Experience Christmas cheer in New York

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Christmas tree lighting at Rockefeller Center in NYC

Christmas holidays are some of the best, what with lights illuminating the night sky and festive cheer all around. If you are headed to the Big Apple this winter, you have made the right choice. There is fun for the whole family from going on walking tours to witnessing enactments of Christmas classics.

See the Rockefeller Center Christmas tree
There’s nothing like a Christmas tree illuminated in all its glory to spread the festive cheer. While there are many places with some great tree-lighting ceremonies, the Rockefeller Center Christmas Tree at Rockefeller Plaza should be number 1 on your list. It was lit for the first time on 28 November 2018 and will remain so until 7 January 2019. It is the perfect backdrop for your holiday shots!

New York walking tours – alleys of Central Park

Go on a Christmas walking tour
Sure, you could take a bus or drive yourself around the city but it’s a lot more personal and rewarding to walk the streets and take in the Christmas sights. Tour companies offer walking tours that take you past the best displays and sound shows. The guides know how to beat the traffic, give you wonderful insights into the city, and help acquaint you with the best that New York has to offer. Some of these tours are pay-what-you-like tours. They have no fixed price. You pay what you think it is worth.

Watch The Nutcracker
The Nutcracker, written by ETA Hoffmann, is a beloved classic. Whether you’ve read it or not, you can see it come to life at the New York City Ballet. The production includes the entire ballet company as well as casts from the School of American Ballet. It’s currently running at the David H Koch Theater at Lincoln Center and will continue to do so until 30th December. Timings vary from 1 pm to 8 pm and tickets cost between USD 55 and USD 295.

Front parlour of New York’s Merchant’s House Museum (Image courtesy: merchantshouse.org)

Catch a Christmas carol at the Merchant’s House Museum
Another much-loved classic is brought to life, this time at the Merchant’s House Museum. Charles Dickens’ A Christmas Carol is a favourite during the holidays and, if it is yours as well, you have to see it enacted. The set is beautifully done up in 19th-century decorations and furnishings. With a glass of mulled wine in your hands and a sampling of traditional Dickensian fare, you will certainly feel like you have entered the pages of the past! If you go on 23rd or 24th December, you’ll get to see ‘Victorian’ carolers singing Christmas songs. Tickets cost between USD 45 and USD 105.

New York – Bryant Park Winter Village

Shop at Bryant Park’s Winter Village
What’s Christmas in New York without a little shopping? There are plenty of places you can go to for indulging the shopaholic in you but we recommend Bryant Park Winter Village. The ice-skating rink is transformed into a bustling market filled with shops and food stalls. As if stall-hopping wasn’t exciting enough, you can also ice skate for free!

This list is by no means exhaustive. It does not even begin to touch the tip of what New York has to offer! Tucking into mouth-watering Christmas dinners, checking out beautiful window displays, going on a cruise around Manhattan – it is really quite endless!

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