Table of Contents
Manhattan, New York
New York City during any season is unique, but the lead-up to Christmas is entirely different. You have the weather, you have the atmosphere, and you have the festivities. Combine being in New York during Winter and being in a city that never sleeps; well, it is a pretty special place. So check out below for the best New York in December in 1 day.
With an approximate population of 8,398,748 in New York City, this number only increases during this time of year. According to the World Population Review, the demographics consist of White: 42.78%, Black or African American: 24.32, Other race: 15.12%, Asian: 14.00%, Two or more races: 3.33%, Native American: 0.40% and Native Hawaiian or Pacific Islander: 0.05%
Things you should know before you go to New York in Winter
Weather in New York in Winter
New York is a great place to go all year round; the weather is not a factor because each season brings something special. The warm season, from June to September, with an average daily high temperature above 24 degrees Celcius. The cold season lasts for three months, from December to March, with an average daily high temperature below 8 degrees Celcius.
Getting to New York in Winter
Flying – You have three airports: New York City, JFK, LaGuardia and Newark Liberty Airport. The flight from Singapore to New York City (JFK) with Singapore Airlines is direct in under 18 hours.
Airport Shuttles.com – you can book your transfer online before your Journey begins; this makes it a cost-effective and efficient way of getting into Manhattan.
Taxi – This is by far the easiest way to get to Manhattan. JFK taxis have a flat rate, but the other airports have a metered fare.
Trains – JFK and Newark airports by train will take, on average, about 1.5 hours and must change a couple of times.
Uber/Lyft – Ensure you upload the app before arriving and set up your account so that once you visit, it is as easy as adding your pick-up location and destination.
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Accommodation in New York in Winter
Courtyard New York Manhattan/5th Avenue
Although this hotel is a little tired, the location is fantastic for the price. The staff are friendly, the rooms are comfortable, and they are precisely what you need after a hard day walking around Manhattan’s streets.
J W Marriott Essex
I can not fault this hotel; the hefty cost is worth every cent. However, the location is ideal, just on the corner of Central Park (165 Central Park South), with gorgeous views from your hotel window. I found the service is also World-Class, friendly and helpful when needed. The rooms are beautiful, and the architecture gives it that old-world charm.
Transport in Manhattan
I love walking the streets of New York, but Winter makes the walk tricky. However, do not be surprised if you walk the streets to get from A to B, as many people will choose this option.
Yes, they are everywhere, but sometimes they aren’t so easy to hail. Busy times and weather conditions may see you standing on the curb longer than you hoped.
The subway is the most cost-effective way of travelling through Manhattan, but it can be somewhat hectic. Outside of rush hour, you will see you moving in less crowded carriages, so take note of times.
Central Park is busy even during Winter; sure, it has a better feel during summer, with the plants in full bloom, the sun shining, and many more people enjoying the warmer weather. But don’t be fooled; there is plenty to see, even in the colder months. Walking tracks allow you to discover this vast park on your own or book a guided tour for an affordable price.
Recommendation – Strawberry Fields is a must for any Beatles fan.
American Museum of Natural History
You will know this Museum well if you have seen the movie Night at the Museum. So get out of the cold weather and spend the morning searching for Dum Dum yourself (you can’t miss it; there will be a long line waiting for an opportunity to grab that infamous shot), or take the A night at the Museum self-guided tour. It is fun for all the family.
Recommendation – If the lines are enormous, become a member for a few extra dollars and enter the express lane.
Macy’s Department Store
Head down to iconic Times Square, where Macy’s Department store can be found front and centre. Suppose you head up to see Santa. Be prepared to wait in a long line for a chance to get that Santa Photo. Remember that the closer to Christmas you get, the crazier and busier this store becomes.
Recommendation – Try not to take small kids if you don’t have to; this place can be busy!
Top of The Rock
Top of the Rock during sunset is the perfect location for those wanting the best view of this beautiful city. It can be super busy, freezing, and windy this time of year, so rug up and enjoy this gorgeous view. Instead of choosing to visit the Empire State Building for its view of the city, you can get a great photo of The Empire State Building from the top of the rock.
Recommendation: The sunset is the best time to head up there; ensure you book online before, though, as lines can be hectic in New York in Winter.
Christmas Spectacular Starring The Radio City Rockettes
Yes, there are plenty of shows to see here during the year, and Broadway shows are plentiful. Nothing, however, beats the Christmas Spectacular during this festive season. The show has you entertained from beginning to end and can be enjoyed by any age. This show does make you feel like you are experiencing a New York Christmas.
Recommendation – Book as early as possible, as tickets sell out fast.
Christmas Lights and Rockefeller Christmas Tree
Of course, there are many places to see the beautiful Christmas lights, but if you are already at Radio City Music Hall, this is a great place to start, especially in New York in Winter. Nothing screams New York Christmas more than Rockefeller Christmas tree, which is only a 4-minute walk away, but remember it is jam-packed in and around this area.
Recommendation – Hold onto your kids; there are people everywhere.
New York isn’t New York without a visit to this iconic location, which is buzzing at any time of the day and night. Enjoy people-watching. The bright lights and the millions of buskers that you can find everywhere. Oh, and a photo in Times Square is something you will look back at for years to come; it doesn’t matter if you are in New York in Winter; this is a must-see.
Recommendation – This place on Christmas Eve is crazy, with loads of last-minute shoppers (like myself), so avoid this place on Christmas Eve if you can.
Pit Stops Not to miss
Although the infamous frozen hot chocolate that was a rumoured favourite of Jackie O is much more favourable during the summer months, it did not stop me from indulging in this restaurant’s favourite even though New York in Winter. Serendipity 3 has seen more celebrities than I can mention, and I can see why; the desserts are to die for, for those with a sweet tooth like myself, you will not walk away disappointed.
Recommendation – Make a reservation to avoid disappointment!
The Original SoupMan
Yes, I am talking Seinfeld here! The Soup Nazi himself will probably not be there to serve you, but this place is a must in New York in Winter and can be found at West 56th near 8th Ave.
Recommendation – It is takeaway only, so if you are looking for somewhere to sit, you may want to return to the hotel to eat it.
Dylan’s Candy Bar
This candy store is famous for appearing in shows like Gossip Girl and Cake Boss, and it was founded by Dylan Lauren, daughter of designer Ralf Lauren. Dylan’s Candy Store is a boutique candy store that allows you to personalise your gummy bears, amongst other things.
Recommendation – You can personalise your candy, which makes excellent Christmas presents.
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Thanks for taking the time to read my blog. I hope this post has given you the information you need. If you have any recommendations, tips or advice, I would love for you to share them in the comment section below!
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