The holiday season is the most magical time of year in New York City. People come to visit from all over the world during this time to catch a glimpse of the Rockefeller Center tree lit up, or see the Rockettes perform their Christmas Spectacular.
Although no place is safe from tourists during the holidays, there are places outside of the Rockefeller Center area with amazing holiday displays. From Brooklyn, to Queens, and even the North Pole, here are some of the best holiday light and displays around NYC.
Where: Dyker Heights, Brooklyn (between 83rd and 86th Streets, and 11th and 13th Avenues)
What: This Brooklyn neighborhood has become an informal Christmas light show, with houses decked out in nutcrackers, snowflakes, angels, reindeer, elves, Santa, and more lights than you can imagine. Stop by any evening from now through December 31!
Historic Richmond Town
Where: Richmondtown, Staten Island
What: Take a ride on the Staten Island ferry to visit this charming town that’s packed with history. It’s full of heartwarming holiday displays, recreations of old holiday traditions, and a beautiful Christmas tree.
Where: Between 49th and 58th Streets (with others scattered around the area as well)
What: If you can deal with some of the Midtown craziness, you should definitely stop by some of the stores on Fifth Avenue and check out their gorgeous winter displays. Some particularly amazing ones are Bergdorf Goodman and Bloomingdale’s (however, Macy’s in Herald Square also has a wonderful window display).
Where: 166th Street and 23rd Avenue (Whitestone, Queens)
What: The retired firefighter that lives in this house has been known to put on some of the post spectacular light displays in Queens. It’s a must see if you can make it out there!
Lights 4 Life
Where: 107 Sharrotts Road (Charleston, Staten Island)
What: The DiMartino family has been decorating their home for nearly 40 years, but since the loss of wife Debra Ann DiMartino on 9/11 the holiday display has become a memorial for her. Her husband Joe puts on over-the-top decorations and hopes people will be filled with the holiday spirit of giving. Although seeing the house is free, he accepts donations that benefit the Staten Island University Hospital Pediatric Cancer Unit in Loving Memory of Debora Ann.
Santa’s Workshop at the North Pole
Where: 324 Whiteface Memorial Hwy, Wilmington, New York
What: This one is out of the city, and not exactly a light display, but it’s an adorable village that’s worth a visit. Spend the day with reindeer and hang out in Santa’s Village. This is the perfect day-trip for a family outing.
Also published on Medium.