In the 21st century, dating is more complicated than ever. Meeting someone that you can form a real connection with has always been a challenge, but the modern world feels more disconnected than ever.
Date ideas can be hard to come by, and despite being able to connect with people all over the world through the internet and dating apps, it’s difficult to get to know someone properly.
Online dating has made it easier to find someone, but you’ll still have to get to know them the old-fashioned way. Most people settle on going out for a coffee or watching a film together, but there are much better ways of learning about someone and having fun together.
Dating doesn’t have to be complicated, and no matter what you enjoy, there are plenty of ways you can meet up and have fun with someone new. Get some advice from James Preece and test yourself with virtual dates first!
We’ve put together a list of some of the most interesting first date ideas that are perfect for getting to know someone.
You can use these for second or third dates too, but they’re especially well suited for meeting up with someone for the very first time. We can’t promise they’ll help you find your true love, but they should help you have more fun on your next dates!
1. Watch a Local Sports Game
This one is a great idea if you’re both sports fans. There are usually hundreds of sporting events happening all over the country, so you can easily find something you’ll both enjoy. It doesn’t have to be the biggest game either. Even small events are a lot of fun to attend and cheer for a team or athlete.
2. Plan a Treasure Hunt
Treasure hunts are so much fun to take part in, and while they may take some time to set up, they’re definitely worth it. You can find out a lot about a person based on how they approach the game and their answers to the clues. Make sure it’s not too difficult and provide assistance if needed so they can find the treasure!
3. Go Fruit Picking
Depending on where you live and the season, it could be a great idea to go out together to pick fruit. You can find plenty of farms in the countryside that allow people to come and pick their own fruit. Whether it’s strawberries, apples, oranges or anything else, you can have fun and enjoy some fresh fruit together.
4. Draw Caricatures of Each Other
If you and your date have a bit of artistic talent, this could be a great idea and a lot of fun. Even if you’re not the best artists, taking turns drawing each other is a great way of breaking the ice and spending some time together. All you need is a few sheets of paper and some coloured pencils, and you have an excellent date on your hands.
5. Go Thrift Shopping Together and Buy Unusual Outfits
Thrift shopping is a great way to find bargains, but it’s also a great place to find clothes that you wouldn’t find anywhere else. If you’re both interested in fashion and having fun, this could be an excellent date idea.
All you need to do is go to a few thrift shops together and find some clothes to dress up in the most unusual outfits. You can even go for a night out in your outfits afterwards!
6. Organise a Fundraising Event for a Cause Important to You Both
If you and your date are both interested in charity work and want to do something good, you could organise a fundraising event. This may take a lot of planning, but it’s a great way to spend time with someone while also doing something productive. Pick a cause that’s important to both of you, and then brainstorm to find out ways you can raise money.
7. Visit an Amusement Park Together
Amusement parks are always loads of fun. Whether you prefer the biggest rollercoasters or the teacups, you can find plenty to do.
Even without going on any rides, an amusement park is a great place to have lots of fun and spend time with your date. Just don’t go on any rides that are going to make you feel sick!
8. Play Bingo Together
Bingo is a great game that’s lots of fun while also being very easy to play. You can play bingo with just the two of you or go to a bingo hall to play for real.
Alternatively, you can also enjoy bingo online, joining an PlayOJO Bingo, buying tickets and having fun together. This is a simple yet different date idea and a great way to spend time and have fun with someone you want to get to know a bit better.
9. Go Axe Throwing
Axe throwing might sound dangerous, but there are now lots of places where you can go and throw axes under supervision. You pay a small fee to get in and then get to throw a certain number of axes at wooden targets.
It’s a lot of fun, and while it might be difficult at first, once you get the technique down, you’ll be throwing axes like a pro. This is a great option if you’d like to try something a bit different and you’re both the adventurous type.
10. Take a Trip to Ikea
A furniture store may not seem like the perfect place for a date, but you can have a lot of fun in Ikea. From looking at all of the cool furniture designs to enjoying a meatball dish, Ikea has plenty to offer.
This is an even better date idea if you’re planning on moving or even moving in together. Even if you just want to look, you can have a lot of fun picking out how you’d want your future house to be decorated.
