Christmastime in New York City

posted by Sharon 10 Comments
New York City Central Park

Christmas in New York far surpassed even my high expectations. This vibrant city knows how to celebrate, adding lights and colorful displays to heighten the charm and give tourists and locals alike a heaping daily dose of holiday spirit. Christmas markets pop up, along with ice rinks and tall trees. Iconic shows like the Rockettes make our spirits soar. And people seem to be more smiley, kind, and helpful during this season.

Here are some Christmastime highlights from our time in New York City this week. My husband and my daughter and I all had a simply marvelous week!

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Rockefeller Center

The Christmas tree at Rockefeller Center is the quintessential spirit of Christmas in New York City. Each December at the tree lighting ceremony, celebrities are brought in to sing and dance and welcome the season. This year’s tree is a 77-foot tall Norway spruce that’s decorated with 50,000 multi-colored lights. It’s topped by a Swarovski crystal star. Ice skaters glide beneath the tree and people come from all over to gaze at this beauty. New York City Rockefeller Cente

New York City Rockefeller CenteRight next to the tree is the famed F.A.O. Schwarz toy store. Even if you’re not a shopper, venture inside this delightful store with its full-sized giraffes, polar bear displays, and piles of teddy bears.Try to go early in the day, as lines go around the corner and down the block just to get in the door. New York City Rockefeller CenteNew York City Rockefeller Cente

Hark the herald angels sing! New York City Rockefeller Cente

Window Displays

Window displays light up all the major stores with color, interactive fun, and scenes from movies. Notice the high-rise buildings in the reflection. Wander along 5th Avenue for outstanding artistry at Macy’s and Saks.New York City Rockefeller CenteNew York City Rockefeller Cente

Inside the stores, the decorating continues to entertain.New York City

Central Park

What says winter in New York more than ice skating in Central Park?

New York City Central ParkNew York City Central Park

Much of the city’s trees sit bare and brown in the winter. I live in California, where pines and palms keep the landscape green year round. So when we found this lone tree sporting greenery, we were happy!New York City Central Park

When you are feeling numb from the cold, stop in the Plaza Hotel food center in the lower level of the hotel, at the south end of Central Park. Warm up with a coffee and a sweet treat. New York City Central ParkNew York City Central Park

This toy soldier stands guard at the Tavern on the Green in Central Park. The restaurant was closed for a private party, but we enjoyed the lobby and gift shop. New York City


The Rockettes

The Rockettes Christmas Spectacular has been a staple of Christmas in New York City since 1933. The precision dancers are joined by a live orchestra, and modern technology wows spectators with projections of New York sights on the walls and a 3-D arrival of Santa. Dazzling costumes, non-stop music and dancing, and a finale of the Christmas story complete with camels are sure to boost your Christmas spirit.New York City

New York City

New York City The Metropolitan Museum of Art

One rainy afternoon we took refuge in the Metropolitan Museum of Art. The elegant Christmas tree featured an artistic nativity scene. The graceful angels were my favorite. New York City New York City New York City


Christmas in New York

Out and about on the streets of New York City, you will see so many seasonal sights to warm your heart. These bears were just sitting outside a cafe, waiting for me to join them. New York City

Our hotel lobby, the New York Public Library, restaurants, and office buildings are all decked out. I love the oversized ornaments.New York City

New York City New York City We just happened to be in the city during SantaCon, when hundreds of New Yorkers dress as Santa. This was how the streets looked ALL day long! New York City New York City New York City

If it’s Christmas cheer you’re after, a trip to New York City during the holidays is just the thing. Lights, trees, ice skating, sparkle, twinkle, and evergreens decorate the town. Merry Christmas and a Happy New Year from my family to you!

New York CityNew York CityNew York City

A Note about Photographs: I edit my photos in Lightroom and often use Presets to bring out the best in a photo. One set of Presets I recommend is Winter Wonderland by Helene in Between. They will make your photos “pop”!

Linking up with Image-in-ing, The Good, the Random, the Fun, Through My Lens, Seasons, Our World Tuesday, Weekend Wanderlust, Faraway Files, Wanderful Wednesday, Feet Do Travel, My Corner of the World, and Weekend Travel Inspiration.

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William Kendall at

Beautiful shots!

Shannon at

What a wonderful post! Beautiful pictures!! Looks like you had a blast 🙂 NYC at Christmas time is so magical.

Lauren at

I love New York this time of year! Your pictures make me so happy to see. I have to bring the kids up next year!

Lisa | Handmade in Israel at

How lovely to see New York at this time of the year. I love all the decorations – the photo of you with the big red bears is fun! Happy Christmas. #feetdotravel

Tamar A Strauss-Benjamin at

You really can’t beat NYC at the holidays!

Shiju Sugunan at

What fun! Great shots! Merry Christmas!

junie[er/Jesh at

Sharon this is the most delightful post of New York I’ve ever seen! Love the “natural” Christmas tree the most, but I see a tremendous amount of lights! Easy to see not only you visiting, but also the New Yorkers love it! Thank you for capturing several kinds of Christmas trees. New York plays a worthy tribute to Christmas. Your daughter looks so much like the both of you! Have a merry Christmas Sharon to you and yours! Jesh

Carol at

Gorgeous post Sharon! Merry Christmas!

Joanne at

That looks wonderful! I haven’t been to NYC at Christmastime in ages and ages. I have the best memories of walking around FAO Swartz with my grandmother.

tomthebackroadstraveller at

…Christmas looks so festive in NYC, but for me the place to be is home! Merry Christmas.


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