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The 7 Best NYC Holiday Activities for Children of All Ages

christmas kids nyc

When you think of New York City during the holiday season, many nostalgic images come to mind. You may dream of adventures like a certain tall elf in the Empire State Building, cozying up with some Serendipity ice cream, or finding a miracle somewhere on 34th street. New York is the best place to experience holiday cheer. Whether you are a native New Yorker or visiting the city, this list is your ultimate guide to making beautiful new memories with your family this winter.

Ice Skate in Bryant Park

If you’re looking for free ice skating in NYC—we’ve got the place for you! Bryant Park magically transforms the first of November into the beautiful Winter Village. At its center, “The Rink” takes shape and allows for exciting quality time and exercise with the family. Surrounding the icy rink, restaurants and shops pop up for fun holiday shopping and treats. Spend an afternoon with the kids in the heart of NYC!

Stroll Down 5th Avenue

This is a New York staple. The stores on 5th Avenue, specifically in midtown, get dressed to the nines in holiday garb. From Bergdorf Goodman to Saks Fifth Avenue, the streets will shine with festive decorations. With fun lights set to music and wintertime window dressings, nothing could be better than an evening stroll with the family by your side. 

Pop by Rockefeller Center

When you think New York City in the wintertime, chances are Rockefeller Center comes to mind. This is a holiday must with the family! Whether you want to see the annual Tree Lighting Ceremony on December 4th this year, go ice-skating with Prometheus (the famous gold statue), or shop at any number of the stores (FAO Schwarz being a notable deture)—this is the epicenter of holiday cheer!

Kick-in-line with the Rockettes

The Rockettes are famously known for kicking off the holiday season each year. With their toy soldiers, little sugar plum fairies, and dazzling gold shoes, they will help you dance your way into classic memories with your children. With shows starting November 8th, you will have plenty of time to catch this historic show. 

Score a goal at a hockey game

No matter if you are a Rangers or an Islanders fan, New York hockey teams will surely bring traditions, old or new, to your family. With both teams having already started their season, Madison Square Garden (Rangers’ arena) and Barclays Center (Islanders’ arena) will be full of fans, chants, and food. So get those jerseys ready and grab the family for a game to cheer on your New York team.

Experience A Christmas Carol on Broadway

While visiting Time Square to see all of the winter-themed boards, head over to the Lyceum Theatre to see Scrooge himself. Yes, the lights will be very bright this winter season with A Christmas Carol coming back to Broadway. With a limited engagement, starting November 7–January 5, you won’t want to miss this timeless story for all ages!

Meet Santa!

The one, the only, the big-man-in-red will be in town this holiday season! Macy’s Santaland is perfect chance to see Santa’s sleigh and for the kids to tell Santa how good they’ve been this year. Opening November 29th for a month, the 8th Floor of Macy’s Herald Square will transport the North Pole to NYC.

We can’t wait to hear all about your holiday adventures in NYC! Tag SmartSitting in your Facebook and Instagram posts for us to see and share your posts on our channels. Want more holiday season tips for your family? Make sure you sign up for our newsletter for all the latest info coming from our team! 

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