11. Go to a Wine Tasting Event
For anyone that loves wine, a wine tasting event can be the perfect date. You’ll be able to try lots of different wines together and learn more about them.
If you and your date enjoy wine, you should look for events nearby. You might be able to travel to a vineyard if you live near to any, but wine tasting events are held everywhere.
12. Go Indoor Trampolining
Remember having a trampoline in your back garden when you were a kid? Trampolines are so much fun, and now you can enjoy them at special trampolining centres.
This is a great date idea if you enjoy being active, and you’ll have plenty of fun with your date as you bounce around on the trampolines. Make sure you wear activewear that’s suitable for exercise when you go on your date.
13. Decorate Together
Got a room that needs decorating? Painting and decorating together is a great way to spend time with someone and can be lots of fun.
This one might be better for when you already know someone well, but you can even offer advice on which colours to choose and brainstorm about how the room should look. Make sure you wear clothes that you don’t mind getting paint on if you’re going to be painting.
14. Visit a Museum
Museums are the perfect date idea for a lot of people, especially if you love learning about new things. Depending on what you’re interested in, there are loads of different museums you can attend, and most are relatively inexpensive too.
If you and your date enjoy museums, you can plan a visit together and find an exhibit that you love. Museums are a great place to talk and learn more about each other and your interests.
15. Take a Boat Tour
If you live near a body of water such as a river, lake or sea, you could take a boat tour together. Boat tours can be a lot of fun, especially if it lets you see your town or city in a new light.
You can spend time taking in the sights as well as chatting, making it a great way to get to know each other. If you’re in the mood for a party, you can also find booze cruises that allow you to have a few drinks and enjoy yourself out on the water.
16. Go to an Escape Room
Escape rooms have been around for a few years now, but they’re still incredibly popular. You can find loads of different escape rooms in most towns and cities, each of which offers a unique challenge and experience. If you both enjoy solving puzzles and searching for clues, an escape room is a great day out, and it’s a good way of getting to know each other a bit better too.
17. Work on a Puzzle Together
Puzzles are simple yet incredibly fun entertainment and very relaxing too. If you enjoy slow-paced dates, this is a great option.
You can play a puzzle at home or go to a café that offers puzzles to customers. Take your time and spend the day getting to know each other better as you search for the right pieces and complete the puzzle.
18. Go Ice Skating
Ice skating can be a lot of fun, but it can be quite challenging for beginners. You can find an ice rink and book a session if you’re confident, but if you’ve never skated before, you might find it difficult at first! During the winter, you may also be able to find outdoor ice rinks in your town or city, which can be a great way to spend some time with someone you’re seeing.
19. Play Video Games Together
Video games are more popular than ever as technology has allowed developers to create increasingly exciting games. If you and your date enjoy video games from time to time, it could be good to play them together as a date.
There are lots of cooperative video games that you can play together, and you can also play competitive games if you prefer. Just be careful not to get too competitive!
20. Take a Cooking Class
They say that the way to someone’s heart is through their stomach, and cooking for someone can be very romantic. However, for a date that you can both participate in together, you can take a cooking class.
This is a great way to hopefully learn something new while also having fun. Not only that, but you can later cook for each other with your new skills if the date goes well.
21. Attend an Outdoor Yoga Session
Yoga has experienced a big increase in popularity over the past few years, helped by people turning to home exercises. It’s a great way to improve your body’s strength and stay fit.
Whether you’ve ever practised yoga before or not, you could enjoy an outdoor yoga session with your date. This is a great idea for active and even inactive people. Just make sure you choose a session that’s suitable for your skills.
22. Volunteer in the Local Community
What better way to spend time with someone than by giving back to your local community. If you and your date are both interested in community projects, you can find one that you’ll be able to volunteer together.
Whether it’s a youth centre, soup kitchen, food bank or something similar, you can do a lot of good. This is a brilliant way to learn more about someone and their values while also doing something helpful.
23. Get Up Early to Watch a Sunrise
Sunrises and sunsets are some of the most romantic times of the day. There are few things that beat the sunset, but a sunrise is probably one of them. The only downside is that you will have to get up pretty early.
However, if you and your date are early risers, this can be an excellent idea for a date. Make sure you go somewhere that you can easily watch the sun as it rises over the horizon and starts the new day.
