New York City locals know how difficult it can be to find someplace to go that’s actually open on Christmas Day (December 25). So here’s a roundup of a things to do in the city that sound like fun, whether you live in New York or are here for a visit, and whether you celebrate the holiday, or not.
Christmas Day 2012 in New York
Get Centered at Central Park Zoo. The Central Park Zoo is open 365 days a year, including Christmas Day (10am – 4:30pm). Winter can be a great time to visit because the air is cooler and some of the animals are more active. General Admission tickets include entry to the Main Zoo and Tisch Children’s Zoo. Or you can opt for the Total Experience tickets for entry to the Main Zoo, Tisch Children’s Zoo, and 4-D Theater. The Central Park Zoo is located near the southeast corner of Central Park in New York City.
Go ice skating in Central Park. Central Park’s Wollman Rink is open for skating on December 25, 2012, from 10am – 11pm. This is the famous New York skating rink featured in the movies Love Story and Serendipity. You can skate with a spectacular view of the NYC skyline. Follow the link above for fees, including for skate rental and lockers. (There’s also a spectator fee.) Located on the East Side of Central Park, between 62nd and 63rd Streets, New York, NY. FYI: We verified this personally with Wollman Rink.
Roll with the Rockettes. The Radio City Rockettes Christmas Spectacular performs three shows on Christmas Day 2012: 1pm, 4pm, and 7pm. Tickets for Christmas Day 2012 are available on this Rockettes tickets page (until they sell out). Although several discount ticket sources offer deals on tickets to the show for many dates in December, Christmas Day may not be available with these offers. Location: Radio City Music Hall, 1260 Avenue of the Americas.
Celebrate the season at the Circus. The Holiday Circus, in Brooklyn, performs on several dates in December 2012, including on Christmas Day, 3pm and 7pm. The event features dozens of world-renowned circus performers under the big top, including tigers, bears, acrobats, jugglers, and magic acts from circuses like Cirque du Soleil, Ringling Bros., Big Apple Circus, and more. Tickets are $55, but right now you can get discount tickets online for half off.
Have a blue Christmas at BB King’s. Chill out for Christmas evening at the BB King Blues Club All-Stars Harlem Blues Project-Live in Lucille’s, B.B. King Blues Club and Grill. Tickets are available for Decerember 25, 2012 at 8pm and 10pm for around $12. The Harlem Blues Project performs soulful New York-style blues, featuring Junior Mack, Jerry Dugger, Saron Crenshaw, Barry Harrison and other NYC blues musicians. Located at 237 West 42nd Street, New York, NY 10036.) More info.
Wax on with the Madame. Madame Tussauds Wax Museum in New York City is open on all holidays, with extended hours during Christmas 2012 and New Year’s Day 2013. It takes approximately an hour and half to complete a visit of Madame Tussauds celebrity wax sculptures, including SCREAM, the interactive horror experience with live actors (appropriate for anyone age 12 or older), Cinema 4D, and Behind the Scenes. You can get 20 percent off Madame Tussards discount tickets online (fees included), and about the same for a Tussauds all access pass form Trusted Tours & Attractions from another source (taxes and fees included). Madame Tussards is located at 234 W 42 Street, New York, NY. Discount parking is available at IKON/Global Garage (143 West 40th St, between Broadway and 7th Ave) when you validate your parking ticket at Madame Tussauds admissions area.
Believe it (or not). Ripley’s Believe It or Not! Times Square Odditorium is open on December 25, 2012 from 9am – 1am. The New York City attraction, located in the heart of Times Square, Manhattan, features more than twenty unbelievable galleries of interactive and archival exhibits.You can get Ripley’s discount tickets for 22 percent off (no added fees) online from from Trusted Tours & Attractions. Info & Tickets.
Just go Jewish. Two NYC museums to visit on December. 25: The Jewish Museum (1109 5th Ave at 92nd Street), open 11am – 5pm; and the Museum of Jewish Heritage (Edmond J. Safra Plaza, 36 Battery Place), open 11am – 5pm. In the evening, check out the Jewmongous Comedy Show, at 7pm, December 25. The show features “that nice Jewish boy, Sean Altman,” in a concert of catchy comedy songs and holiday tunes for the “not-so-easily-offended.” Half price tickets available.
Enjoy the iconic view: The world’s most famous skyline never gets old. On a clear Christmas Day, remember why you love this city and take in the panoramic view from one of the famous observation decks. The Top of the Rock Observation Deck is open December 25, 2012 from 8am – 12am (last elevator at 11:10pm). The 67th and 69th floors include outdoor terraces which feature fully transparent, safety glass. The 70th floor offers an amazing open air, unobstructed 360-degree city view. Located at: 30 Rockefeller Plaza, with the main entrance on 50th Street between 5th and 6th avenues. Special offer 60-minute tour tickets are available online for $3.51 off from one source, and $3 off from another. Also view-worthy, the Empire State Building Observatory, open on Christmas Day from 8am – 2am, offers an amazing 80-mile views from the 86th floor, 1,050 feet (320 meters) above the city streets. Skip the line at the entrance by getting tickets online. The building is located at 350 Fifth Avenue, between 33rd and 34th Streets. Look for limited metered parking, or park at the garage across the street.