You know those “Iconic” holiday activities are a nightmarish hell-scape; a crowded cold and damp exercise in consumerism. Guess what, nobody does it better (or worse) than New York City.
Christmas is NYC can be incredible. Snow in Central Park, rum-spiked hot apple cider and spiced whiskey in a peaceful Christmas market, strolling along the South Street Seaport or Fifth Ave doing a bit of casual shopping… LIES.
It’s a crowded cheese-fest expressly designed to squeeze every last penny out of your already ailing bank account. Here are those favorite NYC Christmas activities and their (depressing) realities…
Times Square on New Year’s Eve
Don’t. Just don’t.
So, you’ll get there hours early, of course… otherwise, the only thing you’re going to see is the back of someone’s head wearing an oversized novelty “I-was-stupid-enough-to-go-to-Times-Square-on-NYE” hat. Upon arrival, you’ll be treated to hours in a crowded, freezing, torture-fest, where you can’t eat or drink… but that’s actually a “plus” because you won’t have anywhere to pee either.
Going to outdoor holiday markets
Ok, ok… let’s just say it… go to ONE outdoor holiday market …unless you’re a big fan of seeing identical products sold in different environments. We mean, really, how many novelties Santa hats and carved wooden Christmas tree decorations do you really need to buy? Once you’ve seen one, you’ve seen them all.
Taking a Leisurely Stroll in Midtown
Ugh. Is there a good time to walk around Midtown? Well, yes. If you want to feel like an extra in a zombie horde from the Walking Dead. Dodge slow-walking tourists, street performers, and the sweeping neck-level selfie sticks. It’s literally a slow-motion American Ninja Warrior. Oh, but you got to see the pretty lights? What are you a moth? Just sit closer to the TV with the window open – call it the Midtown experience.
A walk through a beautifully snowy Central Park
What snow? Are you talking to that melted liquid snow falling from the sky? Here we call that “rain.” Even if it DOES snow, you aren’t going to want to make snow angels in it without a hazmat suit and all your vaccinations.
Go to see the Macy’s Santa
Here’s an idea, why not queue for ages to see a fully grown dude in Santa cosplay. Really, it’s something you could do at literally ANY MALL in about a third the time. “Oh, but Macy’s make the experience so specia…” Shut up. Chances are your kid has the attention span of a goldfish, just take them to any other Santa and tell them it was Macy’s.
The Tree Lighting Ceremony The Rockefeller Center
Get squshed, shoulder to shoulder, with complete strangers for two hours to see someone essentially turn on a Christmas tree. Guess what…The thing will actually stay lit for THE WHOLE HOLIDAY! PROTIP: Go see it at literally ANY OTHER TIME.