While Chia and I have gone on many dates over the course of our relationship, we still love planning new date ideas for one another and spicing things up.
And since we both don’t value physical gifts as much, going on a new adventure together or planning a fun date night has become our go-to gift for any anniversary, birthday, holiday, or special occasion. After all, a memorable experience creates memories that last a lifetime.
So we’ve put together a list of some of our favorite date night ideas. There’s something here for couples of all types whether you’re more interested in artsy things, outdoorsy activities, or romantic night outs.
Remember–the most important part of having a great date night is keeping an open mind and being willing to try new things together!
For the romantic
1. Going to an interactive museum at night
If you thought that museums were only a day time thing, think again. Our second date ever was to Cal Academy Nightlife. We got to experience a really cool natural museum at night with music, creatures, and cocktails. They also had a lot of interactive exhibits including an earthquake simulation which was when I first made the move to hold Chia’s hand. 💕
2. Ferrying off to an island
One of the great benefits of living near a coast is that we have a lot of little surrounding islands that are beautiful and easy to visit for a getaway. Chia and I have taken advantage of anniversary weekends where we would take a ferry and plan a day trip to one of them for a romantic date.
Living in a city doesn’t give us many opportunities to see the stars at night, but if we happen to be visiting a more secluded town or area, we’ll plan a stargazing date night and make some s'mores to enjoy. If you’re lucky or happen to be in the right place at the right time, you could turn it into a northern lights watching date as well, but be prepared for a farther drive out and to stay up all night to catch it!
4. Go on a cruise to an exotic place
Cruises are great for exploring multiple cities/countries in a short amount of time and accessing natural beauty that’s only accessible via waterways. One of our favorite cruises was to Alaska where we got to wake up surrounded by glaciers and wildlife. There truly is nothing like waking up in the middle of the ocean and breathing in fresh air while listening to the soothing waves. Tip: getting a balcony room is 100% worth it to truly enjoy your cruise experience.
5. Making wine together
Why simply drink wine when you can make it? Many wineries offer wine making classes and you can turn this activity into a date night where you’ll both get to enjoy the fruits of your labor afterward. Sadly, Chia is a lightweight when it comes to drinking so it's really just me enjoying the fruits of our labor 😅
6. Dressing up to go to a speakeasy
Once you’ve been in a relationship for awhile, it can be easy to fall into a rut because you’re so comfortable with your partner. Well, if you need an excuse for dressing up and going out, a fun date night idea is to check out a speakeasy. You don’t need to go all out in 1920s clothing, but wearing a fancy outfit and making an effort to look nice in a fun environment can be a nice change to your weekly routine.
For the artsy & amusing:
Before we tried glass blowing, I had no idea the extensive process, technique, and hard work that goes into creating all of those beautiful and colorful glass sculptures that I often see in fancy places. Netflix even has a reality series on glass blowing called “Blown Away” where the competition gets really heated. While Chia and I aren’t close to being expert glass blowers, we did have a lot of fun taking a class together and we got to create these matching mini pumpkin sculptures during the holidays!
8. DIY art bar
If you haven’t noticed from our lesbian comics, Chia loves art! While she’s the artistic one in our relationship, I’m the one with the highest alcohol tolerance so naturally, I thought it’d be fun to plan a date night at a super cool local DIY Art Bar. It’s exactly what the name implies: Drinking + Doing Art Projects! What could be better?
9. Comedy show
Life is always better with laugher and a sense of humor. While we try to keep our comics pretty lighthearted and “wholesome”, we do enjoy standup comics who push the boundaries, especially, a badass woman like Ali Wong. Luckily, the Bay Area is also Ali Wong’s hometown so we got to see her on her recent tour and it did not disappoint. You can check out her equally hilarious book here.
10. Music concert
One of my favorite concerts that I’ve been to was a Taylor Swift concert that Chia got us tickets for. I’ve been a T-Swift fan ever since she came out “Teardrops on My Guitar" over 10 years ago and I currently have her new album and “Betty” on repeat. While Taylor might not be your or your girlfriend’s cup of tea, going to a music concert of one of your favorite artists or bands can make for an unforgettable date night. Here's a list of some of our favorite lesbian music artists and songs.
11. Axe throwing
This is definitely more of an amusing and adventurous date night idea than artsy, but it’s a whole lot of fun! You aim at a wooden target and throw an axe at it. It’s a great way for you both to channel all of your frustrations from the work week into a fun date night activity and you both can laugh at how bad your aim is or kiss when one of you hits the bullseye. 🎯
12. VR arcade
VR is a lot of fun and the technology has improved tremendously over the years. Back when we were kids, we would go to arcades that had pinball machines and DDR (if that’s your thing, then plan a date night at a retro arcade bar near you), but now we’ve got virtual reality! You’ll both look silly playing VR but it’ll be a blast and will bring out your inner child again.
