You plan to go on holiday in September, but you are not sure New York is a good destination at this time of the year? Search no further, you're on the right page! Climate, tourist numbers, major events, activities... In this post, you will find all the information you need to prepare your visit to New York in September.
THE WEATHER IN NEW YORK IN SEPTEMBER
Let's face it, weather-wise, September is one of the best times to travel to New York. During September in New York, the weather is milder than in the middle of summer, and therefore even more pleasant.
July and August, the hottest and wettest months of the year, have passed, and the weather is often perfect for lots of outdoor sightseeing. On a typical September day in New York City, average temperatures range from 17°C to 26°C.
As for rainfall, it rains on average 7 days during September – which is already a lot less than in the middle of summer. As a rule, there is plenty of sunshine and the days last just over 12 hours.
WHAT TO DO IN NEW YORK IN SEPTEMBER?
Before I reveal the activities and events that take place during the month of September, here is a quick overview of all the major attractions that are must-do activities if you plan to visit New York in 5 days or more – and that are available no matter what time of the year:
- Discovering New York's observation platforms. There are several viewing platforms located in iconic New York City buildings that offer great views of the city. During a trip to New York, you should definitely take the time to visit at least one observatory such as the Top of the Rock, the Empire State Building viewing platform or The Edge.
- Visit the museums of New York: the Met, the MoMa, the Guggenheim Museum or the Museum of Natural History. It’s the perfect activity to occupy a rainy afternoon.
- Discover the historical sites and monuments of New York: the Statue of Liberty, Grand Central Station, Saint Patrick's Cathedral...
- Attend a musical on Broadway. A lot of shows are on during the month of September (and I'll even tell you a little bit more about a good plan that might allow you to attend without breaking the bank – just keep reading 😉)
- Spend some quality time in the city's parks and gardens. On a beautiful September day, you'll want to take advantage of the sunshine to explore New York's green spaces, including the famous Central Park of course, but also many others such as Bryant Park, Riverside Park and the New York Botanical Gardens.
BIG EVENTS IN SEPTEMBER IN NEW YORK
In addition to all these must-see sights, if you find yourself visiting New York in September, know that you can also take part in a few festivities and big events that are only held once or twice a year.
COMMEMORATING 11 SEPTEMBER 2001
Every year on the 11th of September, New Yorkers, like all Americans, commemorate the anniversary of the terrorist attacks that hit the city on that date in 2001, killing an estimated 3,000 people. At the scene of the attacks, political families and politicians gather to pay tribute to the memory of the victims. In the evenings, during the "tribute of light", two huge columns of blue light are projected into the sky on the exact same spot where the twin towers of the World Trade Center once stood. You can also visit the 9/11 museum.
Have you considered buying a tourist pass? 🎫
Don't forget to purchase a New York City Pass if you wish to discover the city’s highlights during your trip to New York. With this tourist pass, you will have access to 5 must-see tourist spots at an advantageous price. What's more, you'll be able to choose some of the activities offered (2 fixed activities + 3 activities you can select among a list) 🙂
THE FEAST OF SAN GENNARO
These festivities are held around mid-September in Little Italy and last 11 days. This festival has been celebrated for almost a century in New York, and still draws crowds to this day.San Gennaro is a large celebration of religious origin that was established in 1926 by Neapolitan immigrants to commemorate St. Januarius, the patron saint of Naples. Many festive activities are organised, and it is the perfect occasion to taste the Italian specialities sold along Mulberry Street. There are also traditional music concerts and cooking demonstrations – including a great pizza contest.
LABOUR DAY SALE
New York is one of the best shopping destinations in the world, and this is even more true during the month of September. To celebrate Labour Day, a very large number of shops hold often very interesting sales.
Clothes, jewellery, shoes, fashion accessories... Usually, all the items that were not sold during the summer are sold off during Labour Day sales. Labour Day is on September 5th – but the sales usually start a few days before.
New York Fashion Week
New York Fashion Week is one of the biggest events in the fashion world, and is held twice a year. The week takes place once in February and again in September.
During this event, which echoes the London, Milan and Paris fashion weeks, the greatest designers such as Ralph Lauren, Diane Von Furstenberg, Michael Kors and many others come to present their new creations during numerous ready-to-wear and haute couture shows.
NYC Broadway Week
NYC Broadway Week is another event held twice a year in New York, once in the winter and once in the summer. Generally, the summer NYC Broadway Week takes place in September. For the occasion, many Broadway shows (often the most popular of the moment, even) offer a special deal — two tickets for the price of one.
September is therefore the perfect time to attend a show or a musical at one of the great Broadway theatres.
The Washington Square Outdoor Art Exhibit
In Greenwich Village, you can enjoy a unique outdoor art exhibit. During the Washington Square Outdoor Art Exhibit, which usually takes place on Labor Day weekend and the following weekend, the small streets around Washington Square Park are transformed into art galleries. You will be able to admire the works of many artists from New York City and around the world. Photography, painting, sculpture, jewellery, glass and ceramics... Many art forms are featured during this event.
GOOD REASONS TO GO TO NEW YORK IN SEPTEMBER
To conclude this post, here is a small summary of all the good reasons why September is one of the most pleasant periods to go to New York:
- The weather is idyllic. It's not as hot and humid as in midsummer, the days are still long and often sunny and temperatures regularly reach 25°C during the day.
- Travelling to New York is a little cheaper in September than at other times. Let's face it, travelling to New York is often expensive – and September is part of the peak tourist season, so you'll need to budget quite a bit for a stay during this month. It's actually on your plane tickets that you can really make savings. The average price of a return flight from Paris to New York in September is over £86 less than the same ticket in July or August. What's more, airlines often lower their prices at the start of the school year – although you will always be better off booking your flight several months in advance.
- Hotel room prices are still quite high, I would therefore advise you to carefully compare accommodation offers on the Booking website if you don't know yet where to sleep in New York.
- Tourist numbers are slightly lower than in the middle of summer. New York is the number one tourist destination in the United States, and even though there are still a lot of travellers in September, many of them (especially those travelling with their families) will have already left. This means that you will be able to discover the sights and attractions of New York a little more leisurely. In addition, the locals who leave the city during the summer holidays will be back, so you'll be able to get a better feel for the New York atmosphere.
- No matter where you go, going on holiday in September is often very pleasant. If you were working in August, taking time off when all your colleagues are returning to work is bound to be quite satisfying. On site in New York, the locals and staff you'll be dealing with will often be more relaxed – either because they've just returned from holiday themselves or because they can take a breather after two months of very busy tourism.
I hope you enjoyed this article and were able to find the answer to any question you had! 😄 And if you decide you would rather go on your trip a bit later, don’t hesitate to read my article New York in Octobre 😉