22 Romantic Things To Do In NYC

viewfinder at the top of the empire state building - Romantic Things to do in NYC

New York City has such a rich cultural identity and is known for architecture, business, food and fashion. But it is also steeped in romance, with a variety of romantic things to do in NYC. So, if you’re looking for date ideas or couples’ things to do in NYC, you’ve come to the right place.

I’ve done some romantic trips to New York but I have not experienced all the couples’ activities in NYC. In order to gather a varied list of ideas, I collaborated with some other travel blogger friends, who also know and love NYC, for their romantic suggestions. This post is our combined recommendation of romantic things to do in NYC in 2023.

Disclosure: This article contains affiliate links. These are links to products or experiences I recommend and if you were to buy something after clicking on them, I might earn a small commission at no extra cost to you. Any earnings go towards the upkeep of this blog, which I appreciate.

22 Romantic Things To Do In NYC

Here’s our collective list of romantic things to do in New York City, broken down into categories: activities, food/meal ideas, free things, places to stay and special things to do.

Romantic Activities in NYC

These ideas are romantic activities and fun things to do in NYC for couples.

1. Empire State Building

Contributed by Kate Storm from Our Escape Clause

Without a doubt, visiting the top of the Empire State Building with your beloved is one of the most romantic things to do in NYC.

For generations, the Empire State Building has been one of the city’s most classic viewpoints and has witnessed countless date nights, meet-ups, marriage proposals, and anniversary celebrations–including some portrayed in TV shows and movies (Sleepless in Seattle, An Affair to Remember, and How I Met Your Mother, just to name a few).

metal viewfinder on the observation deck of the empire state building with the skyscrapers of lower manhattan in the distance
View from the Empire State Building towards Lower Manhattan

With tickets starting at $44 per person and several ticket options to choose from, this romantic NYC experience doesn’t come cheap–but it’s sure to be one to remember. While the 86th-floor observation deck is the most classic viewpoint, some tickets will also allow you and your partner to head up to the 102nd floor for an even higher birds-eye view of NYC’s Midtown and downtown, stretching all the way to the Financial District and beyond.

Not sure whether you should visit the Empire State Building during the day or at night? While the night is undoubtedly more romantic and one of the classic things to do in NYC at night, there’s something to be said for the photos you and your partner can take together during the day, too, while appreciating the details of Manhattan’s landscape from above. If you can’t decide which you prefer, consider booking an AM/PM ticket that allows you guys to visit twice!

2. Row Boating In Central Park

Contributed by Chelsea Espinoza from Adventures Of Chels

A timelessly romantic thing to do in NYC is spending an afternoon row boating in Central Park.

The Lake, as it’s called, is located toward the southern end of Central Park. Head to the boat rental location near Loeb Boathouse. Boats are rented on a first come first served basis and only cash is accepted (come prepared as there’s no ATM available). The cost is $20 per hour, $5 for every 15 minutes after that, and an initial $20 deposit. Life jackets are provided and note that pets aren’t permitted. Boats are available to rent from April to November, 10 am until sundown.

row boats on a lake in Central Park NYC surrounded by trees and tall buildings
Row boating in Central Park

Once you have your boat, spend time leisurely rowing around the lake while enjoying each other’s company and beautiful park views. Keep an eye out for glimpses of Bethesda Fountain, and the iconic Bow Bridge. Row toward Oak Bridge (the northernmost part of the lake) to spread out from the crowd. For an added romantic touch, bring a picnic lunch to enjoy on the boat as well – you can pack your own or opt for a premade picnic lunch with your boat rental.

Enjoy your romantic afternoon row boating in Central Park!

3. Top Of The Rock

Contributed by me, Martha from MayCauseWanderlust.com

This is a place that should be on your NYC bucket list. Whilst the Empire State Building is absolutely a classic destination for dates (and proposals), Top Of The Rock offers something you can’t get on the Empire State Building, which is a view of the Empire State Building itself.

