If you’re visiting New York City for Valentine’s Day – or you already live there but are running out of exciting date ideas –, this list will most probably come in handy.
Sometimes, we struggle when thinking of new things to do with our partners – we don’t just want to take them to any restaurant, it has to be special! So, here’s where I come to the rescue with some of the most romantic activities and best places to celebrate Cupid’s holiday.
Although I included many of these activities thinking about couples, most of them are just as fun to do with anyone. So if you and your friends are single, this is your chance to take them on a date to show them how much you appreciate them!
Where to Go on Valentine’s Day in NYC?
NYC is one of the most romantic cities in the world. With its vibrant atmosphere, scenic views, high-quality restaurants, and special events, you and your significant other will surely have a magical day or evening!
Had plenty of romantic, almost cheesy dates and would like to do something different this year? Check out these unique date ideas in Manhattan!
1. Enjoy a Romantic Dinner Date
You can never go wrong with an elegant candlelit dinner for a date night. It’s also the perfect opportunity to switch from the regular bar around the corner and put on your best attire – yes, that dress that you love but never wear because you can never find the right occasion –.
Keep in mind that most places will fill up pretty quickly that day, so it’s very important to make your reservation in advance.
You know what’s both romantic and delicious? Chocolates! Here are NYC desserts you’ll fall in love with.
Romantic Restaurants in New York City for Valentine’s Day
Below are a few suggestions for the most charming restaurants in New York City for Valentine’s Day. From cozy little spaces to fancy French spots, the city has multiple options for all tastes.
- The River Cafe – Located on the waterfront in Dumbo, with a lovely ambiance and breathtaking views of the Manhattan skyline. Perfect for a romantic evening surrounded by magical city lights.
- Loulou – you’ll feel like you’re in Paris in this charming bistro with a romantic atmosphere and beautiful floral displays.
- La Grande Boucherie – lovely, open-air venue (with heated floors) to enjoy French cuisine and signature cocktails.
- One if by Land, Two if by Sea – one of the city’s most romantic restaurants in the city with a vintage touch. Candlelit tables, brick fireplaces, and a piano. Can it be more romantic?
2. Catch a Broadway Show
If your partner is into theater and musicals, surprise them with tickets for a Broadway show! Not only is it one of the best things to do in NYC, but it can also be an exciting and novel experience to enjoy with the person you love. This February, theaters will welcome the public with world-renowned live shows like Disney’s classic “Aladdin” and the passionate love story “Moulin Rouge”.
Check out all the Broadway shows running in February.
3. Have a Quick Getaway on a Romantic Cruise
Looking for something more relaxed, away from the city crowds? A Valentine’s Day cruise might be the solution you’ve been waiting for! There are many different packages and companies to choose from. Either way, you’re guaranteed a wonderful ride in an intimate setting with breathtaking NYC skyline views. What could be more romantic than that?
Here’s my personal suggestion for romantic cruises:
- Valentine’s Day Champagne Tasting Cruise by Classic Harbor Line – small yacht for an evening of Champagne and delicious appetizers.
- Valentine’s Bateaux New York Premier Plus Dinner Cruise by City Cruises – Dimly lit cruise with an elegant setting, panoramic views, and live music.
- Valentine Romantic Cruises by Event Cruises NYC – the decoration is beautiful and you can choose between brunch and dinner packages.
4. Spice Up the Night with a Burlesque Show at House of Yes
How about something a bit more naughty? *wink*. The popular nightclub House of Yes is the best place to spice up your Valentine’s plans with an amazing Burlesque show. It will be a night full of thrilling performances, provocative dances, music, and more.
Is Manhattan not convincing you so far? Take a look at these date ideas in Brooklyn!
Take a look at these romantic spots in Queens, NYC.
5. Explore the City on a Helicopter Tour
A great and unique way to explore New York City on Valentine’s Day is from above! Taking a helicopter ride is definitely not something you do regularly, so it’s the perfect way to give your loved one an unforgettable experience.
You’ll fly over iconic landmarks like Times Square, the Statue of Liberty, the Empire State Building, and so much more. Book your ride here!
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6. Join a Candle-Making Workshop For Couples
Join other couples in the heart of Bryant Park for a delightful experience for two. With the company of an expert, you’ll be guided along a relaxing, sensory journey learning how to make your own scented candles.
