Looking for the best things to do in Times Square at night? Well, you’re in the right place!
Times Square, a bustling and iconic spot in New York City, captivates visitors with its vibrant energy and dazzling lights. The area, situated in Manhattan, boasts a plethora of attractions and dining options.
In this Things to Do in Times Square at Night travel guide, you’ll find a comprehensive rundown to aid in planning your trip to the city. The guide delves into various aspects, including transportation tips and highlights of what to see and do in this lively neighborhood.
Times Square in New York City, renowned for its luminous neon lights, grandiose billboards, and diverse entertainment offerings, stands as the commercial and cultural hub of the city known as the Big Apple.
This vibrant area offers an array of attractions, ranging from street performers and family-friendly destinations to restaurants, theaters, and museums. Situated at the junction of 7th Avenue and Broadway, it’s a pivotal landmark. Despite the touristy crowd, from a cultural and historical perspective, Times Square remains an essential destination for anyone visiting New York City.
10 Things to Do in Times Square at Night
Here are explore 10 Things to Do in Times Square at Night activities you can enjoy.
Shopping at Times Square
If you are a shopping lover then must visit Times Square. This place is famous for shopping. There are fun novelty stores around Times Square. Before we start, we share some tips for visitors Firstly, some characters may ask for tips for photos, but it’s not necessary to give them money. Secondly, check food vendor prices before buying; they should be posted. Lastly, skip chain restaurants for local seafood spots.
Times Square is definitely worth checking out, especially late at night, with its iconic New Year’s Eve ball drop spot. But be aware of impostors trying to get money from you. Famous stores in Times Square must-visit stores like the M&M Store, Hershey Shop, Lego Store, and more.
Times Square Food
We’re exploring the best places to eat in Times Square. Given the abundance of tourist traps with overpriced and mediocre food, it’s quite challenging to find exceptional dining spots. Here are our recommendations for the top places to eat in Times Square:
Carmine’s ranking among the top ten spots in New York City. Despite being popular and often crowded, the wait is worth it.
Jollibee, the Filipino fast-food chain, recently opened an outpost in Times Square. It’s perfect for a quick bite, offering fantastic fried chicken along with sweet spaghetti and peach mango pie for dessert.
For a musical dining experience, Ellen’s Stardust Diner is a must-visit. The waitstaff here entertains guests with a song while serving delightful shakes. However, expect a line, so arriving early is advisable.
Bibble and Sip is a rare gem in Times Square for exceptional cream puff coffee and bubble tea. Amidst the sea of chain restaurants, this family-run coffee shop stands out.
Los Tacos Numero Uno is one of the best taco joints in NYC. Started by friends from Mexico and California, it aims to offer authentic Mexican tacos. Even with its success, the place retains a small, authentic feel. The carne asada and adovada tacos are famous, and the homemade guacamole sauce is a winner.
Junio’s in Times Square is renowned for its New York-style cheesecake and Reuben sandwich. Originating in Brooklyn in 1950, their cheesecake remains fluffy due to the use of Philadelphia Cream Cheese and the original hand-whipped recipe.
We indulged in a cheesecake shake – a testament to New York City’s big portions. The cheesecake’s roots date back to 2000 BC in Isla Tsoumas, Greece, and the first English recipe appeared in 1319.
Hop On Hop Off Sightseeing Tour
If you are visiting New York first time must try riding on the Hop On Hop Off Sightseeing tour bus. The Big Bus tour starts from the front of the M&M store in Times Square. While there aren’t specific stops, if you have a City Pass, the situation changes slightly. This downtown tour, part of our City Pass attractions, covers several stops.
Throughout the journey, you enjoy notable spots like Chinatown, Little Italy, and various other attractions. The tour offers frequent bus services, approximately every 20 minutes, allowing ample time for exploration. From Wall Street to Battery Park and beyond, the sights and experiences were vivid, from the Statue of Liberty to the stunning view from One World Trade Center.
Bus tour prices start from 25$ per person. Don’t miss out on the fascinating views and architectural marvels of New York City via this open bus tour.
Seeing a show on Broadway is often a rite of passage for tourists in New York City, and now that Broadway is reopening, there’s no better time to catch a show. we’ll be sharing tips for catching a Broadway show in the city. Firstly, let’s explore where to get tickets. Standard methods include purchasing them from platforms like Ticketmaster before your trip. However, for cost-effective options, consider visiting the ticket booths in Times Square or South Street Seaport for discounted same-day tickets.
