Let’s face it: Most Valentine’s Day dates are boring.
Which is not to say that you’re boring. It’s just that most of the dates guys take girls on for Valentine’s Day are of the “been there, done that” variety. It doesn’t matter how nice the restaurant is or how great the cinema is: It’s still “dinner and a movie.” Been there. Done that. Yet another manufactured holiday.
If you’re taking your lady friend out for Valentine’s Day, let’s aim a little higher this year, with some fresh Valentine’s date ideas. Not just to impress her, but to make sure tha you’re going to have a better time when you think outside the box and go for something a little more out of the ordinary. If you’re having fun, she’s having fun, and the two of you will have a V-Day you won’t forget.
There are other benefits to getting off the beaten path. For one thing, what you spend in creativity you don’t have to spend in money. For another, creating true experiences delivers much more happiness than mere things. A bunch of the ideas I’m about to share are free or cheap, but full of significance and joy. And the truth is, when you go out of your way to do something fun and creative for Valentine’s Day, she won’t be wondering what you’re spending. She’ll be too busy having a killer time.
So let’s talk about some fun, exciting, unusual Valentine’s date ideas.
Make Art Together
Making something together is a true bonding experience. Why? Because you’re creating something that no other people would create together. And you’re doing it by combining your creative and personal tastes, which is a heady combination.
One of the easiest ways to do this is by writing a song together. How many guys have guitars sitting around their apartments that have been collecting dust since college? This can work just as well — and often even better! — if one of you isn’t musically inclined. If you’ve got the equipment to do so, recording your smash hit for posterity beats a Hallmark card.
But this doesn’t need to be sophisticated. You can do this with any art form you’re comfortable (or, even better, uncomfortable) with. You can write a silly one-act play together, then act it out. You can make a sculpture together, or paint a picture. There are even companies that sell art kits for you to merge your sex life with your art life. If any of this seems to overwhelming, a surprise trip to Color Me Mine can deliver the perfect amount of ridiculous and magical.
Every couple can discover one art form, big or small, to collaborate on. It might not be a masterpiece, but it will be an experience neither of you will forget.
Cook a Mystery Meal
Here’s how this game works: Head to your grocery store in search of something you have no idea to cook — the stranger, the better.
Then take the ingredients home, pick a dish, and get to work. You’re not only working together to create a new recipe, you’re also solving the problem of “how do I incorporate this weird food into what I have in the kitchen?”
Even if you end up going out to dinner after a culinary disaster, neither of you will forget this Valentine’s Day. The randomness of this challenge will strike the perfect note on an otherwise predictable holiday.
Have a Food Fight
One of the great things about being an adult is that you can do all the stuff your parents never let you do as a kid. That can be jumping on the bed (hey, that’s not one of the worst Valentine’s date ideas either!), eating cookies for breakfast (I tried it and I don’t recommend it) or having a food fight.
You might want to lay down some tarp or plastic sheeting before you get into this. It’s going to get messy. It’s also going to get fun — really fun.
And it can be even more fun when it’s just you versus your girl. You might even place a little wager on it. The messiest person “loses,” but really both of you will always win.
Go Out and Get Lost
Whenever boredom struck as a kid, I would head out and see where a coin toss would take me. Now that I’m grown and I’ve done it with my girl, I can tell you it’s a lot more fun when you have a female companion.
So how do you get lost on purpose? And why would you want to?
Because getting lost is fun. You’ll discover new places, see things you’d never see, and generally have an experience that simply “going somewhere” will rarely deliver. (Again, we’re looking for experiences here.) You’re basically exploring the world around you, by navigating a part of it that you wouldn’t normally encounter.
Here’s one way to go about this: Go for a walk, hop on a bike or get in your car (whichever option is easiest, most comfortable and most fun). Then, start moving in one direction. Any time you come to a major intersection, flip a coin. The rules matter less than the journey. Whatever you do, follow the coin where it leads you.
In the process, you’ll have a date neither of you could possibly plan, but that will surpass any evening you’d spend in a restaurant.
Take a Trip to a Ghost Town
This might not work if you live east of the Rockies. For my Western brothers, however, ghost towns are the coolest place you’ve never been. There are scores of these in states like California and Arizona, where former gold and silver rush towns abound. When the rush was over, so was the town. And now they can be part of your adventure.
Some of these have been remade into tourist traps. Those can be fun, but even better are the ones that are true ghost towns, complete with decaying old saloons, tumbleweed, cactuses, the whole bit. These will be your own private amusement parks for the evening.
And I’d bet my last dollar that no one has taken her anywhere like this. You don’t have to be a history buff or a wayward traveler to enjoy this one. It’s very accessible, and very cool.
Check Out a Filming Location
You don’t have to live in or around Los Angeles to check out a film location. In fact, an enterprising individual made it so that you can search Google Maps for filming locations near you. Whether it’s the house from the Goonies, the bar from Goodfellas or even just retracing Ferris Bueller’s steps on his day off, it can be a lot of fun to check filming locations near you.
In a sense, this is a kind of a DIY guided tour. You’ll be amazed at how impressed she’s going to be when you take the time out to find spots from her favorite flicks. You’re reliving an experience you’ve both had on the screen, but injecting a new experience right here in the real world. That combination is rare and exciting.
Do a Tour of Local Urban Legends and Ghost Stories
In the town where I grew up, legend had it that there was a grave in the local cemetery that glowed.
So on Friday or Saturday nights, more often than not, my friends and I would end up there. And it was awesome. A cool group of curious people would usually show up, and we’d all pitch in to piece together the stories we had heard about the mythical grave.
No matter where you live, a quick Internet search is going to turn up a bunch of spots within driving distance where you can play amateur ghost hunter. Not only is it strange and exciting, but when she gets spooked, where do you think she’ll turn?
There’s something uniquely thrilling about mixing fear with safety and adventure.
Redecorate Your Apartments
Change is exciting, and we don’t get enough of it.
One fun way to bond while creating a new experience is to spend an evening moving things around the apartment (yours or hers, or both), rearranging the furniture and basically recreating that early thrill of moving into a new place.
Make the experience even more authentic by grabbing a case of beer and some pizza to fuel you for the night. And don’t worry if you don’t like it. If it doesn’t work out, you can always move everything back where it was. The fun is in the process of shaking things up together.
So there you have it — eight unusual Valentine’s date ideas to make the most of V-Day this year.
Some of these dates will work magic, while others might fall flat. That’s perfectly normal, and that’s why you have your choice of adventures. You can also modify or combine any of these to create the perfect experience for you.
The point, of course, is to do something different this Valentine’s Day, something that will be more interesting than the usual dinner and a movie. Not only will you impress her with your creativity, you’ll also have a shared experience neither of you will ever forget.
If you have your own creative Valentine’s date ideas, share them with us!