For a state fairly quaint in area, historic New Jersey boasts amazing geographical diversity, including extensive woodlands, lush valleys, rivers, mountains, and a long stretch of Atlantic coastline. Among the cities and towns in this fascinating state, you can find an abundance of festivities and events to suit your lifestyle and mood on Valentine’s Day. When you stay at one of many incredible New Jersey vacation rentals, you can easily and conveniently enjoy unique opportunities such as romantic hot air balloon rides, luxury cruises, horse-drawn carriage rides, wine tastings, and other entertaining special activities. Here are the top Valentine’s Day getaway spots in the state of New Jersey.

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1. Atlantic City

Atlantic City is the perfect place for a hand-in-hand moonlight walk along the famous Boardwalk while you admire the vast Atlantic Ocean, the marina, and your partner. Don’t miss a visit to the historic Absecon Lighthouse, which offers two-for-one entry to the tower on Valentine’s Day. After the tower climb, join the Evening of Romance and Renewal in the Keeper’s Cottage, where you can enjoy dancing and champagne, and even renew your vows in a special ceremony. At the Qua Baths and Spa, take the opportunity to relax with a couple’s full body massage, facial, and long soak in the Roman bath. Savor a four-course Valentine’s Day dinner of seafood or filet mignon at the luxurious Gallagher’s Steakhouse. For a fun excursion, head for the southern tip of the New Jersey seacoast and follow the Cape May Wine Trail. After an early lunch, board a trolley and visit Natalie Vineyard, Hawk Haven Vineyard, and Willow Creek Winery for tastings, tours of the vineyards, and fascinating facts about wine making.

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2. Princeton

Princeton, home of renowned Princeton University, is a lovely small city in central New Jersey. Where to dine in Princeton, among its eclectic selection of restaurants for your special Valentine’s Day meal, is a Mediterranean-themed establishment called Mediterra, which features signature dishes from romantic locales such as Spain, Italy, Greece, and the south of France. Renew yourselves with a special side-by-side couples package of massage therapy at the Alchemy Mind and Body Wellness Day Spa. Alternatively, head for the extensive grounds of the Gentle Healing Wellness Spa in nearby Cranbury for the special Valentine’s Day Two Be Well package, which includes an aromatherapy target massage, aromatherapy steam, facial rejuvenation, and lunch with champagne and chocolate. From your Princeton vacation rental, visit the Howell Living History Farm in nearby Lambertville and enjoy Valentine’s Day on the Farm, where you go for a romantic horse-drawn carriage ride, savor tasty snacks, and drink hot chocolate.

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3. Paterson

When in Patterson, experience a unique holiday event with the Valentine’s Day Masked Ball at Lambert Castle. Organized by the Passaic County Historical Society, this masquerade event includes drinks, light refreshments, and dancing. While you’re there, be sure to tour the fascinating museum, which occupies the entire first and third floors of the castle. For a special holiday treat, visit the Woodhouse Day Spa in nearby Montclair, which offers a Valentine’s Day package called Two’s Company.

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4. Hoboken

Hoboken lies across the Hudson River from New York City and delivers a great view of the Manhattan skyline. For a unique Valentine’s Day experience, join a couple’s cooking class at Hudson Table. If you prefer to be served, sit for a special Valentine’s Day three-course dinner at the romantic Brass Rail. Each meal includes chocolate truffles and a complementary rose. From Lincoln Harbor at the north end of Hoboken, take a Valentine’s Day Dinner Cruise with Spirit Cruises. This romantic trip includes dinner, champagne, and dancing. Along the way, the ship passes many of New York’s most iconic sightseeing spots. Just north of Lincoln Harbor in Fort Lee is Spa Dew, whose menu features several unique Valentine’s Day couples packages. Romancing the Stone features reflexology and a warm stone massage, Mad About You includes facials and deep tissue massages, and First Kiss involves a sweet and sensual chocolate scrub.

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5. Branchburg

The town of Branchburg sits at a lovely spot where multiple branches of the Raritan River converge. Near your Branchburg vacation rental lies the Raritan Valley Community College Planetarium and its Romancing the Stars Valentine’s Day event, which focuses on stars, constellations, and stories that highlight the themes of love and romance. If the planetarium show makes you want to reach for the sky, head over to nearby Clinton for a romantic aerial view of the countryside in a hot air balloon provided by In Flight Balloon Adventures. For Valentine’s Day, take a special two-person couples flight just before sunset. Alba Vineyard and Winery in Milford offers tours and tastings of first-class wine paired with gourmet food and chocolates as part of its February Wine and Chocolate Weekends.

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6. Ashbury Park

The city of Ashbury Park lies on the incomparably beautiful Atlantic Ocean seacoast, and its boardwalk and beach are rated as among the best in New Jersey. For a fun and unique Valentine’s Day gift shopping experience, check out the Can’t Buy Me Love Valentine’s Market in the Grand Arcade at Convention Hall. This exciting event features chocolate, flowers, food, live entertainment, and roller skating. Tim McLoone’s Supper Club on the Ashbury Park boardwalk serves up a renowned multi-course Valentine’s Day dinner. For a truly unbelievable and invigorating Valentine’s Day thrill, head up the beach to Manasquan to observe or participate in the annual Valentine’s Plunge. Every year, crowds of people jump into the icy cold waters of the Atlantic for charity. When you crave Valentine’s Day sweets, try Suzi’s Sweet Shoppe in Middletown for the Valentine’s Day special of strawberries dipped in chocolate.

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7. Belvidere

The historic town of Belvidere is in northwest New Jersey on the scenic Delaware River. For a once-in-a-lifetime experience, go to the Valentine’s Murder Mystery Dinner at Four Sister Winery. The theme focuses on a murder mystery plot with a detective, a victim, and suspects. For elevated suspense and intrigue, plot points are supplied by the guests in the audience. Besides the fascinating story, the event includes a buffet dinner, wine tasting, and a tour of the wine cellar.

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