New York City reserves the holiday season for its moment of magical transformation, and the city tends to swell in size over the holidays, as millions of tourists rush to take in the sights and sounds of Christmas in the Big Apple. There is a special beauty in New York during Christmas time. Even the city’s side streets sing with cheer (literally, there’s Christmas music everywhere!), trees are adorned with white lights and wreaths go up in windows. Ever since I was 5 years old and watched Home Alone 2 with my family on Christmas Day (which became a Christmas tradition ever since), I dreamt of celebrating the holidays in New York with my family. I wanted to experience the feeling of walking the streets covered in lights and decorations, hearing Christmas music on every street corner, having breakfast at the Plaza and spending the entire day with my family in snow filled Central Park. It goes without saying that Christmas brings out the best in New York, and New Yorkers. If you haven’t found your Christmas spirit yet, here are a few things that will without a doubt bring out your inner kid that used to start counting down to Christmas months in advance:

1. Oh, the lights!

2. Union Square Holiday Market

3. Rockefeller Center

4. Bryant Park’s Winter Wonderland

5. Radio City Christmas Spectacular