There’s nothing more quintessentially summer than celebrating Independence Day and seeing the Macy’s fireworks in NYC. Whether you want to see the NYC fireworks in person, on TV, or from aboard a boat cruise, here’s everything you need to know to have the ultimate viewing experience. So, don your red, white, and blue, fill up on July 4th barbecue, and enjoy the Fourth of July festivities!
Everything We Know About the Macy’s Fireworks in 2023
New York City is a fantastic place to celebrate the anniversary of America’s Independence. The main event is of course the Macy’s 4th of July fireworks show in NYC, which is celebrating its 47th anniversary. This is the nation’s largest Independence Day fireworks display.
What time do the Macy’s fireworks start?
The NYC fireworks display will begin at nightfall, usually around 9:20pm or so. But for the best views, you’ll want to find a spot and get situated hours in advance.
Where will the 4th of July fireworks take place?
This year’s revelry will launch more than 48,000 shells and effects from five barges positioned between E. 23rd and E. 42nd Streets on the East River, with prime viewing from Manhattan's east side, North Brooklyn, and the western edge of Queens.
What's the music for 2023's New York City fireworks show?
Ray Chew is a sought-after music director, producer, and composer who has made his mark on TV series, awards shows, and live events. He's the Music Director for this year's fireworks. With an impressive portfolio that includes Showtime at the Apollo, American Idol, and Dancing with the Stars, as well as the 65th Primetime Emmy Awards and Macy's Thanksgiving Day Parade, he returns this year to compose the fireworks score, celebrating our country's independence through the voices of young people. Performing will be the the U.S. Army Field Band, whose mission is to connect with Americans and honor veterans through their live performances.
Where are the best spots to view NYC’s fireworks?
Any area with an unobstructed view of the sky above the East River in Midtown. Public viewing locations will be set up and managed by the NYPD. Official public viewing locations will be announced at a later date for portions of the Brooklyn, Queens, and Manhattan waterfronts. Spectators are encouraged to check macys.com/fireworks for the most up-to-date viewing information including entry details and marine viewing.
If you don't feel like fighting the crowds for a spot, Front Row Fireworks brings stellar views of the 47th Annual Macy’s Fireworks show from the East 34th Street Heliport. This special engagement offers exclusive access to the highly limited East Riverfront area. Fireworks are only the beginning, as this family-friendly event also brings ping pong, chess, life-size versions of Jenga, balloon artists, face painters, BBQ, drinks, live DJs, and more! The event runs 6-11pm, you can get more details here.
Celebrate your NYC on July 4th with your family at Solar One and enjoy their 1st Annual Freedom Fest celebration. Tickets start at $59 but there is dynamic pricing, so admission will rise as the holiday gets closer.
Can I see the fireworks from an observation deck?
Getty Images for Edge at Hudson Yards.
Expect premium pricing, but some of the city's best views come from the observation decks. Edge is a popular new destination in Hudson Yards and you get the sweep of the city plus pyrotechnics on July 4th. Tickets include admission, a glass of champagne or non-alcoholic drink, a barbecue bite, and a live music and DJ set by Spencer Ludwig, a Latin Grammy-winning trumpeter, songwriter, and artist. (Additional food and drink can be purchased at the bar.) Tickets are very limited, so this is a great way to catch the action without big crowds around.
SUMMIT One Vanderbilt is hosting an exclusive Fourth of July Celebration from 7:30- 10:30. Two specialty cocktails, the Patriotic Punch and the Stargarita, will be offered (in America's colors no loess). Tickets cost $325 per person (space is limited) and include free roaming across all three levels of SUMMIT as well as two premium drinks. With over 30,000 square feet of mirrors, viewers will be surrounded with panoramic views and curated music throughout the celebration.
July 4th at Bars and Restaurants in NYC
The William Vale in Williamsburg is hosting a July 4th Party with prime views of the fireworks on the East River from rooftop bar Westlight. (You can also dance the night away as part of the hotel's Summer Music Series). Produced by El Studio, groove to the tunes from Carlita, Chloe Caillet, DeRoos, and Gaspar Muniz on the rooftop decks, as well as Milo and Monobase on the open air floor below while enjoying a mezze-style food menu, specialty cocktails, and bottle service. General admission starts at $150 and table reservations start at $550 for 2 people. Tickets can be purchased here.
60th-floor New American spot Manhatta is celebrating the 4th with sweeping views from the Financial District and prime-time seats for the East River fireworks. Tickets are $295 and include a delicious barbecue spread, passed canapes, passed desserts, and an open bar with spirits, beer, and wine by the glass).
The Roof at Park South, located a few blocks from the East River, will be hosting a Macy’s Fourth of July fireworks viewing party with a BBQ cookout and an open bar from 6-11pm. The evening begings with an hour of passed canapés, followed by food stations showcasing holiday favorites prepared by James Beard-nominated chef Bryce Shuman. The open bar will feature cocktail selections curated by Beverage Director Ivan Papic. Tickets are priced at $250 per person and available via Tock.
