December is undoubtedly the best time of the year to experience the magic and wonder of New York City. From festive holiday happenings to glittering light shows to the best street party for the New Year, there is something to wow even the most steadfast Scrooge. Mark your calendars now for what is sure to be a fabulous month and an exciting end to 2017!
Radio City Christmas Spectacular
(Now – Jan. 1) We included the Radio City Christmas Spectacular on our list for November, but it deserves a spot on the December list, too. There’s no other show in town that celebrates the holidays quite like the Rockettes. See all 36 of these world-famous dancers in full wooden solider costumes execute the perfect trust fall, and experience Radio City Music Hall as it is transformed into a Winter Wonderland. Performances are scheduled multiple times a day, every day from now through New Year’s Day. Get your tickets before they’re gone!
(Now – Dec. 24) There is no better Santa than the one you’ll meet at Macy’s Herald Square. This 13,000 square foot holiday display is one of the best events for kids in New York. Be sure to make reservations online before your visit. Admission is free, and professional photos with Santa are available for purchase.
Bryant Park Winter Village
(Now – Jan. 2) Ask any New Yorker and they’ll tell you the holidays haven’t officially arrived until the Bryant Park Winter Village is open for business. Get all the gifts on your list at more than 150 shopping and food vendors. When you’re done, take a spin on the 17,000 square foot ice-skating rink. Ice-skating is free if you bring your own skates; otherwise, rent skates for $20.
Louis Vuitton New York Exhibition
(Now – Jan. 7) Are you looking for something fun and unusual to do in the Financial District? Then head over to the Louis Vuitton New York Exhibition at the American Stock Exchange Building. This free exhibit gives visitors an intimate look at the history of Louis Vuitton from 1854 to today and features objects from the company’s archives as well as artifacts on loan from museums in Paris.
Winter Onederland at One World Observatory
(Now – Jan. 7) Follow Ollie the Snow Owl’s holiday journey across the world, ending at One World Observatory. Experience the Glacier Cave, the Snowy SkyPod, the Giant Snow Globe and visit Santa himself on top of the World. It’s an unforgettable experience.
Sea of Light
(Dec. 5) Engage in a spectacular immersive light show on the opening night of Sea of Light at the South Street Seaport. On December 5 from 5:30 – 7:30pm, get a first look at this unique installation, take home some swag, enter to win a free bicycle, and sip on free mulled wine and hot chocolate.
Light Up The Night Hanukkah Gala
(Dec. 14) The Museum of Jewish Heritage in Battery Park City is once again holding their annual Hanukkah Gala on December 14 at 8pm. Join the Young Friends of the Museum for this black tie optional event, which will include dinner, dancing, a high-end silent auction and a premium open bar.
(Dec. 17) Do you enjoy caroling, but are up for an experience that’s a little more unusual? Then you’ll love the musical performance piece dubbed Unsilent Night. Grab your boombox or download the app and join fellow “carolers” at Washington Square Park on December 17 at 6pm. You’ll simultaneously play four different soundscapes and walk together through the streets of New York for 45 minutes. Time Out New York describes this event as “one of the loveliest communal new-music experiences you’ll ever encounter.”
Community Carol Singalong at Trinity Church
(Dec. 21) If you haven’t tired of Christmas music yet, then join Trinity Church at Broadway and Wall Street for their Community Carol Singalong on December 21 at 7:30pm. While you’re there, explore the historical church, consecrated in 1846, and visit the gravesite of Alexander Hamilton.
Times Square New Year’s Eve
(Dec. 31) Is there a more iconic way to welcome the New Year than with a million other people in Times Square? We think not. Enjoy live musical performances from today’s biggest stars and watch the ball drop while being showered with confetti. This is an event that you have to experience at least once when you live in New York.