Date nights in this lively city are always a good idea, but they aren’t always cheap. If you and your sweetheart are looking for a budget-friendly way to enjoy the city together, check out these 12 cheap and free date ideas to try in Jersey City, New Jersey.
Perfect for a fun and cheap, day date, check out Project Eats, a food festival held by Jersey City’s non-profit foundation, The Jersey City Project. It’s got gourmet food trucks, hand-picked beverage bars and more. Plus, it only happens for one weekend in the summer, so you better make sure you’re there.
Located in the historic downtown area on Newark Ave, couples can breeze up and down this four-block-long plaza while enjoying a night out on the town under the glittering string lights. During the warmer months, it draws a bigger crowd of people taking a reprieve outside the bars and restaurants, which makes it all the more fun for people watching.
On a warm, sunny day, head over to Newport Green Park to catch some rays. This four-acre landscaped area has a sandy beach spot that overlooks the river and city skyline, plus, a playground, green space and even special events throughout the year.
For under $20, the two of you can sip on local craft beer and play throwback arcade games at the Jersey City Barcade location. This is the ultimate date night for old-school video game lovers who want to hang out in a fun and laid back atmosphere. Try your hand at Donkey Kong, Crazy Taxi or Miss Pac Man for a night of some seriously retro gaming.
Pack up a picnic lunch, bring your bikes and your sweetheart, and head over to Liberty State Park, 1,212 acres worth of green space, walkways and panoramic Manhattan skyline views. Here you can walk the two mile-long loop or rent a Citi bike and take in the sights along the way — it’s the perfect spot for an outdoor date.
Make your way over to the Journal Square Green Market to grab everything you need for a romantic, homemade dinner for two. The market vendors sell fresh fruits and veggies, plus, homemade goods such as empanadas, mozzarella, and even fresh fish. Not only is it inexpensive, but it’s a great way to get involved with your local farming community as a couple.
Strolling down the long Hudson River Waterfront Walkway, hand-in-hand will take you from Liberty State Park and all the way up to the neighboring town of Hoboken. Stop off at a pier to watch the fishermen, enjoy the panoramic view of the city skyline, and pop in and out of the many restaurants and stores that dot the walkway on your self-guided tour.
For when you can’t get time alone, this dog-friendly and kid-friendly spot is your go-to. Check out the Lutze Biergarten for good beers, cheap food trucks and oh, yeah, panoramic city skyline and riverfront views. They’ve also got a weekly brunch menu, plus, specials all throughout the summer.
Learn something new, take in classic and modern works of art, and soak up Russian culture together by visiting the Museum of Russian Art (MORA). The museum regularly hosts opening and closing events for their exhibitions, plus, live performances, readings and informational sessions that are budget-friendly. The suggested donation for non-members to enter the museum is only $10 a pop.
Perfect date nights are made of dining on freshly-made pizza and beer al fresco. Check out the cozy, causal and lively rooftop bar at Porta and enjoy some live music at their downstairs area all night.
During the wintertime, a few Jersey City hangouts will transform their frozen outdoor spaces into skating rinks! It’s worth checking out, so keep your eye on Pershing Field’s swimming pool turned ice rink and the Newport Green Park’s sandy beachfront area that morphs into a festive winter wonderland.
Jersey City street art
If you and your honey are art lovers, then this one’s right up your “alley”. While it might be easy to miss in your everyday life, all around town are beautiful street art murals painted by Jersey City locals. While you stroll around the city’s busiest spots, duck into alleyways and side streets, or just pay attention to the brick walls to enjoy the community’s larger-than-life outdoor art gallery.
These recommendations were updated on March 21, 2018 to keep your travel plans fresh.