Every holiday season New York city transforms
into a winter wonderland. The city radiates with holiday spirit as
the five boroughs offer world-renowned performances, shopping,
dining and more.
“There’s no better time to experience New York
city’s five boroughs than during the annual holiday season,” said
George Fertitta, CEO of NYC & Company, the city’s official
marketing, tourism, and partnership organization. “Each year the
city opens its arms and welcomes visitors to experience some of
the world’s most stunning holiday decorations, events and
entertainment. This year will be another opportunity to enjoy the
city’s unique energy, excitement and vibrancy.”
The holiday season kicks off when soaring
balloons, crafted floats and of course Santa Claus himself arrive
in Herald Square during the 84th annual Macy’s Thanksgiving Day
Parade on 25 November. The parade begins at 9am on 77th Street and
Central Park West and then makes its way to Columbus Circle, turns
east toward Seventh Avenue and continues on to 42nd Street. Then
it turns east toward Sixth Avenue and goes down Sixth Avenue to
34th Street, where it travels west until it ends at Seventh
Now in its 78th year, Radio city Music Hall’s
Christmas Spectacular continues to amaze both visitors and
residents alike. From 5 November to 30 December, experience the
joy of Christmas with performances by the world-famous Rockettes,
along with special effects, costumes and excitement that will
create lasting memories. Ticket prices start at $45.
The Theater at Madison Square Garden will host
Wintuk, a Cirque du Soleil production, for its fourth and final
season this year. The holiday show shares the tale of a boy’s
quest for snow in an imaginary wonderland called Wintuk. With
exciting acrobatics, theatrics and music, you will not want to
miss this production’s last season, 17 November 2010, to 2 January
2011. Tickets range from $30 to $220, with a special 30% discount
for select children’s tickets.
The Rockefeller Center Tree Lighting is one of
the most popular draws for holiday visitors from around the world.
The annual tree-lighting ceremony, which takes place this year on
30 November, is an exciting star-studded event. Decorated in
festive LED lights and topped with a Swarovski crystal star, the
tree, which has become more eco-friendly in recent years, can be
viewed till early January.
The New York city Ballet will present one of the
season’s favorite annual productions, George Balanchine’s The
Nutcracker. Featuring marching toy soldiers, a glowing one-ton
Christmas tree, crystalline snowflakes and some of the most
glorious dancing the city has to offer, the show is truly a
magical experience - whether it’s a family tradition or a
once-in-a-lifetime event. The show runs from 26 November 2010 to 2
January 2011. Tickets range from $20 to $135.
Bloomingdale’s, Bergdorf Goodman, Barneys,
Saks Fifth Avenue, Lord & Taylor and Macy’s spruce up their window
displays with holiday-themed decor that awes visitors year after
year. Indoor and outdoor holiday markets at Columbus Circle,
Bryant Park, Union Square and Grand Central Terminal have become a
new must-go for shoppers looking for unique gifts created by local
artists and vendors. The lavish Midtown hotel Le Parker Meridien
will host its second annual Gingerbread Extravaganza, during which
local bakeries display their large-scale confectionary creations
from 1 December 2010, to 9 January 2011. For $1, vote on the best
gingerbread design and enter to win a prize. All proceeds will
benefit city Harvest, an organization that rescues food to feed
hungry New Yorkers throughout the five boroughs.
The Big Apple Circus celebrates its 33rd season
this year with an all-new show, Dance On! New York city’s circus
returns to the big top at Lincoln Center, complete with
unicyclists, contortionists, animals and the hilarious clown
Grandma. Seats are never more than 50 feet from the ring.
Performances run from 21 October 2010 to 9 January 2011. Tickets
range from $15 to $92.
Visit The Jewish Museum on the Upper East Side
to view The Hanukkah Project: Daniel Libeskind, on exhibition from
21 November 2010 to 30 January 2011, featuring Hanukkah lamps from
the museum’s collection, each with a rich and beautiful history.
NYC & Company will once again launch its annual
Harlem for the Holidays promotion, which runs from late November
through the New Year. Harlem is a remarkable area to visit during
the holidays, as it offers the finest in culture, dining, shopping
In the Bronx, visitors can experience the Annual
Holiday Family Day at the Bartow-Pell Mansion Museum on Saturday,
4 December 2010 from 10am to 2pm. Get into the spirit with the
whole family at the festively decorated 19th-century mansion and
participate in programs and activities for children, including
photos with Santa. Reservations are requested, call 718-885-1461
or send them an
Also in the Bronx, at the New York Botanical
Garden, is the family favorite Holiday Train Show, featuring toy
trains that zip through more than 100 replicas of NYC landmarks,
including the Brooklyn Bridge, Yankee Stadium and the George
Washington Bridge. Handcrafted by award-winning designers, the set
is made from natural supplies such as orange slices, cinnamon
sticks, bark and pinecones. The show will be on display between 20
November 2010 and 9 January 2011.
In Staten Island, the annual Candlelight Tours
will take place on Saturday, 11 December and Saturday, 18
December. See the sights and sounds of Historic Richmond Town,
which will be lit by candles, oil lamps and blazing fireplaces.
Tickets cost $22 for adults and $10 for children 12 and under;
prepaid reservations are required. Call 718-351-1611, ext. 281,
for tour times and reservations.
Brooklyn comes alive for the holidays with the
Lights of Dyker Heights. Truly a sight to behold, the spectacle
attracts thousands of visitors during the holiday season. The best
displays can be seen on the blocks between 83rd and 86th Streets
from 11th to 13th Avenue in this small neighborhood between Bay
Ridge and Bensonhurst.
During the week of Hanukkah, be sure to visit
the Menorah of Brooklyn in downtown Brooklyn at Columbus Park,
right outside Borough Hall. And in Manhattan, don’t miss the
lighting of the World’s Largest Menorah at Fifth Avenue and 59th
Street, right in front of the Plaza Hotel.
In Queens the Queens Historical Society presents
the Annual Historic Holiday House Tour on Sunday, 12 December
2010, from 1pm to 5pm. This guided trolley tour includes stops at
five festively decorated museums and historical sites, including
the Queens Historical Society at the Kingsland Homestead, the
Flushing Quaker Meeting House, Flushing Town Hall, the Voelker
Orth Museum and Lewis H. Latimer House. A local historian will
narrate the tour. Visitors will have access to all exhibits at
each site, which will also feature holiday refreshments and family
activities. Tickets cost $10 for adults, with children under 12
free, and can be purchased in advance at any of the sites or at
the door the day of the event.
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