This December, we took a train trip to up to the big apple for a three day trip. New York at Christmas is classic. It anytime is so mesmerizingly beautiful, but something about the Christmas festivities. New York has soooo much to offer, its almost overwhelming. I put together everything I learned from our adventure in the notes at the bottom of this post. I hope this helps you get the most out of your time!! It’s freakinggg cold but walking the city and trying different coffee shops along the way makes it pleasant!
We spent 2 full days and two half days in the city, and fit in as much we possibly could! We were able to get everything we wanted to do crossed off our list, and some amazing pizza in our bellies in that amount of time!
Here are some of our tops places we went, and tips to go along with them! I hope this helps if you are planning a New York adventure! Good luck!
Empire State Building
Go at night! Or even in the evening before the sun sets. I know there is usually a terrible line, but at night we walked right through. It’s more beautiful at night, in my opinion. There is nothing in the world quite like the lights of New York City.
Statue of Liberty
So worth it! I expected it to feel super touristy and sort of dumb, but it is so beautiful! I was overcome with a wonderful since of patriotism and thankfulness for my country, that we have such things of beauty here.
Absolute must do. Once you cross it, you’ll be in the Brooklyn area, and you can visit dumbo. We found lots of neat shops in that area, as well as amazing pizza!
This is essential at Christmas time! The lights, the ice skating, the Christmas trees, the music, the people, just everything, is so festive! Saint Patricks Church and Hotel Plaza, the New York Library, and Empire State Building are nearby
Central Park, of course!
I didn’t realize this until we were there, but you can actually take the sub into central station, which is so neat. The artwork is simply breathtaking. Joe’s coffee there is yummy, I heard from a local!
New York Library
SOHO and NOHO
A fun place for shopping! They have lot’s of online stores there, such as Zara and Brandy Melville, so it was so fun to go in person! This area is famous for the beautiful iron work on the buildings.
Flat Iron Building – located right by Eatily! (please PLEASE got to Easily! Best Italian food of my life.)
Chelsea Market – perfect place for coffee and breakfast.
The highline – it’s right by Chelsea Market! Walk off those breakfast calories. 😉
Super touristy, but definitely something you have to experience while in New York! It’s crazy mezmerizing and so fun for people watching! People from all over the world gather there. Don’t eat there though, because you will only find typical chain restaurants, nothing New York special.
You could go to New York and eat all day!
PLEASE go to Eatily. I never loved Italian food more. I only wish one day I could learn to cook like that so I could eat it all the time!
Fika Coffee Shop
Chelsea Market – you’ll want to eat everything!
Stumpton Coffee Roasters
Things I Learned:
Be prepared to dress WARM at Christmas time. I wore a cotton shirt under my sweater, a scarf at all times, leggings under my pants, two pairs of socks, and comfy kicks. Even then we were making lots of coffee stops to warm up. I had pictured going there and getting pictures in cute outfits, but if you want to be able to enjoy the sights and survive a long, full day of fun, you have to be warm! Practicality is not my strong suit but weather in the teens will get you there.
Use Uber in the morning – late at night they are busier, and the rides become more expensive. This is something a didn’t know as a newbie to New York!
Learn how to use the sub! It seems daunting, but you’ll quickly get the hang of it. The Apple maps app can help you navigate.
Be prepared to walk a lot! We walked an average of about 7 miles per day. We were going at an especially fast pace thought because we wanted to see as much as we could! I was glad for the exercise, because we ate so many amazing Italian calories. At the end of each day I felt sore and happy, and woke up ready for more!
Look up what restaurants you would like to go to beforehand! I was really looking forward to experiencing a lot of hip local New York restaurants, and pictured walking down the street and seeing many good options. However, most of the good spots are off on a side street, and it can be very time consuming to sit in your hotel room and find a good place! Next time I plan to be prepared with a list of places we’d like to to try. It’s also important to know what area they are in, because New York is so big! It could take you half and hour to get to a restaurant that is still in the city of New York. That way, if you do spontaneously find a neat spot, you can go there, but if you don’t (and you probably won’t) you be able to make the most of your time and still eat at a great place!
If you’ve been before and have any tips or great places to go, I would love to hear!