christmas in nyc

When is the 2014 Rockefeller Center Christmas Tree Lighting?

rockefeller center christmas treet

And a few other far-too-early-to-be-talked-about questions about the holiday season in NYC.

It’s the most wonderful time of the year! Christmas in NYC, it doesn’t get much better than that. What’s that, it’s 92 degrees out today? Summer still has another month left? Yes, these things are true, but right around the beginning of August is when we begin consistently receiving questions about Christmas in NYC, so it’s time we start planning our holiday vacations while we answer your questions in a special holiday edition of NYC FAQ:

When is the 2014 Rockefeller Center Christmas Tree Lighting?

2012 rock center tree

This year’s Rockefeller Center Christmas Tree Lighting Ceremony will be held on Wednesday, December 3 beginning at 7 p.m. Remember, get there early if you want a good spot of the show.

When does the NYC Holiday Lights Bus Tour begin?

christmas lights tour

Each year, Gray Line New York turns our Night Tour into a specially themed Holiday Lights Tour catered to the incredible sights and sounds NYC puts on during the season. Between the Rockefeller Center Christmas Tree, 5th Avenue’s awesome holiday decorations, Macy’s light show, and so much more, we had to dedicate a tour to the season. This year, the Holiday Lights Tour begins on Thursday, December 4th, the day after the Christmas Tree Lighting.

Where is the Rockefeller Center Christmas Tree?

2008 rockefeller center christmas tree

The easy answer is Rockefeller Plaza.

The more appropriate answer is that the Rockefeller Center Christmas Tree can be found between 5th and 6th Avenues on the plaza that connects 49th and 50th streets. You can approach the tree from the side by walking down one of those blocks and entering the plaza, or you can go to 5th Avenue between 49th and 50th streets to enter with the traditional view of the tree. There will almost always be a crowd on 5th Avenue taking pictures during the holiday season, so just look out for them.

How long will the Rockefeller Center Christmas Tree be lit?

rockefeller center christmas tree statue

The tree will be lit for the first time on December 3rd and remain lit until January 7th, 2015. Aside from a few special days during this stretch, the tree will remain lit until 12 a.m. each night.

Will there be any other tree lightings in NYC during the holiday season?

bryant park christmas tree

Yes! Most people are only familiar with the Rockefeller Center Christmas Tree, but there are quite a few trees in NYC that have lighting ceremonies and remain lit for an extended period of time. Here are just a few:

  • The American Museum of Natural History has an Origami Holiday Tree on display
  • Bryant Park hosts one of the best trees in Manhattan at the top of their skating rink
  • Winter’s Eve in Lincoln Square is on December 1 this year
  • The New York Stock Exchange Tree will rise for the 91st time this year
  • The World’s Largest Menorah can be found on 59th and Central Park South

Where can I go ice skating in NYC?

central park ice skating

There are a few places to go ice skating underneath the cold, night sky in NYC. The most popular spot is Rockefeller Center, right below the big Christmas Tree. The Bryant Park Ice Rink is another beautiful park to go skating, surrounded by the Holiday Shops. Our third recommendation goes to the Central Park ice rink, which has some incredible views of the skyline.

The holiday season in NYC is truly as good as it gets. Decorations hang high, music and lights serenade the city streets, smiles will cover the faces of all and holiday cheer will capture will our hearts. Are you coming to NYC for the holidays? Do you have more questions that we didn’t cover? Let us know about it on twitter @GrayLineNewYork.

Photo Credit:
Andrew F. Kazmierski / Shutterstock.com
Gray Line New York
Anthony Quintano / Flickr
pedrosala / Shutterstock.com
Anthony Quintano / Flickr
Andrew F. Kazmierski / Shutterstock.com
Marcio Jose Bastos Silva / Shutterstock.com

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2013 Rockefeller Center Christmas Tree Lighting

rockefeller-center-christmas-tree-ny

Will you be in New York for the holiday season? What’s Christmas in the Big Apple if you don’t visit the Rockefeller Center Christmas tree . This year the ceremonial lighting will take place on the evening of Wednesday, December 4th, 2013 and will mark the event’s 81st anniversary.  The famous tree will remain lit and be viewed into the New Year until 11 p.m. on Tuesday, January 7, 2014.

New York looks even better at night with breathtaking lights.  If you’re going to be in Manhattan this winter, don’t forget to check out our Holiday Lights tour, which starts in November.

The event is a free event and you do not need tickets to attend.  Be sure to show up early to get the best spots!

This year’s ceremony will feature performances from Mary J. Blige, Mariah Carey, Kelly Clarkson, Ariana Grande, Jewel, Leona Lewis, The Rockettes and more! The ceremony will be aired live on NBC at 8 p.m. EST

Rockefeller Center Christmas Tree Pictures

tree top

Rockefeller Center Tree

The Rockefeller Center Christmas Tree lighting is just hours away and people are beginning to pack into Rockefeller Plaza.  Here are some before and after pictures of the tree in Rockefeller Center.

You can see all of the lights of Rockefeller Center, 5th Avenue, and more on the Holiday Lights bus tour, now running through the end of the year!

2013 Rockefeller Center Christmas Tree Lighting

Will you be in New York for the holiday season? What’s Christmas in the Big Apple if you don’t visit the Rockefeller Center Christmas tree. This year the ceremonial lighting will take place on the evening of Wednesday, December 4th, 2013 and will mark the event’s 81st anniversary.  The famous tree will remain lit and be viewed into the New Year until 11 p.m. on Tuesday, January 7, 2014.

New York looks even better at night with breathtaking lights.  If you’re going to be in Manhattan this winter, don’t forget to check out our Holiday Lights tour, which starts in November.

The event is a free event and you do not need tickets to attend.  Be sure to show up early to get the best spots!

**Updated for 2013**

Holiday lights tour- Christmas tours in NYC

Starting Dec. 1, 2009  through Jan 2, 2010,  GrayLine New York will be offering the Holiday Lights Tour.

As the Night Tour converts to Holiday Lights tour, GrayLine New York invites you to revel in the festivities that make New York the fun capital of the world at this time of the year. Times Square, Laser Light show at Grand Central Terminal, Macy’s, Lord & Taylor, 5th Avenue, Central Park, Bryant Park, world famous Rockefeller Christmas Tree, Radio City Music Hall, Time Warner Center, Tavern on the Green, Trump Tower and St Patrick’s Cathedral are some of the sites along the tour route.