Top 5 things to do in New York City in December

December in New York City means enormous Christmas trees, fabulous light displays, fun-filled holiday markets and joy all around the neighborhoods. New York is without a doubt the perfect place to spend Christmas and get in the spirit.

These are some of the top activities you must do in December:

New York, NY

– Go see the Rockefeller Center’s Tree: December is a magical time to visit the Rockefeller Center and its stunning Christmas tree. The first Christmas tree at Rockefeller Center was erected in 1931, during the Depression-era construction of Rockefeller Center, when workers decorated a smaller 20 foot balsam fir with “strings of cranberries, garlands of paper, and even a few tin cans” on Christmas Eve. Since then, this has been a yearly tradition.

Fun fact: This year’s Christmas tree might be the representation of the controversial and catastrophic 2020. ( The bottom limbs appeared to be bare, and its needles hung limply, meanwhile, it leaned to the side, as if unsteady on its trunk).

-Visit Dyker Heights in Brooklyn: Dyker lights as it’s known might just be the city’s most Christmassy neighborhood. This tradition started by Lucy Spata when she moved to the neighborhood in the 1980s. Now it’s visited for more than 100,000 people a year.

Christmas Decoration

-Check out the holiday window displays: From Bloomingdale’s to Macy’s, a walk down Fifth Avenue in December is sure to get you in the holiday spirit. Each storefront is beautifully decorated with stunning lights and garlands, and has its own unique theme. Macy’s debuted the tradition in 1883.

5th avenue, New York, NY

-Try ice skating: When winter arrives, New York offers us lovely places to skate under the stars with our special someone as we take in the dazzling skyline views framing the rink!

These are a few examples:

  • The Rink at Bank of America Winter Village – Bryant Park
  • Ice Rink at Rockefeller Center – Midtown East
  • Wollman Rink – Central Park
  • Riverbank State Park – Harlem
  • LeFrak Center at Lakeside – Prospect Park, Brooklyn
  • The Rink at Brookfield Place – Battery Park City
The Rink at Bank of America Winter Village – Bryant Park

-Check out the Holiday Train Show in the New York Botanical Garden:  showcases over a dozen toy trains cruising past the city’s iconic buildings. On display are more than 175 miniature landmarks made of plant-based materials, including Brooklyn Bridge, Rockefeller Center, and the Statue of Liberty. This year’s exhibitions would be from Thursday, November 12, 2020 to Sunday, January 31, 2021.

Photo by Jarod Lovekamp

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