Best Time to Visit New York for Weather, Prices, and Crowds

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New York is visited by an estimated one million people on New Year's Eve

New York is one of the most visited places in the world, a global destination for both business travelers and vacationers. From the bustling streets of Midtown Manhattan to the beautiful greenery of Central Park, there are many famous New York landmarks to see!

New York is also a top destination to celebrate holidays. From Independence Day fireworks on the East River to the beloved Macy's Thanksgiving Day Parade. Christmas festivities in New York are world-famous, with top sights like the Rockefeller Center Christmas Tree and Radio City Music Hall Christmas Shows.

Times Square is the place to be on New Year's Eve. An estimated one million people pack the streets of Midtown to watch the glittery ball drop in Times Square. Billions more tune in from home to watch New York's famous New Year's Rockin' Eve Party broadcast.

Every season brings something different to New York, from winter ice skating at Rockefeller Center to summer nights of Shakespeare in the Park. So whether you're planning on sightseeing around Times Square, walking the Brooklyn Bridge, or catching a Broadway show, there's no other place like New York! Read on to learn the best time to visit New York.

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Best Time to Travel to New York

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The best time to visit New York depends on the activities you enjoy
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Spring and Fall are generally considered the best times to visit New York

When is the best time to visit New York?

New York is a bustling big city with many things to see and do. Deciding the best time to go to New York depends on what you want to see or do there.

Winter is best if you want to see a snowy winter wonderland in Central Park or go ice skating (December through February). If you're hoping to catch a legendary performance of Shakespeare in the Park and splash around in the Rockefeller Plaza fountains, summer is calling! (June through August)

Spring and fall are generally considered the best times to enjoy New York's climate. These seasons have the mildest weather–neither too hot nor too cold and fewer crowds. They also have beautiful scenery, with trees flowering in the spring and colorful foliage in the fall.

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January and February are the cheapest times to fly to New York

When is the cheapest time to fly to New York?

The cheapest time to fly to New York is in January and February. Unfortunately, this is typically the coldest time of the year, with temperatures reaching below freezing in New York, so it tends to have fewer visitors then.

According to flight price trackers, travelers can save up to 44% on plane tickets to New York in January or February. Reports also show that flying into La Guardia Airport versus JFK Airport tends to be cheaper.

The best time to visit New York is in January and February if you like indoor events
January and February are the cheapest months to visit New York for indoor events

When is the cheapest time to go to New York?

The cheapest time to visit New York is in January and February. This is usually the coldest time of the year in New York, with below-freezing temperatures, so tourism is at its lowest point. However, those willing to brave the cold and snowy New York streets in January or February will be treated to reduced plane tickets and hotel pricing.

This can be a great time for indoor activities like visiting museums or catching a Broadway Show without the crowds. It's also great for tours that can be less accessible in busier months, like the New York City Catacombs by Candlelight Tour.

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New York is most expensive to visit during the holiday season

When is the most expensive time to visit New York?

The most expensive time to visit New York is the holiday season. The entire month of December is considered the high season, with prices steadily increasing in the days leading up to Christmas and New Year's Eve.

Flying into New York or finding hotel accommodations during the Christmas and New Year's Eve holidays can be difficult and expensive. Tickets to popular shows like the Radio City Christmas Spectacular can also be costly and tend to sell out.

A light lamp post with a bridged walkway and trees
New York's spring and fall offer the most ideal temperatures for outdoor activities

When is the best season to visit New York?

The best season to go to New York is based on personal preference. New York has many different experiences to offer. For some, it may be winter and the holiday season to see the dazzling Christmas Tree and displays of lights at the Rockefeller Center. Others may enjoy spring and New York's famous Cherry Blossom Festival.

Strictly based on weather, spring and fall are regarded as the best seasons in New York. Spring runs through March, April, and May, and temperatures range from 30 to 70 degrees Fahrenheit. Fall is considered September, October, and November, with temperatures ranging from 40 to 60 degrees Fahrenheit.

A row of apartment buildings painted green, white, and red with fire escapes
Spring and fall in New York offer mild temperatures and beautiful scenery

When is the best weather to visit New York?

The best weather in New York is usually during spring and fall. These two seasons have the mildest temperatures and are considered the most comfortable for walking the city.

Spring runs March, April, and May and sees temperatures ranging from 30 to 70 degrees Fahrenheit. A mix of cool breezes, sunny days, and beautiful flowering trees typically characterize a New York spring.

Fall encompasses September, October, and November and sees temperatures ranging from 40 to 60 degrees Fahrenheit. Fall in New York is characterized by cooler temperatures, colorful foliage, and some of the best weather for one of New York's famous walking tours.

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Summer runs June, July, and August and is one of the busiest times for vacations

When is the tourist season in New York?

The New York climate lends itself to having two tourist seasons, or high seasons: summer and part of winter (the holiday season). Summer runs June, July, and August and is one of the busiest vacation times since schools are out in the US. Summer is the best time to travel to New York for families visiting with school-aged children. A lot of international travelers also visit New York during the summer.

The second wave of tourists hits New York around the holidays, with December being one of the busiest months in New York. The week of Christmas and New Year's Eve, in particular, is perhaps the most active, with Times Square being packed with people for the holidays.

