Ornaments and lights, candy canes, nutcrackers, sleighs, snowmen, Nativity scenes — along railings, on awnings and around the long pole that holds an American flag, tiny bulbs gleam in red, white and blue. It seems like every year these installations grow more and more dazzling.
While no guidebook may mention the holiday lights in Queens we’ve rounded up some local addresses that we think, or hear, are worth the trip. And if you don’t have a car, or can’t get there with public transport (a lot of the most popular lights are hard to access by the MTA) a walk around pretty much any Queens neighborhood after sundown will undoubtedly unveil some sparkle and shine. It’s the unexpected lights as you round the corner of otherwise familiar streets that let you know the wonder of the holiday season is truly in our midst. Every street in Queens seems to have at least two or three houses, or apartments, incandescent with cheer.
Here are few widely considered the best.
- Bayside is one Queens neighborhood that goes all out. The house at 33-20 205 Street, Bayside is famous for its lights and the owner of the house allows you to walk in the backyards of both of his houses to see the whole display.
- The corner of 212th Street and 32nd Ave, Bayside is also aglow.
- At the intersection of 166th Street and 23rd Avenue, Whitestone you’ll find multiple houses completely wrapped in lights, and adorned with lawn animals and figurines. Its widely known as Santa’s Corner.
- 160-15 13 Avenue Whitestone, LED Lights Display is set to dance to music every hour.
- 91st Street between 157th and 158th Aves, Howard Beach
- 76th Street at 77th Ave, Glendale (more for the nativity and train set in garage, which are not visible from the street)
- In Maspeth, Queens the lights come on at 4:30 p.m., accompanied by Christmas carols bellowing from speakers tucked behind a battalion of toy soldiers. And what looks like one big, brightly festooned house on 60th Road by 69th Street are, in fact, four homes — turn-of-the-century brick bungalows united by common walls and illuminated snowflakes
- 69th Street and 60th Ave, Maspeth
- Metropolitan Avenue and 56th Street, Maspeth
- Caldwell Avenue and 72nd Street, Maspeth
- Pitkin Ave and 78th St, Ozone Park
- At 1882 Stockholm Street, Ridgewood lights are syncopated with music every night from 5pm-midnight
If you want to avoid the crowds and traffic jams, consider going early on a weekday evening – it can get really busy on the weekends.