Top 10 things to do in New York in winter

Foto: Kevin Lee
Redactora / Travel writer

New York is one of those cities that can be visited hundreds of times, every day and every trip, visiting different places, activities to do and places to discover regardless of the weather. But is there something to do in New York in winter? That low temperatures or snow do not discourage any traveler from traveling to the Big Apple because its charm It will also be highlighted by the white color of falling, as if it were a film.

In this post we will tell you which are the 10 best things to do in New York in winter and take advantage of the city’s activities, leaving the low temperatures aside and enjoying the city as truly He deserves it.

What is the best time to travel to New York?

The Big Apple, the heart of Broadway musicals, one of the most important cities in the United States and one of the most popular travel destinations for travelers worldwide, has much to offer. Attractions everywhere, cool neighborhoods, bohemians, museums, historical places, art galleries, musicals and one of the largest urban parks in the world make up one of the“ recording set ”Most filmed in the entire film industry.

New York is one of those cities where you can return a thousand times and always find something new to do, whatever the time of year.

Is it possible to assign a better time to travel to New York, being a city that always surprises its inhabitants whatever the time of visiting it?

So what is the best time to visit New York?

With very low temperatures and snow covering the city, visiting New York in winter is like entering a movie, in a city tale, with the fumaroles “decorating” the streets and the white snow falling on the stores; in summer, high temperatures hit the streets, prompting travelers to relax in the great Central Park, take advantage of the air conditioners in the shops and museums.

In spring, the colors of the city’s flowers decorate each sector, travelers rent bicycles and to explore the streets and avenues and the pleasant atmosphere allows you to walk for miles and miles looking for the best spots photographic.

In the fall, the orange colors of the trees form an indisputably photographic postcard and the cool breezes accompany travelers to the rooftops for a drink while enjoying the the city from above.

In short, all the seasons of the year make New York stand out all its charm and attract billions of travelers every month, week and day. Many first-timers, looking for their experiences in the city of lights and many returning as many times as necessary to learn more and repeat those places that were “with little flavor.”

But come on, it all depends on the month in which it is visited and in this post we are going to dedicate ourselves to the Christmas season, we are going to find out what are the best things to do in New York in winter.

Top 10 things to do in New York in winter

1. Visit Central Park

The most important park in New York (can we say the most cinephile?) and one of the largest urban parks in the world turns white during the winter season and the great hills, ideal for picnics, become fantastic tracks for slides. The tables are transformed into perfect Christmas postcards filled with snow and the wide green sectors are e ice skating rink scenarios to enjoy during the trip.

What to do in New York in winter: Central Park turns white and the postcards are not to be missed

Central Park has thousands of attractions to visit inside, although the simple act of walking along the trails (for a short time, be careful, temperatures can be very low) everything is photographic and enjoyable.

  • Traveler advice: if you are looking for recommendations on what and how to visit Central Park, visit our complete guide.

2. Enjoy a Broadway musical

During winter in New York, snow can be present of course, during all months of the season but what is certain is that temperatures are low (and a lot) so it is also advisable to look for alternatives that are heated and indoors to enjoy the city without complications.

The Broadway musicals are recognized worldwide and the main works are presented in the wonderful and bright Times Square, the heart of Manhattan. Musicals such as The Lion King or Cats, are presented almost all year round but, the best thing is that during winter, being one of the lowest seasons to visit the city, prices are usually cheaper than during the rest of the year.

Qué hacer en Nueva York en invierno: visitar Broadway
What to do in New York in winter: Broadway cannot be missing from the itinerary (in addition to finding works and performances with lower prices than during the summer)
  • Travel advice: just under the stairs in Times Square are the lockers that, as we call them, “low cost”, On many occasions, tickets are sold within minutes of starting the show, which have an advantage, which can be obtained up to half price.

Visiting New York at Christmas? Don’t miss the Rockettes at Radio City Music Hal, (from my own experience), one of the best winter musicals in town.

3. Snow, cold, ice? Skate!

Visualizing the city from different points of view is one of the best things to do in New York and we are not only referring to the viewpoints or the super tall buildings, in this case we are referring to the skating rinks ice that open their doors when winter begins.

Some lakes in the parks freeze in such a way that they manage to form these “natural” skating rinks and other places are perfect settings to build these rinks throughout the season. The best places to ice skate in New York are:

  • Wollman Rink : It is located in Central Park, so it is surrounded by greenery and the main skyscrapers of the Big Apple.
  • Bryant Park : In addition to being a very picturesque park, it is one of the ideal places for ice skating and, for those who prefer, do some shopping at the Christmas market.
  • The Rink at Rockefeller Center: Imagine ice skating in the heart of New York and the magnificent Rockefeller Center sculpture and the magnificent Christmas tree in the background, is it possible ? Yes of course, visiting New York in winter this postcard is possible.
Ice skating rinks open their doors when winter begins in New York.

4. Photograph the city from above

The rooftops and viewpoints of New York are also the stars of the city and take all the photos of travelers. The different angles from which to view the city become the main attractions and, we could say, even unmissable within the Big Apple.

The 4 viewpoints of New York are the Empire State, the Top of the Rock, the One World Observatory and The Edge, each with very particular views, from different points of the city. In this post you will find more information about them.

  • Traveler advice: if the temperatures are very low, keep in mind that the outdoor balconies usually do a lot (but a lot) cold, so the One World Observatory can be a great option to visit, as it has glazed roofed balconies.

5. New York in winter: museum time

As with Broadway theaters and musicals, museums in New York are part of one of the attractions that no one wants to miss when visiting the city. Does it mean that you have to visit all of them? Of course not, it all depends on preferences, time and the type of trip you want to choose. Of course: all museums have heating so, to warm up, they are a great option.

