Spending 4th of July in one of America’s most iconic cities is bound to be amazing no matter how you decide to celebrate—NYC never disappoints. And where a BBQ, a picnic, or a party are all perfectly pleasant ways to commemorate America’s birthday, the ultimate celebration has to be watching Macy’s annual fireworks display. Since this year the fireworks will take place over the East River, we suggest you head somewhere near the water in Midtown, the East Village, Long Island City, Greenpoint, or Williamsburg. Make sure that wherever you go that you set up a couple of hours before the 9:25 p.m. start time because it is sure to be crowded!
Macy’s Recommended Locations
As the mastermind behind the spectacular light show, Macy’s knows all the prime locations for an unobstructed view (visit their website for the official list)! Alongside FDR Drive you can stop at 42nd, 34th, 23rd, and Houston Street or 18th Street and Avenue C for an open air and free of charge view of the fireworks. These spots are bound to be filled quickly and remain crowded a couple of hours before and after the show so be prepared (food and water are essential especially if you’re bringing children) and come early to snag a good spot. Consider yourselves warned!
If you want a more sophisticated and luxurious way to celebrate under the fireworks then a cruise is the right place for you. Numerous companies are offering the opportunity to celebrate on the water with a clear view of the fireworks and Manhattan’s skyline. Some even offer a buffet, hors-d’oeuvres, and an open bar, like the Independence Day Family Fireworks Cruise aboard The Audubon Yacht! While tickets for this one start at $139 many others like the North River Lobster Company and the Hornblower Cruise are pricier and climb as high as $600. So if you’re looking for a great deal for a cruise experience then make sure to buy your tickets sooner rather than later.
Grand Ferry Park
If you don’t want to spend a lot on cruise tickets and if you dislike large crowds then maybe head to Grand Ferry Park. This Williamsburg waterfront park is the perfect spot to have a late afternoon picnic, watch the sun set over Manhattan’s skyline, and slowly transition into night time for the show. Not sure what to bring? Delish has some fantastic recipes specifically tailored for 4th of July. Also, don’t forget to check out our 12 Essentials For The Perfect Picnic!
If you’re in the mood for some BBQ classics that just scream 4th of July then get your tickets for Riverpark’s annual party. Located in Manhattan’s Kip’s Bay, this establishment doesn’t only promise some great food and great views of the fireworks, but also some ping-pong, cornhole, and bocce ball for the competitive ones among you. Enjoy their Texas-Style Smoked Wagyu Brisket, Whole Roasted Pig, Buttermilk Fried Chicken, an array of fresh salads and sides, and even a Summer Trifle alongside the open bar for $250 per person. Get your tickets here!
This new Brooklyn park surrounding the historic Domino Sugar Refinery is situated right off the Williamsburg Bridge making in the ideal spot for a great view of the firework display. If you didn’t have enough time to pack any food don’t worry, Domino Park has Tacocina—a laid-back establishment serving Mexican inspired food and snacks, alongside a selection of Mexican beer, canned wine, tequila cocktails, and soft drinks. As with any open space come early to secure seating!
Front Row Fireworks
This day-to-night private event bypasses the crowds and gives you the closest access to the firework display. Complete with live music, numerous food vendors serving their 4th of July inspired meals, and multiple bars. The event takes place on the 34th Street Heliport and tickets range from $35 (general admission) to $400 (table reservations for four people). If food and drinks are not enough to convince you then maybe a life-size version of your favorite games including lifesize Jenga, ping pong, and chess will. The event is open to all ages so bring all your friends and family!