Winter is the perfect time to cozy up indoors with your new or forever crush. But I say you elevate your wintertime dates with some quality time in the open air!
Turn up the romance and the adventure with these fun and creative winter date ideas. They’ll get your heart pumping, muscles moving and dopamine firing in the most memorable of ways.
Full Moon Hike
There’s nothing quite like the romance of a full moon. That’s why a full moon hike makes for the perfect date night for outdoor enthusiasts!
First things first: look up when the next full moon is, and mark it on your calendars. In the days leading up, research a trail in your area that’s not too long or strenuous but still one that’s exciting. And gentle enough to tackle in the dark.
On the day of, be sure to pack warm layers, a headlamp, and a thermos with a warm beverage of your choosing. Also, have a trail map downloaded just in case. A nice touch would be to make a “full moon playlist” for each other that you can play during the hike, too. And if you’re in a region with snow cover, boost your adventure by choosing a trail that requires snowshoes or cross-country skis!
Local Food Tour on Bicycle
Step one for this DIY food tour date is to pick a food theme together. Think tacos, pizza, or dumplings; something you can share and order small portions of to-go. Then, research three or four local restaurants or food trucks that specialize in that theme in a town or city near you. Now load up your personal bikes- or rent them!- and map out a route on your phones from one spot to another. Make sure they’re a little spaced out, so you get those legs moving between tastings. Eat outside, share the meals, and take small detours whenever inspiration strikes. And naturally, be sure to save room for dessert. It’s a date idea that be replayed with different styles of food each week, too!
Skiing or Snowboarding…Blindfolded!
It’s not as dangerous as it sounds if you do it slowly, believe me! Plus, it’s a fantastic trust-building date for those who’ve been together for a while. With that said, this idea definitely works best for those who live near ski areas and already have experience skiing or snowboarding.
Now let’s get to it! First, find a local, quiet ski hill for beginners; preferably, one outside of a ski resort. Pack your skis or board -or both!- and a couple of bandanas or scarves. An eye mask for sleeping works too. When you arrive at your desired spot, take turns blindfolding each other, and having your partner “guide” you down the hill. Yes, it’ll take time to get used to, but that’s the point! Step outside of your comfort zones, and work on your trust and communication skills. Especially for snow sports enthusiasts, it’s a super special date that will stick with you for a long time!
Ice Skating with Style
Ice skating is a memorable outdoor date no matter what your skills are. But let’s not make it too ordinary. That’s why for this date idea, you’ll be stopping at a local thrift store first to spice things up!
Here’s the plan: give each other a budget of about $10 or so, and a time limit of about 15 minutes. If you want to take it up a notch, come up with a certain theme, too, like “all yellow” or “black tie event.” The goal? Pick out the funkiest ice skating outfit that you can…for each other! Once you’ve both selected the other’s garb (remember, you’re supposed to feel silly in it), head to a local ice skating rink donning your new attire. You may get a few looks, but at least you’ll be grooving and laughing at the goofiness of it all together.
Winter Camping with a Sunrise Summit
There’s no better way to elevate a relationship than by crafting an outdoor adventure together. And one during the cooler winter months? Even better yet! Winter camping takes a bit more planning, though, so make sure you put some forethought into it so that your date airs on the side of comfortable.
Start by looking up campgrounds in your area that are close to a viewpoint hike. Gather up the necessary gear, and don’t forget extra blankets, camping chairs, and all the knick-knacks for cooking. What’s a camping date without a romantic bonfire dinner, after all?
Before heading to your campsite, stop to buy food you can cook over an open flame, firewood and a firestarter if needed. When you arrive, set up camp and celebrate with a bonfire-cooked meal. If it’s a clear night, look for shooting stars and share your favorite camping stories!
Don’t stay up too late, though, because in the morning, set out for a sunrise hike together. Sure, it’ll be cold and a bit of a struggle until you get moving. But catching those first rays of sun together from a scenic viewpoint after a night camping in the open air? That’s as romantic as it gets!
Sparking Creativity in Nature
Time to unleash your inner artists! First, get a couple of sketchpads and choose three “mediums” you both agree on. Options like: colored pencils, acrylic paints, watercolors, charcoal, crayons…you name it! Then, find a park or botanical garden in your area. Pack all of your art supplies, some beverages and snacks, and a picnic blanket just in case there are no tables or benches. Be sure to dress for the weather!
When you arrive, walk around and take turns picking different scenes to illustrate with each medium. And, most importantly, with your date being the main subject! It’s a great way to connect- or reconnect- since you’ll be looking pretty intensely at each other while you tap into your creativity. When you’re finished, head to a local café or pub to warm up!