For the outdoorsy & sporty
13. Camping in a treehouse
There’s nothing more rejuvenating than getting away together into the wilderness and enjoying nature. This date night idea is more of a weekend getaway and to make the most out of our time in nature, we decided to stay in a cool treehouse in the woods. But there are so many other unique accommodations that you can stay at including a dome, yurt, etc.
14. Kayaking around an island
This is both a cute date activity and a workout for your arms! Whenever we visit a beautiful place with a large body of water, we love renting a tandem kayak to explore the lakes, oceans, and areas not accessible by land. One of our most memorable kayaking trips was a 5-hr event kayaking around an entire island 😅 Being on the water gives you a new sense of perspective and bonus points if you bring some snorkeling gear to add to the date as well.
15. Picnic on a mountain peak
This one requires putting in a lot of work first (i.e. hiking to the top of the mountain) before you can reap the rewards. Since Chia and I both love hiking, on one of our trips to Denali National Park, we decided to hike up Mt. Healey and enjoy the breathtaking views of Alaska from 4000ft up! And of course, to reward ourselves and take a break, we enjoyed a nice little “picnic” of PB&J sandwiches up top while soaking in the glorious beauty.
Have you ever wanted to be like Katniss from The Hunger Games? Well, this was the closest we were ever going to get to living out our Katniss dreams. Archery is a lot of fun and really easy to pick up for beginners too. Many archery ranges will provide equipment rentals and there are both outdoor and indoor ranges that you can choose from.
17. Swing clubs at Top Golf
Hitting golf balls and drinking at a modern venue like Top Golf is a casual date night activity that you can do any day of the week. Top Golf has locations in many places and they make driving ranges fun, cool, and accessible again. On the other hand, if you're looking to play real golf, find a nice course near you for a game of 9 or 18 holes.
18. Do a themed race together
This is one of those activities that will bring you and your girlfriend closer because you’ll have to train for and compete in an intense race together. Also you’ll both commiserate in the physical pain you’re in the day after the race. I’ll still remember how Chia and I were both sore for a week after doing a Spartan race (which almost got cancelled due to a blizzard the day of 😅). If you want to do something more lighthearted and fun, check out races like the Santa Run, Color Run, or any 5k that’s also for a good cause.
19. Explore a new city on an electric scooter
With so many e-bike/scooter companies nowadays, it’s easy to hop on one simply by downloading an app such as Lime, Bird, etc. and then zoom around to explore a new town. Plus, you can park them anywhere when you’re done and they are very affordable and easy to rent!
20. Hot springs
Natural hot springs are one of nature’s great wonders. Unless you live near a natural hot springs, this idea will require some planning/road tripping but is 100% worth it. This takes being in a hot tub to another level. You can check out this list of all the hot springs in the U.S. and plan your trip accordingly.
For the animal & food lover
21. Petting baby animals
If you love animals as much as I do, then getting to play with and petty animals is like being in heaven. Some of our favorite date nights included going to a goat farm and petting baby goats while eating delicious goat cheese. It doesn’t get much better than that!
22. Dog sledding
Even though we don’t own any pets, we’re both huge dog lovers. So getting to be surrounded by beautiful huskies while dog sledding and then getting to hold and play with baby huskies was a dream date activity. While this idea is pretty niche and dependent on location, if you ever get the chance, make sure to incorporate this activity with your boo!
23. Going horseback riding
Horses are such majestic and powerful creatures that being on one makes you feel equally powerful. There are many places where you can ride horses and to make things even more memorable, try doing horseback riding in a scenic place such as on the beach or along a mountain trail.
24. Go on a food walking tour
What better way to bond with your girlfriend than through food? If you’re in a new city, one of the best ways to get a feel for the culture and local neighborhoods is to do a walking tour but make that a food walking tour instead! While we were able to find a guided food walking tour when we visited the Virgin Islands, you can easily DIY yourself and map out some highly-rated, hole-in-the-wall restaurants to explore.
25. Fruit picking
The best part about fruit picking is that you get to eat them while you pick them. Cherry picking has become one of our favorite date activities to do during the summer seasons, but you can go fruit picking for many other types of fruits as well (strawberry, blueberry, huckleberry, apple, peach, etc.)!
Planning fun date night activities for one another is one of the best ways to keep the spark alive in your relationship. If you need more inspiration, you can always look at sites like Gold Star, Stubhub, Eventbrite, Thrillist, etc.
And with the holidays coming up, you can even turn a date night idea into a gift idea.
Let us know what are your all-time favorite date night activities!
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