Maybe you will say that visiting New York City in December is kitschy, but the truth is, that is worth it. Even though you’re right. It’s like looking at the sunset at the Bahamas or ordering pasta in Italy.
Don’t you think that traveling is also about that? Doing the kitschy and predicable things? Reliving the clichés and at the same time looking for your personal experience in it?
Every sunset is unique and every person will experience Eiffel tower in his own way. And that my friends… is magic of those who wander. No matter how old or iconic one destination is, your view on it will be completely personal and unique.
If you visit Big Apple in December, you’re going to experience Christmas spirit on steroids. Stores will be decorated right after Thanksgiving and by the first week of December, the Rockefeller Center Tree will be displayed and all the windows will be complete. The Christmas shopping will be at its peek.
If you come in the third week of December, many stores will have sales and a lot of Americans will already leave New York and drive to visit their families, so in this time it wont be that crazy as in the first two weeks.
Regarding weather, you can hope for some snow, or just experience some rain, but most importantly – pack your most warm cloches, because it’s really cold there in this time of year. New York in December is beautiful and you will want to walk around, but you have to be prepared.
When you’ll have your boots on your feet and new knitted scarf around your head, be sure to visit next 3 spots that are a true celebration of this magic time of the year.
3. Go to Macy’s
Those that think that Santa lives on the North Pole are wrong. He lives in Santaland at Macy’s. If you have children, by taking them to see this place in December, you will offer them the most intense experience for a child. You can also take them to se Santa and take a picture with him, even though it will cost you. A picture can cost from 20 to 50 bucks so… Yeah, it’s your choice.
If the time is what you value more than money, we suggest you to come early and beat the crowds. Santaland at Macy's in New York City is open from the Friday after Thanksgiving until Christmas Eve. During the holiday season, it is open from 9 a.m. to 9 p.m. On peak days, Santaland opens as early at 7 a.m.
2. Skate in central park
Yes, you have to skate in one of the skating rinks in New York City. It will bring the child in you and that is not a bad thing. Ever! Well maybe in court. Or at a very important job interview...
Probably the Rink at Rockefeller Center is most popular, but you can find much cheaper options even though they offer as much special experience as this one does. Wollman Rink in Central Park will be a bit cheaper and there are shorter waiting lines, but the cheapest option is at The Rink at Bryant Park, that is one of Manhattan’s best locations for seasonal skating. You can also enjoy a snack or drink there.
1. The ultimate Christmas tree
The tree will be lit for the first time on Wednesday, December 2 at Rockefeller Plaza. It has been like that since 1931 so it’s really the ultimate NYC tradition. From the beginning, the Tree was a gathering place and reflection of what was happening in the world around it. It is said that even before the first formal tree went up, workers lined up beneath a Christmas tree on the Rockefeller Plaza construction site to collect their pay checks during the height of the Great Depression.
When visiting the tree, enter Rockefeller Center from 5th Avenue and walk through the horn-blowing angels, which represent hope, toward the tree.
The tree is illuminated by 30,000 environmentally friendly LED lights on five miles of wire, and crowned by a Swarovski crystal star. If you come around after dark, be sure to have your camera with you, because the sight is amazing.
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