Darling at Park Lane New York is offering one of the most elevated July 4th drinking and dining experiences in the city. Guests can toast to the long weekend with the rooftop bar's celebratory set-menu ($100), featuring a choice of the Park Lane Margarita pitcher or watermelon smash pitcher (serves 4 drinks), as well as crispy chicken sliders and a 12-month-old Tomme De Savoie grilled cheese. There's also a selection of premium American beers and whiskey, and an additional, extensive menu of luxurious bar bites, such as Petrossian caviar, East Coast oysters, a decadent seafood tower, and a lobster mac 'n' cheese. Darling sits 47 stories above the New York City skyline, overlooking Central Park, and a breathtaking spot to take in the holiday.
On the East River at the FDR, join upscale restaurant Riverpark and its panoramic views for a July 4th Fireworks. The ticket price isn't cheap ($395 per person, although under 21 kids get in for half price) but it comes with a lot: live music, a variety of food stations, specialty drinks, and an exceptional vantage point for the fireworks. The bar is open and has beer, wine, liquor, a specialty sangria cocktail. Food stations include Big Herms Pit, NY Burger, a crawfish broil, and desserts. In bad weather, there's access to an indoor space with floor-to-ceiling windows.
A Manhattan destination you may not have considered is Roosevelt Island, where East River views are perfect for this year's fireworks show. Panorama Room, situated at the crown of Graduate Roosevelt Island, is a perfect spot to celebrate during a 4th of July party. Head 18 floors up for a breathtaking 360-degree look at Queens, Brooklyn, and Manhattan. The ticketed party will include live DJs, an open bar from 5-8pm, and passed hors d'oeuvres. (There's a cash bar from 8pm-midnight.) General admission presale tickets start at $216.10.
Credit: Peter Garritano.
Brooklyn waterfront taco stand Tacocina will be serving favorites in Domino Park from 7-10pm. Tickets are $195 and come with homemade tortilla chips with salsa and guacamole, quesadillas, a taco selection, a paleta (popsicle) selection, and unlimited classic Margarita pitchers, Topo Chico hard seltzer, canned cocktails, and beers.
Del Frisco’s Double Eagle Steakhouse New York boasts a sophisticated space that reflects the energy, vibrancy, and romanticism of the city. This July 4th weekend (July 2nd through July 6th) they'll be celebrating America with an exclusive Prix Fixe Menu featuring some of Del Frisco’s classics like filet mignon and sesame-crusted ahi tuna.
The show goes on at popular Times Square spot Ellen's Stardust Diner, famous for its singing waitstaff and great vintage vibes. For the month of July, Ellen’s will be selling their 4th of July shake ($18), which comes with cookie dough ice cream, whipped cream, American star cookies, red, white, and blue sprinkles, and a cherry on top.
What's happening on the Coney Island boardwalk July 4th?
For an all-American Independence Day experience, head out to Coney Island, home of the Nathan’s Famous International Hot Dog Eating Contest. The world’s top competitive eaters gather here every July 4th. After a record-breaking performance last year, look for Joey Chestnut to add a 16th Mustard belt to his collection. On the women’s side, you can expect less predictability—Miki Sudo won last year after downing 42 dogs. The competition takes place on the corner of Surf and Stillwell Avenues.
What about the Nathan's Hot Dog Eating Contest Weigh-In?
You can catch some of the action in Manhattan. On Monday, July 3rd at noon, top competitors vying for The Mustard Belt will step on the scale at special pre-event festivities at the Public Square and Gardens in Hudson Yards.
Are there Coney Island fireworks for Independence Day in 2023?
Coney Island also presents a fireworks show on July 4th (in addition to 10 weeks of Friday night fireworks starting on June 23rd). Starting at approximately 10pm on Independence Day, the 8th Annual Fourth of July Fireworks Spectacular will bring a 15-minute estravaganza. Visitors can view the fireworks on the Boardwalk anywhere from West 15th Street to West 10th. The weekly Friday night shows run through September 1st, starting around 9:45pm (most after Brooklyn Cyclones games).
The Day Party at the Coney Art Walls
Another great way to celebrate Independence Day on Coney Island is at The Day Party at the Coney Art Walls (3050 Stillwell Ave.), an annual urban cultural arts event filled with live music, performances, and a rotation of DJs. Monday, July 3rd brings the LITDIGITAL DJ’S FEST; July 4th's headliner is KEHLANI LIVE. You can learn more and get tickets at thedayparty.com.
Are there New Jersey fireworks this year?
Yes, there are. Right across the Hudson River from Manhattan you'll find fireworks on the Jersey City waterfront. Look for an all-day Freedom and Fireworks celebration with 60 food trucks and vendors. Local DJs will play from multiple stages and the day-long celebration will be capped off by fireworks lighting up the sky over the Hudson River conducted by Guinness World Record holder Fireworks by Grucci.
How can I watch the 2023 Macy’s fireworks on TV?
NBC will broadcast a live view of the Macy’s fireworks in NYC, along with various performers. The TV special airs July 4th from 8-10pm.
Who will be performing in the TV broadcast of the NYC fireworks?
Macy’s hasn’t released details about the 2023 NYC fireworks, but we’ll update you as soon as we know.