24. Visit the Local Theatre
The theatre is a great place to catch or show and support local performers. If you or your date are interested in theatre, dancing or any kinds of arts, it’s a great place to spend time together. While you won’t be able to talk during the show, you can have a coffee and a chat afterwards.
25. Catch a Movie at an Outdoor Cinema
Outdoor cinemas are the latest trend for film lovers. While going to the cinema is a lot of fun, it can be even better if you’re outdoors.
This is best for films that you’ve already seen before, so you can watch and also chat and enjoy being outside rather than stuck inside a stuffy room. You can also find drive-in cinemas, where you watch the film from your car.
26. Go for a Run Together
While this one might not be for everyone, exercising together is an excellent way to have fun while staying healthy. Running is something that you either love or hate, but don’t knock it until you’ve tried it.
If you both enjoy being active, you could go on a short run together and see how you find it. You might struggle to talk to each other at first, but once you’re used to it, running and chatting at the same time becomes second nature.
27. Attend an Open Mic Session
Open mic nights give people a chance to express themselves. Whether it’s by playing an instrument, singing a song or telling jokes, you can have loads of fun.
You don’t have to get on stage to enjoy yourself, as you can also sit together and watch everyone else taking part. If you do have a talent to share, it’s also a great chance to show your date what you can do.
28. Enjoy a Day at the Spa Together
Spas are perfect for relaxing and taking away the stresses of the week. You can enjoy massages, saunas, special beauty treatments and much more.
If you enjoy spa treatments, there’s no reason why you and your date can’t go together. Compared to some other dates, it might be a bit pricey, but it’s worth it for the experience.
29. Go on a Hike and Enjoy the Outdoors
Hiking is perfect for nature lovers and is a great way of keeping fit and spending time with someone you like. If you’re both reasonably active, you can find a trail close to where you live and walk it together. Bear in mind that this is probably better for a date with someone you already know quite well, especially if you go on a route that not many people take.
30. Feed the Ducks at Your Local Lake or Pond
Another great way to spend time outdoors is by going to feed the ducks. If you live by a river, canal, lake or any other body of water, you’ve probably seen the ducks before.
Lots of people go to feed ducks, and it’s a lot of fun to throw food to them and watch them eat. You can chat and get to know one another as you enjoy watching all of the colourful ducks.
31. Attend a Crafts Workshop Together
Crafts workshops are a lot of fun, giving you the chance to learn a new craft or experience something completely new. Whether it’s painting, sculpting, woodworking or anything else, this can be a great idea for a date. Make sure you check with your date to find out what sort of crafts they’d be interested in trying.
32. Try Out Geocaching
Geocaching is a fun outdoor game that anyone can play. A geocache is a waterproof container that’s left outside. Inside the container are various items, including a GPS tracker.
Players of the game can use a GPS device to locate the cache and uncover the treasure before leaving new treasure for other people to find. It’s a fun activity and a great way to spend time with your date outdoors.
33. Visit a Video Arcade
While most people play video games at home these days, arcades are still popular and offer loads of exciting games. If you live in a city, you’ll probably be able to find an arcade nearby with games that can be played simply by entering a coin. You can play together or against each other and even try to compete for the highest scores.
34. Attend an Author Reading at a Local Bookstore
This date idea is perfect for book lovers! Whether it’s your favourite author or someone you’ve never heard of before, you can have a great time attending an author reading, learning more about a new book and the interests of your date. Lots of book readings are available at most major book stores, but you’ll normally need to book your place before attending.
35. Join a Book Club
Another great idea for book lovers is to join a book club together. You can join a club with other people or make your own!
To make your own book club, all you need to do is take turns picking a book to read. Then once you’ve both finished it, you can discuss what you thought of the book and have lots of fun talking about it.
36. Go Birdwatching
Bird watching is a great hobby for nature lovers and can be a perfect idea for a date too. You can get out in nature together and look for all kinds of interesting birds.
Bring a bird spotting guide and even some binoculars if you want to get really into it. You can watch birds from anywhere too, either from your back garden or at a bird hide on a nature reserve.
