Back in the day I reckon my parents were lucky if they got out alone together once a year.
And even at that is was probably to attend a school function.
But now, the world over, date night is seen as a staple of any solid relationship.
Whether it's a candlelit dinner, a night at the movies, or something a little more creative, couples are advised to step away from work stresses/ family life / the TV, for a night in order to make time for one another and reconnect.
And because of this, the Date Night Idea Jar, has started to crop up at many weddings, as a novel way for couples to get ideas for dates from their wedding guests.
But of course, many of the guests get stumped, so you might end up with ten suggestions for bowling, and none at all for a moonlit picnic out the back garden (you can have that one for free!).
So whether you're a guest in a tizzy, or a couple looking for ideas for date night to help you with your post-wedding slump, here's some of ours to get you through the first few months of marriage.
1. Movie Night
We're not just talking any old movie night, we're talking, phones off, laptops away, blankets and pillows on the floor, sodas in the fridge, and an abundant supply of Maltesers and popcorn. Both of you each get to pick a flick and you have yourselves a cosy double bill.
2. Road Trip
So this one could work for a day date, a date night, or heck, even a date weekend. Get away from it all with your other half and just hit the road. It doesn't matter where you go as long as the views are good, and the playlist is awesome.
Okay so this might not sound like the most romantic way to spend your time, but helping other people is a great way to bring two people together. Whether you're playing with kids at camp, or prepping food in a shelter, share the love outside your relationship, and you'll enhance the love within it.
4. Dinner Outside
My other half and I love doing this one – and we don't have a garden, so it's even more of an adventure! We'll cook up our dinner, (or sometimes, if it's the weekend, our breakfast), pop it into some wooden bowls, grab a blanket, and take a stroll up to our nearest park. It's such a novelty, after a day at work, to flake out together with some food. And so much nicer than sitting at home after dinner with the telly on.
5. Climb a Skyscraper
Not everyone will live near a skyscraper, but look for the tallest building in your city, and race your partner to the top. Skip the lift, and see how long it takes you to make it up 40 flights of stairs. Getting to the top is even better when you've been put out of breath trying to get there. And is there anything more romantic than a roof with a view?
6. Play with Animals
Depending on where you live you might have access to a farm, a petting zoo, a city zoo – or maybe even a safari park. Spending a day among cute furry creatures and big scary beasts, is not just romantic, it's a lot of fun too.
7. Fruit Picking Fun
A seasonal date idea that is rewarding in more ways than one, spend the day fruit picking with your other half, and get some quality time together, along with enough produce to keep you in jams and tarts for a year. Have a look online to find your nearest fruit farm, chances are, even if you live in a city, there's one nearby.
8. Rent Bikes
Wherever you are in the world, riding bikes is always a good idea. Seeing a city on two wheels is so much fun, while exploring forests and country lanes by bike can be exciting and romantic. Just remember to wear a helmet – and if you're feeling super loved-up, why not rent a tandem?
9. Have a Drink
This might not be everyone's cup of tea (or cup of sangria), but there's nothing my other half and I love to do more on a Friday night, than to make a date with him, me and a bottle of wine (or two). I'm not saying you need to get sozzled, but letting your hair down together, and putting the world to rights over a drink or two, is sometimes all you need to regroup.
10. New Cuisine
So the Tex-Mex restaurant on your street might be incredible, Italian is your eat out go-to, and your Indian take-away knows you by name – it's time to branch out with some new eats. Next time you make a date for dinner, why not surprise your other half by trying something totally different. Even if you find out Korean food is not for you – at least you can say you've eaten a raw octopus!
11. Go Boating
There's something just so fun about taking to the water – I think it reminds me of fun days out as a kid. If you don't live near the sea, look for canoe spots in lakes or rivers nearby, or hit your nearest park with row boats and pedalos – it doesn't matter if you're in a super yacht or a giant swan, pack a picnic, and have a wonderful day.
12. The Scene of the Crime
If you're stuck for a date idea, this one will never fail to woo the one you love. Because it's where you wooed them first. Head to the place you first met, or had your first date. Revisit your alma mater, hit the bar where you first bumped heads, or go to the restaurant where your friends set you up on that blind date. There's nothing like a walk down memory lane to remind you why you fell in love in the first place.
Photo by Adrienne Gunde
13. Go Camping
I just love camping. There's something about getting away from it all, gathering firewood, going for long hikes, then curling up in the tent at night and listening to the rain fall outside, (as long as the tent is waterproof, that is). If all that's not for you, there's always glamping – either way, sleeping outdoors is good for the soul.
14. Aprons On
The couple that cooks together, well, eats together, I guess! If you want a date night for a rainy day, locking yourself and your partner in the kitchen is a good idea to have in your arsenal. Cook a slow roast, a delicious cake, or even something quick and easy, but preparing a meal together means you both get to enjoy the process – just remember to do the washing up together too, y'hear?
15. Take A Class
Dance improv, life drawing, cooking, introduction to Mandarin or yoga. It doesn't matter what you take your class in, but doing something together and learning new skills, will give you something new in common, and a fresh focus to share after all the madness of planning a wedding.
16. Comedy Night
Laughter is good for your soul, your abs, and your relationship. Almost every town will have its own comedy club, or somewhere with regular stand-up shows. And the best thing about stand ups are, when they're good, they're great, and when they're awful, well, you have yourself a great story.
17. Book Swap
This is a free, all-weather date, that's a lovely way to spend a lazy Sunday together. You both swap your favourite book, then spend the day kicking back together reading. Whether you're tucked up in bed, or enjoying the sunshine on a blanket in the park; not only will you have a lovely lazy day, but you'll learn a little bit more about each other's literary tastes – and maybe even enjoy them.
18. Take a Train
Trains are so cool. Faster than buses, without the hassle of driving, and none of the stress of the airport, taking a train always feels like you're taking an adventure. Why not arrange to meet your other half in your nearest station, and jump aboard the first train you can. Exciting, impromptu, and a whole lot of fun.
19. Fairground Ride
Whether you live by the seaside, in a big city, or a small town, chances are you're near a theme park, a fun fair, or even a ferris wheel. Have an adrenalin rush on the roller coasters, get candy floss stuck to your nose, then hit up the photobooth, to document your day.
20. Just Play
Getting married has a habit of making you feel all grown up, so it's important to remember to have fun. Throw snowballs, chase eachother on the beach, play cards or build a fort. Perhaps even ask your guests for some boardgames as part of your gift registry. Just because you're married doesn't mean you have to settle down just yet.
What do you and you other half get up to on your date night? Share your ideas in the comments below.
For more quirky ideas for your wedding, check out our Decor & Details section on the blog.