Watching the Ball Drop on Times Square

All you need to know: The NYE Times Square Ball Drop

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Find out how to watch the Ball Drop on Times Square on New Year’s Eve. We’re sharing the best spots to celebrate where you will see the ball drop in NYC. Watching the Ball Drop on New Years is free of charge, but there’s a lot of things to know about before heading to Times Square to party. 

At 11:59 p.m., the Ball begins its descent as millions of voices unite to count down the final seconds of the year. 3, 2, 1 Happy New Year!

Things you need to know about the Ball Drop in NYC

Where does the ball drop in NYC?

New Years ball drop is the highlight for many visitors and only a few locals here in NYC. It’s a huge party on Times Square when the ball drop happens in NYC. In case you’re wondering where does the ball drop in NYC, its on Times Square at 42nd Street just south of the intersection of Broadway and 7th Ave. Located on the roof of One Times Square.

Places to watch the ball drop 2022

There’s a simple rule to follow to find the best spot outside to see the ball drop on New Years Eve. The lower the street numbers you’re on, the closer you are to the Times Square Ball Drop. The entire area around Times Square is secured with barricades and you can only enter the viewing area through designated entry points.

The best places to watch the ball drop in NYC are from Broadway, between 43rd Street and 50th Street. There’s also a great chance to see the ball drop along 7th Avenue from 43rd Street to 59th Street.

There are the designed entry points to watch the ball drop in NYC

  • 6th Avenue – 38th, 49th, 52nd, 54th, 58th, 59th streets
  • 7th Avenue – 37th, 57th streets
  • 8th Avenue – 38th, 49th, 52nd, 55th, 58th, 59th streets
  • Broadway – 37th, 57th streets

Beside the outdoor areas, there are several hotels that offer great views of the Ball Drop on Times Square for a very high rate for the night. Of course, some New Years Parties in the city have access to exclusive view of the event as well.

Best times to arrive to experience the Times Square Ball Drop

Secret places to watch the ball drop fill up pretty quickly which is why serious visitors arrive early in the morning. Most likely around 6-7 pm the area will close down because the event reached its capacity.

You cannot leave your spot to go to the bathroom, or go and buy some food. You also cannot bring a backpack inside the viewing zones on Times Square. Public drinking is illegal in the State of New York, so make sure to leave any alcohol at the hotel. Check your phones to find out about the most recent updates about street closures and more.

New Year’s Eve Times Square Ball Drop Party

If you are willing to spend a little more money on watching the ball drop on Times Square, there’s a great party, that we can highly recommend going to enjoy the best views of New Years Eve ball drop.

Best Hotels to see the Ball Drop on New Years Eve

New York Marriott Marquis
Ball-Drop-on-Times Square

The popular New York Marriott Marquis offers several choices on New Years Eve. 100+  rooms have outstanding views of the ball drop on Times Square. There’s also a private party on the 8th floor which overlooks the ball drop as well. The famous restaurant  The View on the 48th floor unfortunately has no views of the ball drop.


The Knickerbocker
Ball drop on Times Square Hotels

The Knickerbocker is one of  the hotels that is on super high demand for New Years because from the St. Cloud rooftop bar on top of the iconic hotel,  you’re only 180 feet away from the ball drop on Times Square. There’s probably no better view than that.


DoubleTree Suites by Hilton – Times Square

 If you want the ball drop happening right in front of your hotel, this is the place to be for you. Hotel residents have the priveleges of being able to go in and out of the hotel all night. So you’re not obligated to stay in the crowds for hours.


Where to stream the Ball Drop on Times Square

If you can’t make it or you simply want to avoid the crowds and waiting times on Times Square you can also stream the ball dropping on Times Square. The official Ball Drop Website offers a streaming service where you can watch the New Years Ball Drop from different perspectives. It’s another great way to see the New Years Ball Drop and more than 1 ton of confetti dropped in Times Square to bring in the new year.

FOX New Year’s Eve will air from 8 to 10pm and 11pm to 12:30am EST on FOX. Check with each channel and their apps for more live streams

Who is performing at the Ball Drop?

While the crowds are waiting for the new year and the ball drop on Times Square there are several artists performing on stage leading up to midnight. Last year Christina Aguilera was rocking the stage in the pouring rain. We will keep you updated who is performing at the Ball Drop this year!

Is it worth it watching the New Years Ball Drop in NYC?

The Ball Drop in NYC is a huge event that attracts mostly tourists. Some of them have it on their bucket list to watch the ball drop in New York once in their lifetime. To see the ball drop live is definitely a unforgetable experience. But if it’s worth waiting outside in the cold for hours without any food or beverages?

From our local perspective, we don’t think it’s worth waiting 10+ hours in the cold with no bathroom or food near us to see the ball drop on Times Square. But again, we live in the city and just like to spend our New Years Eve differently.

About the author

I'm a true New York fan! Not only have I visited the city over 20 times but also have I spent several months here at a time. On my blog I show you the best and most beautiful spots of the city, so that you have a really good time! You can also find lots of insider tips in our New York travel guide. Also check out my hotel finder for New York!

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