37. Visit an Open House
Open houses are for people looking to buy a property, allowing them to see the house for themselves. There are often open houses listed in towns and cities all over the country, and anyone can turn up. It can be a fun if slightly unconventional idea for a date, imagining your future together or simply looking at homes that seem interesting.
38. Play Mini Golf
Mini golf is a classic date idea, and for good reason, it’s a lot of fun while also being simple to play. If you live near a mini-golf course, it’s definitely worth giving it a go, as you can have a friendly competition and enjoy each other’s company too.
39. Go to a Karaoke Night Together
Karaoke isn’t for everyone, but it can be really exhilarating to get up and sing in front of people, especially if one of those people is your date! Lots of bars offer karaoke nights, and you can make a regular thing of it if you both enjoy it. If you really want to have fun, why not try a duet with your date?
40. Take a Day Trip to a Nearby Town
Sometimes we get so focused on going on holidays abroad that we forget what we have around us. If you want a fun day out, why not take a trip to a nearby town, seeing what it has to offer. You can always discover new places and new things to do, even in towns that are right on your doorstep.
41. Visit a Botanical Garden
Botanical gardens are places where you can see all kinds of different flowers and plants from all over the world. They’re fascinating if you enjoy nature and a calm and relaxing place to have a chill day out with a date. Check to see which botanical gardens are nearby and whether they have any interesting exhibits.
Go-karting is a great option for adventurous types, letting you race against one another around a track in high-speed karts. Full safety gear is provided, and you’ll be able to compete for who has the fastest lap times. Many places also do electric karts if you prefer these over petrol options.
43. Book a Horse and Carriage Ride
For a great day out and a chance to see the local sights, a horse and carriage can be a lot of fun and very romantic. Most major cities will offer at least one horse and carriage ride service, taking you through a slow and relaxing route.
44. Enjoy a Historical Guided Tour
For a chance to learn some local history and interesting facts about where you live, why not go on a historical guided tour together? You can learn a lot while also getting out and exploring the area. Guided tours are great for spending time together in a group setting that’s fun.
45. Plan a Surprise Date and Then Swap Roles
If you’re a bit more adventurous, you could try planning a date that’s a complete surprise. You can combine this with one of the other suggestions on this list to create a truly unique experience.
Don’t tell your date anything about the date other than what they might need to wear or bring with them. Then you can surprise them on the day. Swap roles afterwards so you can get a surprise too!
46. Learn a New Skill Together
Learning a new skill is always fun and even more so if you’re doing it together. Pick something that you’ve both always wanted to learn, and then find the best way to learn it. You can attend a workshop or class, or simply find videos to watch on YouTube.
47. Watch a Favourite Childhood Film
Most people have a favourite film that they remember the best from their childhood. As a fun date idea, you can watch your favourite childhood films together. It’s always different watching them as adults, and you can have loads of fun laughing about all the parts you remember.
48. Make Cupcakes
Baking, in general, is a great date idea, but cupcakes are some of the most fun because of how you can decorate them. They’re also relatively simple to make, so even if you and your date don’t have lots of experience with baking, it’s still straightforward and fun to do.
49. Go to an Indoor Rock Climbing Gym
Rock climbing is a very strenuous but thrilling sport, and while it can be dangerous, it’s very safe if you do it indoors and follow all of the guidelines. You can find indoor rock climbing gyms in a lot of towns and cities, meaning you won’t have to go far to get started.
50. Take an Exercise Class Together
For active people who love to work out, an exercise class could be a perfect date. There are lots of different types of exercise classes for all kinds of different activity levels, so you don’t need to worry about it being too difficult.
51. Play a Trivia Quiz
Pub quizzes are commonplace and lots of fun, letting you make a team and compete for prizes by answering trivia questions. If you and your date are good at quizzes, you might love this for a date idea. Even if you’re not that good at general knowledge, it’s still lots of fun.
52. Visit a Haunted House
Like spooky things and up for a haunting experience? There are two different types of haunted houses, those that use actors to create a fun but chilling experience and those that claim they’re actually haunted. Both can be pretty spooky and a fun date idea if you and your date don’t scare easily.
53. Go to the Fair
The fair is a classic place for a date, offering lots of games, rides and food to enjoy. While fairs aren’t available year-round, they’re always worth visiting when they’re in town. You can have a great day out with your date and get to know each other better.
