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Bryant Park winter village
Photograph: Angelito Jusay

The best holiday markets open in NYC this year

At a holiday market, NYC offers the best decorations, food and winter activities to get you in the merriest of moods

By Jennifer Picht, John Marshall, Collier Sutter and Shaye Weaver
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Shopping for holiday gifts for your clan can be stressful, so you might as well enjoy yourself while hiking up that credit card balance. And you will, as long as you nab presents from vendors at the best holiday markets in NYC. While fancy Christmas window displays may entice you, these winter bazaars offer many perks such as free-admission ice-skating, mouthwatering treats for purchase, supporting local small businesses this year and more in addition to one-of-a-kind gifts for your loved ones.

RECOMMENDED: Full guide to Christmas in New York

Best holiday markets in NYC

Bank of America Winter Village Bryant Park, holiday market
Photograph: Angelito Jusay

1. Bank of America Winter Village at Bryant Park

Things to do Markets and fairs

The Winter Village at Bryant Park is back this year in all it's holiday glory. On the grounds you can peruse about 60 shopping and food kiosks—all at one of the best NYC parks. This year will be slightly different given new health and safety protocols, but you can expect loads of handmade, unique and New York City-specific gifts for your family and friends. Work up an appetite at the free, 17,000-square-foot ice-skating rink and then fill up at the rinkside pop-up restaurant called The Lodge Deck for festive cocktails and hearty food.

@r.ace.me/Richard Acevedo

2. Bronx Holiday Market

News City Life

The Bronx Night Market is known not only for bringing amazing eats, but celebrating all that the incredible northernmost borough has to offer. Though Bronx Night Market is usually off during the winter months, the beloved open-air festival is taking a stand and has curated a Holiday Market in Fordham Plaza for one weekend only. All proceeds will be donated to support market and street vendors, critically affected by the pandemic. You can expect performances, local merchants, and Bronx-based vendors, serving up tamales, soul food, pastries, elotes. This edition welcomes vendors including, Mozzarepa, Chicktreatz, The Fried Kitchen, Yakitori Tastsu, BX Burger Co., La Braza, Don Ceviche, Fried Lasangna Mama, Tacos El Guero, Variance Jewlery, Bar Theory, among others. Don't leave home without a mask, which will be mandatory.

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artists and fleas
Photograph: Courtesy Artists & Fleas

3. Artists & Fleas

Shopping Markets and fairs Soho

This ever-changing marketplace in Soho offers a constantly evolving lineup of wares from artists and merchants. It's a great place to find a one-of-a-kind gift and to experience some amazing creativity. The marketplace has recently reopened for a series of weekend holiday pop-ups. Current seasonal merchants include Aliens of Brooklyn, Eat Records and Roots by Bella.

Grand Central Terminal Holiday Fair
Photograph: Courtesy Grand Central Terminal Holiday Fair/Craftspring

4. Grand Central Virtual Holiday Fair

Things to do Literary events Midtown East

It’s hard to imagine a more perfect excursion than going to a Christmas market in Grand Central. Go for the: Chance to gawk at the swirls of constellations on the roof inside, then check out the towering, bejeweled tree to get a new meaning of bright lights, big city. Stay for the: Chance to grab goods to give the best Christmas gift ever. Redesigned this year comply with state and federal government-recommended social distancing guidelines, it's smaller but brings the same festive charm. Open in the iconic Vanderbilt Hall from November 16 until December 24.

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Chelsea Flea
Photograph: Courtesy Brooklyn Flea/Samuel Hollenshead

5. Chelsea Flea

Shopping Markets and fairs Flatiron

The iconic open-air Chelsea flea, brought back from the dead by the team behind  Smorgasburg and Brooklyn Flea, showcases 40 veteran vendors selling mostly historic collectibles. If you love eclectic costume jewelry, quirky furniture, midcentury art and ceramics, records, antiques and art, and more, you’ll spend hours combing for treasure here.

Plus, you'll now be able to grab a rewarding snack on the way out from various Smorgasburg food vendors that will soon be revealed. 

Turnstyle Undergorund Market, nyc, holiday market
Photograph: Courtesy Turnstyle Underground Market

6. Turnstyle Underground Market

News City Life

While you may normally associate a subway trip with commutes, you’re in for a change of pace this holiday season in NYC. The Turnstyle Underground Market has reoopned at the 59th St-Columbus Circle station. For the uninitiated, underground eateries, shops and kiosks inside the corridor sell everything from doughnuts, to natural wine, to ornaments. You don't even need to swipe a MetroCard to get inside the market!

Check out our Winter Village video

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