Before you know it, it'll be time for the city to trade in its flimsy T-shirts for snuggly sweaters, its cold beers for Pumpkin Spice Lattes, and... ugh, forget it. End of summer sucks. Fortunately there are still a few more weeks of sun soaking and glorious (yes, GLORIOUS) 90-degree days. Fill up these days with that person whose hand you’ve been holding all summer long on one of these awesome waterfront dates.
You know, before the East River freezes again. Because that happened.
1. Eat and drink on the water
Duh. And luckily we've got a complete guide to everywhere you can eat/drink on the waterfront to help you do it.
2. Check out the Brooklyn Heights Promenade
It’s amazing how many dudes get laid just by taking ladies to the Brooklyn Heights Promenade to show them “the view.” Okay, maybe it’s not so amazing. That view is pretty panty-dropping awesome.
3. Walk, picnic, or make out at any of the waterfront parks
Stuyvesant Cove Park, Riverside Park South, Battery Park, Hudson River Park... any of those should do it.
4. Let them win at tennis
Maybe you and your S.O. are the outdoorsy, sports enthusiast type. Whatever. Get a little sweaty together at the Brian Watkins Tennis Center, an outdoor waterfront tennis court in John V. Lindsay East River Park.
5. Visit City Island
If you don’t mind enduring the 6 train all the way to the end, and then taking a bus for a few minutes over a small bridge, you and your date will be handsomely rewarded. This 1.5-mile-long island is one of the last secluded oases of NYC, complete with a street filled with fish shacks and restaurants slinging frozen drinks and cheap beers. Pick one and enjoy this rare waterfront NYC moment of zen.
6. Ride the Cyclone at Coney Island
Or don’t ride the Cyclone. See a freak show, win someone a giant stuffed bear, sit on the beach, or eat a hot dog. Whatever you choose to do at Coney Island (and FYI, there are a lot of things to choose), just make sure you do it together.
7. Seriously, get to the beach
You are rapidly running out of time, and the chilly mid-Atlantic waters are actually tolerable in August and September. Soon you’ll have to pay for plane tickets to see your date in a bathing suit. The Rockaways, the Hamptons, or -- if you're feeling frisky -- the closest nude beach to NYC are much, much cheaper.
I know, I know. New Yorkers don’t go here. Ever. But... have you seen it since the renovation? It’s actually not all that terrible. Smorgasburg has its own outpost down there, and you can even drink on picnic tables on “historic” cobblestone streets. You don’t HAVE to go into Abercrombie & Fitch. You’ll probably definitely still hear it, though.
Sure, it’s not technically ON the water, but you can certainly see the water from above. Stroll the romantic gardens and take in some culture and then make out overlooking the Hudson.
Catch a concert together, or share a beer (or maybe just get your own beer) at this concert venue/bar/grill on Governors Island. Governors Island will close at the end of September, so get there while you can.
11. Actually be ON the water
There are so many boat options in NYC, and almost all of them can be classified as “date-y.” Unleash your inner elderly couple on a dinner cruise with Bateaux New York, sail back in time with Shanghai Mermaid’s Moonlight and Music on the Hudson, really up your game with a NYC night helicopter flight and Statue of Liberty cruise, or just take the Staten Island Ferry for free, bring some beers, and admire the sunset.
12. Go to France... kind of
Visit Le District Downtown at Brookfield Place for what is essentially the French Eataly. Be romantic by buying French things like cheese, meat, bread, pate (if you like pate), or visit one of the many bars and restaurants where all of those ingredients are put together into actual meals. Plus it’s all right on the NYC waterfront. Bonus: you 1) don’t have to buy a plane ticket to France, and 2) don't have to talk to real French people!
13. Join the North Brooklyn Boat Club
Get active and proactive together helping to preserve Bushwick Inlet Park. The North Brooklyn Boat Club is a community of members committed to cleaning up this section of waterfront open space. Paddle on kayaks and canoes, and also learn how to get involved in a community effort.
Did you know you could take a speedboat out to a floating clubhouse? That is a real thing. Visit the Honorable William Wall, which is the floating clubhouse of the Manhattan Yacht Club. Bring along some food and hit the clubhouse bar to take in the sunset and the skyline.
15. Go to Hoboken
Nooo!!!!!!!! Except that the waterfront has killer views of Manhattan that are almost awesome enough to make you forgive New Jersey. Also, NJ isn't all bad, apparently.
Sign up here for our daily NYC email and be the first to get all the food/drink/fun New York has to offer.