NYC skyline with the empire state building in the centre
Classic view of the Empire State Building, from the Top Of The Rock observation deck

Located in the Rockefeller Centre on 42nd Street and Fifth Avenue, the Top Of The Rock observation deck has a panoramic view of New York City. This includes a south-ward view, with the Empire State Building standing proud, perfectly symmetrical in the middle of Manhattan. And on the other side, you have a gorgeous view over Central Park – so you really feel like you’re seeing the best of Manhattan here. It’s an awe-inspiring spectacle, which makes for a great date activity. When I went with my husband, we couldn’t resist sneaking a kiss in front of those stunning views.

Tickets start at $40 for adults, but you could pay less if you have an NYC City Pass.

There’s also a lovely terrace restaurant on the ground floor by the fountains if you want to grab food or a drink afterwards. And, if you and your lover enjoy walking, you could visit Top Of The Rock during my free self-guided walking tour of Manhattan.

4. River Cruise

Contributed by Knycx Journeying  

Manhattan is an island and so New York city is surrounded by water. One of the best ways to admire the city’s dramatic skyline is on a boat from the river because the high rises in the city are so close to one another, the spectators need some distance to gain perspective and see the “big” picture. 

Brooklyn Bridge suspension bridge seen from a boat with people on it on the east river
Brooklyn Bridge, seen from a river cruise

Hopping on a river cruise is a romantic thing to do in New York as couples get to be separated from the crowd and have a moment to themselves whilst they enjoy the view. No matter the view is from day to night, from Midtown to Downtown, or from good value to upscale, there are plenty of options that suit the needs of different couples. One of the greatest choices among these tours during the daytime is heading to the Statue of Liberty on Ellis island

The Statue of Liberty has been a national monument since its inauguration in 1886, and there are different routes and vehicles for couples to get there, including a 50-minute cruise to Ellis Island from downtown Manhattan. The Yellow Water Taxi is a hop-on-hop-off sightseeing cruise that goes around Manhattan Island with a close up to Ellis Island; The Liberty Harbour Cruise is a scenic boat tour that covers not only the Statue but also other attractions from Brooklyn Bridge to Ellis Island; The Ellis Island Ferry is a true classic for couples to explore Ellis island with an old-fashioned vessel. 

5. Summit One Vanderbilt

Contributed by Allison from Eternal Arrival

One incredible romantic thing to do in New York City is to bring your date to the newest observation deck in NYC, SUMMIT One, located above Grand Central Station. The views are stunning and romantic, the photo opportunities are endless, and it’s a ton of fun.

view of the empire state building through the windows of Summit One in NYC
View from SUMMIT One

If romantic to you means making memories and having souvenirs of that date, then SUMMIT One is perfect because it’s one part epic view and one part interactive art installation. There are several rooms you can visit that all have views as well as art pieces you can interact with – think a room filled with endless mirrors, or reflective balloons that bounce off the ceiling and floor that you can play with. It’s a great way to engage with your partner and have a fun, memorable time – and grab some fun-loving photos as well! And because these elements are indoors, Summit can still be fun even on rainy days in NYC.

To make it even more romantic, time your entry for about an hour before sunset and then wrap up your sightseeing of the observation deck with a cocktail – champagne, perhaps? – at the lounge at the end of the visit. You can sit indoors or outside depending on the weather, admiring the city with a drink in your hands.

SUMMIT One ticket costs vary from $40+ depending on what entry time you request and any add-ons (such as the glass elevator that brings you even higher).  It’s open daily except Tuesdays, from 9 AM to midnight.

6. See A Broadway Show

Contributed by Ruma from The Holiday Story

Seeing a Broadway show is definitely a fun thing to do in NYC for couples. It’s a classic date idea that has been popular for decades. There are 41 theatres in NYC, with the majority between 41st Street and 54th Street. This area in Midtown is known as the Theater District of Times Square.

performers on stage during a broadway show in NYC
Broadway show

You could choose from a range of genres including romance, comedy, drama, or even horror; there are new shows all the time, as well as established favourites like The Lion King. The cost of a ticket can range anywhere between $20 to $200. Evening and night shows are the most sought-after by audiences and prices tend to increase during weekends. Thus, for a lower price, choose a weekday show.

