7 Valentine’s Dates That Are Better Than A Fancy Dinner Out

Posted on February 13, 2017 - February 14th is just around the corner. Which means that couples are scrambling and dinner reservations at Vancouver’s hottest restaurants are filling up.

But what if there was something better? What if there was a Valentine date idea that was more original than a fancy dinner out, would save you money and would give you a chance to actually spend time with your loved one? Well, there is. In fact, there are seven great ideas that totally beat a boring, expensive and overly fancy dinner out.

Ice skating & hot chocolate

The most adorable winter date is definitely ice skating and hot chocolate. Luckily, Vancouver has the perfect options for this date: Robson Square Ice Rink and The Hot Chocolate Festival. The Robson Square Ice Rink is open until Feb 14th and, best of all, is free to skate on! Follow up your laps on the ice with a warm and cozy cup of hot chocolate at one of the 29 restaurants participating in the Hot Chocolate Fest. Check out Thierry or Soirette which are both close to Robson Square and see our Hot Chocolate Festival guide for even more options.

City-wide scavenger hunt

Now this one is going to take a bit more planning but your date will LOVE it. A scavenger hunt is the ultimate romantic gesture because it takes time, effort and a great memory.

You can go old fashioned and hide clues around the city or go high tech and text the clues to their phone. Great places to include in the scavenger hunt might be your significant other’s favourite restaurant, the place where you had your first date and the workplaces or homes of friends and family if you want to get them involved.

Just make sure the last clue on the hunt leads to you, preferably waiting with flowers, and the rest of the day together.

A comedy show & a slice

This is the perfect low-key date if you and your significant other are not the most romantic couple. Who said V-Day had to be all lovey-dovey anyway?

If you ask us, a night spent laughing and enjoying a slice of pizza sounds great. Check out what’s playing at some of Vancouver’s best comedy clubs like The Comedy Mix or Yuk Yuk’s Comedy Club Vancouver. And then, stop by a pizza joint where you can refuel and reminisce about the best jokes.

Best of all: Fresh Slice has their pizza deals on Tuesday and this Valentine’s Day happens to fall on a Tuesday so not only is this date fun, but it’ll save you money!

Right now-ish @ardenmyrin has our sold-out show in stitches. One more show at 9:30 and we can't wait!

A photo posted by Yuk Yuk's, Vancouver (@yukyuksvan) on


And we don’t just mean hitting a nightclub after midnight with your sweetie. We’re talking about some old school, traditional and romantic dancing. So take your date out for a fun night of salsa or try not to step on each other’s feet with some ballroom styles.

You don’t have to be Fred Astaire or Ginger Rogers to enjoy a night out dancing. As long as you’re willing to give it a try, we’re sure your date will appreciate your efforts and love the romantic gesture. Check out Salsa Vancouver or Dancey Ballroom to see what classes, workshops or dances they are hosting.

Tour the art gallery

Looking for a date idea that is full of culture, gives you lots of time to talk, keeps you warm and, most importantly, doesn’t cost you very much money? Then head to the Vancouver Art Gallery for an intellectual and inspiring date night.

On Tuesday nights, admission to the art gallery is by donation, saving you and your date a bundle. Check out the current exhibits We Come to Witness: Sonny Assu In Dialogue with Emily Carr and Vancouver Special: Ambivalent Pleasures. For more on these exhibits, check out our art gallery guide.

Valentine’s Day snowshoes & fondue at Grouse Mountain

For a memorable date night that takes advantage of Vancouver’s snowy winter, head to Grouse Mountain for their Valentine’s Day Snowshoe Fondue.

Go on a hour-long guided group snowshoeing tour and finish it off with chocolate fondue in a romantic setting. If your date is looking for something adventurous and doesn’t mind trading in their fancy date outfit for a snowsuit, this would be the perfect thing.

And we guarantee you’ll win significant other of the year for coming up with this original date idea that definitely blows a fancy dinner out of the water.

Dreaming of snowy winter sunsets. Photo by @toprentice #tbt #snowshoe #sunset #snowshoegrind #grouse90

A photo posted by Grouse Mountain (@grousemountain) on

At home dinner & a movie

Dinner and a movie? Boring. But dinner and a movie at home? So much better! Why? Because you can make it your own and you can save money. Instead of making a box of K&D and watching whatever you can find on Netflix, plan a romantic special night.

Pick a movie your date loves or one that means something special to you two. Maybe the movie you saw on your first date! And then, match the cuisine to the movie and cook something from scratch.

Bonus points if you also bake a homemade dessert. So if your date’s favourite movie is Roman Holiday, whip up some authentic Italian pasta and try your best to bake the perfect tiramisu. Believe us, your date will be so impressed!

Which one of these ideas are you going to be trying out on Feb 14th? Wishing you and your loved one a fun night!

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