There is arguably no better place to celebrate the 4th of July than in New York City, home to America’s largest fireworks show. Read up on the entertainment and viewing locations, and then plan out your trip to the United States’ most populous city.
Since 1976, Macy’s has been in charge of organizing New York City’s annual Independence Day fireworks display. After spending five consecutive years at the Hudson River, the show is moving back to the East River and the Brooklyn Bridge this year. The fireworks start at 9 p.m.—though television coverage on NBC begins at 8 p.m.—and light up the city for 25 minutes with more than 40,000 firework shells.
The DIVA Jazz Orchestra will play the show’s patriotic music score, and a variety of musicians—The Charlie Daniels Band, Idina Menzel, Billy Porter, and Essential Voices USA—contribute their own recordings. Menzel’s musical track is her rendition of “The Star Spangled Banner,” sung in honor of the song’s 200th anniversary this year. The celebration will also feature live performances by popular recording artists Enrique Iglesias, Ariana Grande, Lionel Richie, Hunter Hayes, and Miranda Lambert. Nick Cannon will host.
This year the best places to enjoy the fireworks and take pictures with the Manhattan skyscrapers in the background will be Brooklyn Bridge Park and Brooklyn Heights Promenade. If you choose the first option, try to be there in the afternoon to find a free bench or sprawl out on the grass of this beautiful park. If you prefer the promenade, just nab a piece of sidewalk and enjoy the lights in the sky from one of the most romantic spots in New York City. Wherever you decide to go, make sure to arrive with plenty of time to spare to make sure you secure your spot.
The event’s website also shared how to access these public viewing locations.
No matter where you’re watching, the fireworks show in New York City is sure to be an exciting spectacle. For ideas of what to do in the city for the rest of the weekend, check out our New York travel guide. It’s not too late to book an impromptu flight to New York or reserve a hotel room, so enjoy the show, and happy 4th!