This is a selection of New York travel photography images taken from three trips in 2015, 2019 and 2023.
During our Thanksgiving trip in 2015, there was a bomb threat in Times Square, so you see the security presence there. It was after the Paris bombs, and even the Staten Island Ferry we took was accompanied by the Coast Guard.
However, the real trip highlight was the annual Macy’s Day parade. It’s that ever-cherished tradition, with the iconic parade that has drawn captive spectators since 1924. It truly is something special, and I’ve camped out overnight to see the Rose Bowl parade!
The parade features massive floats adorned with colorful decorations, giant character balloons (including some really old-school ones) that float high above the streets. Almost as much fun are the fantastic performances by the marching bands, dance groups, and celebrities. We were not near the Broadway performance area, but we love to the show numbers from the hottest musicals on t.v. Naturally, after all the hours of balloons and entertainment, Mr. and Mrs. Santa Claus finish off the event.
To get close to all the action for the Macy’s parade, we were up at 4:00am, hunkered down with some very friendly New York in a bus shelter. We were a little surprised to see that it’s often families lining the streets, braving the chilly weather. Leading up to the start of the parade, peoples share information on the nearest bathrooms (the city does not put out porta-potties) and coffee venues. The also like to talk about how many times they have come out to see the parade and often claim the same spots year after year. The air is filled with a palpable, New Yorker-cool, low-key excitement.
The Macy’s Day Parade symbolizes the start of the holiday season, and the decorations in the city are almost as special. Because the city is filled with so many unique small shops and classic department stores, all the window dressing really does bring out the magic of the holiday season. We thought it was also super fun to just grab some hot cocoa and watch the skaters at both the Rock Center and the Winter Village at Bryant Park.
Besides the late November trip, the other two were in September and January. Each time I go, the city has so much to offer, with various iconic sights and events always happening. Last trip, we took the train out to the Brooklyn Museum and saw the skaters at Rockefeller Center. I can’t wait to return!
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All photos are copyright Chris Allan and cannot be used without my written permission. Please contact me for usage rights. Thank you for reading my page “New York Travel Photography.” To learn more about me and my work, please see my About page.