6 Best NYC Fireworks Cruises
The best way to experience the fireworks in person without the major crowds is aboard one of NYC’s boat cruises! With boat rides on the East and Hudson rivers, a fireworks cruise in NYC is a truly unforgettable way to celebrate the holiday.
1. City Cruises
Departs from: Bateaux New York: Pier 61, Chelsea Piers. Signature Dinner Cruise: Pier 15, South Street Seaport and Pier 61, Chelsea Piers.
Cruises: New York 4th of July Signature Dinner Cruise Pier 15, New York 4th of July Signature Dinner Cruise Pier 61, Bateaux New York 4th of July Premier Plus Dinner Cruise
Courtesy City Cruises
City Cruises Signature Dinner fireworks cruises depart from Pier 15 and Pier 61. While onboard you’ll enjoy a delicious dinner buffet with freshly prepared entrees, salads, and desserts. Climate-controlled interior and open-air outdoor decks await. For an elegant plated meal, look to City Experiences’ all-glass, European-inspired Bateaux New York. The dinner fireworks cruise features chef-inspired fine dining, beer, wine, and classic cocktails, and the city’s most impressive views.
Departs from: Seastreak Ferry Terminal at Highlands, 326 Shore Dr., Highlands, NJ; also Bedford, NJ
Cruise: NYC 4th of July Fireworks Cruise
Seastreak is the most comfortable way to explore NYC and surrounds: climate controlled cabins and an open-air top deck, 360° panoramic windows, plush seating, and a full-service cash bar. This is by far the most civilized way to get into the city from New Jersey: ride from Highlands shortly before sunset, cruise to the East River to watch the show on the top deck (you’ll feel like they’re right on top and all around you; this is the way the show was meant to be seen), and then check out your favorite Manhattan sites aglow in the city lights.
Depart from Highlands, NJ ($159) – Celebrate the 4th of July in the most luxurious way possible! Cruise on one of Seastreak’s newest, largest, and fastest vessels, the Courageous or the Commodore. Included in the price of the ticket, enjoy music by the live DJ, an indoor and outdoor full service bar, and complimentary beer and wine until 10pm.
Depart from Belford, NJ ($99) – Get the same incredible views at a lower price! This departure option will feature a full-service bar on the first deck as well as the same incredible views of the NYC skyline and the amazing fireworks display. Vessels departing from Belford, NJ will include Seastreak’s New York, New Jersey, and the Whaling City Express.
3. Circle Line
Courtesy Circle Line
Circle Line's 4th of July Fireworks cruise sails down the Hudson River and around the tip of Manhattan, showcasing the gorgeous views of the NYC skyline. While enjoying the sights of Manhattan from the water, take advantage of the buffet featuring classic Independence Day fare, like fried chicken, hamburgers, hot dogs, and mac 'n’ cheese. Tickets also include unlimited beer, wine, and soda. And when it gets dark out, you’ll have unbeatable views of the Macy’s 2023 fireworks.
4. Manhattan by Sail
Departs from: Clipper City: Pier 17, South Street Seaport; Shearwater: North Cove Marina at Brookfield Place, Battery Park City
Cruise: July 4th Fireworks Sail - Clipper City, July 4th Fireworks Sail - Shearwater
Set sail on the river aboard Manhattan By Sail’s tall ship Clipper City or the classic schooner Shearwater.
5. Classic Harbor Line
Departs from: Pier 62, West 22nd Street and Chelsea Piers, Chelsea
Cruises: Fourth of July Fireworks Cruise aboard Luxury Yacht Manhattan II, Fourth of July Cruise aboard Yacht Manhattan, Fourth of July Sail aboard the Schooner Adirondack, Fourth of July Sail aboard Schooner America 2.0, 4th of July Fireworks Cruise on Yacht Full Moon from North Cove Marina, Fourth of July Cruise aboard Yacht Kingston, PRIDE Fireworks Cruise aboard the Yacht Manhattan, 4th of July Fireworks Cruise on Yacht Mariner III
Take in the breathtaking NYC fireworks display from aboard a luxury yacht or schooner with Classic Harbor Line—there are eight available. (What could be more fitting than a fireworks cruise on July 4th aboard the schooner America 2.0?!) During your fireworks cruise, you’ll enjoy light hors d'oeuvres along with an open bar featuring beer, wine, champagne, and soft drinks.
6. Event Cruises NYC
Departs from: Pier 36, South Street Seaport
Cruises: Premier 4th of July Dinner Cruise NYC Aboard Oasis, July 4th Fireworks Cruise NYC Aboard Freedom, Fourth of July Buffet Brunch, Premier July 4th Brunch Cruise
Courtesy Event Cruises NYC
Event Cruises NYC offers two different fireworks outings for July 4th fireworks: the Dinner Cruise and the Fireworks Cruise. The Dinner Cruise, aboard a 3-deck vessel, features a three-course meal, including scallops, Cornish hen, shrimp, lobster tails, a vegan option, and more, as well as an open bar. The Fireworks Cruise, aboard a 2-deck vessel, includes a buffet of mini sandwiches and an open bar featuring beer and wine. There are also two options for brunch.
—Katelin E. Walling contributed to this article.