Perfect Winter

How to Plan the Perfect Winter Date

Looking for a steamy way to dial up the romance this winter? Consider planning a fun winter date. We know what you’re thinking: Winter date? You mean stay inside and watch Netflix together? Don’t get us wrong—we’re as crazy about the stay-in date as you are, but sometimes it’s worth all the cold and bundling to spend some QT with your QT.

If you’re stumped on what to do when the cold weather rolls around, read on for some great ideas designed specifically for cold-weather canoodling. Featuring sled-riding, holiday shopping and lots of baked goods, there’s a date idea on this list for just about everybody. We’re here to help you nail your big winter date–from cute outfit planning to final execution!

  • Step 1: Pick an Activity—Before you can make any reservations or pick out a cute outfit, you have to decide on what to do. We’re firm believers in the classic two-part date—one part fun activity and one part food or drink, even in the winter. Doing something engaging and active with your partner can help you learn a whole lot about each other. Plus—since almost half of people would rather go on a recreational date than dinner and a movie—you know it’ll be a crowd-pleaser! Here are some ideas:
    • Bundle up and walk dogs together at a local animal shelter
    • Take a cooking class at a local culinary school
    • Learn how to wield an axe at an axe-throwing center
    • Go shopping at a flea market or holiday craft fair
    • Go to a choir or symphony concert
    • Take a rock-climbing class at an indoor climbing center
    • Get sweaty in a hot yoga class
    • Go sled-riding or ice skating
    • Take a skiing or snowboarding lesson
    • Try snowshoeing or cross-country skiing
    • Take a cake decorating class
    • Compete against each other at the (b)arcade
    • Hit up a local hot spring, spa or hot tub
    • Go buy craft supplies and make something together
    • Bundle up and take a winter hike at the park
    • Visit a museum or a local historical site
    • Do the most touristy thing in your city
    • Visit the aquarium
    • Go to the thrift store with a list of items to find
    • Play outside and build a snowman
    • Take a train ride on a scenic railroad
  • Step 2: Pick a Place for Food or Drinks— You’ll definitely work up an appetite after all those activities! There’s nothing more classic than a dinner date, but sitting down for a meal in a regular old restaurant can be a bit boring, especially if you’ve done it a million times before. Consider going on an experience-based food date that involves lots of tasting, talking and experimenting. Some of our favorite gastronomic date options include:
    • A coffee tasting at a local bean roaster
    • A wine tasting at a local vineyard or winery
    • A seasonal beer flight at a local brewery
    • A private dinner experience at a chef’s table
    • An appetizer crawl with multiple different stops
    • A roll-your-own sushi class
    • A home beer brewing class
    • A food-based walking tour
    • Cooking an elaborate dinner together at home
    • Baking cookies, cake or a gingerbread house
    • A donut taste test featuring different local bakers
    • Making individual pizzas from scratch
    • Going to a supper club and dining family-style

  • Step 3: Plan Your Outfit—Now that you’ve figured out where you’re headed, it’s time to start formulating an outfit. We’re big fans of seasonal layering because it serves both functional and fashionable purposes, keeping you cozy and versatile. The fact is that you’re going to need a lot more warmth when you’re hiking in the park than when you’re gorging on donuts after the fact. It’s winter, so you’re going to need leggings, cardigans and cozy scarves. If you’ve chosen an active date, don’t wear anything especially restrictive. Comfy boots are a must!
  • Step 4: Include a Surprise Element—If you’ve planned this date in honor of a special occasion, like Valentine’s Day or an anniversary, consider throwing in a surprise element. Show up with something in hand—locally made candy, a small gift or a homemade paper bouquet will really go a long way in charming your date. You could also use it as an opportunity to give your partner (or potential partner) a handwritten card or note to express how much you love them.
  • Step 5: Execute—Now it’s time to execute! Make sure your date is free and issue a formal invitation (by that we mean, send a text). Don’t forget to sure up any reservations and, if you plan on drinking, book a ride. If you want it to be a surprise, give your date a general idea of what to wear, but say no more than that! Remember that if you’re planning on taking a lesson or attending a class of any sort, you’ll need to reserve a spot and possibly pay ahead of time. That’s it! You’re ready for your date.

Enjoying Your Quality Time Together

One last tip for our cold-weather planners: While nailing down the specifics is important, don’t be married to your plans. Allow for spontaneity and, if something’s a bust, laugh and move on. The best dates are the most memorable ones, and sometimes those include snafus. Embrace and enjoy every moment you have together this winter!