If you are like me, then New York City’s Time Square New Year’s Eve ball drop is on your bucket list! Ian decided to check this off of my list and take me for my birthday (December 30) and New Year’s! A few things about me first; I love New York, I love Christmas, and Christmas in New York is everything and more! The moment you step outside during this season, you feel the magic of Christmas. The air is brisk, everyone is bundled up because it is freezing, and the store window’s are decorated in ways I didn’t know were possible.
We began our trip with a walk through Times Square. Everyone was setting up for the big event! If you go to New York, you cannot miss out on the hilarious sites in Times Square, like the Naked Cowboy!
We then went on a ferry ride to Lady Liberty. We went inside the statue to the top. This was incredible! Make sure you don’t have drinks or metal on you as you have to go through metal detectors before entering. Getting to the ferry was extremely easy on the subway. With GoogleMaps, they break down what line you need to take and from where. I am NOT good with directions. If I could make it around NYC, you can too! We stopped by Canal Street to get some cheap New Year’s eyeglasses and hats! This is a fun place to pick up tourist gifts at an affordable price. Next up was a trip to the Top of the Mark. Buy these tickets in advance, as they sell out quickly. The views are worth every penny.
Seeing a musical in New York is essential. We saw “The Book of Mormon” and “Jersey Boys” here. I am a huge broadway fan and there is no better place to treat yourself to a musical than NYC.
The next day was my birthday. All I wanted to do was walk around Central Park to Fifth Avenue and soak up all the Christmas spirit I could! We loved the Rockefeller Christmas Tree and watching everyone ice-skate. If you decide to skate here or in Central Park, get there early and prepare to be freezing! Make sure to check out the Plaza’s Eloise section!
We went back to our hotel and got ready for the “Rockette Christmas Spectacular Show.” I used to watch this show every Christmas with my mother. Seeing this show was like reliving my childhood. The dancers are incredible. This show encompasses the magic of Christmas in NYC. Our night concluded with a carriage ride in Central Park.
We stayed in Greenwich Village, a short subway ride to the heart of NYC but far enough away from all the madness of Times Square. This area is so cutesie and is walking distance to Ground Zero. This is one of the greatest places to try new food places and get drinks.
It was finally New Year’s Eve. We each had a hefty bagel for breakfast and at 10AM we claimed our spots in Times Square. No tickets are required as it is first come first serve. We were standing on our feet for 13.5 hours total. Once you are in a section and it fills up, they shut the gates. Nobody gets in or out. This means no bathroom breaks for an entire day. Do not drink excessively and bring light munchies for the day. Dress warmly as you cannot generate body heat since you are stagnant. Make friends with those around you. It is a long day so you may as well be friendly!
Luckily, we got there early enough where we were to the right of the performer’s stage. We got two live concerts by: Macklemore, Miley Cyrus, and Blondie. The first concert is the warmup making sure everything goes well, the next one is aired around the world. One of the coolest parts about this experience was all the free stuff we got; hats, chapsticks, sound makers, and more!
There are mixed reviews about those attending the Ball Drop. Some say they would never go back. I would do it again in a heartbeat. We were dressed warmly (thankfully since it began snowing), we were surrounded by great new friends, and we were in the perfect section.
The moment we had been waiting for was finally here. The Ball Dropped and Times Square vibrated with everyone counting down. Confetti flied off every roof and the speakers blasted Frank Sinatra’s “New York” as you stole your New Year’s kiss. I get chills thinking about this night. If you can, please go. There is nothing else like this in the world!
We ended our New York trip with a Polar Bear Plunge in Coney Island. This was absolutely freezing but such a fun way to bring in the New Year. Next up on our trip was Canada’s Niagara Falls.
Please bare in mind that New York this time of year is extremely expensive. Hotels and airlines exponentially increase their prices. Book all tours and hotels as early as you can!