I used to really hate Valentine's Day. Before I met Dennis I was always single (and even got dumped on Valentine's Day once) on Valentine's Day and pined for that perfect romantic day. I always thought I wanted the typically cliche day full of flowers, chocolates, sappy card, a teddy bear, jewelry, and a romantic dinner at a fancy restaurant. All that sounds great (and I'm not knocking it), but I've never had that "perfect" Valentine's Day and a few years ago I realized that that's not really the Valentine's Day I want anyway. Once I got over the idea that I needed to have all those stereotypical things to have a good Valentine's Day, I actually started to enjoy the holiday (for the first time ever).
Valentine's Day is right around the corner and if you're trying to come up with some fun, low-key things to do, I put together a list of 14 amazing Valentine's Day date ideas. These are dates that would be perfect for any couple, no matter how long they've been together. I think these date ideas are a lot more fun than the typical candle light dinner options most people think of when trying to plan Valentine's Day. Plus, if you go on one of these dates, you're pretty much guaranteed moments of laughter and silliness which is way more fun than the serious romance of a candle light dinner.
14 Amazing Valentine's Day Date Ideas
- Karaoke. I've been singing karaoke since I was 13 (and not very well, mind you, but with passion and heart) and I can't think of a single time that I didn't enjoy myself. There's always an adrenaline rush when you get on stage and it doesn't' matter how skilled of a singer you are. Belt out some love songs, cheer each other on, and giggle - lots of giggling.
- Bowling. It doesn't matter how good or how bad you are at bowling, it's always fun. There's usually fun music playing and some bowling alleys even have disco or black-light bowling for more of a dance club feel. It's loud enough to be exciting (but you don't have to yell to be heard), and it gets you up and moving. Plus, bowling offers plenty of opportunities to either celebrate a great frame or laugh at yourself for throwing a gutter ball.
- Photo Scavenger Hunt. Take the day to do a little urban (or suburban) exploring. Come up with a list of things to photograph (graffiti art, someone wearing a blue hat, birds, a taxi), take your smartphones and click some photos. Try to get as creative as you can (with both the list and the pictures). Later, print out your favorite photos and hang them in your house or create a photo book from the day!
- Go to a Drive-In Movie. Drive-in movie theatres are making a comeback and are a fun (and romantic) way to see a movie. Most drive-in theatres offer a double (or even triple) feature for the price of one admission, have better food choices, and some even have playground equipment. To find a drive-in theatre near you, check out this directory of drive-ins. Don't have a drive in near you? Turn your living room into a drive-in. Put pillows and blankets on the floor, snack on movie food, and enjoy the show!
- Putt-Putt. Another great activity that you don't have to be good at to enjoy. I also can't think of a single time I've played putt-putt and not had at least one belly laugh. A little friendly competition can be exciting (take bets on who wins each round - or who looses the worst), and there are now indoor places, so if the weather is bad you can still play.
- Drink Wine and Paint. Have you been to one of those get drunk and paint classes? They're cropping up all over the place and are so much fun! You don't need to have any artistic skills to end the night with a painting that's probably good enough to hang in your house. Most places have date night options where each person paints half of a painting on their canvas and then the canvases can be hung together to make one larger piece of art.
- Browse a Bookstore. This date has the potential to be completely free (who am I kidding - I can't go into a bookstore without spending money). Go to your local bookstore and browse the aisles. Find a book you think your honey would like and vice versa. Take turns reading passages from cheesy romance novels and try not to laugh.
- Tour a Brewery. I'm not much for beer (yuck), but I know I'd enjoy a brewery tour. With so many micro-breweries cropping up out there, there's probably one not far from you. Most will offer tours with a sample at the end.
- Go to an Arcade. I miss the days when a mall would have a movie theatre and and arcade. I've never been good at video games, but I still hung out at the arcade when crawling the mall as a teenager. I never pass up an opportunity to go to one of those arcade fun centers and always have a great time! Bonus if you can collect enough tickets to win a prize!
- Go Hiking. Get out and explore some nature. Bring a picnic lunch and don't forget your camera. Make up silly names for all the plants and animals you see for a good laugh.
- Go on a Day (or Evening) Cruise. Most of us live somewhere near water. Chances are you can find a local day or evening cruise on a nearby river or lake. Some might even offer dinner or drinks!
- Explore a Flea Market. You never know what quirky things you'll come across at a flea market. Spend the day trying to find the weirdest thing at the market. You can also set a small budget and try to find something for only $10 that you'll love.
- Backyard Camping. Pitch a tent in your backyard and pretend that you're camping. Cook out on your grill and don't forget to make s'mores. Tell ghost stories and look at the stars.
- Test Drive Cars. Even if you're not in the market for a new car, it can be fun to do to different dealerships and test drive what they have to offer. Try out a sports car or a fancy luxury car - you don't have to limit yourself to what's practical or in your budget.
No matter what you decide to do on Valentine's Day, the important thing is to have fun. Hopefully this list gives you some inspiration on how you spend your day. What are some of your most fun date ideas? What's your most memorable Valentine's Day? I'd love to hear about it in the comments!!