If you’ve booked a trip to the most famous city in the USA over the holidays you’ll certainly want to absorb as much of the festive spirit as possible.

Thanksgiving is the largest American holiday and the celebrations are huge. We’ve put together our top 3 things to do in New York this Thanksgiving.

Macy’s Parade

Undoubtedly the biggest parade in the world. Retail giant Macy’s has been putting on a parade through the city for almost 100 years. Growing in size every year. As a result, the crowds heading to line the streets to watch balloons, bands and floats pass by top over 3million annually.

The Macy’s Thanksgiving Parade is something you’ll not want to miss.

Head up to the upper west side of Central Park on Thanksgiving eve to watch the balloons being blown up for the parade. Get a first look at the balloons up close. Before they take flight the following day.

This impressive spectacle is viewed by thousands so expect to wait in line as the queues snake around the block. It does move quite quickly however so you won’t be waiting that long.


On Thanksgiving, the parade begins from the upper west side and comes down 77th Street and Central Park West. Then down Columbus Circle before ending up at Herold Square where the procession winds up at the front of Macy’s.

It is not advised to view the parade from Columbus Circle. As balloon teams race through it due to higher winds in this flat area. New York City officials preview the parade route and then try to eliminate as many potential obstacles as possible. Including rotating overhead traffic signals out of the way.

Some areas of the parade are ticketed for the views. However, we grabbed a great spot just moments away from Times Square on 6th Ave and 53rd Street.

Depending on the weather depends upon how high the balloons fly. They can fly up to 55ft feet. However, 2018’s parade was the coldest on record with extreme winds which meant the balloons flew at 15ft.

Grab Thanksgiving dinner

When in Rome. Thanksgiving dinners are served all over the city and if you’re spending Thanksgiving in New York we highly recommend tucking into a turkey dinner with all of the trimmings.

There are lots of different offerings of the traditional meal. Where you choose is all depending on your budget and location.

Do expect to pay a higher price for a turkey dinner on Thanksgiving as this is the equivalent of dining out on Christmas Day.

A traditional Thanksgiving dinner alongside turkey includes; riced potatoes, cranberry sauce, stuffing or dressing, mashed potatoes and gravy, and brussels sprouts. Other commonly served dishes include winter squash and sweet potatoes. Fresh, canned, or frozen corn is popular and green beans are frequently served; in particular, green bean casserole, a product invented in 1955 by the Campbell Soup Company to promote the use of its cream of mushroom soup. This has since become a Thanksgiving standard. A fresh salad may be included. Bread rolls or biscuits and cornbread are served. For dessert, various pies are usually served, particularly pumpkin pie, though apple pie, mincemeat pie, sweet potato pie, cherry pie, chocolate pie, and pecan pie are often served as well.

Start your Black Friday shopping early

With retailers getting in on the Black Friday shopping deals early more and more stores are opening from 5pm on Thanksgiving. Including Macy’s which offer up to 50% off most lines.

If you want to be thrown into true holiday madness check out the crazy shoppers grabbing crazy deals. Beware it’s not for the faint-hearted! It is certainly a spectacle and only something that you’ll believe when you see.


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