They call the beginning of a relationship the honeymoon period for a reason. You have energy and excitement, you’re both putting in a lot of effort to impress each other, your date nights are creative and fun, and it’s a great time of life. But, eventually, you reach a stage in your relationship where a lot of that forward momentum winds down.
This is when you learn new ways to be with each other and have other things to get excited about—things like staying in on a Friday night, sleeping in on a Sunday, or agreeing to do nothing together becoming surprisingly fun, and ya, maybe even romantic.
But if it becomes too routine, these new intimacies can get boring. Even the most comfortable and secure relationships needs a little bit of maintenance on occasion. One way to get out of the rut? Finding some creative date ideas you might not have tried just yet.
If you’re looking for some fun things to do that aren’t staying in and watching a movie, here are a few date ideas for couples to consider:
Aside from the reviews, one of the best uses for Yelp is discovering new places in your town that you might not have known about. Feeling fancy? Why not try booking a reservation at the top-rated restaurant in your area. Feeling adventurous? Try somewhere new or a type of food you usually don’t eat. Feeling like breaking the rules? Why not get some desert for dinner. It’s an easy way to find somewhere different to go.
Go on a tour of where you grew up.
If you live in or close to your hometown, a fun date is to drive through your old stomping grounds and see all of the sights that were important to your upbringing. I once fell off my bike and broke my arm on that corner. That’s the tree I had my first kiss in. This is the short cut we took to my friend Eric’s house. Check out your high school, friend’s houses, or see if your favorite local hangout is still in business. You’re bound to learn a lot about your significant other this way, and it’s a wonderful way to strengthen your connection.
Check out a random museum.
Even if you don’t live in a big city, your town may have small museums and exhibits that you never knew of before. Perhaps it’s a quaint little art center tucked deep in the town, or maybe it’s a house museum that you thought was purely residential. Many towns have children’s museums, which can be fun to check out even if you don’t have kids. The more random the museum, the better. It’ll be an adventure and give you more to chat about and explore.
Go on a hike.
Even if you don’t think of yourself as the outdoorsy type, have no fear—there are hiking trails for all levels, and they’re a great way to get some exercise together. Just make sure to have a good pair of boots and a sense of adventure. If you’re scared to go all-in, you’re bound to find a nice local walking path for a similar experience.
There are so many wonderful organizations that would love a little help. Find one that both you and your significant other love, and try to spend some time together making a real difference. One good suggestion is your local animal shelter—most of them are often in need of people to walk and groom dogs and play with cats.
Screen your favorite childhood movies together.
Bust out your old DVDs of find your old favorites on whatever streaming service you use. By watching each other’s favorite movies from the ’70s, ’80s, ’90s, or ’00s, you can both be entertained and learn a little about each other. Just make sure to make a ton of popcorn.
Take a road trip.
Sometimes, you’ll never know what you’ll find just an hour or two away. Find fun tourist attractions to visit together that one to two hours away. Part of the enjoyment will come from the car ride itself, especially if you prep with snacks, podcasts, and playlists. Don’t be afraid to visit the goofiest locations and take some memorable photos.
Make an elaborate dinner together.
If you’ve depended on Blue Apron and restaurants to handle your dinners, perhaps you can try to elevate your experience even more. Try a full-course meal made by the two of you. It might take all day, but the end result is worth it. (And as a bonus, you’ll likely have a ton of leftovers to split.)
Try out karaoke.
Listen, karaoke isn’t for the weak of heart. Most of us aren’t blessed with angelic singing voices. That’s why karaoke is often a date idea that’s skipped when you’re just getting to know someone—it seems a little bold. But now that you’re comfortable with your partner, you can go into it without fear of judgment. Just have fun with it, and sing your heart out. You may want to even take a shot at a duet.
Go to a Swap Meet
Swap meets, antique shows, and craft and art fairs are all good places for dates because you can wander and chat, while having plenty of people to watch and things to react to. You can even make a game out of it, by giving each other $10 to buy the other person a gift with.
It’s so important to keep a relationship fresh. You’re never too old to build new memories together, and it doesn’t have to cost a fortune in order to do so. The best dates are experiences you share. It doesn’t have to be hard, but putting in a little extra effort to plan something different can go a long way.