Are you wondering what is the best time to visit New York? If you’re planning to visit this incredible city soon, this is the information you need to read before you book anything.
Visiting NYC is something many of us spend months (even years) planning ahead. NYC is the most amazing city in the world, so you’ll want to make sure you pick the right time of year to visit. So what is the best time of year to visit NYC? Picking the best month to visit NYC, is the best way to guarantee you have an amazing time.
I visit NYC a few times a year, and have done for about a decade now. It’s my favourite place in the world, and I’ll visit come rain or shine, at any time of year. In my opinion, there isn’t a bad time to visit NYC. It’s amazing in every kind of weather, in every season, at all times of the year.
BUT… Different months and seasons are suited to different people, so finding the best time to visit NYC for YOU is what will make your trip to New York amazing and more enjoyable. There isn’t a ‘one size fits all’ answer for “when is the best time to visit NYC?” – so I’ve approached things a bit differently.
I’ve listed every month below, reasons to visit during that month, reasons not to visit, and the kind of things you can expect to see and do in NYC during that month. Hopefully that’ll give you an idea of the best time to visit NYC, and you can make the right choice for your interests and priorities. Keep reading to find out how to choose the the best month to visit NYC.
So what is the best time to visit NYC for you?
So you’re wondering “what is the best time to visit NYC?” and what is the the best month to visit NYC – Let’s find out!
Visiting NYC in January
January is one of my favourite times to visit NYC, and for me, one of the best months to visit NYC. The first reason I love visiting in January is that it’s CHEAP and quiet. Christmas peak-season is over, the city calms down a little and the hotels reduce their prices (by quite a lot).
January in NYC is cold, so you’ll want to wrap up warm. It’ll probably snow during your visit (so be prepared for that!) or there might be snow on the ground, especially in the parks. Saying that, snow isn’t a bad thing – the snow in NYC is magical, and walking in Central Park through the fresh snow is pure MAGIC. There’s also the N.Y. Lunar Parade to look out for too!
Lots of people wondering “what is the best time to visit NYC?” might not consider January at first, but it’s actually a great time to visit.
Top tip! If you’re there in early January, you’ll still get to see all the Christmas decorations too – which is an added bonus, as you won’t be paying big December prices. But you still get that festive feeling.
Visiting NYC in February
Another off-peak month to visit the city, it could be the best time to visit NYC if you’re on a budget. If you want to grab an absolutely bargain of a trip, February is likely the best time to go for you. You’ll get much lower rates in February (as long as you avoid Valentines weekend – which does tend to spike the rates up temporarily).
February is cold (likely a little colder than January) so you’ll need layers, gloves, hats and coats. If the cold doesn’t put you off (and when I say cold, I mean it) then February might be a good time to visit for you. You’ll likely get to see snow, the city is a little quieter than usual, and it’s cheaper to fly in and stay there during this month.
Top tip! Chinese New Year falls in February – and is such a fun thing to celebrate in the city!
Visiting NYC in March
Visiting NYC in March can be a bit hit and miss. It’s not quite springtime yet, but the weather definitely starts to improve, so walking around outside is a bit easier (and less cold). Saying that though, March in NYC is unpredictable, and you may end up with snow even this later in the year.
St. Patrick’s Day falls in March, so if you like the Irish bar scene (and there are plenty in NYC) it’s a pretty cool place to celebrate the holiday! There’s even a big parade to celebrate St Paddy’s Day too, and parades are a real NYC tradition.
When thinking about “what is the best time to visit NYC?” March is a great choice!
Visiting NYC in April
April is another one of my favourite times to visit NYC, and for me April is definitely one of the best time to visit NYC. April is ‘easter month’ and there are loads of great events in the city and things to do in NYC during this period that you can get involved with.
My favourite thing about NYC in April? The Easter Bonnet parade, which is just something else – and so much fun. You can decorate your own easter bonnet and join the parade, or you can just walk the city and enjoy admiring everyone else’s creations. When choosing the the best month to visit NYC, April is a great option.
April in NYC is brighter, sunnier, warmer, it’s the start of spring and it’s a lovely time to see the city blossoming into the spring and summer months. You’ll probably still need a jacket in April (it might be a bit chilly in the evenings) but overall the weather in April is really pleasant and enjoyable and allows for lots of outdoor exploring and outdoor activities. Definitely one of the best time to visit NYC!
Visiting NYC in May
When thinking about the best time to visit NYC, May is a great choice and one of my favourites!
May is another brilliant month to visit NYC – May is the middle of spring, and you’ll usually experience great weather during this month. Hotel rates start to creep up in April and May, so bear this in mind when booking, and expect prices to reflect the great weather and changing seasons. It’s all these things that makes it one of the best times to visit NYC.
May is full of events, holidays and celebrations, such as Cinco De Mayo, Mother’s Day, Japan Day, Shakespeare in the Park and Memorial Day – so you’ll likely see a party or a parade at some point during your time in NYC if you visit during May.
May is a great month for people who love to spend time exploring the outdoors. It’s a perfect month for walking through Central Park, walking the High Line, and heading everywhere on foot. May is definitely one of the best months to visit NYC!