Plan your Broadway date to enjoy it to the maximum. You could grab a drink at a local pub before the show starts – Sardis is a popular drinks hub in Midtown. You could also finish your date night by grabbing dinner post-show. Many restaurants serve delicious food in the Theatre District and Joe Allen is one such restaurant that stays open till late. You might also want to consider one of the Michelin-star restaurants in New York.

Food-related Date Ideas In NYC

If you want to centre a date around food, here are some ideas of romantic places to eat in NYC.

7. Picnic in Central Park

Contributed by Imee Magbag from The Backpacking Executive

If the weather is good, a lovely and romantic thing to do in NYC is to have a picnic in Central Park. The park is huge, so there are plenty of options to find a romantic spot to share a bottle of wine or to relax and enjoy a picnic lunch. The park features numerous walking paths, gardens, rocks, lakes, and a reservoir, making it a popular spot for tourists and locals to enjoy nature and exercise.

tall skyscrapers seen behind the trees and boulders of Central Park in NYC
Central Park

One of the best spots for picnicking is located in the southwestern part of Central Park: the Sheep Meadow is a popular spot for picnickers, sunbathers, and also recreational activities like frisbee. You could pack a romantic dinner for two and admire the sunset views in Sheep Meadow together while enjoying your meal. You can also take a relaxing walk around the meadow with your loved one and enjoy the beauty of nature.

The Sheep Meadow is open from 11:00 am – 7:00 pm from mid-May – October.

8. Dinner With A View: Manhatta

Contributed by Denise from Chef Denise

What could be more romantic than dining on the 60th floor at Manhatta Restaurant? The award-winning chef Danny Meyer and his Union Square Hospitality Group created a restaurant with an intimate atmosphere, stunning views, and, of course, delicious food. They describe the restaurant as “a love letter to New York.”

The constantly evolving seasonal menu combines global influences, often in the same dish, to reflect the melting pot that New York City is known to be. For example, the beef tartare infuses Asian ingredients into one of the most traditional French dishes. The result is superbly inventive cuisine full of unique flavours.

However, even with such amazing fine fare, the surrounding vistas can sometimes steal the show. You’ll want to linger with your love and stretch your meal out as long as possible.

aerial view of built-up city and two bridges crossing the east river in New York City
View of the Brooklyn and Manhattan from Manhatta

Manhatta is located in the Lower East Side of Manhattan, so you’ll have views of the East River and the bridges that cross it: the Brooklyn Bridge, the Manhattan Bridge, and the Williamsburg Bridge. Walk around to see the different parts of the city. You could even peek into the private events room where you’ll have a birds-eye view of the Statue of Liberty.

9. Seasonal Décor At Serra By Birreria

Contributed by Kelly of Girl with the Passport

Located right near the Flat Iron Building on the rooftop of Eataly, Serra by Birreria is the perfect place to go if you’re looking for the most romantic things to do in NYC. 

Not only can you enjoy enchanting views of the surrounding area, but this is one of the best themed bars in NYC that features changing, seasonal decor. So, if you visit in the winter then you’ll dine in a cosy Swiss chalet. And if you visit in the spring then you’ll be surrounded by bright beautiful flowers that adorn every surface of the restaurant. The charming and ever-changing decor really does add to the romantic feel of this place. 

restaurant with flowers decorating the ceiling
Serra By Birreria

If you can though, stop by right when they open. Because while they do open daily between 11:30 am and 9:00 pm, it’s incredibly popular and seats fill up fast. Plus, if you visit at 11:30 am you can take lots of cute Instagram photos without people since the restaurant hasn’t filled up yet. 

And while the menu here does feature a wide array of Italian-inspired cuisine, skip the food and just order drinks at the bar instead. Highlights include their signature Cherry Bomb or Savoia Spritz.

10. Nighttime Dinner Cruise

Contributed by Ross and Zuzu at We Get To Travel

For a unique romantic experience, book a dinner cruise around NYC Harbour. It’s one of the best things to do in New York at night.

On weekend nights, you can enjoy unrivalled views of the Manhattan skyline at night aboard the Skyline Princess. Sailing from Queens at 7 pm, the dinner buffet keeps you busy while the Super Yacht begins your four-hour cruise to some of the world’s most iconic landmarks. 

