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Where to See the Fireworks on 4th of July in New York City

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This post tells you how to see Macy's 4th of July Fireworks in 2021. The incredible pyrotechnics show will be launched from 5 barges on the East River in Midtown Manhattan.

There will also be official spectator viewing areas but with limited capacity. The number of people allowed has not yet been announced.

As the exact details are still in the works, be sure to check back with us often for updates.



On Sunday, July 4, the live show will begin just before 9:30 PM.

Over 65,000 shells and special effects will be launched from 5 barges on the East River centered in Midtown Manhattan. 

An NBC star-studded televised special will air from 8 PM - 10 PM. The show will feature performances by artists such as Coldplay, OneRepublic and Reba McEntire.



Official spectator viewing areas will be divided into sections for people who are vaccinated and those who are not.

Macys Fireworks Map

Viewing locations for verifiable fully vaccinated spectators:

Along the elevated portions of the FDR Drive in Manhattan with entry points at:

  • East 23rd Street
  • East 34th Street (ADA accessible)
  • East 42nd Street

Viewing locations for non-vaccinated spectators:

  • Along portions of the Queens, Brooklyn, and Manhattan waterfronts.
  • Exact locations have not yet been announced as of June 10th.

*We will be updating this post often as the details are announced. Check back frequently!

You can also check the Macy's Fireworks website for details.



As the barge locations in Midtown Manhattan have not yet been announced, we can't yet offer exact guidance on the best unofficial locations are.

Check back frequently for accurate information on the best unofficial viewing spots.

Since the barges will be located in Midtown Manhattan, we can make some educated guesses about where in Brooklyn and Queens you will be able to get good views of the show.

Roosevelt Island Waterfront including Four Freedoms Park

Long Island City Waterfront (including Gantry State Park and Hunter's Point South Park)

Domino Park and Marsha P. Johnson State Park in Williamsburg

Transmitter Park in Greenpoint 

These locations can be reached by the East River Ferry if you want to skip the subway and get some nice views of the city from the water.

TIP: Read our post on the best Manhattan skyline views to find out about other places to get incredible views of New York City, including locations on land, from the water, and from the sky.



Getting out onto the East River provides you with a great view and an evening of entertainment. 

The Circle Line provides a specialty cruise that night as does Liberty Cruises.

Hornblower Cruises often has cruises for the Fourth of July. American Princess Cruises is another possibility.

To learn more about the various cruise and boat companies in NYC and read reviews, see our post, Which New York Boat Tour or Cruise is Best?

Although the better-known companies sell out more quickly, you can still get similarly priced tickets from competition found on Get Your Guide.



Fireworks in Coney Island

The 2021 fireworks display will begin at 10 PM viewable from the Coney Island Boardwalk. To get directions there and find out about other goings-on,  see our post on what to do in Coney Island.

Earlier in the day, Nathan's Hotdogs will hold its annual Hot Dog Eating Contest. In 2020, a new world record was set when famed Joey Chestnut consumed 75 hot dogs in 10 minutes! 

While this is a free event, tickets are required. Get all the information here.

Fireworks in New Jersey

In 2021, Jersey City will have its own fireworks which can be viewed from the Jersey City waterfront and Liberty State Park.

Just after sunset on Sunday, July 4, 2021, fireworks will be launched from two barges on the Hudson River. 

You can't beat the backdrop of the Statue of Liberty and the NYC skyline!


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About The Author

Stephen Pickhardt

Stephen is the CEO of Free Tours by Foot and has overseen the transformation of a local walking tour company into a global tour community and traveler’s advice platform. He has personally led thousands of group tours in the US and Europe, and is an expert in trip planning and sightseeing, with a focus on budget travelers. Stephen has been published and featured in dozens of publications including The Wall Street Journal, BBC, Yahoo,, and more.
Updated: October 11th, 2021
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