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10 Romantic Date Ideas to Thrill That Special Someone

Stephanie writes about relationships, travel, and entertaining ideas. Married for 20 years, she and her husband love planning dates!

Shake up the usual date routine with something extra special!

Shake up the usual date routine with something extra special!

Looking for Romantic Date Ideas?

Looking for some good ideas for Valentine's Day or a special anniversary? Forget the movies or a dinner out. *yawn*

Here are 10 romantic date ideas that will thrill that special someone! But first you have to know him or her. Figure out what their interests are, and then scroll down for some great, romantic ideas.

Married? In a long-term relationship? Great! You should know your special someone really well, which will help you plan your date ideas. My husband and I have chalked up 20 years together, which adds up to a whole bunch of Valentine's Days, birthdays, anniversaries, first date celebrations and much more.

Whether you'll enjoy a walk in the park or cooking dinner together, or maybe heading up to the ski mountain for a day on the slopes or taking in the latest concert, you'll get many ideas here for your anniversary, Valentine's Day, or other special celebration.

Didn't find what you were looking for? Then be sure to tell me in the comments below. I love reading about other ideas that have worked for you and your loved ones, as well!

The Outdoorsy Date

Are you dating an athletic partner? Well, good for you!

I love running marathons and attending gymnastics meets, so I can say that planning a romantic date with an outdoorsy person shouldn't be that challenging!

Here are two great ideas:

1. Find a great place to hike and pack a picnic lunch. Don't forget to bring along essentials like a camera, band-aids, sunscreen, bug spray and a cap. Maybe even surprise your date with an eco-friendly bottle of wine (in a box). Maps and GPS devices are suggested too, so you can get home in time for more . . . romance.

2. Schedule an adventure outing for the two of you. Do a quick Google search and see if you can find a zip-line location near you. Try parasailing, hang-gliding or parachuting, as well. With any luck, she or he will be hanging on tight!

10 Fun Date Ideas

The Artsy Date

If you are dating an artistic type, you are in luck! These right-brained people are especially moved by beauty and art. Think poetry, music and theater!

Since I'm one of these types, I can easily tell you about three romantic date ideas for entertaining an artsy date:

3. Attend a local theater production. No matter how small (or big) your hometown is, there are bound to be local theater productions, or plays or musicals produced by high schools that you can attend. The bonus is that you'll pay a lot less than you would for Broadway, but the entertainment is more intimate!

4. Try a First Friday Art Walk. Across the United States, many communities have a First Friday art walk in town. Scheduled on—you guessed it—the first Friday of each month, galleries open up for free and often offer complimentary libations and appetizers.

5. Attend a concert. Whether you enjoy singing, orchestra or a jazz band, there are many concerts from which to choose. Larger venues often bring headliners, which cost more. Or, simply search your local newspaper for information on local concert performances. Spend the extra cash on dessert afterwards.

The bonus with an artsy date is that they are not usually impressed with money spent on an outing. It's more about the quality of time spent together. So, pick carefully and then enjoy!

A single-stem rose or small, inexpensive gift will also go a long way on a romantic date.

First Date Ideas

The Connoisseur Date

Does your date love expensive brands? Designer clothing? You might have a connoisseur date who is focused on the finer things in life!

Don't think that you have to shop at Tiffany's and designer outlets to impress your date, however. Sure, he or she might have expensive taste, but there are definitely romantic date ideas that will entertain him or her without leaving you broke!

6. Cook a gourmet meal at home. This is how you can treat your date to the best, without a triple-digit bill at the end. Get some high-end cooking supplies and make a gourmet meal at home. Splurge on truffles and expensive champagne, instead. Later, you won't have to wait for the bill! Bonus is that you can cook to your own tastes, without having to worry about sending the meal back if the veal is undercooked. Don't forget a light, delicious dessert!

7. Go wine tasting. Find a region close to where you live (if possible) and schedule a late afternoon of wine tasting. Here in my home state of Oregon, there are a number of regions outside of Portland that offer free or reduced-price wine tastings, at which you can purchase bottles or cases of wine or other souvenirs. My friends also love the Napa Valley region in California.

The Date Who Enjoys the Simple Things in Life

Are you dating someone who enjoys the simple things in life? Well, you're in luck!

Not only will you be able to save some money on a romantic date, but these types are the easiest to please, overall. Whether they enjoy good food, laughter, or just spending time together, there are many options for going out on a date with one of these easy-to-please people.

Your first questions should still be: what do they enjoy? If they like reading, a trip to the library might be fun. Foodies may enjoy an inexpensive cooking class. For the athletes among us, try taking them to a local sporting event, or out for an enjoyable hike.

8. Attend a lecture or free class. Learn together, and you might stay together. Check your local community college for free classes or review your newspaper for lectures or other presentations. Where I live, the Bend Public Library often invites authors and other experts to speak about interesting topics. Whether you want to learn how to write, or what to write about, you can probably find it in your backyard.

9. Volunteer at an animal shelter or food bank. Studies show that giving back to the community is a sure-fire way to raise endorphins— the feel-good hormone. Just imagine what it would do if you and your date volunteered together! In the local economy, many organizations can use a helping hand. Whether you help clean out animal cages or put together food baskets for the needy, join efforts and see what your love together can do.

10. Go for a walk or bicycle ride together. It really doesn't take much to enjoy time together with a loved one. Find a nice path or trail and plan an easy walk, or go bicycling together. If you are not one who enjoys the simple things in life, you soon might be!

Inexpensive Date Ideas

© 2010 Stephanie Marshall