Ah, the third date. Somewhat of a milestone, the third date means you’ve made it through the awkwardness of the first and second date and are getting more comfortable together. Congrats! To celebrate this occasion, you’ll want to choose a date idea that’s especially creative—something that gets you both engaging, talking, and connecting. Hands-on activities are ideal (and no, we don’t mean hands-on in that Netflix and chill kind of way) or something you can do together.
If you’re stuck for ideas, these third date ideas will win you extra creativity points, and get you thinking outside the box.
1. An Escape Room
Solving problems together is a fun hallmark for a budding relationship. During the challenge, you’ll have to solve puzzles and unlock clues to break free. If you collaborate well, you’ll learn tons about each other’s communication style—especially when you’re stuck in a tight spot!
You’ll be surprised how much you can learn about someone in an hour of problem-solving. But there are also plenty of opportunities to get close and flirty.
2. Drive Somewhere and Park
Know of a good spot you can drive to and see a great view? Grab some drive-thru or pack some snacks, and then drive there to park and chat. It’s more creative and intimate than going to a restaurant, and can lead pretty easily to a make-out session. Don’t have a car? Then find a spot you can walk or take public transit to.
3. Salsa Dancing
Salsa is sexy. If you’re sure-footed and have some rhythm, salsa dancing can be incredibly hot. And aside from the obvious bonus of breaking down the physical barriers, this activity can help strengthen your comfort levels with each other.
As you swing and twirl, you’ll feel out each other’s coordination and become more intuitive with your body language. It’s one of the best third date ideas because it dissolves the pressure and lets you be free. Plus, you might feel some physical chemistry too!
4. Go to a Museum (Especially If It’s Weird)
Museum dates are fun because you can wander the exhibits together and automatically have things to do and talk about. And with a little research you can find some really interesting museums to go to. Maybe there’s a small, obscure museum near you or a wax museum, historical society, or a science museum. The weirder the place, the more fun it can be.
5. A Pottery Class
Have an artsy flair? Working with your hands can be incredibly romantic! With pottery, the act of molding and smoothing clay can be a highly sensual experience. (Hello, Patrick Swayze.)
This type of non-physical intimacy is highly important for growing closer as a potential couple. Just be careful about acting too cheesy. Avoid doing things like helping your date massage their clay. Just keep the moment natural. Organically, the vibe will become cozy and cute.
6. A Cooking Class
Everyone loves food so you can’t really go wrong with this third date idea. A cooking class works well on a variety of levels, both emotionally, physically, and most definitely sensually. You’ll be indulging your senses with herbs and spices, while offering each other tastes of your emerging culinary creations.
Then afterwards, you can sit down and sample your dishes. Here, you’ll relax and engage in some light conversation about food preferences and possibly, some debate and friendly teasing about who’s the better cook. If all goes well, you may be repeating some recipes for a romantic home-cooked dinner.
7. Rock Climbing
A little more extreme, rock climbing takes the third date to new heights. If you’re an active pair, you’ll get a rush from this challenging, full-body workout, while also developing teamwork skills. You’ll be belaying each other, which means you’ll be taking turns controlling the climbing rope to ensure your partner doesn’t fall. So leave your trust issues at home.
There’s also a strong communication aspect to rock climbing. As you exchange turns climbing, the person who’s belaying will coach the other on their climbing technique. They’ll advise the climber on which hold to grab or where to place their feet. Be each other’s cheerleader, motivating each other to conquer each wall.
Afterwards, you’ll feel rewarded and energized—a great feeling for when you’re still finding your groove together.
8. Sporting Events
If you’re more into spectator sports than actually taking part in the sport yourself, then going to a live game is a great date idea. You’ll have plenty of time to talk and plenty to talk about. Sure, major league baseball, professional hockey, or NBA games are super fun, but you can also get creative with it. Go a minor league baseball game, check out the local high school football team on Friday night, see if your town has a roller derby team, or go to a friend’s recreation league game and cheer them on.
9. 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 get to know each other, while having plenty of people watching and things to react to.
10. Introduce Them to Something You Love
Do you love a specific video game? Teach the other person how to play it. Are you a big golfer? Take your date to the driving range and show them how to hit a drive. If you’re a huge a cook, invite them over and teach them to make your favorite dish. Whatever your hobby or obsessions, think of a date idea where you can show it off.
11. Browse a Bookstore Together
This date idea is a definite must for book nerds—go to a bookstore together and browse the shelves and chat about all things books. (This also works great for record and music stores.)
12. Do a Themed Movie Night
Is there a movie you know they haven’t seen that they absolutely should? Plan a movie night around it. Do you both love Bill Murray or Mel Brooks movies? Pick two or three movies to watch together. You can pick a movie that’s been redone and watch the old and new versions then talk about which you like better, watch your favorite move trilogy, or watch something old and campy.
Try any of these creative third date ideas and show the other person that you’re interested and want to impress them. It’s all about focusing on fresh dating adventures and mixing things up.