Between tree lighting ceremonies and pop-up events, the holiday spirit in NYC is in full force heading into December! Of course a major part of this is the stunning holiday lights that are appearing all across the boroughs, dazzling New Yorkers everywhere they look.
Whether you’re looking for a neat Instagram shot, or want to just get into a festive mood, here are some of the best places to find holiday lights in NYC:
1. Lumagica, Westchester
This gorgeous illuminated walking trail located about an hour outside of NYC features over 750,000 LED lights that are perfect for your next Instagram post! There are different areas scattered around the Harvest Moon Farm & Orchard including Sparkling light, Into the Wonderland, Magical Trees, A great Celebration, Treats and Sweet, and Beyond the Forest! These illuminating sculptures, decorations, tunnels, and more will surely have your jaw dropping, and is definitely worth the trip.
Where: 130 Hardscrabble Rd, North Salem, NYBuy your tickets here!
2. Dyker Heights, Brooklyn
Dyker Heights homes are now lit up and ready to be seen! The neighborhood’s impressive light display has been a tradition for more than 30 years and spans three avenues and several streets.
Where: 12th Ave & 84th St, Brooklyn
3. Amaze Light Festival, Flushing
One of the country’s largest holiday light shows is now open at Citi Field in Flushing, Queens. This massive display is currently open until January and features millions of dazzling lights to walkthrough and check out. Plus, their two fun attractions, Zing’s Icy Thrill Hill (tubing an icy slope) and Arctic Express Train (a magical train ride through Frosty Land) are fun for the whole family. Be sure to stop at the Sparky’s Sweet Spot for whimsical candy and Zing’s Toyporium, where kids can create their very own toys!
Where: Citi Field, 41 Seaver Way (Queens)
4. Saks Fifth Ave, Midtown
Saks Fifth Avenue never disappoints with its enormous front facade decorated in colorful lights sure to get you giddy with holiday cheer! The 13th annual light show that debuted last week feature over 700,000 programmed LED lights can be viewed through end of December/early January. Be sure to stop by when a light show is happening for the full experience.
Where: 611 5th Ave
5. New York Botanical Garden Glow, The Bronx
Everyone loves dazzling lights during the winter months, and now, the NYBG is putting together an outdoor, immersive experience that is sure to satisfy! They have created a “glowing world of color” that is centered around their famous landmark, the Haupt Conservatory. Incredible installations will appear in the gardens and Reflecting Pool.
Where: 2900 Southern Blvd, The Bronx
6. Seaport District, Manhattan
The annual Seaport District tree is getting lit up tonight (11/29) on Fulton Street and it’s a beautiful place to view lights along the water. There will be tons of activities, from crafts and live music to pop-up markets to hot chocolate and mulled wine. While you’re over there, be sure to check out Watermark, which is currently hosting their “The Santa Clauses” Winter Wonderland takeover too.
Where: 19 Fulton St
7. Rockefeller Center Tree, Midtown
Of course we couldn’t leave out one of the most iconic light displays of the holiday season in NYC! The lighting will take place tomorrow (11/30) and is first come first served to watch live! If you can’t make it, the lighting will be live streamed on NBC, and will be illuminated every night afterwards!
Where: 45 Rockefeller Plaza, New York
8. Bronx Zoo Holiday Light Show, The Bronx
Covering several acres of the zoo, explore a glowing forest at this year’s Bronx Zoo Lights. See larger-than-life toads, frogs, snails, sunbirds, and more with 21 beaming lanterns. Learn more about the “Forest of Color” on the Bronx Zoo’s website here.
Where: 2300 Southern Blvd, The Bronx
9. Hudson Yards
This year, Hudson Yards brought back their stunning holiday installation called “Shine Bright.” The neighborhood is decorated in more than two million lights! Prepare to be dazzled by the shopping center’s interior decked out in shimmering string lights. Step outside to see the vessel gleaming gold alongside other holiday trees and the beautiful hot air balloon display!
Where: 20 Hudson Yards, New York
10. Brooklyn Botanic Garden, Brooklyn
Roam under one million sparkling lights at Brooklyn Botanic Garden’s astonishing holiday trail. Walk along the garden’s landscapes to a curated soundtrack and experience incredible light sculptures, & vibrant effects on the BBG’s landscapes that will illuminate the many trees and water features.
