There is nothing to compare to a New York Christmas shopping spree. Native New Yorker's spend much of their shopping time on Fifth Avenue. Many retail stores can be found between 60th and 34th Streets. Famous stores on this route include F.A.O. Schwartz, Macy's, Henri Bendel, Barneys, Tiffany's and the Century 21 Department Store. There are also many other sites on this historic thoroughfare including the famous Rockefeller Center, Guggenheim Museum and the Metropolitan Museum of Art.
The best way to shop in New York City is to book a shopping tour, especially if you are unfamiliar with the city. A New York Christmas shopping tour is a great way to shop in the best known stores and see some of the famous landmarks in town. Shopping tours can span several days or be as short as several hours. Licensed guides can direct shoppers to the departments they need to find their perfect gift as well as point out photo opportunities during the tour.
If you are a power shopper than the afternoon New York Christmas shopping tour could be for you. A typical afternoon shopping tour is about five hours long. These tours will take you to the largest and most famous stores in New York City; the stores are also within a short walking distance of each other. The best way to do this tour is to wear very comfortable shoes and to purchase the large shopping bags at the first store on the tour. Experienced shoppers may even double bag their purchases to ensure that their bags don't tear open during this whirlwind experience.
Since not everyone wants to shop at warp speed, there are many other New York Christmas shopping tours to choose from. Leisurely tours usually span two to three days to allow older shoppers time to recover after each shopping day. The tours typically include a special event during the tour such as a Broadway show or a night in a famous restaurant. Longer tours may also include other tourist destinations such as St. Patrick's Cathedral, Central Park and the New York Public Library. Occasionally the tour may include Millionaire's Row on Fifth Avenue which includes many of the old mansions that were popular at the turn of the century. Famous houses include the Vanderbuilt and the Carnegie mansions and the Astor's home.
Individuals that have experienced Christmas shopping in New York before may want to plan their own shopping tour. It is important to book transportation and hotels well in advance of the start of the holiday season which officially starts the day after Thanksgiving. Popular holiday dates in New York City include the lighting of the tree in Rockefellar Center and the Macy's Thanksgiving Day Parade. A New York Christmas shopping spree wouldn't be complete without a ride around Central Park in a carriage. These rides are fabulous and they can usually be arranged with a hotel concierge.
Finding your way around this large city is difficult if you aren't familiar with your surroundings. The best way to experience Christmas shopping in New York is with an experienced guide, whether it is a paid one or with a relative who enjoys your passion for shopping. Many shoppers who have experienced a New York Christmas shopping tour have returned the following year with their own large group of friends to enjoy a fun filled trip of shopping and sight seeing. Whether you choose to speed shop solo or include your friends and family, Christmas shopping in New York is an experience you will always remember.