With February 14 just around the corner, romantics everywhere start wondering the same thing: how can I make Valentine’s Day special this year? Of course, there’s the traditional candlelit dinner and typical chocolate gifts — but sometimes you may want to mix it up a little (or a lot) and ditch the usual “dinner and chocolates” for something a little more creative and one-of-a-kind. Luckily, we’ve rounded up some of the best things to do on Valentine’s Day, so you and your beau don’t have to settle for a typical and unmemorable date on Valentine’s. Who wouldn’t want a truly unique night full of romance that you’ll both remember for years to come?
So instead of stressing over V-Day plans this year, simply choose a fun activity from our list, and you and your sweetheart (or group of friends!) will be feeling the love in no time — without any of the pressure of an elaborate outing! And whether you decide to stay in for a movie marathon or venture into the great outdoors this February 14, you’re of course guaranteed to have a good time — because you’ll be spending the day together.
Don’t forget to check out GoodHousekeeping.com’s Valentine’s Day Guide.
Take a Cooking Class
They say that food is the way to heart, so why not spend quality time preparing some together? A couple’s cooking class is not only romantic, it’s a great way to ditch the traditional dinner date for something more hands-on and fun.
Play at an Arcade
Channel your competitive side for a night full of street-racing games and Skee-ball at your local arcade — plus, you can totally win a cute teddy bear prize for your S.O. as a sweet Valentine’s keepsake.
Have a Valentine’s Bake-off
In true Great British Baking Show fashion, have a friendly competition in the kitchen to see who can make the best (and most festive) Valentine’s Day desserts — extra points for anything heart-shaped, of course.
Visit a Conservatory or Botanical Garden
Go beyond the traditional red roses this year and show your loved one around a whole garden of beautiful flowers. It’ll make for a great photo op and you’ll get a nice, romantic nature walk with your sweetheart, too.
Have an Indoor Picnic
The winter weather doesn’t have to stop you from planning the most romantic date of all — a picnic meal. Break out a checkered tablecloth and your best Valentine’s Day recipes for a sweet indoor picnic date your S.O. won’t forget
Spend the Night in a Fancy Hotel Room
Make your Valentine’s Day special by checking into a local hotel, changing into a plush bathrobe, and dialing up some room service. Enjoy the night with your partner (or solo!), and feel free to order breakfast in bed the next morning.
Take a Dance Lesson Together
Skip the traditional dinner and get on your feet for a dance lesson with your partner. It’s a perfect way to get close and create a sweet memory.
Host a Wine and Cheese Night
We love this idea for couples or a group of friends. Have everyone bring their favorite bottle of wine, plus a cheese that pairs well, and let the good times roll.
Head to a Museum
Visit that new exhibit or gallery you’ve been eyeing and be ready to experience some unexpected emotions and thoughtful conversation. Plus, many museums offer special after-hours events for Valentine’s Day.
Take a Painting Class
If you’d rather be making your own masterpiece, take part in a painting class with your better half or your best gals.
Take a Relaxing Bath
Turn on the warm water, add in your favorite essential oil or bath bomb, and forget about your troubles. Oh, and don’t skip the candles and music.
Sing Your Heart out at Karaoke
Share the stage and sing your special duet song together. After all, science has proven that singing together with a partner or your best friends helps create strong bonds.
Plan a Movie Marathon
Get cozy by re-watching Love, Actually or laugh along with Jada Pinkett Smith and Queen Latifah while enjoying Girls Trip.
Share a Romantic Night Under the Stars
You can go camping, or just set up for a few hours at night, in a location where the stars are visible. You can always head to a planetarium for a similar vibe if it’s too cold outside.
Book an at-Home Massage
Head to the Ice Rink
Whether you’re a pro or a newbie, skating with your sweetheart is as romantic as it sounds. Even if you fall, someone will be there to catch you!
Create an Itinerary of Your Best Hits
Go to a Jazz Club
As we all saw in one of the most romantic movies ever — La La Land — it’s a classic date that will never feel dull. Nothing compares to listening to live music and enjoying a drink with your loved one at your side
Stretch It out at Yoga
Attend a class after work and center yourself through a variety of poses. Calm your mind and remember the importance of self-care, one breath at a time.
Reserve a Cozy Cabin in the Woods
Take advantage of sweater weather and escape into the wilderness with a few other couples or a close group of friends.