Does Valentine’s Day stress you out, or is it something you look forward to?
You’ve put it off as long as you possibly can, and despite pretending like it would never arrive, Valentine’s Day is right around the corner. Have you started stressing out about where to take your significant other and what flowers to buy to accompany the box of chocolates you got for them? There are only so many hours in a day, and you’re worried this holiday will be the same as last year — rushed and stressful.
Hold your horses! It doesn’t have to be this way. Too long have you dreaded Valentine’s Day and seen it as nothing more than an advertising scam to get lovesick couples to spend money.
What if you switched it up this year and did something, dare we say, unconventional? What if you took this Valentine’s Day as an opportunity for you and your partner to experience something new and exciting? If you’re already on board, we’ve got some great information for you. In this article, we’re going to provide you with 11 unconventional date ideas to make this Valentine’s Day unique and special.
Let’s Talk About It
Regardless of whether you’re a hopeless romantic who loves the lovey-dovey feeling that Valentine’s Day brings, or you dread this holiday every year, it’s important to bring up the topic of Valentine’s Day with your significant other before committing to any big plans.
Sit down with your partner and simply ask them about their expectations for this holiday. What makes them feel the most loved and fulfilled? Maybe they’re helpless to dramatic displays of affection and want you to serenade them with a boombox on your shoulder, or maybe they just want a genuine connection with their special someone. Opening up this conversation allows the two of you to understand each other’s expectations and manage them accordingly.
Not only will this leave no room for anyone to be disappointed, but it will allow you both to be on the same page for this holiday. Keep in mind that trying something new this Valentine’s Day is also a great way to freshen up the relationship. Maybe things have been a bit stagnant lately and the both of you are wrapped up in your jobs, or maybe you need to get that spark back. Doing something fun and new together is a great way to achieve this.
11 Unconventional Date Ideas for a Unique Valentine’s Day
1. Recreate Your First (or Favorite) Date Together
Do you remember that first date you two went on that had butterflies fluttering around in your stomach the whole time? Maybe it was a cute picnic or a movie and dinner afterward. Consider recreating that special memory together, and tweak it as you see fit. Maybe you’re dressing for the weather better this time so you don’t have to freeze, or maybe you’re surprising them with their favorite dessert afterward. Reminiscing about this carefree and giggly early stage of the relationship can provide some levity to the relationship.
2. Stay In and Have Your Own Wine and Cheese Tasting
Wine and cheese — need we say more? If the two of you aren’t particularly fond of going out, consider setting up your own wine and cheese tasting. There are so many ways to spice this idea up, too. You can try cheese and wine combinations that are new to both of you, or you could see who can make the best pairing. Did someone say fondue fountain? Take it to the next level!
For all the sober lovers out there, wine isn’t a necessity. Cheese goes great with plenty of things. Check out this list of the best alcohol-free alternatives to pair with your delicious cheese board.
3. Drive Through the Countryside
Something you may not think of just because it sounds so trivial is taking a scenic drive through the countryside at dawn and finding a beautiful spot to sit together and watch the sunrise. Put on your favorite tunes and belt them in the car together, or listen to your favorite crime podcast (spooky season doesn’t sleep!) to keep things fun while you commute. February can be quite chilly, so make sure to bring blankets and bundle up together to keep warm.
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4. Get Your Adrenaline Flowing
Studies have revealed that engaging in an activity that increases the production of adrenaline in the body can lead to passion and increased arousal. This means that opting for an activity that includes exercise and gets the blood flowing may cause you both to feel a bit frisky. This can be a bonus for couples who have been together so long that they’ve developed a Valentine’s Day tradition. Not only will this be a fun new activity for the two of you to try out, but it may reignite some lost passion in your relationship. Rock climbing, hiking, and bike riding are all great places to start.
5. Try a Progressive Dinner
Don’t know what a “progressive dinner” is? Allow us to explain! This is not your typical dinner out; instead, each course will be served in a different restaurant. The meal might begin with drinks at one establishment, move on to an appetizer at another, the main course at yet a third, and finally, dessert back where you started. Instead of just going out to dinner, you go on a mini-adventure together.
6. Take a Painting Class
If you and your sweet thing are a couple of artists, you may want to scratch that artistic itch with a fun activity that allows you both to exercise your creativity. A painting class is a great way to accomplish this. These days, many different establishments offer nightly painting classes that you can sign up for with your partner, and many of these places serve wine so the two of you can sip while you paint. Who knows, you may surprise yourself with your painting abilities.
7. Trivia Night
What better way to make your date swoon than by crushing a game of trivia at your local bar or brewery? Many establishments run themed trivia nights on weekdays, and there are sure to be plenty on Valentine’s Day. Put that extensive Harry Potter knowledge to use and stupefy everyone with your trivia skills!
8. Visit an Animal Shelter
Be careful with this one, all you animal lovers out there. If you’re prone to get attached to animals quickly or if you just hate saying goodbye to furry friends, proceed with caution! However, if the two of you are open to spending time with animals who need a friend, visiting a shelter is a great activity.
Not only will the two of you bond with each other as you give pets and kisses to all the good boys and girls at the shelter, but you’ll be doing a good deed as well. Many shelters will even let you take the dogs for a walk together. If you’re feeling extra spontaneous, you may even wind up bringing a new family member home from the shelter.
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9. Make an Escape
Maybe you are a thrill-seeker but don’t exactly want to get tired and sweaty rock climbing on a romantic Valentine’s date. That’s understandable, and we have you covered.
Escape rooms are taking the world by storm as a fun activity to engage in, especially on a date night. You must solve puzzles and gather clues to progress and eventually escape the locked room you and a group have been placed in. Not only is it a great activity for people who love solving puzzles, but it allows you to work together to solve them, which will make you feel closer to one another.
Escape rooms can get hectic, so this might not be the best idea for a first date as it can be easy to become overwhelmed. However, couples who have been together for a while may find that working together reignites some passion in their relationship.
10. Have an Outdoor Movie Night
If you’re lucky enough to live in a place that still has a running drive-in movie theater, take advantage of that and go on a drive-in movie date. It could be a rom-com, a thriller, or the scariest movie you can find, but what’s important is you’re snuggling up with your partner under some blankets.
If you don’t live in an area that has a drive-in theater, try making your own. There are a handful of affordable projectors you can buy and set up your own outdoor movie night in your backyard. That way, you get the privacy of your own home and the liberty to choose whatever movie you want to watch.
11. Take a Dance Class
Even if you are the clumsiest person you know and can’t fathom becoming an adept dancer, a beginner’s dance class can be a fun activity for you and your partner. If you take it seriously, the benefits of this activity can last a long time. You never know when you’ll need to bust out those moves on the dance floor. Not to mention, this activity will get both of your hearts pumping, which will lead to increased arousal.
Give Your Special Someone a Valentine’s Day to Remember
We know these suggestions might not fit the mold for every couple. You may absolutely loathe the sight of cheese, or you may hate the idea of painting for an entire evening. And that’s okay! If anything, this article is meant to give you a starting point for some unconventional date ideas to keep your relationship spicy.
Relationships are important for many reasons, but close connection with another person is especially important to maintaining a positive quality of life. When you invest time into strengthening your relationship with your significant other, you also allow yourself to develop as an individual and improve your own mental and emotional health.
Most importantly, you should have a conversation with your partner about what makes them feel the most loved and appreciated. Until you do that, you have no guarantee that the plans you make for this special day will even connect with your partner. Once you know what they need to feel loved, you can start planning a unique Valentine’s Day to remember.