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Ways to Celebrate Christmas and New Year's Eve in New York City

Ways to Celebrate Christmas and New Year's Eve in New York City

Whether you're spending Christmas or New Year's Eve in New York with friends, family, or your sweetheart, there are a variety of ways to get into the holiday spirit in this festive city. Here are our top ideas for seasonal things to do in NYC.

See the City Illuminated

In the city that never sleeps, holiday lights are a major event, so book a night tour to check out famous sights such as the Radio City Music Hall and Rockefeller Center Christmas tree and ice skating rink all lit up for the season. Choose a tour that combines stops to see the holiday lights with visits to famous movie locations, particularly in Central Park, for an entertaining twist that shows you recognizable locations from "Elf," "Home Alone 2," "Miracle on 34th Street," and more.

Go Christmas Shopping

Picking out Christmas gifts at Manhattan's department stores is a favorite tradition, as is admiring the holiday window displays in Midtown. Saks Fifth Avenue, Macy's, Bloomingdale's, Tiffany & Co., Bergdorf Goodman, and other shops go all out year after year to create the most impressive street-view scenes. Be sure to also check out the Union Square Holiday Market to browse gifts in an outdoor setting.

Enjoy an Evening Cruise

One of the best vantage points for watching the New Year's Eve fireworks in the Big Apple is from the water. On a nighttime cruise, you'll glide along the Hudson River or East River and into New York Harbor to admire the illuminated city skyline and take in views of the Statue of Liberty and Brooklyn Bridge. Some cruises include dinner before the fireworks, while others feature a DJ for dancing and most offer drinks. Cruises typically last three to four hours.

Watch the Ball Drop

Manhattan's iconic New Year's Eve celebration—the Times Square ball drop—is watched by millions each year, and you can be part of the excitement yourself by booking a ticket to a party near Times Square (where Broadway meets Seventh Avenue). These gatherings typically include an open bar, hors d'oeuvres, dinner, and dancing at a location where you can stay warm while those on the street deal with the cold. Depending on the party you choose, you can either watch the ball drop on TV or head outside to watch in person.

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13 Tours and Activities | All New York City Tours

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NYC Lights Tour by Limousine

NYC Lights Tour by Limousine

star-3.5
Experience the Big Apple in style on a 2-hour private tour by party bus or limousine.  Take in Times Square, Rockefeller Center, and other iconic attractions from the comfort of your private vehicle. Plus, you'll have the opportunity to stop in DUMBO Brooklyn for classic photos in front of the Manhattan Skyline and Brooklyn Bridge. If you choose the party bus, enjoy complimentary champagne during the tour.
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  • 2 hours
  • Free Cancellation
From
$539.00
per group
From
$539.00
per group

Dyker Heights Brooklyn Christmas Lights Tour

Dyker Heights Brooklyn Christmas Lights Tour

star-4
Christmas in New York City is a magical time, and some of the best festive spots in the Big Apple are Dyker Heights and Bay Ridge in Brooklyn. With this tour, head to the neighborhoods where Christmas decorations are taken to a whole new level to see the most dazzling displays; on the way back, you can enjoy views of the lit-up Manhattan skyline.
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  • 3 hours 30 minutes
  • Free Cancellation
From
$55.00
From
$55.00

THE RIDE: Holiday Edition New York City

THE RIDE: Holiday Edition New York City

star-4
Buy your tickets ahead of time for The Ride in New York City during the holiday season. This often sold-out theater experience is extra special against the twinkling lights of the city lit up for the holidays. With tickets in hand, you'll guarantee your spot for this popular show, featuring holiday performances during a 4-mile (6.5-kilometer) ride through New York in a glassed-in mobile theater.
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  • 1 hour 15 minutes
From
$69.00
From
$69.00

New York Holiday Lights and Movie Sites Tour

New York Holiday Lights and Movie Sites Tour

star-4
Enjoy the spectacular Christmas lights and holiday movie sites in New York City on this guided bus tour. While the filming locations can be easy to overlook on your own, joining a tour ensures you don’t miss any of the iconic attractions or hidden gems. Plus, the guide matches the locations to their on-screen movie clips along the way.
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  • 2 hours 30 minutes
  • Free Cancellation
  • Taking safety measures
From
$51.00
From
$51.00
Taking safety measures

New York Christmas Holiday Small-Group Walking Tour

New York Christmas Holiday Small-Group Walking Tour

star-4.5
There are few places that feel more festive than New York during Christmastime. Soak up its holiday spirit on this New York sightseeing tour, including stops at the Rockefeller Center and St. Patrick’s Cathedral. Snap photos in front of the iconic Rockefeller Center Christmas tree, admire the festive window displays of Fifth Avenue stores, and browse stalls in the magical Bryant Park holiday market.
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  • 2 hours
  • Free Cancellation
  • Taking safety measures
From
$27.74
From
$27.74
Taking safety measures

