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There’s nothing quite like being out on the water on a gorgeous day and City Cruises has lots of sailing options along the Hudson River that make for a fun day out! We recently took a trip aboard The Spirit of New Jersey for its 35th-anniversary celebration and the kickoff of the summer cruise season.

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Once on board, you’ll see that the interior of the first floor (called the second deck) is set up for a fun afternoon, complete with a fully stocked bar, buffet line and dance floor.

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There’s another party room if you walk down the steps to the first deck, or instead walk up a flight of stairs and you come to the sky deck with lounge-like sofas, high-top tables, party games (like Giant Jenga and Connect 4) and another stocked bar. This is where you want to be when you set sail, because once the yacht starts to go you’ll recognize landmarks like the Colgate Clock in Jersey City, the Water’s Soul monuments along the Hoboken waterfront and the Lackawanna train station. Across the Hudson are icons like Hudson Yards, Little Island and the Freedom Tower.

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You’ll want to take in all of your surroundings during this experience, like the birds flying above, helicopters giving tours, the Staten Island Ferry passing by, and jet skis and sailboats cruising alongside. There are plenty of opportunities to take photos – and selfies – with gorgeous NYC skyline views as the backdrop.

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The highlight of the trip was sailing up close to The Statue of Liberty. As the captain plays patriotic music through the speakers, you’ll get chills seeing the gateway to our country. There is plenty of room along the railings to get a picture in front of Lady Liberty – and because the boat turns back at this point, you get to see her for an extended period.

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City Cruises offers various sails aboard its six different yachts. There are special events like Valentine’s Day, Easter, Mother’s Day and Father’s Day, Fourth of July and NYE (imagine seeing fireworks from the boat!), fall foliage and Christmas cruises; or you can charter the boat for a wedding, charity event, work meeting or reunion. Depending on the day of the week, lunch, brunch or dinner options are available.

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The buffet has a variety of options like Mexican birria chicken, jerk pork, orecchiette pasta with vegetables and mini desserts.

Keep in mind that even though the waters of the Hudson are mostly calm, you may at times feel the boat rocking. If you tend to get seasick, be sure to take anti-nausea medication or wear a sea band.

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City Cruises by Hornblower docks The Spirit of New Jersey at the Lincoln Harbor Marina, located at 1500 Harbor Blvd. in Weehawken. Public parking is available in the Whole Foods Parking Garage on Level 2, with the main entrance on Waterfront Terrace between 19th Street and River View Terrace. The specific address for the garage is 1350 Waterfront Terrace, Weehawken, which should be recognized by your nav.

There are also sails that leave from Newport Marina and Liberty Landing Marina in Jersey City, as well as Chelsea Piers and Pier 15 in NYC.

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