Sure, we love a night spent curled up on the couch at home. It’s cozy, comfortable and free, but getting into the great outdoors (or, at least just out of the living room) is another option that’s not just good for your health, it can seriously improve the quality of your relationship, too.
Whether you’re going on a date for the first time, or hanging out with your long-term partner in crime, these date ideas will get your blood flowing and peel you away from that semi-permanent body-shaped groove that’s now fixed in your sofa.
Go see a band you’ve never heard of
Pick up one of those local newspapers you often overlook, flip to the live entertainment section, close your eyes and point to a band on the page. That’s your date night, bonding over a crazy, spontaneous decision and maybe even finding a new fave group along the way.
Or go back in time
Pick an era (let’s say, the ’50s), dress for the occasion (poodle skirts!) and dream up some tasty dishes that fit the theme (casseroles, casseroles, casseroles). Each person can be responsible for their own dish, or you can cook together.
Enter a Rock Paper Scissors competition
Chances are, there’s a bigger Rock Paper Scissors scene in your town than you thought. Many pubs are hosting tournies that are fun, hilarious and a great way to meet new friends. (We entered in Vancouver and had a blast.) Plus, you KNOW you’re better at RPS than your significant other. Why not show off?
Spend an afternoon snowshoeing
Rent a pair of snowshoes or pick up a used set, and get moving. A quick Google search for snowshoeing trails in your area should yield a handful of results. You don’t need to have a high fitness level to enjoy a romp in the snow either, so no excuses.
Borrow your kids’ toboggan and hit the hill
Pick a hill that you know isn’t going to be populated by children (or go after dark when they’re in bed), use a few of your kids’ sleds (cardboard is also acceptable) and fly down your neighbourhood’s biggest (okay, second biggest) hill with the reckless abandon of a 10-year-old.
Enjoy the community
Across the country, communities big and small boast all sorts of winter festivals. From Winterlude in Ottawa, to the World Ski and Snowboard Festival in Whistler, a little bit of research is all it takes to discover outdoor celebrations happening in your area. Layer up and get to know your area with your favourite human in tow.
Make fireplace s’mores
You’ll need a fireplace for this next one, but there’s nothing more delicious and romantic than making s’mores in your PJs next to a roaring fire. You know what goes great with s’mores? Port. No kidding. Cheers to a night in.
Attend a bar trivia night
An evening at your local watering hole can be fun, but why not throw some competitive trivia into the mix? It’s basically like night school where everyone drinks. It’s also an entertaining way to work together as a team, and some pubs will even buy a round for the winners.
Have a snowman making competition
You don’t have to stray far from home or break the bank to have some good old fashioned fun with your lover. Find some old scarves and hats, a few carrots and have yourself a snowman making competition. Whoever makes the best one within 30 minutes wins–loser owes the winner a massage when you’re ready to warm up at home.
Make a fort and do adult things inside
If you loved building forts as a child, you’re going to love the adult version. Couch cushions and bed sheets will still do the trick–maybe drape some pretty string lights for ambiance. Then just layer the ground with blankets and pillows, and get close.
Take your laptops to the library
If you’re a busy couple and can’t imagine a few hours away from work, take your laptops to the local library or a cozy neighbourhood coffee shop. You’ll explore new surroundings together while still being productive.
Visit an animal shelter
Even if you’re not on the market for a new pet, there’s something heart-warming about visiting with the pets at your local animal shelter. Many of these not-for-profit organizations are in need of volunteers–maybe your one-time weekend date will turn into a recurring event for a good cause.
Create some art together
Paint lounges are places where you can paint and drink, and have been popping up across the country. Bring your lover and a creative mindset and tap into your left brain in a fun setting where you don’t have to clean up after you’re done. We made our apartment’s new statement piece at the GTA’s Paint Lounge. Highly recommended.
Cocktail party for two
Who says lavish drinks are only for big parties? Challenge your inner mixologists with some cocktail recipes you wouldn’t ordinarily attempt and then drink to your accomplishments with your bae.