Where: 990 Washington Ave
11. Bryant Park Holiday Market, Midtown
It’s no secret that we love the Bryant Park Holiday Market and Winter Village, and they have a bunch of lights that makes it even more festive. Plus, what could be better than looking at some holiday lights while shopping for presents, or even ice skating for free? There’s so much to do!
Where: Bryant Park
12. Radio City Music Hall, Midtown
Radio City Music Hall is an iconic NYC venue, especially during the holiday season when The Rockettes famously take it over for a month! Now that they’re back on show, we suggest checking them out, along with their gorgeous Christmas tree that sits on the roof of the building.
Where: 1260 6th Ave
13. Washington Square Park, Greenwich Village
This year’s tree lighting at Washington Square Park will take place on December 7th, and will illuminate every night afterwards. Being situated right under the Washington Square Arch, the angle of this incredible illumination is one of our favorite in all of NYC!
Where: Washington Square Park
14. Chelsea Market, Meatpacking
Walk under multi-colored mylar fringe and ornaments when you visit Chelsea Market. You’ll find dazzling lights along the exterior of the market and decorative presents, lit up Christmas trees, and shiny ornaments on the inside.
Where: 75 9th Ave, New York
15. Brooklyn’s Largest Menorah, Brooklyn
Beginning the first night of Chanukah, December 18th, Brooklyn’s largest menorah will shine bright! Continuing through to the eighth night of Chanukah, the menorah lighting is accompanied with live music and hot food to celebrate—and it’s free for everyone to go see!
Where: Flatbush Ave, Brooklyn
16. Summit One Vanderbilt, Midtown
Experience a gasp-worthy light and sound show “AIR at Night” at the world’s most immersive observatory, SUMMIT One Vanderbilt. Get your tickets here.
Where: 45 E 42nd St
17. The Shops at Columbus Circle, Midtown West
The 14-foot stars have reappeared at The Shops at Columbus Circle and they even dance! Starting at 5 p.m. daily the stars light up in synchronization with holiday music during the Holiday Under the Stars Show at every half hour until 11:00 p.m. These stars will illuminate until January 3rd.
Where:10 Columbus Cir, New York
18. Pulitzer Fountain & The Plaza Hotel, Midtown
Right across from The Plaza Hotel and east entrance to Central Park, see 32 animal sculptures leap, jump, & skate around the Pulitzer Fountain that’s been decked out in 5,000 feet of lights! The arctic display is made up of 24 floating icebergs and a skating rink!
Where: 764 Central Park S, New York
19. Neighborhood Brownstones, UWS
Take a quaint stroll on the UWS to discover gorgeous facades, elegantly decorated in wreaths and garland. The sparkling lights will enchant you as ornaments are strung in bright shades of red and green along the perimeters.
Where: (zip codes) 10023, 10024, 10025, 10069
20. Zuccotti Park, FiDi
Admire thousands of lights on every branch of every tree in Zuccotti Park for a wowing display of holiday cheer.
Where: Zucotti Park, New York
21. Brookfield Place, Battery Park City
The Luminaries exhibit has returned to Brookfield Place and it’s a colorful wonderland. Located in the Winter Garden, head over to make a holiday wish. With every wish, $1 will be donated to City Harvest.
Where: 230 Vesey St, New York
Created as a way for visitors to experience and learn about the culture and craftsmanship of traditional Chinese lantern festivals, three incredible Winter Lantern Festival events are available this season across Queens Staten Island, and Long Island. Enter into a whimsical world of light and be awed by thousands of handmade glowing lantern figures. Get your tickets here.
Where: Various Locations
23. 73rd Street, UES
This street on the Upper East Side is lined with tons of twinkling trees. Take a lovely stroll through the neighborhood and try to find more gorgeously festive decorations throughout!
Where: 73rd Street (UES)
Of course many of NYC’s restaurants go all-out with decor for the holidays, and many of them take careful curation when it comes to lights. Whether it’s Rolf’s (pictured) or Oscar Wilde, there are many places across the city to get mesmerized by lights while enjoying a meal or a festive cocktail!
Where: Various places around NYC
25. Fifth Avenue, Midtown
The beloved illuminated toy installations are back on Fifth Ave again this year along with an initiative called “Fifth Avenue for All.” Visitors are able to see their favorite childhood toys like teddy bears and jack-in-the-boxes reincarnated in glistening lights! The lights are up now, but are able to being explored even more on select Sundays, when the whole street will be blocked off.
Where: 5th Ave between 48th St – 57th St