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NYC Winter Activities to Check Out This Holiday Season!

This article is written by a student writer from the Her Campus at St. John's chapter.

If you’re looking for fun winter activities this holiday season, what better place to look than New York City? As we transition into the colder months, it can be hard to come up with fun things to do, especially when it’s 30 degrees outside and you just want to curl up under a blanket. So, here are a few ideas for fun activities in New York City to get you out of the house this winter. 

  1. Winter Jazzfest

Winter Jazzfest is held every year and visitors can see a series of live jazz music performances in what’s to be considered America’s best jazz festival. Here, hundreds of jazz artists perform all night long, so this option is perfect if you’re looking for a fun night in NYC. The event takes place on January 23, 2024.

  1. Smorgasburg Winter Market 

Smorgasburg Winter Market is an indoor market that offers seasonal items from local food vendors to many other flea-market finds. Open only on weekends for the whole winter season from 10 a.m.- 6 p.m., the market is one of the best places to find fresh seasonal food. If you’re looking for something interesting to do or just trying to get into the holiday spirit, this is a great place to go!

  1. Rockefeller Center Christmas Tree 

The Rockefeller Center Christmas Tree is one of the most iconic features of winter in New York City. The ice skating rink nearby serves as an incredible sight to see while enjoying classic winter fun! It is the perfect place to go with family or friends, take cute pictures and eat high-quality food from one of the many vendors close by. 

  1. Visit Bryant Park and All It Has to Offer

If you’re not planning on visiting Bryant Park this holiday season you will be missing out. Not only can you go ice skating, but there is also the European-inspired open-air market featuring artisans from New York and around the world. Along with bumper cars on ice, the lodge bar is where visitors can cozy up with a festive cocktail, enjoy delicious food and so much more.

  1. See The Nutcracker Only In NYC For A Limited Time Only

The Nutcracker presented by the Ajkun Ballet is coming to New York City just in time for the holiday season. The show will take place at the Rudolf Nureyev Studio in the City Center and will only be there for a limited time starting December 2, so purchase your tickets now to enjoy this festive show! 

  1. Lantern Festival 

Don’t miss out on the stunning experience that is the Winter Lantern Festival in Queens. According to the website, visitors “Step into a dazzling world of light with over 1000 Chinese lanterns; all handmade by artisans with decades of experience. A whimsical walk-through experience to light up and warm up the holiday season!” You can also find many vendors nearby to enjoy some food with your family and friends. The festival is now open at the Queens County Farm Museum.

  1. The Rockettes 

The Christmas Spectacular starring the Radio City Rockettes happens every year and is presented at Radio City Music Hall in New York City. The show features more than 140 performers, an original musical and a combination of singing, dancing and humor with classic performances. The show is bound to knock your socks off! Tickets are available now with multiple showings a day until New Year’s Day. 

  1. See a Broadway Show 

Broadway is what New York City is best known for. This is one of the more expensive options, so I know it’s not feasible for all, but it is definitely something everyone should do once in their life. You can experience shows like “Wicked,” “Hamilton,” “Moulin Rouge” and “Aladdin.” Also, there are newer shows on Broadway to see like “MJ the Musical” or “Back to the Future.” It’s always nice to get lost in a story for an hour or two and sing along to songs you know and love. 

The holidays are all about experiences and showing love, and what better way to do that than to take a friend ice skating and eat some amazing food? All-in-all, New York City is the perfect place to get in some winter fun with family and friends or even on a solo adventure!


10 best things to do in winter in New York. Find Snow-Covered Fun in the Big Apple – Go Guides. (n.d.). https://www.hotels.com/go/usa/us-best-winter-things-to-do-new-york

Bank of America Winter Village at Bryant Park. Ice Skating, Bumper Cars on Ice, Bar and Food Hall at New York City’s Bryant Park. (n.d.). https://bryantpark.org/activities/bank-of-america-winter-village-at-bryant-park

Christmas spectacular. The Rockettes. (2023, November 8). https://www.rockettes.com/christmas/

Nyc.com Guide to broadway theater. NYC.com. (n.d.). https://www.nyc.com/broadway_tickets/?gad_source=1&gclid=CjwKCAiAu9yqBhBmEiwAHTx5p2JIZ2exHPzjhjxmffZ8axN-kaX2sB4jUoHd9Sqww5ayTQDZaRM0cBoCOd4QAvD_BwE

Ramanand, L. (2023, November 17). This stunning Nutcracker Ballet is in NYC for Limited Time only. Secret NYC. https://secretnyc.co/ajkun-ballet-nutcracker-nyc/

Tishman. (n.d.). 🎄 Rockefeller Center Christmas tree lighting: NYC winter events. Rockefeller Center. https://www.rockefellercenter.com/holidays/rockefeller-center-christmas-tree-lighting/#christmas-tree-ticket-offerings

Winter Lantern Festival New York. Cities. (n.d.). https://winterlanternfestival.com/new-york/?utm_source=google&utm_medium=sc&utm_campaign=142190_nyc&utm_content=676768220522&gad_source=1&gclid=CjwKCAiAgeeqBhBAEiwAoDDhn1HOfApaThzuS3ySN8e3ZQFi3X98U71UBgm2SvMxhdHFm2J0THkeDBoCwoAQAvD_BwE

Sasha is journalism major at St. Johns. She's born and raised in Pennsylvania but always dreamed of living in a big city. She loves all things fashion, books, tv/movies, and food.