Bryant Park in Winter

Where can you skate for free in NYC if you bring your own skates? What rink has a holiday market around it? Which rink has several food choices close by? Bryant Park in Manhattan has all of these.

Bryant Park borders 42nd Street and 41st Street behind the main branch of the NYC Public Library. It is about two blocks from Grand Central Station. Between Thanksgiving and the beginning of January the park also hosts a Holiday Market. There are a booths outside carrying a variety of items from clothing to food and gifts.

Yes, if you bring your own skates it is free. They have a changing area. Skating starts early in the morning. There is food available in the lodge, an indoor area near the rink. There is also a Whole Foods across one of the streets it borders and other restaurants and shopping nearby. There are also permanent food kiosks in the park.

Bryant Park- behind the fountain is the ice skating rink. The park is behind the main branch if the NY Public Library. You can see some of the vendor booths for the Holiday Market on the left.
The fountain in the park
The Zamboni smoothing the ice on the rink. The rink clears for about 15 minutes when it is time to resurface the ice.

It is a rink with some nice views of Midtown Manhattan. It does not get the crowds that the rink at Rockefeller Center gets. I recommend this rink over the others because of that and the close proximity to food and shopping.

One of the permanent food kiosks at the park.

Whether you ice skate or not, it is worth visiting Bryant Park in winter. Watch the action or catch a bite to eat and enjoy the scenery of Midtown Manhattan.

Columbus Circle Holiday Market

Did you know there were holiday markets outside Europe? Where can you find holiday markets in New York City? One location is at the southwest corner of Central Park at Columbus Circle.

Hours

Monday- Saturday 10-8 Sunday 10-7

Items

More than 100 vendors sell hand crafted items and specialty foods. Some items are environmentally friendly. There is a food court area with vendors and tables to sit at. In other areas vendors sell hot drinks and other food items as well.

Clocks were made of various vintage books.
Chocolate covered soft meringues- Italian
Lanterns of many colors
Meditating Santa

If you are interested in buying a unique handmade item, head over to Columbus Circle- 59th Street and Central Park West by December 24th. You may be surprised what catches your eye.