Photo: Fornino Pizza
With a range of romance-stirring activities and picturesque places to share with your beloved, New York City is a fantastic place to spend Valentine’s Day, offering something special for every couple, style, and budget. Whether you’re taking in the stunning works at one of the world’s most famous art museums, recapturing a bit of romance movie magic, or enjoying a slice of heart-shaped Brooklyn pizza, there are plenty of ways to up the romance, enjoy a fun-filled Galentine’s day, or simply try something new for a special date night.
Here are some of our favorite ways to spend this Valentine’s Day in NYC’s most romantic spots. You won’t have to go far either, as many of them are in Manhattan, with a handful just a short subway, cab, or ferry ride away. With an impressive range of restaurants, events, and activities, New York City ensures Valentine's Day is as diverse as its dynamic couples. Read on to explore exciting options for things to do in NYC for Valentine’s Day.
Do Date Night at the Metropolitan Museum of Art
Valentine’s Day may be on a Wednesday this year, but if you’re willing to celebrate a little before or after, Date Night at the Met makes a great option. Enjoy live music and food and drink specials at the museum’s eateries, plus the chance to check out all your favorite works of art after hours. Friday and Saturday from 5 p.m. to 9 p.m. 1000 Fifth Ave., metmuseum.org.
Get Some R&R With A Spa Treatment
Indulge in a romantic spa day at Allure Day Spa this Valentine’s Day, where you can enjoy 10 percent off one massages or spa service, along with complimentary champagne, with the promo code "Love.” Choose from a range of luxurious treatments listed on Allure’s extensive service menu, including couples’ massages, body scrubs, and nail treatments, and either treat your loved one to a bit of pampering, or enjoy some highly relaxed time together. 139 E. 55th St., alluredayspa.com.
Ride the ferry to Staten Island
Take in views of Lower Manhattan and the Statue of Liberty for free aboard the Staten Island Ferry. Once in Staten Island, go for a stroll in North Shore Waterfront Esplanade Park or better yet, pick up some take-out at a nearby restaurant for an impromptu waterside picnic before heading back. Staten Island Ferry from 4 Whitehall St., siferry.com.
Enjoy Heart-Shaped Pizzas in Brooklyn
Photo: Fornino Pizza
Celebrate your love of pizza and each other with heart-shaped pizzas all month long (by request) at Fornino. From Feb. 10–14, 2024, order a Valentine’s Day Pizza Love Kit from its Greenpoint location in Brooklyn—which includes two heart-shaped pies, a large salad, and a bottle of wine or bubbly—for a fun and delicious date night meal. Fornino, 849 Manhattan Ave., fornino.com
Take a Spin on the Ice
For a fun February date night in Midtown Manhattan, head to Bryant Park, home of one of NYC’s best ice skating rinks. Skate hand-in-hand, then warm up with hot cocoa. For a more romantic feel, imbibe inside a cozy rink-side igloo. The rink is open 8 a.m. to 10 p.m. daily through March 3, 2024. Skate rentals from $18. Igloo with drinks and bites from $215 (for 1–4 people). 41st Street and Sixth Ave., bryantpark.org
Worth the Splurge
Get Cozy in a Rooftop Igloo
Photo: Somewhere Nowhere
Somewhere Nowhere is offering a special four-course menu, which you can enjoy with your beloved in the privacy of a cozy rooftop igloo, from $200 per person. Or, opt for seating in the enclosed rooftop (from $125 per person) or the indoor lounge with live jazz music (from $85 per person). Rooftop of the Renaissance NY Chelsea Hotel, 112 W 25th St, somewherenowherenyc.com.
Swing by a Swanky NYC Supper Club
Get ready to groove at Dizzy’s Club, a fabulous jazz and supper club nestled among The Shops at Columbus Circle as part of Jazz at Lincoln Center. This Valentine’s Day, celebrate with live music by Morgan James, who will perform her own acclaimed numbers as well as interpretations of classic hits from legends like Aretha Franklin, Otis Redding, and Joni Mitchell. The evening also includes a three-course dinner, from $225 per person. 10 Columbus Circle, jazz.org
Embrace Your Inner Foodie at an Omakase Experience
Fans of creative Japanese dining will love Kissaki’s 16-course Omakase experience, happening Valentine’s Day at the upper West Side location and Feb. 14–18, 2024, at its Bowery outpost. Treat yourselves to specially crafted handrolls, 10 nigiri, four appetizers, and dessert, from $185 per person. Kissaki Upper West Side: 286 Columbus Ave (at West 74th Street.; Bowery: 319 Bowery (between East First and Second Avenues); explorekissaki.com.
Splurge on a Sumptuous Seafood Dinner
Photo: Matthew James Ortiz, MJO Studio
Seafood lovers can treat themselves to a romantic dinner at Nerai thanks to a four-course prix fixe Valentine’s Day menu, from $140 per person. Feast on seared scallops, squid ink pasta with lobster, or fresh black bass crudo, among other tasty dishes—there’s even a dry-aged New York strip option just for surf-and-turf fans. 55 East 54th St, nerainyc.com.