The museums of New York are distributed throughout the city and with themes, such as the MOMA (the art museum) or the Museum of Natural History or even the MET, the Metropolitan Museum of New York, one of the best museums in the world. world. The best thing to do is know what type of museum you are looking to visit, check the schedules and prices on the web pages and explore the city’s cultural options.

image new york in winter que hacer en nueva york en invierno museo metropolitano nueva york met
What to do in New York in winter: dedicate a visit to cultural spaces such as the MOMA (the art museum), the Museum of Natural History or the MET, the Metropolitan Museum of the city.
  • Did you know that there are free museums in New York? Don’t miss our guide to know them and what days It is advisable to visit them.

6. Itineraries and free dates? Enjoy New Years in New York

As we told you at the beginning, visiting New York at any time of the year is highly recommended because the city has so much to offer, regardless of the weather.

However, if someone asks if there is a date when visiting the city not to be missed (as long as the budget allows) it is New Year’s Eve in New York.

The biggest New Year’s show takes place in Times Square where thousands of people gather in the heart of the city to wait for the countdown, the beginning of the new year and the great ball of lights falling into hiding when the timer reaches zero, set to music by bands and artists from around the world.


At 12 o’clock at night, in addition, the fireworks from different parts of the city are noticed and provide another show for all travelers. If you can and if you have the opportunity, it is a great date to visit the city.

  • Caution : New Year’s prices tend to increase a lot. Not suitable for low cost travelers.

7. Visit the shops and their windows

The department stores on 5th Avenue are an emblem in the city, where the best brands in the world are distributed on the most famous avenue in New York but, in winter, something else does that everyone wants to stop and look: the stained glass windows.

Something like an unnamed competition, the entrances and windows of the main stores (such as Sacks, Macys or Victoria’s Secret ) are decorated with characters, lights, garlands and dolls alluding to the time of year, forming another attraction to see in the city.

8. Heated, indoor tents make up New York’s most charming markets

In addition to its wonderful shops, New York City also has some markets where you can buy food, souvenirs and decorative items, mostly. During other seasons of the year, some markets and fairs can be seen on the main streets although, during the winter in New York, the most recommended markets to visit are those that are indoors and heated.

Chelsea Market, one of the best markets to visit in New York in winter (and during the rest of the year). Photo: Ludovic Bertron

One of the most visited markets in New York is Chelsea Market, located, of course, in the homonymous neighborhood, also integrated by a food court where you can taste gourmet dishes. Gotham West Market, for its part, is a great place to taste good and varied cuisine, of the highest standards in the city.

9. Have a drink in a speakeasy

In Spanish please: a signature drink, a classic drink or a cocktail can be found anywhere in the city but New York is so special that has managed to turn what used to be a great fall for life nightlife, one more attraction to visit (not to be missed? Of course).

To be fair, the speakeasy are, in other countries, also known as the hidden bars that, at the time, arose during the period of the Prohibition where alcohol could not be sold in bars in the Big Apple (and many cities in the United States).

What was sought as an alternative, illegally speaking, was creating spaces where you had to enter through a secret door, a password or hidden places so as not to be seen.

With the repeal of the law, the hidden bars were left as different places to enjoy a drink and, particularly those in New York, are highly recommended. These are some of the best known:

  • Please Don’t Tell
  • The Garret
  • The Back Room
  • The Corner
image new york in winter que hacer en nueva york en invierno de noche
Enjoying the night in an easy speake is one of the best things to do in New York in winter

10. Tour the New York Public Library and feel in a movie

Speaking of cinephile places in the city, the Library must be one of the top of the list and all those who have seen The Day After Tomorrow or Sex and the City, surely they know what place we are talking about. The New York Public Library is not another building within the city since its importance lies in its exterior and interior, impressive alike and forming an ideal place to warm up after walking under the cold city.

Tour the New York Public Library and feel in a movie

The New York Public Library has free admission and, during some days of the week, offers guided tours to visit each of its sections and spaces of importance.

Visiting New York in winter is a great alternative and of these 10 plans, there are thousands of other options to visit and enjoy one of the best cities in the world (yes, I said it ).

And in Summer, what can be done?

The city is ideal to be visited at any time of the year and, if heating is sought in winter, air conditioners are listed on the stock market in summer. During the summer in New York, the days are longer and allow travelers to walk more through the streets of the city, although with caution as temperatures can be very high.

The best recommendation for a hot summer night is to enjoy the rooftops of the city, the viewpoints with or without glass and the breaks in Central Park, with its green vegetation that contrasts with the gray of the buildings.

Fall in New York is not just a movie

As we told you before, autumn dyes the city in different shades of orange and yellow and offers travelers a different postcard (and one of the most beautiful) in the whole city.

The best recommendation is to rent a bike and tour Central Park, if possible in its entirety, enjoying the pleasant temperatures and changing colors in each of its areas.

In autumn, in addition, it is ideal to enjoy the High Line, a linear park of almost 3 kilometers that runs, in height, the district of Manhattan. Without a doubt, a great option to see the city from another perspective.

What to do in New York in spring

And if the colors of autumn spoke volumes, then the colors of spring in the city are also noticeable, especially in city parks such as Central Park, but also Bryant Park or The Riverside Park.

A great alternative to make the most of the city during the pleasant spring temperatures is to visit the south, Wall Street and the banking district, but also take the ferry to Staten Island, admire Manhattan from the water and photograph “the queen of the Big Apple” and the star of hundreds of films: the Statue of Liberty.

  • Travel tip: the ferry to Staten Island is free.

Yes, New York is a city to travel a thousand and one times, a destination that we should all visit at least once and an unforgettable place for everyone who has already enjoyed it.

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