While there are many beautiful holiday lights tours all over the United States, none are quite as spectacular as the ones in New York. Thousands of tourists come to NYC each year to experience the popular installations in Manhattan, Brooklyn, and Bronx. With the holidays fast approaching, this is the perfect time to get to know the best Christmas lights displays in the Big Apple and book NYC Holiday Lights Tours for a memorable experience!
Holiday Lights Tours in NYC
One of the most iconic landmarks to visit around the holidays is the Rockefeller Center Christmas Tree, which is usually at least 70 feet tall. The breathtaking show at Rockefeller Center is said to have over five miles of lights that wrap around all of the displays. With other attractions such as the Herald Angels and skating rink, there is no doubt that a New York City holiday lights tour would be incomplete without this stop!
From the Rockefeller Center, you can move right along to Fifth Avenue, where stores compete in showcasing the most magnificent display. For instance, Saks Fifth Avenue in Diamond District has been known to have impressive installations with perfectly synchronized lights choreography. Other stores in the area that go all out in the holiday season are Bloomingdale’s, Bergdorf Goodman, Cartier, and Macy’s.
Aside from the department stores bringing their own Christmas joy, the Fifth Avenue Association showcases a heartwarming display called “The Fifth Season” as well. This light show spans over 13 blocks, featuring hand-crafted penguin sculptures, icebergs, and 5000 feet of lights bringing the scene to life.
Columbus Circle is housing a display called “Holiday Under the Stars,” featuring brightly-colored 14-foot stars hanging from the ceiling. If you want to see the stars light up, then you will be happy to know they have scheduled shows every 30 minutes between 5 and 11 p.m. In case you arrive at the scene a bit too early, then you can get some Christmas shopping done at The Shops.
If you still need to buy a few more gifts, then you can include Hudson Yards on your list too. This Manhattan neighborhood equips The Vessel structure and the closely-located shopping center with over 2 million lights in their “Shine Bright” display. Both tourists and residents come here to see the life-sized hot-air balloon decorated with brightly-colored lights.
Stepping out of Manhattan, there are plenty of gorgeous holiday lights in other boroughs of New York City. A great example is the New York Botanical Garden Glow in the Bronx that provides a whimsical background for a Christmas family photo. The historic buildings are lit up to accentuate their beautiful architecture, while the trees and paths are covered in colorful lights. On top of that, you can take in the awe-inspiring ice sculptures while enjoying the live music often performed in the Garden.
The Brooklyn Botanic Garden does not disappoint either, with a superbly lit one-mile trail called Lightscape. The organizers put together over a dozen separate light shows that visitors can enjoy, such as the Winter Cathedral tunnel, Fire Garden, Wish Tree, and Sea of Light. While in Brooklyn, we recommend taking a drive down Dyker Heights as well. This neighborhood is filled with residents that have a blast decorating their homes. Here you will find some of the most fun and vividly colored displays in all of New York!
If you are looking to include a bit of novelty in a classic Holiday Lights tour, then be sure to check out the NYC Winter Lantern Festival. This event takes place at the Queens County Farm Museum and it features fantastic lantern displays especially popular with children. Some of the best installations in the festival are the dinosaur and lion lanterns, the Starry Alley, and the Christmas Tree.
Whether you are in the city with your family or an organized group, everyone is sure to love the many unique holiday decorations hidden all over New York. If you want to get into the holiday spirit, experiencing Christmas in the Big Apple is always a good idea. You can let go of the stress of organizing the tour yourself by trusting professionals with years of experience in the New York City area.