Seen on Film
Visit the Empire State Building’s Observation Deck
Recreate your favorite moments from Sleepless in Seattle and An Affair to Remember from the famously filmed Observation Deck on the 86th floor of the Empire State Building. Feeling brave? Continue upstairs to see the view from the 102nd floor. Tickets from $44 per adult for lower deck access only; from $79 per adult for both decks. 20 W 34th St., esbnyc.com.
Sit at “The Table” at Katz’s Delicatessen
Fans of When Harry Met Sally can sit at “The Table” at Katz’s Delicatessen—you know, from the scene that inspired the infamous “I’ll have what she’s having” quote—and enjoy a gigantic corned beef or pastrami sandwich with their loved one. Whether or not you attempt to recreate the rest of the scene is entirely up to you. 205 East Houston St., katzsdelicatessen.com.
Strike a Pose in Central Park
Central Park is one of the most-filmed spots in the entire city, with Bethesda Terrace and the iconic Bow Bridge making appearances in many a rom-com, like 27 Dresses, Enchanted, and 13 Going On 30. Get your fill of pics, then go for a romantic stroll on The Mall. Bethesda Terrace is located near the park’s center. Nearby, Bow Bridge connects The Ramble with Cherry Hill.
Feel Moonstruck in Lincoln Center Plaza
Though one of the 1986 film’s most important scenes takes place inside the Metropolitan Opera as the two lovebirds, Loretta and Ronny, watch La Boheme, you can still catch some romantic vibes in the courtyard just outside, also featured in the movie. Hold hands as you pass by the Revson Fountain, which always puts on a good show. Columbus Ave. and W. 64th St, lincolncenter.org.
Out of the Ordinary
Take in a Broadway Show
Treat yourselves to an unforgettable Broadway show this Valentine’s Day, whether you’re in the mood for “Moulin Rouge,” “Merrily We Roll Along,” or “Sweeney Todd.” Stop by the TKTS booth in Times Square, which offers steep discounts on last-minute tickets. Broadway at W. 47th St., tdf.org.
Get in the Spirit with a Distillery Tour
Great Jones Distilling Co., a craft whiskey maker located right in Noho, invites you to celebrate Valentine’s Day with a special pairing class featuring chocolate from Brooklyn's Fine & Raw Chocolate. Begin with a distillery tour, then enjoy a guided tasting of four Great Jones whiskeys (all of which are made with locally-sourced ingredients), and each expertly paired with artisanal chocolates. Tickets available at $55 for individuals or $99 for couples. 686 Broadway, greatjonesdistillingco.com.
Stargaze at the Hayden Planetarium
What’s more romantic than being under the stars? Geek out at the Hayden Planetarium, located inside the American Museum of Natural History. You’ll need to reserve a timed ticket to enter the museum, plus tickets for “Worlds Beyond Earth,” the epic space show narrated by award-winning actor Lupita Nyong’o. The venue offers pay-what-you-wish admission for residents of New York, New Jersey, and Connecticut + one show, $25 per adult; Admission + one show for non-residents from $34 per adult. 200 Central Park West, amnh.org/hayden-planetarium.
Enjoy a Dinner Cruise Around Lower Manhattan
Take in incredible views of Manhattan and sail up and down the East and Hudson Rivers as you enjoy dinner, drinks, and a dance aboard City Experiences’ New York Valentine’s Day Cruise. The 2.5-hour cruise includes a chef-curated buffet dinner, DJ-spun tunes, a glass of sparkling wine, and roses (depending on your package, which start from $150, $210, or $240 per person. ). Pier 61, Chelsea Piers, at 12th Avenue and West 23rd Street, cityexperiences.com.
Sip Wine While You Paint
Create memorable artwork alongside your beloved at Painting With a Twist in Forest Hills, Queens, which has two events this Valentine’s Day. With each of you painting your own portion of the double canvas, you’ll create a giant masterpiece dedicated to your shared love. Tickets from $45 to $49 per person. 97-14 Metropolitan Ave., paintingwithatwist.com.
Venture Uptown to The Met Cloisters
Make a pilgrimage uptown and spend some time roaming the beautiful halls of The Met Cloisters, a sibling museum of The Metropolitan Museum of Art specializing in medieval art. While it is closed on Wednesday (and therefore Valentine’s Day), it’s still a romantic place to visit another day, as is Fort Tryon Park, which surrounds it. 99 Margaret Corbin Dr., Fort Tryon Park, metmuseum.org/cloisters.
Read Each Other Poetry in the Park
For a simple yet romantic date idea, wander through the seemingly endless bookshelves at the Strand Book Store, pick out a few poetry books, and recite love poems to each other in nearby Union Square Park. Strand Book Store, 828 Broadway, New York, NY 10003, strandbooks.com.
Roam the New York Botanical Garden in the Bronx
Venture to the Bronx for a romantic day in New York Botanical Garden, where you can connect with nature on a forest bathing walk and spend time exploring any of the 50 on-site specialty gardens and collections. Grounds admission is free for NYC residents on Wednesdays, including Valentine’s Day; otherwise, it’s $15 per adult or $35 per adult for non-residents. 2900 Southern Blvd, Bronx, NY 10458, nybg.org.
Stroll the Brooklyn Heights Promenade
There’s no better way to end the day than with a walk with your loved one along the Brooklyn Heights Promenade, whether at sunset or after dark when the NYC skyline really shines. Entrance on Montague Street and Pierrepont Place.