bryant’s Park Christmas Market!

  • Dates: from October 31st, 2019 – February 29th, 2020.
  • Prices: entrance is free, skate rentals costs between $18 – $33, depending on the days of the week

Central Park Wollman Rink – the most famous ice skating rink in New York City, the Wollman Rink in Central Park! This rink is located in the middle of the park. I think this is one of the most romantic activities you can do while visiting New York City in the winter. We’ve seen this ice skating rink in almost every New York based movie or TV show!

Dates: October 21st – April 2020
Opening hours:

  • Monday-Tuesday – 10:00am-2:30pm
  • Wednesday-Thursday – 10:00 am-10:00 pm
  • Friday-Saturday – 10:00 am-11:00 pm
  • Sunday – 10:00 am-9:00 pm

Price: Cash only, costs:

  • Monday-Thursday – adults $12, Children (11 and under) $6, Seniors – $5
  • Friday-Sunday and holidays – adults $19, Children $6, Seniors 9$
  • Skate rentals – $10

More To Read:

How to book cheap flights on Skyscanner

25 travel tips you should know before visiting New York City

Where to stay in New York City?

Best attractions in Manhattan 

Christmas Lights Tours

New York City is one of the prettiest cities in the world, especially during the holidays season!

Trust me, you will want go on Christmas lights tours. The city is decorated so beautiful, that you won’t want to miss any spot of the city!

Here are the best Christmas Lights tours in New York City, which you can buy tickets to from this website for a discount price! (I saved a lot of money buying tickets to multiple attractions through this website)

New York Christmas Markets and Lights Walking Tour – this festive 4-hour tour is a lovely walking tour of New York’s festive markets and decorations.

In this tour you’ll visit 4 of New York’s traditional Christmas markets, find unique Christmas gifts for your loved ones, try traditional foods and drink delicious Christmas drinks.

You’ll also see the magnificent window displays at the big department stores! which are AMAZING.

Book your tickets in advance for a discount price through this website!

New York Christmas Holiday Tour of Manhattan – it’s the most magical time of the year, and this guided tour of the festive lights and Christmas decorations of the holiday season will show you the best Christmas decorations around New York City.

The city is one of the prettiest cities in the world during the holidays season, and a full guided Christmas lights tour is a must!

I went on a Christmas lights tour in one of my visits to New York and it was amazing!

CLICK HERE for more information and to book your tickets!

There is also a private tour option if you are interested.

3.5-Hour Brooklyn Christmas Magic Tour – Brooklyn is so pretty during the holidays season! people decorate their houses so pertty it’s insane!

Explore the beautiful Dyker Heights, which is an area of the cutest and most spectacular houses that are decorated so pretty for the holidays season!

The neighborhood has blocks and blocks of Christmas lights and amazing decorations.

They go all out with beautiful nativity displays, nutcrackers, inflatable santas, garland, lights and more. The place glows with bright lights, buzzes sound, and bumps with holiday music on full blast

You can also enjoy a walk under the Brooklyn Bridge and take picture infront of the beautiful skyline of Manhattan.

This tour is a highly recommended experience! it is the perfect night out for families, groups of friends or even a date night.

The tour include:

  • A Driver
  • Proffesional guide
  • Hop on Hop-off tour
  • Small group
  • Transport by air-conditioned vehicle

The tour doesn’t include:

  • Food and drinks
  • Gratuities


Holiday Lights Extravaganza Walking Tour – a more deep tour of the beautifully decorated Manhattan.

In this guided tour you’ll view the incredible holiday lights of New York’s Fifth Avenue, visit the famous Rockfeller Center Christmas Tree and ice rink, and also enjoy a 1 hour of shopping at outdoor holiday shops in Bryant Park’s Christmas market!

The tour also includes a hot coca, coffee or tea and also a choice of dessert!

View incredible holiday lights of New York’s famous Fifth Avenue high-end retailers Visit the famous Rockefeller Center Christmas Tree and ice rink Enjoy 1 hour of shopping at outdoor holiday shops of the Bank of America Winter Village at Bryant Park Wind down your night of fun and warm chilled bones with hot cocoa, coffee or tea as well as a choice of decadent dessert!


 Manhattan Holiday Yacht Cruise – last but not least is this special holiday yacht cruise around New York City!

This is definitely a unique experience to do during the holidays season.

In this lovely cruise you’ll sail around Manhattan on a holiday season cruise. You’ll see the New York skyline, warm up with cocoa and holiday cookies while listening to live entertainment and carols.

During the cruise you’ll get to see the Statue Of Liberty, Brooklyn Bridge, Ellis Island and many famous sites of Manhattan, while enjoying some champagne, wine or beer as you listen to live jazz or Christmas carols.

The cruise includes:

  • A 90-minute cruise
  • Live entertainment
  • Holiday cookies
  • 1 beverage per person



Go On A Private Photos Journey

Another special activity you can do while visiting New York at any time, but especially during the holidays season when everything is decorated so pretty, is to go on a private photos journey!

If you don’t know what a private photos journey is, it is a guided tour by a local guide which is also a photographer!

You go on a private tour of the city, while the local guide explanes and shows you everything, he also takes proffessional pictures of you where ever you want to!

The tour includes:

  • Knowledgeable, local guide/photographer
  • Hotel pick-up via subway (uopon request)
  • Unlimited photos of you and your group
  • New York taxes and fees

The tour doesn’t include:

  • Subway transfers
  • Gratuities (optional)

Also, I have a discount code just for my readers! when booking the tour, use the code TravelByMaya10 for a $10 discount on your tour! YAY.


Watch A Christmas Broadway Show!

Broadway shows are a must  do activity when visiting New York City.

During the holidays season there are very nice and special Christmas broadway shows that are super recommended.


Visiting New York City? book your hotels for cheap through this website!

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