The biggest Thanksgiving event in New York (and arguably the whole of the USA) is the spectacular Macy’s Day Thanksgiving Parade. Millions of Americans watch it at home, but there’s no better way to experience it than in real life. The parade started in 1924, so it’s been going on for almost a hundred years, and consists of gigantic floats being paraded through the city, using a record-breaking amount of helium in the process. The floats are usually pop-culture related, so you can expect everything from a 60ft Santa-hat-wearing Spongebob Squarepants to a gigantic Kermit the Frog. You can watch the parade from the side of the street or, even better, from the comfort of your hotel room. Stay at the Ritz-Carlton New York in Central Park on the parade route, and you’ll have front-row seats without having to leave the building. Post-parade, there are plenty of top restaurants to get your turkey and trimmings fix, and there’s even an Annual Day After Thanksgiving hike at the Blood Root Valley park where you can work off all that grub.
Head to Florida for Thanksgiving and you can make the most of the theme parks while experiencing the festive traditions. There are over 350 restaurants in Orlando for you to choose from. For a traditional Thanksgiving feast, Seasons 52 on Sand Lake Road and Capital Grille on International Drive are both great options. Or if you’re not a turkey fan, venues like Mi Tomatina and Tamarind serve alternative holiday-themed dinners. Head to Walt Disney World or the day, and you’ll find plenty of restaurants offering special Thanksgiving menus. There’s Liberty Tree Tavern at Magic Kingdom, The Hollywood Brown Derby at Hollywood Studios, Tusker House at Animal Kingdom, and loads more options in Epcot’s World Showcase and Disney Springs. Of course, the famous giant turkey legs are sold in every park if you want a quick turkey fix in between rides.
Universal Orlando also put on a few celebrations at their onsite resorts. Universal's Cabana Bay Beach Resort, Hard Rock Hotel® at Universal Orlando and Loews Portofino Bay Hotel at Universal Orlando usually put on Thanksgiving buffets with live entertainment and a tree-lighting luau. If you happen to be at Universal Orlando over Christmas, you’ll also see the balloons and floats from the famous Macy’s Thanksgiving Day Parade in New York, which are sent straight to the park after Thanksgiving.
Las Vegas is action-packed at the best of times, and especially during Thanksgiving. Loads of Americans choose this city for their festive weekend away too, so you’ll be in good company. The City of Sin is known for its impressive all-you-can-eat buffets, and during the holidays, you’ll get to tuck into a traditional feast, too. There’s a buffet for every kind of budget, from a wallet-friendly option at New York New York which starts at $19.95, to an extravagant 5-course dinner at The Bellagio starting from around $145 per person. If you’re staying at The Bellagio, you’ll also have access to a grand Thanksgiving botanical display, featuring pumpkins and seasonal plants, that takes up the entire Bellagio Conservatory. When it comes to entertainment, you’ve got plenty of concerts, casinos and shows to take up your time, and you can take advantage of the amazing shopping discounts at the outlets stores on Black Friday, the day after Thanksgiving, too.
The luxurious puts you right next to Central Park and gives you front-row access to the Macy’s Day Parade.
A trio of theme parks are right on your doorstep when you stay at the retro-themed Universal’s Cabana Bay Beach Resort.
Stay at the The Bellagio Las Vegas over Thanksgiving and you can dine on a five-course gourmet dinner and see the stunning botanical display in the Bellagio Conservatory.
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