This dinner cruise is the only way to get incredible views of the city lit up at night (and selfies of you and your date with these backgrounds): the Manhattan Skyline, under the Brooklyn Bridge and The Statue of Liberty on Liberty Island.

NYC skyscrapers lit up at night seen from the water
Enjoy the city lit up at night with a dinner cruise

Along with your $134 dinner cruise ticket, you can buy 4 drink tickets for $38, a bottle of champagne for $30 or a non-alcoholic drink package for just $9. If you have a few drinks, this unforgettable date night will run you around $300.

The Skyline Princess boasts three all-weather decks. The first level is the main dining room with a private table for each party. Groups of up to 20 can be easily accommodated. The second level can be reserved for larger private parties such as wedding receptions and bar mitzvahs. The third floor features breathtaking views with an enclosed dance floor to party the night away!

11. High Tea At King’s Carriage House

Contributed by Kelly of Travel New York Now

One of the most delightful and romantic things to do in NYC is to have high tea at King’s Carriage House. After all, this magic little spot is brimming over with stunning, Colonial-inspired decor that really adds to the romantic feel of this place.  

Plus, this enchanting little tea parlour is well-located on the Upper East Side. So, you can easily stop by after a fun trip to the MET. Additionally, high tea here is extremely well-priced at $48.00 per person and is a lot less touristy than in other spots, like the Plaza Hotel. 

fancy red tea room with drapes and round tables with white table clothes
King’s Carriage House

So, be sure to visit between 12:00 pm and 5:00 pm Tuesday through Thursday or on Sunday. Additionally, King’s Carriage House is also open from 12:00 pm to 9:00 pm on Fridays and Saturdays. And while reservations aren’t required, you may want to book a table if you plan to visit on the weekend. This way you can enjoy a premium selection of Harvey and Sons teas that are perfectly complemented by scrambled eggs with smoked salmon and baby-truffled grilled cheese sandwiches.

However, the real highlight of your tea service is the warm scones, which are served to on classic delft china with raspberry jam and fresh Devonshire clotted cream. Yes, it’s an all-around amazing spot that is the perfect place to go for a date or if you’re looking for things to do in NYC for your birthday.

12. Dessert Date At Serendipity 3

Contributed by Paula from Truly Expat Travel

Indulgence can be romantic, so perhaps you’d like to cosy up and share a dessert with your date.

Serendipity 3 was named after three princes from Sri Lanka (once named Serendip), which the writer Sir Horace Walpole then drummed up the name Serendipity. This place became renowned after First Lady Jacqueline Kennedy ordered the infamous frozen hot chocolate. Since then, the shop has been in countless shows and has been visited by many celebrities.

dish of chocolate desert topped with cream and chocolate sprinkles
Frozen Hot Chocolate at Serendipity 3

Although their frozen hot chocolate is the original, they do have other flavours, such as cotton candy, smores and salted caramel, to name a few.

And there is more than just desserts on the menu, so you can sit down and enjoy something at any time of the day. You can choose a dish from their brunch menu, or if you are daring enough, you could choose something from their Guinness book of record menu; these include a golden opulence Sunday, a foot-long Haute hot dog or World’s most expensive fries (these have to be ordered in advance).

Serendipity 3 can be found at 25 E 60th St, New York, NY, 10022 and is open from 11 am to 11 pm Monday to Friday and available from 10 am to 11 pm on weekends.

Free Romantic Things To Do In NYC

If you’re feeling romantic, but also not wanting to spend much, here are some free romantic things to do in NYC.

13. Walk The Brooklyn Bridge

Contributed by me, Martha from MayCauseWanderlust.com

A stroll along the Brooklyn Bridge is such a great romantic thing to do in NYC and is sure to make a date memorable. Walking the 1.1 miles of the Brooklyn Bridge Promenade, maybe holding hands, you’ll have time to talk with your date, whether you’re just getting to know them or discussing your future.

brich towers and suspension cables on the Brooklyn Bridge from Lower Manhattan to Brooklyn
Brooklyn Bridge Promenade

The views along the way are stunning, so do make sure you pause to appreciate them.  The brick towers themselves are attractive and iconic and you’ll also have great views of Manhattan from the eastern end of the bridge. On the Brooklyn side, there are even more viewpoints, including the Brooklyn Bridge Lookout and a classic view of the bridge in between buildings from Washington Street.