Private New York City Christmas Walking Tour

Private New York City Christmas Walking Tour

star-5
See Manhattan decked out for the holidays on a 2-hour private evening walking tour that takes you to locations including Rockefeller Center, St. Patrick's Cathedral, and along Fifth Avenue to see the elaborately decorated storefronts. Along the way, hear about the history of holiday events in New York City, including the Rockefeller Center Christmas tree, from a private guide.
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  • 2 hours
  • Free Cancellation
  • Taking safety measures
From
$74.67
From
$74.67
Taking safety measures

Dyker Heights Christmas Lights Luxury Bus Sightseeing Tour

Dyker Heights Christmas Lights Luxury Bus Sightseeing Tour

star-3.5
See the holiday season light up the New York City streets on a 3-hour Christmas tour that takes in the best of Manhattan. Browse elegant window displays, and start your holiday shopping early (own expense) at the seasonal Bryant Park market. Watch skaters glide across the ice, and take in the city’s remarkable light displays before heading to Rockefeller Center, where one of America’s most famous Christmas trees shines in the heart of Manhattan. Enjoy refreshments throughout the tour, as well as transportation in a warm, comfortable luxury vehicle.
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  • 3 hours
  • Free Cancellation
From
$85.00
From
$85.00

New York Christmas Tour with Private Guide

New York Christmas Tour with Private Guide

Get in the holiday spirit on this New York City Christmas walking tour with a private guide. Check out the iconic tree in Rockefeller Center, revel in the colorful lights and classic decorations. See the famous window displays at top department stores and enjoy a meal at a restaurant in Times Square.
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  • 3 hours 30 minutes
  • Free Cancellation
From
$99.00
From
$99.00

New York City Holiday Lights and Markets Walking Tour

New York City Holiday Lights and Markets Walking Tour

star-4.5
Watch New York City ignite with holiday sparkle during this walking tour that explores the best of the Christmas season. Browse elegant window displays as you make your way to a series of traditional holiday markets, and shop for locally made arts, crafts, and specialty food. Follow your guide to see Manhattan’s spectacular holiday lights, visit the locations of beloved Christmas movies, and experience NYC at its most festive season.
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  • 3 hours
  • Free Cancellation
  • Taking safety measures
From
$48.00
From
$48.00
Taking safety measures

New York City Times Square New Year's Eve Celebration

New York City Times Square New Year's Eve Celebration

star-2
Be a part of New York City's New Year's Eve tradition at Times Square during this celebration with access to an all-inclusive party. Inside the Times Square 'lock down zone,' enjoy a dinner buffet, premium open bar, and Champagne toast when the ball drops at midnight. When booking, you have two location options to choose from, or you can upgrade to include tour add-ons.
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  • 4 hours
  • Taking safety measures
From
$481.67
From
$481.67
Taking safety measures

Christmas In Manhattan: Private Experience With A City Host

Christmas In Manhattan: Private Experience With A City Host

Walk across New York City with a guide who knows the ins and outs of the city at Christmas time during this holiday tour. Customize your itinerary for the day and have your guide take you to the places you want to see, or let them provide suggestions and see pockets of the city most visitors never find on their own.
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  • 3 hours
  • Free Cancellation
  • Taking safety measures
From
$99.74
Price varies by group size
From
$99.74
Price varies by group size
Taking safety measures

New York City Premium New Year's Eve Dinner Cruise by World Yacht

New York City Premium New Year's Eve Dinner Cruise by World Yacht

star-4
Celebrate New Year's Eve in New York fashion with this luxurious dinner cruise. Indulge in a delicious 4-course dinner or a gourmet dinner buffet, and then dance and drink the night away, celebrating the upcoming year. Best of all, you'll have perfect views for the annual fireworks extravaganza at the Statue of Liberty.
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  • 3 hours
  • Taking safety measures
From
$529.00
From
$529.00
Taking safety measures

Private New York Christmas Tour with Driver and Guide

Private New York Christmas Tour with Driver and Guide

Christmas in New York City mean fabulous shopping, holiday displays, and crowded, icy sidewalks. Get a personalized introduction to New York while staying warm and dry with a convenient, 6-hour guided tour that includes door-to-door transport for up to six passengers in a private car. Create the perfect itinerary for your interests, and check off every stop on your holiday list at your own pace.
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  • 6 hours
  • Free Cancellation
  • Taking safety measures
From
$599.00
per group
From
$599.00
per group
Taking safety measures