54. Share Your Favourite Spot
Lots of people have a favourite spot. Somewhere they go to chill out and relax.
This could be somewhere out in nature away from lots of people, or it could also be a restaurant or café or a bustling market. You can take your date to your favourite spot and show them what you enjoy the most.
55. Go for a Bike Ride
Cycling is a great way to stay fit, and it’s also a lot of fun. You can enjoy a nice bike ride through the city, using a rented bike.
There’s lots to see as you cycle around, and you can make it a relaxing yet active day. If you’re feeling more adventurous, you can also go mountain biking.
56. Restaurant Hop
Going to a restaurant is a classic idea for a date, but you can make it slightly more interesting by restaurant hopping. This involves ordering a small plate from a restaurant before moving on to the next one. This way, you get to try out loads of different foods while having lots of fun.
57. Visit a Fortune Teller
Fortune tellers or mediums may not be everyone’s cup of tea, but it can be very interesting to get a reading done. Whether you believe in it or not, it’s a lot of fun to learn what your future might hold and whether you have a future together.
58. Go to a Brewery
If you and your date both enjoy beer, then a brewery can be a really interesting place to visit. You’ll get to look around and see how beer is made.
Of course, the best part is the tasting. Breweries will give you a chance to try some samples, and this is a great day out with a date.
59. Find a Planetarium
Planetariums use technology and a specially curved roof to show off the night sky at its best. It’s the perfect place for people who enjoy stargazing and love outer space. You’ll get to learn more about constellations, the planets and the stars above us.
60. Visit an Art Gallery
Whether you’re into art or not, an art gallery is always a great choice for a date. You’ll get to see lots of interesting art, and it’s always a great place to start conversations. If you and your date love art, even better, because you’ll have loads to talk about!
61. Play Sports Outdoors
Sports are always fun, and it’s a great way to get to know someone better. You can enjoy a friendly game of tennis or football outside, enjoying the sun and getting some exercise while having fun together.
62. Go Roller Skating
Roller skating, just like ice skating, can be challenging. However, it’s generally slightly easier than skating on ice. It’s also less painful if you fall over! Still, it’s a good idea to wear safety equipment, especially if you’re skating around other people.
63. Attend a Concert
Concerts are a perfect date for music lovers, letting you enjoy a live performance of your favourite band. It doesn’t have to be a huge, expensive concert either. You can find plenty of local shows and live performances by smaller bands and lesser-known musicians.
64. Visit an Aquarium
Aquariums are so much fun, especially if you have a lot of interest in fish and aquatic life. Not only are they interesting to see, but they’re also very calming and tranquil places. You can walk around together and enjoy the atmosphere as you see all the unusual sea life.
65. Enjoy a Food Festival Together
Food festivals offer a chance to experience lots of new food and drink, often freshly prepared. This is a great place to bring someone you want to spend time with, as you can have a lot of fun trying out new foods together.
66. Check Out a Farmers Market
Farmers markets are the best place to get fresh produce from local sources. You can support local farmers while also finding lots of interesting and exciting things to buy and eat. Why not bring your date along to have some fun together the next time you go?
67. Take Dancing Lessons
Dancing can be incredibly fun, provided you’re decent at it! If you’re not the best dancer, you could always take dancing lessons together, learning to dance while also having lots of fun. You can find all kinds of different dance classes across lots of different styles.
68. Spend the Day at the Beach
The beach is a great place to relax, have some fun and soak up the sunshine. If you live in an area that has a beach, you can make the most of it by taking dates here. You can spend some time in the water, play some sports or simply relax and enjoy some refreshing drinks.
69. Have a Picnic in the Park
Picnics are classic dates that everyone should try at least once. You can pack a nice lunch with some of your favourite foods including sandwiches, crips and fruit.
It’s also a good idea to bring all this in a cooler box, along with some drinks. You can plan this for a sunny day to get the most out of it and have a fun day with your date.
70. Go Stargazing
While the planetarium might be a great date idea, it’s hard to beat the real thing. Stargazing is perfect for a romantic date, letting you enjoy the night sky. However, you will have to plan this date for a day when the skies are clear.