The bridge opened in 1883 and was the first fixed crossing over the East River; at that time it was the longest suspension bridge in the world. If you’re interested in the history of NYC, you could also combine this with a more extensive walking tour of Lower Manhattan, where New York City began back in the 17th century.

14. Walk The High Line

Contributed by Victoria from Guide Your Travel

The High Line Park is an elevated park built on a former railroad in New York City. This unique park offers visitors a chance to experience the city from a different perspective and has become a popular spot for romantic walks and picnics.

High Line Park is romantic because it’s a great place to take a walk with your partner. It has a combination of natural beauty and urban settings. It features a variety of plants, flowers, and greenery, providing an oasis of calm amid the hustle and bustle of the city. At the same time, the park offers breathtaking views of the city skyline, including the Empire State Building and the Hudson River, making it a perfect spot for taking romantic photos or watching the sunset.

pathway bench and flowers with a view of the empire state building behind it
High Line Park

To make the most of your visit to High Line Park, it’s best to go in the early morning or late afternoon, when the crowds are smaller and the lighting is more favourable for photos. If you’re looking to take a romantic picnic, there are several food vendors along the park offering a variety of options and there are also several seating areas and benches to sit and enjoy the views. Additionally, there are occasional public art installations, exhibitions and events taking place on the High Line all year long, which can make the experience even more special.

The High Line Park is located on Manhattan’s West Side, running from Gansevoort Street in the Meatpacking District to West 34th Street, near the Hudson Yard. The park is open daily from 7 am to 10 pm. It’s free to enter and access to the park is at several entry points along the route.

15. See Cherry Blossoms In Spring

Contributed by Tamar Marder from World by Weekend

One of the most romantic things to do in NYC is to see the cherry blossoms in spring. These elusive flowers bloom between late March and mid-April, and only last around two weeks. While your love isn’t as fleeting as these flowers, seize the opportunity and take your partner on a romantic cherry blossom tour of New York City.

For the best experience, go see the cherry blossoms in Central Park. The park is free to explore and has one of the highest concentrations of cherry trees throughout the city, making for stunning flower displays.

pathway between two rows of trees adorned with pink cherry blossoms in central park in NYC
Cherry Blossoms in Central Park

Another romantic NYC destination to view the cherry blossoms is Roosevelt Island. Hop on the tram and soar over the east river, landing on this inner-city enclave. Head over to the southeast side of the island for the best displays, and enjoy cuddling up to your sweetie under the pink and white blooms while taking in stellar views of Midtown Manhattan.

One final can’t-miss romantic cherry blossom destination is the Brooklyn Botanical Gardens. During peak bloom, the gardens host a cherry blossom festival with food trucks and live performances every year. This Japanese-inspired event is a fun and romantic activity. Stroll beneath the cherry blooms while chowing down on takoyaki to the sounds of taiko drumming – Talk about romance!

Romantic Places To Stay In NYC

For a memorable night in NYC, consider these ideas for romantic places to stay the night.

16. A Room With A View

Contributed by Soline from On the Road Diary

For the ultimate romantic experience, why not book a room in an iconic hotel located in the best area to stay in New York for the first time? Many of these world-famous hotels offer high-floor rooms with unrivalled views and top-notch amenities. 

The feeling of being up so high, surrounded by skyscrapers and all that New York has to offer is truly indescribable and will provide the perfect backdrop for a romantic night. It makes you feel like you’re on top of the world! After a long day of exploration, it allows you to take a break from the hustle and treat yourself to an unforgettable night in the city that never sleeps.

woman lies in bed looking out a window over the night lights of new york city skyscrapers
Room with a view: Arlo NoMad

Imagine waking up next to your loved one in the morning, drawing the curtains and seeing the sun sparkle over the city. Arlo NoMad in Midtown offers rooms with outstanding views and big windows. Whether you’re on a honeymoon, celebrating an anniversary or just looking for a special getaway, there’s nothing more breathtaking than sleeping with the sparkling skyline in front of you.

Other ideas for New York hotels with incredible views include the Mandarin Oriental New York on the Upper East Side or the Residence Inn by Marriott New York Manhattan in Midtown.

