Let’s face it. New York City cannot possibly be visited in only a few days. This eclectic city with multiple skyscrapers is a world in itself. You will probably need several trips to New York to feel that you have entirely visited this city in the northeast of the United States, and you will never run out of things to do and places to see!
I remember the first time I really spent time in New York. It was high school, and our high school drama club went on a trip to NYC. Camping out on school property the night before, we took an early morning bus trip and got into the city about noon. Unbelievably, we were dropped off, told where to meet for the shows that we were going to attend and had freedom to do whatever we wanted. I was 16. And this was 1979, long before they “cleaned up” the theater district. It was amazing. And for a kid from a small rural town in Pennsylvania, it was a world I wanted to know more of.
I loved the crowds, the grittiness and dirtiness of the city, the food on the street and the freedom that NYC represented. I wanted to go back as soon as I could. I wanted to see it all. I can safely say that after numerous trips and now much older, I have still not seen it all in NYC.
And in the fall? Simply amazing. I have to say I miss the “gritty” NYC still, but with nearly 12,000 hectares of green spaces, the city changes its face and colors during the fall, and I still love it. The end of October is definitely the best time to enjoy it. Pumpkins are making their appearances in stores. The streets for Halloween and all the trees of the city are colored with red, yellow and orange hues of the most beautiful effect. Here are nine reasons why you should visit New York this fall:
Cheaper Flights and Accommodations
Autumn is an ideal season if you are looking for lower fares. The popular summer season has passed, and the Christmas and New Year holidays are still far away. As a result, the prices of flight tickets are more reasonable. The same is the case with accommodations, and you can easily find promotional offers on most travel websites.
Central Park Changes Colors
Central Park becomes even more special in the fall. With over 25,000 trees, this is one of the best places to see the foliage of the trees evolve over the weeks. Head through the narrow paths of the park and walk through the trees that are slowly losing their leaves. The best places in the park during this period are The Mall and The Pond (located in the south of the park) and the Jacqueline Kennedy Onassis Reservoir to have an incredible panoramic view of the trees which surround the body of water.
You should particularly take a short walk on the side of the Bow Bridge, in the southern part of Central Park: with the reflections in the small lake, the show is even more magical.
Admire the Stars on the High Line
Autumn is known for its clear skies in New York, so the Association of Amateur Astronomers invites you to observe the sky from the High Line promenade. Meet on the High Line every Tuesday evening in October, until October 27 at the 14th Street entrance. The event is free, so you can look at the different telescopes.
Halloween is quite popular in America in general and in New York in particular! Here, Halloween is celebrated with dignity on the evening of October 31, the eve of All Saints’ Day. Kids pull out their spookiest costumes and go in search of candy by casting the dreaded ‘treats or trick’. Also, not to be missed is the traditional Village Halloween Parade, a monstrous parade that will parade on October 31 on 6th Avenue, from Spring Street to 16th Street.
Follow the Thanksgiving parade
After Halloween, Thanksgiving is another unmissable holiday in the United States. Thanksgiving is celebrated across America on the fourth Thursday of November. In Washington, the President of the United States will pardon a turkey in front of television cameras, while in New York, Macy’s organize a huge parade with giant balloons. I must have watched the Macy’s Thanksgiving Day Parade every year my entire life. Even now, though I don’ watch it all, I still tune in just to see the balloons and the people.
Go shopping for low Prices
If you are a shopping lover, the day after Thanksgiving should be marked in big red on your itinerary. Black Friday is indeed a day of monster sales throughout the United States. And the stores of New York are not left out! Of course, entering these shops will be difficult for you, but there are amazing deals to shop for.
Fall for the Truffle
It is a well-established tradition in New York: fall is truffle season! The famous mushroom is on every menu and can be found in almost every dish. So order some truffles while you visit the restaurants. As a truffle connoisseur, Kati loves this time of year and looks for truffles throughout the city.
Experience the Start of the NBA and NHL Championships
The fall marks the resumption of two major championships in North America: the basketball and ice hockey leagues. And New York is in the running! In basketball, the Big Apple has two NBA teams: the New York Knicks, who play in their Madison Square Garden cauldron, and the Brooklyn Nets, who play at Barclays Center. In ice hockey, New York also has two teams involved: the New York Rangers, who play at Madison Square Garden, and the New York Islanders, who play at the Barclays Center in Brooklyn.
I have to admit, I have never seen an entire basketball game in my life but do love to see hockey live. I have never gone to a NYC game or match, but I know many people that do and love it.
Discover Christmas Decorations
From the end of November, New York will begin to light up for the end-of-year celebrations. The stores compete in imagination, and the Rockefeller Center welcomes its giant Christmas tree. The advantage of seeing the decorations at the end of November? There will be a lot fewer people than during the Christmas holidays, and you will be able to take pictures more easily.
As with most cities in the US, NYC seems to be putting up their Christmas decorations earlier and earlier each year. I do not really know how to think about this honestly. But I like to see them and enjoy visiting.
Our Final Word
To make the most of your New York trip, it is essential to travel at your own pace in order to enjoy all the activities that will be part of your program. Whether you decide to go to New York with your family, your friends, or your soul mate or why not on your own, it is essential to take your time so as not to miss any of the moments that await you.
New York sometimes seems cliche. Sometimes it is just a place to pick up a flight to some European capital or a place you pass through to head up to New England. It is big. It is loud. It has some rude people in it. But it also has great food and restaurants, some of the best shopping in the world, great Broadway shows, and an array of free activities like no other. We love NYC. And you will too.
When it comes to accommodation, you will be spoiled for choice. New York has a great offer for all budgets, all tastes and in all neighborhoods. Take advantage of your stay to choose splendid accommodation and rest after a day of sightseeing and shopping in this gigantic city! Do not hesitate to combine the districts closer to the activities you want to do and put your suitcases in a different hotel every day: it is such a big city that it will save you time, which is ideal for enjoying your stay!
Experience the enchanting winter wonderland of the Smoky Mountains. Witness snow-capped peaks, frozen waterfalls, and wildlife in their winter habitat. Enjoy winter sports or cozy up in a cabin, all while surrounded by the serene beauty of nature. The Smoky Mountains in winter offer a unique, breathtaking experience you won’t want to miss.
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Discover the top Thanksgiving destinations in the US in our Ultimate Guide. From the historic charm of Plymouth, Massachusetts to the vibrant Macy’s Parade in New York City, we’ve got you covered. Explore unique traditions, mouthwatering feasts, and stunning fall landscapes that make these locations the perfect backdrop for your Thanksgiving celebration.