Many people would argue that winter is the best time to visit New York. Why? Well, some major events take place in New York in the winter: Christmas, New Year’s Eve and the mother of sporting events, The Super Bowl! That’s not all yet, though! In this article we’ll share everything you need to know about this season, including our top things to do in the winter in New York!
Weather in New York in the Winter
What’s the best way to describe the NYC winter weather? Short answer: COLD! NYC winter temperatures can be pretty extreme, hitting an average low at around 29°F. That is, however, no reason at all not spend winter in New York. It’s time to bundle up and explore – there are just too many amazing winter activities and events going on that you shouldn’t miss!
|Temperature (Day)||Temperature (Night)||Snow [in]||Rainy Days|
|December||45 °F||32 °F||5||8|
|January||39 °F||27 °F||7||8|
|February||41 °F||28 °F||9||6|
What to wear in NYC winter
If you are lucky, you will experience New York as the perfect winter wonderland, completely covered in snow with blue skies and the sun shining. On the other hand, you may experience a crazy snowstorm, like we did early 2018 when visiting New York in the winter. Regardless, you’ll need warm clothes to bundle up and protect yourself from the cold. If you’re wondering what shoes to wear in the winter in New York City, we recommend bringing winter boots or even snow boots.
You will spend most of your time outside, so it makes total sense to wear clothing that keeps you warm for hours.
Visiting New York in the Winter
Yes, winter in New York is the perfect time to check off indoor activities, but there are some unique outdoor activities in New York during winter, too! There is no doubt that ice skating is the ultimate top thing to do in New York in the winter.
The Big Apple is well known for its numerous ice skating rinks, so there is no way you can get around putting on those skates! Apart from ice skating and winter markets, you should know that a few rooftop bars will remain open during the cold months.
Most of them will have fireplaces and provide you with blankets, which makes a visit super cozy. Also, all the main attractions in the city such as the Empire State Building, Statue of Liberty or Top of the Rock remain open throughout the winter.
Hop on a cruise during the Winter Season in New York City
They all have an indoor seating space where you can protect yourself from the cold in case you need to.
Visiting the Statue of Liberty in the Winter
Are you planning on visiting the Statue of Liberty in the winter? Be prepared! The winds oftentimes are pretty gusty and the overall temperature feels much colder than anywhere else in the city. Wear a sweater, gloves, a hat, a scarf and of course a warm winter jacket. Here you can see exactly how to plan your visit to Miss Liberty.
Since Spring 2019 the new Statue of Liberty Museum has opened. Use this great location to warm up for a few minutes, when you’re getting too cold.
Best museums to visit during the winter
One of our favorite museums is the Museum of National History. You can literally spend an entire day here if you wanted to.
The best Rooftop Bars NYC Winter
As mentioned earlier, even though rooftop season is officially over, there are a couple of rooftop bars that allow their guests an incredible outdoor experience. At 230 Fifth near the Flatiron Building, you can even sit in a heated igloo while enjoying breathtaking views of the skyline – how cool is that?
Where to go shopping during Winter in NYC
Shopping in New York seems to be on everyone’s bucket list. But what if the snow is blocking the sidewalks and the high winds won’t even make you want to leave your hotel to stroll around 5th Avenue?
Luckily there are a bunch of great shopping malls in the NYC area where you can simply move your shopping experience inside. Our favorites are Garden State Plaza Mall and the Outlets at Jersey Gardens. Both malls in New Jersey can be reached via bus from Port Authority in Midtown Manhattan. If you want to stay local make your way to the Oculus in Lower Manhattan which offers a couple of shops as well. Both Woodbury Outlets and Empire Outlets are located outside with no indoor areas except the shops.
New York Winter Events
Why do so many people travel to New York in the winter? That’s because some major events are taking place during that season! The obvious ones are Christmas and New Year’s Eve in December. But, don’t forget about other great events like the Super Bowl (scheduled for February 3rd), Valentine’s Day and Fashion Week in February.
As you can see, hibernation in New York does not exist! You can find more detailed info in our monthly articles.
- December Events in New York City
Musicals and Shows during Winter in NYC
Especially when it’s cold out a musical show on Broadway is a great thing to do in the winter in New York. We have watched most of the shows on Broadway and it’s always a very special experience.
Radio City Christmas Spectacular
Radio City Music Hall is a distinguished concert and event hall located on Sixth Avenue and can be recognized from a distance by its striking exterior lighting. Throughout the year, concerts and events take place here such as the popular Radio City Christmas Spectacular starring the Rockettes. It is the most famous Christmas Show you can watch in New York!