17. A Room With A Bathtub With A View

Contributed by Megan of Your Brooklyn Guide

Picking a majestic hotel with a view of the skyline is amazing – and you could make it even more romantic by choosing a suite with a bathtub with a view!

The Dominick Hotel in SoHo has some of the best views and is a great location if you’re looking for romantic stays. Not only are you steps away from romantic restaurants like Altro Paradiso, which is a great place for a celebratory dinner, but you’re also close to some of the best shopping in the city, art galleries, and great bakeries like Dominique Ansel Bakery.

For a romantic stay that you just might not want to leave, consider the Dominick Hotel’s Landmark Sunset Suite located on the top floor. There are not only one but two bathrooms with soaking bathtubs with incredible views for you and your beaux to enjoy a glass of champagne while taking in the twinkling lights of the city or Hudson River. Your bedroom will also have an incredible view, the Landmark Sunset Suite had a bedroom view of the World Trade Center and Lower Manhattan skyline that was surreal.

Bathtub with a view: Dominick Hotel

If you’re not able to book the penthouse, don’t worry there are several floors with skyline view rooms that are just as incredible and romantic of a stay! Because of the location, you can request which skyscrapers you see within your view too as some rooms face the Midtown skyline and some have windows that face Lower Manhattan.

18. Glamping On Governor’s Island

Contributed by Lyndsay from The Purposely Lost

Visiting Governor’s Island is one of the more unique things to do in NYC. And Glamping is a unique way to experience the outdoors without sacrificing comfort, combining camping with luxury amenities, such as comfortable beds, clean bathrooms, and gourmet meals.

One of the most romantic activities in New York City, sleeping under the stars at Collective Retreats on Governor’s Island, does just that. Located just off the coast of Manhattan, this unique retreat offers couples a chance to escape the hustle and bustle of city life and reconnect with each other in a tranquil setting. The Island is home to stunning views of the Statue of Liberty, Ellis Island, and the Lower Manhattan skyline, making it the perfect backdrop for a romantic getaway.

tents and parkland from which is visible the skyscrapers of NYC across water
Glamping On Governor’s Island

The retreats offer luxurious accommodations, including private cabin tents, or you can upgrade to a suite with your own bathroom and soaker bathtub. Guests can also enjoy activities like yoga classes, making smores, and sitting beside a warm campfire in Adirondak chairs. Governor’s Island also has a variety of restaurants and historic landmarks from its time as a military base to explore during your stay.

With its stunning views and peaceful atmosphere, glamping at Collective Retreats on Governor’s Island is the perfect place to spend quality time with your loved one. 

Special & Romantic Things To Do In NYC

If you’re looking for something romantic, but also a bit ‘extra’, perhaps for a birthday, an anniversary, Valentine’s Day or even for a proposal(!), these ideas are on the pricey side, but they’re also rather special.

19. Cocktails At Bemelmans Bar

Contributed by me, Martha from MayCauseWanderlust.com

Bemelmans Bar is possibly my favourite cocktail bar in all the world – certainly in NYC. It is perfect for an intimate evening because it is such a romantic place: low lamps and leather banquettes; exquisite cocktails served by immaculate waiters; live piano music playing.

low-lit table with cocktails and an illustrated lamp at Bemelmans Bar in Manhattan
Bemelmans Bar

Bemelmans is the ground floor bar in the luxurious and stylish Carlyle Hotel on the Upper East Side. It is named for Ludwig Bemelmans, whose illustrations decorate the walls, and which he did in the 1940s in exchange for accommodation in the hotel. The bar has been featured in several movies set in New York City.

As you’d expect in a luxury hotel like this, the drinks are not cheap (ranging from $21-38) and there are cover charges which kick in from 5:30 pm and increase at 9/9:30 pm when a jazz trio plays. So, it’s the kind of place you might save for a special occasion. However, you can minimise your spending by coming early and/or making your drinks last a long time.

