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8 Terrific NYC Cruises Where You Can Dine and Sip with a View

Category Tours

|by ShowTickets Editors |


Maximize your NYC visit by hopping on a cruise where you can eat, drink, be merry – and take in gorgeous skyline views

New Yorkers are all about efficiency, from the routes they take to maneuver the city streets to ordering takeway in a New York minute. River cruises slot right in with that ethos. A sail on the Hudson or the East River not only shifts one's perspective on the twinkling skyline of Manhattan but also provides a floating vantage point where you can toast with a glass of champagne, nibble on sweet treats, or come together for a dance. The following cruises all offer the chance to indulge with a stellar view, whether you want to feast on lobster and beer or mimosas and brunch.

Shearwater Champagne Brunch Sail (Photo: Courtesy of Manhattan by Sail)

Shearwater Champagne Brunch Sail (Photo: Courtesy of Manhattan by Sail)

Bateaux New York Dinner Cruise
Inspired by the all-glass boats popular in Europe, the Bateaux New York is a special vessel with outstanding views through its glass walls and glass ceilings. After boarding this elegant ship, guests will be escorted to a candlelit dining room. As the ship sails along the Hudson and East Rivers and a pianist sits down to play a Baby Grand, a three-course meal is served. You'll pass by numerous landmarks while filling up on crab chowder, beet and goat cheese salad, miso-glazed cod, and braised short ribs. Before finishing the evening with a spin on the dance floor, dessert will be served, satisfying a sweet tooth with New York-style cheesecake. This is a subdued, classy cruise that's perfect for a sophisticated crowd. Departs from Pier 61, bateauxnewyork.com

Clipper City Lobster and Beer Lovers Sail
Many seafood lovers have a lasting taste for lobster. This themed sail aboard the Clipper City provides a picnic on the water, serving up Maine-style lobster rolls from the legendary Luke’s Lobster, complete with all the essential accompaniments: chips, coleslaw, pickles, and potato salad. During a relaxed two-hour sail, guests can kick back with unlimited craft beer from Coney Island Brewing Company and watch the sunset from the deck of a replica of a Civil War-era cargo schooner. Depending on the crowd, this beer-centric sail can take on a particularly festive atmosphere and is a good match for a group of friends looking to raise a glass. Departs from Battery Park, manhattanbysail.com

Hornblower Manhattan Dinner Cruise
A 210-foot yacht is the luxurious chariot for a dinner sail from Hornblower Cruises. This decadent evening kicks off with sipping champagne (or the welcome drink of your choice) as the boat sails out onto the Hudson River, passing landmarks including One World Trade Center and the Statue of Liberty. After an hors d’oeuvre reception hour, a four-course meal -- including everything from filet mignon to wild salmon -- begins, with breaks between courses for a stroll along one of the outdoor decks or a climb to the Skydeck, 65 feet above the water, for a photo or two. After a nibble from the dessert station, let the DJ tempt you to the dance floor for a lively finish to this three-hour cruise. Departs from 353 West St., hornblower.com

Hornblower Sunday Brunch Jazz Cruise
For all the fun of Hornblower Cruises by day, opt for the Sunday Brunch Jazz Cruise. The same luxurious yacht sets sail on the Hudson for a two-hour cruise that may be a better match for children and families than the after-dark longer dinner cruise. You will be welcomed aboard with a cocktail (or sparkling apple cider for the little ones) before tucking into a brunch buffet, with both breakfast and lunch options, including vegetarian paella and rosemary garlic chicken. A dessert station and constantly flowing mimosas are indulgent touches to this daytime cruise, setting sail at 12:30pm and offering views of New York icons from the George Washington Bridge to the Statue of Liberty. Be sure to climb to the Skydeck for some fantastic pictures before taking a spin on the dance floor to a live jazz band. Departs from 353 West St., hornblower.com

Spirit of New York Dinner Cruise
One of the great summer pleasures in New York is raising a glass on a rooftop. The Spirit of New York brings that pleasure to the Hudson River, with a spacious top deck that has the atmosphere of a rooftop on water. After a scenic cocktail, this dinner cruise includes a three-course menu with dishes such as a Mediterranean couscous and chickpea salad and braised short ribs. In addition to the top deck, this dinner cruise is unique for its talented singing waitstaff that add an extra dose of entertainment to the three-hour tour. A DJ spins a range of music across genres after dinner. Departs from Pier 61, spiritcruises.com

Shearwater Champagne Brunch Sail
There’s something pleasantly cheeky about feasting and raising a glass by daylight. The Shearwater -- an 82-foot vintage schooner from the roaring 1920s -- offers just that opportunity with its champagne brunch sail. Setting sail at 11am from North Cove Marina, this two-hour tour serves up brunch classics including bagels with cream cheese, smoked salmon, granola and yogurt, fruit, and sliced country breads. Brioche sandwiches and quiche round out the food menu; coffee and tea are also served. As the schooner sails past Ellis Island and the Verrazano Bridge, you’ll have the chance to toast with a glass of prosecco from the open bar (beer and other wines are also available for purchase). This casual, open-air sail is an ideal pick for a sunny Sunday afternoon brunch -- no dress code required. Departs from Brookfield Place, manhattanbysail.com

World Yacht Dining Cruises
No T-shirts, flip flops or tank tops are permitted onboard the refined World Yacht Dining Cruise -- this three-hour tour offers a chance to get dolled up, dance to a live jazz band and dine on a four-course menu. Arrive early, before the boat sets sail, to soak in the views and snap photos from the rooftop lounge. Upscale menus include dishes such as Long Island duck breast with saffron risotto. This ship sets itself apart not only for its tasty menu but also for its extras, from onboard photographers to marble bathrooms to a handy coat check. The route passes a variety of New York landmarks, from the United Nations to the Brooklyn Bridge to the Statue of Liberty. Departs from West 41st St and 12th Ave., worldyacht.com

The Water Table
The Water Table is a restaurant set on a boat, with the goal of bringing a New England tavern feel to a World War II-era historic ship that cruises through the scenic New York Harbor. Enclosed and protected from the elements (but with big windows for taking in those iconic views), this cruise serves up restaurant-quality cocktails from Moscow mules to negronis to salty dogs. The fresh, seasonal menu includes items such as a kale casear salad with garlic croutons and a Maine lobster roll with knuckle and claw meat, with chips on the side. Whoopie pies round out the 2.5-hour sail. Also, enjoy a variety of local beers as the boat makes its way from Greenpoint, Brooklyn, under the Brooklyn Bridge, to the Statue of Liberty. FDR Dr. at 23rd St., thewatertablenyc.com

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