Alternatively, buying directly from the theater box office can help avoid service fees, though arriving early is key to snagging better deals. Broadway Box offers advanced bookings at discounted rates, a great option to secure tickets for sold-out shows. For those on a budget, standing-room tickets or lotteries for discounted same-day tickets could be viable alternatives. Broadway Direct Lottery lists available lotteries for last-minute discounted tickets. Opting for off-Broadway or off-off-Broadway shows can also be a more economical yet enjoyable choice. Broadway Roulette offers a surprise show for a set price, perfect for those open to various show options at a fixed rate.
As for show recommendations, family-friendly options like ‘Aladdin’ or ‘The Lion King’ are perfect for young children. ‘The Book of Mormon’ guarantees a few laughs, while classics like ‘Chicago’ or ‘Phantom of the Opera’ offer timeless Broadway experiences. Top-rated shows like ‘Hamilton,’ ‘Wicked,’ and ‘Harry Potter and the Cursed Child’ are also must-sees. Now, let’s dive into tips for the show itself. Broadway Week offers two-for-one tickets during specific periods, a fantastic deal to grab during your visit. Ensure you print your tickets as not all theaters accept email confirmations. Try to avoid bringing extra bags to the theater, as space is limited.
If collecting tickets at short notice, head to the box office during the day to skip the evening queues. Arriving early is crucial, at least 30 minutes before the show starts. Make reservations for an early dinner, around two hours before the show, to avoid rushing through a pre-theater meal.
The Palace Theater
The Palace Theater in Broadway, synonymous with the history and grandeur of theater, has hosted illustrious names like Harry Houdini, Liza Minelli, and even SpongeBob SquarePants. After a century of entertaining audiences, this iconic theater in Times Square is undergoing a significant transformation. Millions are being invested to restore its interior, remodel intricate plasterwork, and install new light fittings. But the real buzz surrounds a radical plan—to lift this century-old landmark 30 feet above its current elevation.
Yes, you read that correctly. The plan involves lifting the entire 1700-seat theater by 30 feet, aiming to create the most cutting-edge entertainment venue in Times Square. This ambitious project is not just about renovating; it’s about redefining the theater experience in the heart of New York City.
The helicopter tour over New York City provides a breathtaking aerial perspective. From Brooklyn to Manhattan, the tour showcases iconic landmarks like The New York Stock Exchange, Wall Street, and the Chrysler Building, which stands alongside the Empire State Building. Flying over Yankee Stadium captures the hustle and bustle as preparations are made for an upcoming game. Ellis Island, once an Immigration Processing Center, and Madison Square Garden come into view, offering a historical glimpse. Witnessing passengers’ reactions as they marvel at Manhattan from above is the highlight for the guide.
Central Park’s vast greenery and the towering buildings of New Jersey are also part of the tour’s stunning vistas. Ending at Times Square, known for its New Year’s Eve ball drop, the guide expresses gratitude to the passengers, hoping they enjoy their stay in Manhattan. For those aboard, the helicopter tour leaves an unforgettable impression, offering a unique and memorable view of New York City’s grandeur.
Hershey’s Chocolate World
Hersey’s Chocolate World is a sweet destination for anyone with a craving. You can’t miss the chance to make your own custom s’mores at the s’mores shop or meet the Hershey’s mascots—the iconic Jolly Rancher, Hershey’s chocolate bar, Reese’s peanut butter, and Mr. Twizzler himself. Perhaps you’ll take home a cuddly Hershey’s Kiss or a squishy s’mores marshmallow. And why not customize your very own Hershey’s Kiss with your choice of foil?
When it comes to variety, Hershey’s spoils you with options—pretzel bites, white cream, milk chocolate, almonds, caramel, and the distinguished special dark bar, each more tempting than the last. Don’t forget to personalize your Hershey’s chocolate bar wrapper, a delightful treat or souvenir to cherish.
Indulge in the delights from Hershey’s chocolate kitchens or create your own mix at their amazing candy machine. As you step into the store, the aroma of toasted marshmallows from the s’mores station envelops you, a true holiday delight.
