Christmas in New York City
New York during ordinary time already has so much to offer, and during Christmastime it goes into overdrive. Knowing that most people who come to visit our town don’t have the amount of time as we residents, I have listed out 3 of our favorite things to do to kick off the Yuletide in New York. So even if you’re only here for the weekend or even just for the day, following this simple itinerary is sure to put you in the Holiday spirit.
To begin, this famous bistro carries the same name as one of the three Magi. This fact alone already makes it a holiday destination as far as I’m concerned. Balthazar is on many top ten lists of places to dine during the Holidays for good reason, as there are few places more festive and lively to enjoy a good meal or drink.
Located on Spring Street and Crosby Street, it’s perfectly situated for those who may want to do some Christmas shopping in the NoLita and SoHo neighborhoods.
Classical Christmas Music
Come for breakfast. I personally enjoy this place early, when one can hear the Classical Christmas Music being piped through amidst the bustling of the wait staff and clinking of flatware and plates. You can’t help but feel as if you’re taking part of a festal ceremony.
It’s probably the only time of day you’ll find room at the bar, so take advantage, grab a seat and have breakfast there while enjoying some great conversation with the very hospitable bartenders before they get too busy. Order up some classics such as the English Breakfast, Corned Beef Hash, Sour Cream Waffles, and their famous basket of bread and pastries. If you’ve had a tough night previous, order their awesome Bloody Mary which can cure any hangover in time before getting started on a great day of shopping and exploring the city.
Saint Thomas Church New York City
Saint Patrick’s Cathedral Photo Credit: Brad Clinessmith via Creative Commons
Along with Saint Patrick’s Cathedral, this Anglican Church is one of Fifth Avenues pillars of faith. If you are one searching for the root of the Holiday, this is one place to consider finding it. This church opens its doors to everyone that wants to visit. So, if you’re not the religious type, no worries, the structure is one to behold for anyone that appreciates beautiful architecture. Taking the time to admire the beautiful stained glass windows alone can certainly bring calm to anyone’s day.
Happy Second Sunday of Advent.
Saint Thomas Boys Choir
However, if there’s one reason to walk within these doors, especially during the Christmas Season, it would be to hear the angelic voices of the country’s most renowned boys choir. You can hear them every Sunday during the high mass (11:00) and if you really want to treat yourself, try to score a ticket to one of the performances in their concert series. Handel’s Messiah is particularly special. So when the traffic and the shopping starts carving into your good spirits, find time to replenish here.
50th and Fifth Avenue NYC
If you find yourself a bit soured these days, or just can’t seem to get yourself into the spirit, place yourself on the southwest corner of 50th and Fifth. I promise, within minutes you’ll find yourself feeling the same transformation the Grinch experienced at the end of the story.
Face west and you’ll be facing the world famous Rockefeller Christmas Tree. Face East and you’ll be facing Saint Patrick’s Cathedral, just recently having gone through a restoration and looking as cleaned up as ever. To its right is Saks Fifth Avenue, which currently has the best Holiday windows and light display in the city. Then take a moment to listen to the traffic, the many languages and accents being spoken, the laughter and glowing faces that surround, and you’ll find it easy to have faith in mankind. What better way to kick off the season than feeling the spirit that makes it so special.
Ready to book your trip for Christmas in NYC?
We almost always use Skyscanner for the best in flight deals.
Although we live in NYC, we occasionally need some “staycation” time here so we can enjoy a different neighborhood. One of our favorites is The Grand Hyatt because of its central location and beautiful rooms.
If you’re in town, do use UBER for your daily transportation if you just can’t bare another ride on the subway. Uber is arguably the best and most inexpensive way to get around any town, even NYC. Most of the drivers we’ve met through Uber were not only more courteous and efficient than yellow cabs, they are also full of good information on the best eats in town.
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Coming to NYC during Christmas? Or know someone who is? Share this short itinerary!