20. Helicopter Tour Over The City

Contributed by Grace from Pixie Dust And Passports

If you’re looking for spectacular romantic things to do in NYC, you simply can’t beat a helicopter tour over the city. The Big Apple offers several incredible tours of the Manhattan skyline, including a private helicopter tour for couples. You’ll fly over iconic attractions like the Empire State Building, Central Park, and Yankee Stadium as you cuddle up to your sweetheart.

aerial view of manhattan skyscrapers from a helicopter tour of NYC
View from a helicopter over NYC

Most flights run for 30 or 45 minutes, giving you plenty of time to discuss the sights and sounds of the city as you soar above it all. Better yet, there are several dedicated tours available for couples that offer complimentary champagne and sunset trips which are clearly geared towards honeymooners.

It’s no secret that most tours are incredibly expensive (upwards of $500 for several tours, depending on length). But the privacy you get and the convenience of a transfer from Manhattan make it a no-brainer for travellers who can afford it.

Just be aware that you’ll need to be at your pick-up point in advance of your tour reservation for pickup. So, don’t rock up late and miss take-off altogether as most tours as non-refundable!

Whether you’re a history buff who wants to learn more about Ellis Island or an architecture nerd who appreciates the city’s soaring skyscrapers, looking down on one of the most beautiful cities in the world is definitely an exciting experience to share with someone special.

21. Michelin-Starred Dining At River Café

Contributed by me, Martha from MayCauseWanderlust.com

If you like the sound of fine dining with a view, consider the River Café for a special dinner date. This Michelin-starred restaurant sits on the banks of the East River, almost under the Brooklyn Bridge (on the Brooklyn side). The dining room views of the bridge and the Manhattan skyline are gorgeous, especially at sunset, when the cityscape is transformed before your eyes.

three images: a skyscraper in a pink sky, the skyline at night and a plate of dessert with a 'happy anniversary' chocolate sign
River Cafe is perfect for a special romantic dinner, such as an anniversary

The ambience is also lovely: the dining room is calm, service is impeccable and they have a talented lounge pianist playing gentle jazz music live. I came here for an anniversary dinner once and it was such a lovely, romantic thing to do – and so memorable.

The cuisine is American and they’re very proud of their Michelin star, which is a signal that it won’t be low-cost, but that it will also be high quality. At $195 per person for a three-course set menu, it is expensive, but also a really enjoyable treat.

River Café is on the formal side, so you should bear that in mind. There’s a dress code, too: jackets & collared shirts for men; no casual attire like jeans and trainers/sneakers – not even sandals. However, if you know that in advance, I say just go with it – it’s somewhat old school, but really high quality and those views are just wonderful.  

22. Champagne Admission At Edge

Contributed by Sydney from A World In Reach

Edge, one of New York City’s newest observation decks, is the perfect spot to add to your NYC bucket list for outstanding views of the city and a bit of romance. Edge is the highest outdoor sky deck in the Western Hemisphere, making it different from the city’s other observation decks. The deck is suspended in mid-air 100 stories above Manhattan, giving you 360-degree views of New York City and all its landmarks.

aerial view of manhattan towards the skyscrapers of downtown
View from Edge

To make it extra special, upgrade your ticket to the Champagne Experience. In addition to your admission to Edge, these tickets also include a glass of champagne. What’s more romantic than sipping champagne while enjoying world-class views?

The Champagne admission ticket starts at $55 when purchasing online, with extra fees for visiting during peak times or sunset. To enjoy the sunset without the extra fee, book the timeslot just before the sunset surcharge begins – this is noted by a special icon when booking tickets.

Regular admission starts at $38. If you purchase the regular admission ticket or want to have an extra drink after enjoying your champagne, the on-site bar also serves cocktails, champagne, beer, and non-alcoholic beverages.

Edge is located in Hudson Yards; enter the Shops at Hudson Yards and follow the signs for Edge. Tickets can be pre-booked online for a discounted fee or purchased on-site.

The Final Word…

I hope we’ve shown you that NYC can be a romantic city with plenty of lovely, couples’ things to do. So go out and plan some dates and enjoy your romantic time in New York!

For even more NYC inspiration, check out my guide to movies set in New York and my 4-Day New York itinerary, which shows you how to make the most of a few days in the city.

And if you want to get off the beaten path a little, I also have some ideas for unusual and unique things to do in NYC.

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