A rainy road with trees on the side
Tourists in New York often explore the city on foot even in the rain

When is the rainy season in New York?

The rainy season in New York runs from late spring through early summer, with April, May, and June often being the rainiest months. While there are plenty of rainy day activities to do in New York, like museums and shows, most tourists are known to still explore the city on foot with the help of rain gear.

You'll see outdoor attractions, like Times Square and Central Park, filled with tourists in ponchos and rain boots. Short of heavy thunderstorms, rain doesn't seem to slow the city down.

Weather, Prices, and Crowds in New York

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Choosing when to visit New York based on weather, prices, and crowds

Autumn in New York

Autumn in New York encompasses September, October, and November. Autumn is a good time to visit New York with its crisp, cool temperatures, colorful foliage, and pumpkin-themed everything around the city!

New York in September sees the start of fall with temperatures from 60 to 70 degrees Fahrenheit. Summer crowds start to dissipate after Labor Day weekend in early September, and flight and hotel prices come down.

New York in October has temperatures from 50 to 60 degrees Fahrenheit. It's the month of Halloween, so pumpkin patches and spooky-themed activities are abundant. Known as New York's most haunted neighborhood, Greenwich Village Ghost Tours are wildly popular in October!

New York in November can be chilly, with temperatures from 40 to 50 degrees Fahrenheit. Crowds and prices are high, with the New York City Marathon and Thanksgiving both occurring in November. The Macy's Thanksgiving Day Parade in New York City is one of the busiest days and kicks off the beginning of the holiday season.

Winter in New York

The winter season in New York is December, January, and February. It is marked by shorter days, snowy nights, and lots of holiday festivities! The holiday season in New York is regarded by many as the best time to go to New York.

New York in December has wintery temperatures from 30 to 40 degrees Fahrenheit. It's the busiest and most expensive month to visit the city and draws large crowds for Christmas and New Year's Eve.

Festivities are everywhere in the city, with holiday-themed events, streets decked out in lights, and holiday window displays in famous New York stores. Christmas Light Tours and Hudson River Holiday Cruises are very popular for Christmas. At the same time, New Year's Eve brings one massive street party to Times Square.

New York in January is often the coldest time of the year, with temperatures between 20 and 30 degrees Fahrenheit. It's also one of the best times to go if you are hoping to see snow in New York.

While a snow-covered Central Park can be beautiful, many visitors find indoor activities more comfortable on a January day in New York. It's a great time to visit museums without the crowds or take advantage of NYC Broadway Week and catch a show!

New York in February is also quite cold, with temperatures between 30 and 40 degrees Fahrenheit with some snow. So it's a great time to warm up indoors and enjoy the many culinary delights the city offers during NYC Restaurant Week. February is also the time of one of the biggest Chinese New Year celebrations in the US. Colorful floats parade through Chinatown for the Chinese New Year Parade and Festival.

Spring in New York

Spring is one of the best times to visit New York, with sunny skies and blooming flowers all around the city. However, it is the start of the rainy season, so visitors should be prepared with rain gear and flexible itineraries.

New York in March has temperatures ranging from 30 to 50 degrees Fahrenheit. While cold, sunny days make the city feel slightly warmer. March is still considered low season, so deals on flights and hotels can be found.

New York in April sees temperatures range from 40 to 60 degrees Fahrenheit. By mid-day, it's often warm enough for a pleasant stroll through Central Park or a fun Brooklyn Street Art Walking Tour. Just be prepared for potential rain!

New York in May has temperatures from 50 to 70 degrees Fahrenheit. Cherry Blossoms and other flowers are in full bloom, and it's a great time to visit the New York Botanical Garden.

Summer in New York

Summer in New York encompasses June, July, and August. It is one of the busiest times for tourism in the city, with families and international travelers coming during summer break. Summer is also the season of New York's famous Shakespeare in the Park, nightly outdoor theater performances.

New York in June has temperatures ranging from 60 to 80 degrees Fahrenheit. It can be rainy at times but overall still pleasant for exploring the city and outdoor attractions like the Statue of Liberty.

New York in July sees crowds and heat rising, with temperatures climbing to over 80 degrees Fahrenheit. The Independence Day holiday (July 4th) has parades and fireworks celebrations and is one of the most expensive times to travel to the city.

New York in August is one of the hottest months, with temperatures in the mid-80s. It can be a great time for a New York Harbor Lunch Cruise or paddleboats in Central Park.

In Summary

With so many unique things to see and do in New York, it's no wonder it's such a busy place. From the buzz of Times Square to the lights of Broadway, it's always a good time to visit New York!

While the weather and events around the city may change, whichever season you choose to visit will still undoubtedly have that unique New York charisma. Whether you want to see the Statue of Liberty or take guided tours, learn fun facts about the city. New York has it all!

This article was edited by Henry Grahame.

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Written by Lauren Rey

L_Rey WRITER Lauren might be based in Florida, but she is always plotting out a new road trip route with her partner-in-crime, Pickles. Pickles is a mixed-breed rescue dog that loves hiking, road trips, and Starbucks as much as she does!


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