You’ll choose from a curated selection of natural ingredients to develop unique scents and designs for your creations. In the meantime, enjoy delicious treats specially selected to elevate the senses and enhance the overall experience.
Even though this is a Valentine’s Day event, it’s also a great activity to enjoy with a friend and share a pleasurable experience together – while you develop some new skills!
Get your tickets here.
7. Visit the Museum of Sex
There’s no better place to explore your sexy side than the Museum of Sex. This museum is filled with displays and artifacts describing the history of sex, as well as honoring its acceptance in today’s culture.
Moreover, step into the erotic world of Super Funland, an “adult” carnival inside the museum with four floors of interactive games and amusing exhibitions.
Get tickets here.
8. Spend the Night in a Romantic Hotel
Whether you already live in NYC or you’re only visiting, you can book a one-night-only stay in a nice hotel room. New York is full of cool hotels with lots of amenities to enjoy with your partner, such as spas, luxury suites, bars, and more.
Just set up the room with some candles and flower petals, order a bottle of champagne, and voilá!
Best Hotels for Couples in NYC
Need some ideas? I’ve got you covered. Here are the best hotels for couples in NYC:
- Budget ($) — Freehand
- Best Value ($$) — The Kimberly Hotel
- Luxe ($$$) — The Hotel Chelsea
- Unique ($-$$$) — Four Seasons
9. Go on an Ice-Skating Date
In today’s economy, we can’t always afford a fancy dinner or expensive gifts, but there are still tons of affordable things to do in New York City for Valentine’s Day. Ice skating at Rockefeller Center’s ice rink or the Wollman Rink at Central Park is free and a fun activity that everyone can enjoy. And once you get tired, you and your partner can go for some hot chocolate at one of the many cafes in the area. Sounds like a plan, doesn’t it?
In case you need some suggestions for good coffee, check out the best coffee shops in NYC here.
10. Try Valentine’s Day Speed Dating
Single on Valentine’s Day? Don’t let that stop you from doing something exciting and different this day, like speed dating! This is a fantastic option and you can go either alone or with your friend group.
This event promises lots of fun and a lively atmosphere, where you’ll have the chance to meet with other singles. You might not necessarily be looking for a partner, but it can be a nice way to make new friends and connections – who knows? Maybe your soulmate is there, too.
Reserve your spot here.
Bonus Date Ideas & Valentine’s Day Events
New York City is filled with special events on Valentine’s Day, so here I included some honorable mentions not to miss this February.
Ribbons & Roses – Comedy Show
The Ribbons & Roses Comedy Show at Producers Club Theater & Bar welcomes all couples with a rose and promises an evening full of laughter. Besides, with the purchase of your ticket, you’ll be entering a $100 raffle!
The Office Trivia: Valentine’s Day Edition
Love the iconic TV show “The Office”? This is your chance to show off how much you know about it at this Valentine’s Day-themed trivia!
You can come alone, bring your special someone, or your whole squad of The Office fans. Participating in this event is free, but you still have to reserve your spot.
Valentine’s Day Dinner at The Mansion
Celebrate love and romance at this intimate dining experience, taking place at the beautiful Mansion at Glen Cove. This culinary journey begins with a curated selection of decadent appetizers, continuing with the main courses, and finally, delightful desserts. All dishes from this special menu have been meticulously prepared in honor of the most romantic day of the year.
Valentine’s Day Sip and Paint Party
A Sip and Paint Party is perfect for a relaxing date or a girls night out. Spend the night painting to spark your creativity while enjoying the smooth sounds from the live DJ. The ticket covers complimentary hors d’oeuvres, wine, and champagne.
Anti-Valentine’s Day Party
Have a great time with other singles at this Anti-Valentine’s Day Party, featuring live DJs, sweet treats, and drinks. Enjoy a night full of games to win special prizes.
Last Thoughts on Valentine’s Day in NYC
Have you found the perfect date plan you were looking for? I hope you did! New York City is a fantastic location to celebrate Valentine’s Day. From classy, romantic restaurants and hotels, to fun and innovative events, you’ll find something that both you and your significant other can enjoy together on this special day.
Finally, remember that you don’t need to spend a lot of money to show your partner or friend how much they mean to you. All you need is a nice plan, good intentions, and lots of love!