New Years Eve in New York City -Events, Things to Do, Tours

Free Events

New York City is the place to be on New Year’s Eve to celebrate the New Year. Tourists from around the world visit this time of year to be a part of the excitement in one of the World’s largest cities. The biggest event that takes place in the city is at Times Square watching the countdown to New Year ball drop but there are many events including fireworks displays in Central Park and in Brooklyn’s Grand Army Plaza. All of these events are free to anyone who wants to visit. The Times Square is where there are the most crowds and if you are planning to attend this plan on being in the city early afternoon. The lines usually start about 2:00pm to enter the street area in front of Time Square. The Brooklyn Bridge has a great view from the pedestrian walkway fireworks in Brooklyn. All of these events are free to all who attend.

If you are a tourist and visiting New York City for the first time on New Year’s Eve and are planning to attend any of these outdoor events here is some advice. Dress warm! Realize you will most likely be outdoors for several hours so gear up for it. I have spent many New Years eve’s in the city and I can tell you from my experience that you can have a great time if you are comfortable and you are not freezing! So wear warm clothes, with a million plus people in the streets there’s no need to make a fashion statement with short skirts and high heels- bundle up. Wear layers of clothes, sweater, hooded coat, scarf, gloves and insulated shoes if you have them. Another great thing to bring along are some of those hand warmer pouches, they work great – put them in your gloves, scarf or pockets to keep you warm.

This year, for the first time, we went to the Brooklyn Bridge pedestrian walkway to see the fireworks displays. Of course it was a little windy up there, but the overall view is breathtaking as you can overlook the city and harbors. This is another great FREE event that only requires you to walk. Tourists be aware that there are tour operators that advertise a Brooklyn Bridge walking tour and charge for the narrated tour about $35-$60 and include a cup of hot chocolate. I would suggest you save the money buy a pair of gloves or scarf and your own beverage and pocket the rest. The view can also be seen from the Manhattan Bridge. If you are a tourist and want to attend all you have to do is simply take the walkway from the street up the bridge, there is no charge or fee for this on either bridge. On the Brooklyn Bridge there are areas to stop and rest with benches along the way. The crowds here are minimal and if you like, continue walking to the other side of the bridge into Brooklyn to find other places to party. From experience, walking in the city on New Year’s Eve is the best way to get around town or use the subway’s or buses.