And speaking of holidays, be sure to try the newest KitKat sensation—the Sweet Cinnamon Minis—a perfect holiday treat.
Visit the Museum of Modern Art
The Museum of Modern Art stands as a quintessential Manhattan attraction. Its captivating collection has significantly expanded over the years, now boasting nearly 200,000 pieces. Spanning multiple floors, you’ll discover a diverse array of thought-provoking films, paintings, sculptures, and more. Each new exhibition provides a fresh perspective on our world and beyond.
Moreover, on most Friday nights, you can enjoy free entry to the Museum of Modern Art!
National Geographic Encounter: Ocean Odyssey
Inside this immersive experience, witness the vivid reality of marine life, from the tiniest creatures to the most magnificent sea dwellers. The interactive displays and vibrant visuals transport you into the depths of the ocean’s wonders. Exploring the coral reef at night reveals the marine world through its true fluorescent hues.
Move through the exhibit and encounter a myriad of sights and sounds, from bioluminescent reactions triggered by your movements to the mysterious kelp mirror maze. It’s an adventure that immerses you in the ocean’s beauty and ecological importance.
Broadway shows, situated within a geographical area called the Broadway box, captivate audiences with a diverse range of themes—from classic musicals to contemporary works. Megan suggests starting by checking Playbill.com for a list of current shows and exploring blurbs to get a sense of each production. Considering Tony Award-winning or nominated shows adds a touch of assurance that you’re selecting a top-notch performance.
FAQ: Things to Do in Times Square at Night
What are some must-do activities in Times Square at night?
Visiting Times Square at night is an experience in itself. Don’t miss the dazzling lights and vibrant atmosphere. Catch a Broadway show, explore interactive attractions like National Geographic Encounter or Ripley’s Believe It or Not!, or simply stroll through this iconic area to soak in the bustling energy.
Are there specific events or shows that happen in Times Square at night?
Yes, Times Square often hosts events, performances, and shows in the evening. Keep an eye out for concerts, cultural festivals, or special performances in nearby theaters. The area is known for its lively entertainment scene, so there’s usually something happening.
What dining options are available in Times Square at night?
Times Square boasts a wide range of dining choices. From renowned restaurants to casual eateries, you’ll find diverse cuisines to suit every palate. Many places stay open late, allowing you to enjoy a delicious meal or grab a snack after an evening of exploring.
Is it safe to visit Times Square at night?
Times Square is typically bustling with tourists and locals, which often means increased security and a safe environment. However, as with any urban area, it’s advisable to remain vigilant and aware of your surroundings, especially in crowded spaces.
How can I make the most of my visit to Times Square at night?
To fully enjoy your visit, plan ahead. Check for any events or shows scheduled for the evening. Wear comfortable shoes for walking around, as Times Square is best explored on foot. Also, consider arriving a bit earlier to avoid the peak crowds and get the most out of your time there.
Are there family-friendly activities in Times Square at night?
Absolutely! Many attractions in Times Square cater to families, offering experiences suitable for all ages. Consider visiting family-friendly spots like Hershey’s Chocolate World, Madame Tussauds, or the M&M’s World store for a fun evening with kids.
Is Times Square less crowded at night?
While it may be slightly less crowded compared to its daytime hustle, Times Square remains lively well into the night. The bright lights and energy continue, attracting visitors throughout the evening hours.
How can I get around Times Square at night?
Navigating Times Square is easiest on foot due to its pedestrian-friendly setup. If needed, taxis, rideshares, or public transportation options like the subway are available for getting around the city after dark.
Are there free activities or places to visit in Times Square at night?
While some attractions might have admission fees, experiencing Times Square itself is free. Taking in the vibrant atmosphere, people-watching, and enjoying the neon lights are all complimentary. Additionally, some events or street performances might be free to watch.
What time does Times Square typically quiet down at night?
Times Square remains vibrant late into the night. While it might slightly quiet down after midnight on weekdays, the energy often continues until the early hours, especially on weekends.
Any additional tips for visiting Times Square at night?
Dress comfortably for the weather, as evenings can get chilly. Keep your belongings secure, stay aware of your surroundings, and don’t hesitate to ask locals or staff for recommendations or directions. And most importantly, enjoy the experience of being in the heart of one of New York City’s most iconic areas!
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