Holidays in NYC are the best. We’re all familiar with the big must-see holiday shows and landmarks. However, I wanted to revisit this list and make it a little easier on the pockets. There’s NYC for the tourists and NYC for the locals. This list would be more of what the locals would do. If you’re in for a train ride and a little adventure this should be a great day of fun.
My goal is to keep the kids entertained, with hopes they will be exhausted by the end of the night. My City Holiday Guide includes transportation routes which won’t leave you on too many transfers on the subway, but direct and quick. When I’m traveling with the kids I try to do fewer transfers as possible. First, let’s start at Pennsylvania Station (Penn. Station) and grab some Garrets Gourmet Popcorn. It’s just a must and it keeps everyone happy for a couple of minutes. We then walk across the street to Macy’s Herald Square.
-Macy’s Holiday Window display: Bundle up and get ready to enjoy the Holiday Window display, that won’t disappoint. This is one activity that both adults and kids and adults enjoy. But be warned, this nationally acclaimed display is a bit of a tourist attraction. But while in Rome…you know.
Tip: Go during the day to skip out on the crowds. The evening does give a more magical experience with the beautiful glow of lights and great picture opportunities but expect a crowd at this Holiday Favorite.
-Macy’s Santa Land: Locals and Tourist alike take in this Holiday tradition. Skip your local mall Santa and plan your visit to the original Santa Claus at Macy’s Herald Square. I would never recommend this Holiday tradition of pictures with Santa if it wasn’t Toddler-friendly by being able to RSVP up to five days in advance. The Santa Land experience is FREE however, you must have a reservation. Have your cell phone charged and ready to go. As you walk through “Santa Land” the photo ops are amazing and suddenly an Elf appears and they walk you in to meet Santa.
TIPS: When planning this activity, remember to keep in mind the kid’s lunch and nap times to avoid crankiness as much as possible. Despite your RSVP, there is still a wait. Weekdays are less crowded and mornings are the best time slots. Photo packages start at $20 but not pushed on you to purchase.
They allow you to take pics with your cell phone!
The Subway can be found right outside of Macy’s. Take the Red Line 1 train downtown to the last stop South Ferry train station. You can easily catch the Staten Island Ferry for Free.
Views of Statue of Liberty: A FREE ferry ride on the Staten Island Ferry. You won’t be disappointed with the views of the Statue of Liberty and downtown Manhattan yes for FREE. No stops will be made but the close proximity will be a great photo opportunity.
Tips: Be first outside on the balcony for unobstructed views.
Winter Wonderland: The borough of Staten Island is often not visited, but this Holiday Attraction has brought out the masses. Once in Staten Island, a 3-minute walk by following the crowd is the Winter Wonderland Festival. An array of carnival games and rides with a winter theme and even an Ice Skating Rink that’s much cheaper than what you will pay for the same activity in Manhattan. This festival gives you a choice to mix and create your own adventures according to ages and monetary wishes. This has even been advertised on Groupon-App at a discounted rate.
Tips: Plan your visit in advance by visiting the website. www.winterwonderlandsi.com
Mixing both traditional and local favorites to your must-do-holiday activities leaves you with more money to spend on gifts. Happy Holidays!