Visiting NYC in June
June is definitely one of the best time to visit NYC. It’s the last ‘spring’ month in the city, before the heavy humidity settles in. June might see some thunder storms and some sticky humidity heat, but you might also get some lovely sunny weather without the humidity. It can be a gamble, as it just depends how early or late the NYC is falling that year. But when it’s good, it’s great in June.
Regardless, NYC is lovely in June and it’s a great time to visit, especially if you want to enjoy the city on sunny days with beautiful weather. Hotel rates will likely remain high in June, as the weather is good and summer holidays have begun for lots of schools.
Also, Brooklyn Pride Parade and Manhattan Pride both happen in June, and Pride is such a fantastic celebration! When thinking about “what is the best time to visit NYC?” June is a solid choice!
Visiting NYC in July
OK this is when summer hits the city. If you’re OK with humidity and heat – you should be fine, but just keep in mind the city does get HOT during the summer. Another piece of advice for visiting NYC in July – PLEASE make sure you pick a hotel with A/C, because you’ll need it after exploring the city in the heat!
Like I said though, if you’re good with the heat – you’ll likely really enjoy NYC in July. There’s the 4th of July to celebrate of course, and the 4th July parade… So the city is amazing during this holiday! Watch out for spectacular Macy’s fireworks too – they’re amazing!
Top tip! Occasionally there are thunderstorms in July, so be sure to pack a waterproof later or umbrella just in case!
Visiting NYC in August
OK, so August is likely the least ‘comfortable’ month to visit NYC. Expect it to be hot and humid, and it can feel a bit stuffy.
If you don’t mind the heat and humidity (or you’re used to it) then this might be a good time to visit, as the city does feel a little quieter in August compared to May, June and July.
A couple of August events to look out for in August are; Afropunk Festival, and NYC Cocktail Expo.
Visiting NYC in September
In September the temperatures have cooled a little from August, and the crowds lessen slightly too (as kids are back in school). If you wanted to visit lots of family-centric attractions, like museums, observation decks, etc – then you’ll notice there are less crowds in September compared to June / July / August.
I love September in NYC, it’s an amazing month for long walks in the park, picnics in Central Park and cocktails on NYC rooftop bars. You also have Labor Day Parade in September too, which marks the official close to the NYC summer season. The parade is held the second Saturday of September. A great choice for the best time to visit NYC for couples.
Visiting NYC in October
OK, another one of my FAVOURITE months to visiting NYC. October in NYC is all about Halloween, and let me tell you, NYC delivers in spades!! Weather wise, NYC is still pretty nice in October, it can be warm and pleasant, maybe with a chill in the evening.
The two main events are the Greenwich Village Halloween Parade and the Halloween Pumpkin Flotilla in the Central Park Conservancy BUT there are loads of smaller events going on around the city too such as trick or treating, parties, fancy dress events, cinema screenings… NYC really knows how to celebrate Halloween.
One of my favourite things to do in October in NYC, is to walk around Greenwich and Chelsea and look at all the decorated houses and real haunted houses in NYC. I also love raiding the local neighbourhood fancy dress stores and finding epic costumes!
Some other fun events in October… the Korean Day Parade, the Pulaski Day Parade, and the Columbus Day Parade. Definitely one of the best time to visit NYC!
Visiting NYC in November
Visiting NYC in November is another gorgeous time of year to visit. It’s usually towards the end of October, start of November that you’ll get to witness the stunning autumn colours in the city’s parks. There’s nothing quite as beautiful as the amazing autumn leaves in Central Park.
November gets a little colder in NYC, but it’s still good weather for walking around, and it’s not ‘bitterly’ cold yet. You might experience some rainy days in November too – so be sure to plan for a few wet days.
For events, there’s loads in November. You obviously have Thanksgiving (and the Macy’s Thanksgiving Day Parade to go with it) but there’s also the Long Island Boat Parade, the New York City America’s Day Parade too.
Another lovely thing about visiting in November, is that if you visit at the beginning of the month you’ll get to see some of the Halloween events and decor, and if you visit towards the end of the month, you’ll get to see some of the Christmas events and decor. So you can time your visit to the holidays you want to celebrate!
Visiting NYC in December
When thinking about “what is the best time to visit NYC?” December seems like the most obvious choice, right? Visiting NYC in December is INCREDIBLE.
NYC comes alive in the holiday season, and December is just a magical time to be in the city. There are festive events almost daily, festive menus in restaurants, festive shop fronts, festive shows (the Rockettes!), Christmas trees everywhere… and it’s just the perfect place to be if you love Christmas and celebrating the holidays.
Yes, December is cold, but it adds to the wintery magic! If you want to indulge in Christmas shopping, this is the perfect time to visit too! Let’s face it, December is absolutely one of the best times to visit NYC.
I’m not sure what else I can write about NYC in December… It’s just magical and I love it so much! I’ve spent Christmas Day in NYC twice, and both times it was perfection.
The only negative of visiting during December is the crowds and the prices, this is a busy and peak season for the city, so prepare for crowds and prepare for queues.
I hope this post about what is the best time to visit NYC has been helpful!
This city is amazing all year round! So if you’re wondering “what is the best time to visit NYC?” the answer is – any time! The point is though, some times of the year might be better to visit for you than other. It just depends what you’re after and what kind of experience you want to have.
Hopefully this info about what is the best time to visit NYC has helped you decide when to visit and when to plan your trip!