First Date Ideas
In need of some ideas for a first date? Here are over 50 first-date ideas so you’re ready to ask that special someone out!
What are good ideas for a first date?
Whether you met somebody over a dating app, got set up on a blind date, or are trying to turn a long-term friendship into a relationship, we have a first-date idea for you!
Let’s help you connect and enjoy getting to know each other with the perfect first date idea for you!
What makes a great first date?
A perfect first date involves something that gives you the right amount of time to talk. But it also provides a fun and good time. You want to make an impression, so getting a little creative is key! And a fun date idea is easy to easy to pull together, and sure to earn some bonus points!
Typically, you want a date activity that shows you value sharing that person’s time. But I’m also a firm believer the best first dates need to feel natural and too expensive or extravagant to make your acquaintance feel guilty.
Here are a ton of good first date night ideas that help you bond, feel the chemistry, and help you get to know each other better.
Over 50 First Date Ideas
- Jazz Club or Blues Night Show: This is a unique, cultural night out on the town with some live music to set a fun mood. Some jazz clubs host a poetry reading night, and that’s an equally fun and entertaining way to get to know someone!
- Rock Climbing: A little conversation, and a lot of fun! This will take your first date idea to new heights. And you’ll learn a lot about their ambition, activity level, and ability to push through hard things. It’s one of the best active date ideas, particularly for a first date!
Related: Rock Climbing Date Night
- Bowling: Heading to the bowling alley is an iconic first date for a reason. Enough time to sit, but enough time to keep moving and having fun.
- Batting Cages: Take a swing and get to know your date better! You could also wager a bet and get creative with some friendly competition.
- Roller Skating / Roller Blading / Ice Skating: The perfect activity if you need to find an excuse to hold hands.
- Cooking Class: For a but if a splurge for a first date, you can recreate that cosmopolitan feel in the movie Hitch (hopefully without the allergies). It really is a great way to add some easy romance and fun without coming on too strong.
Related: Romantic Cooking Date
- Conversation Topics Date: Dive in getting to know each other with some fun conversation cards. Try a conversation topics deck, or download our free would you rather questions for couples printable. You’ll have some laughs and plenty of fun getting to know each other.
- Painting Class: Did you originally connect over a love of art? Then this would be the perfect follow-up. And it’s one of our go-to dates when we need something fun to try together.
Related: Paint night date night
- Dog Park (with your dogs) or Animal Shelter: If you and your date share a love of canine critters, make it a good date at the dog park or animal shelter. It’s a great way to reduce anxiety and have man’s best friend by your side!
- Mini Golf: Fun, low-key, but keeps you moving = the perfect first date formula. It’s a classic first-date idea for a great reason!
- City / State Fairs and Carnivals: Dependent on your budget, you can go big with a state fair or save some money on a smaller fair in town.
- Nearby Water or Amusement Park: Make a day date out of it with a group for an unforgettable first date. It’s one of those unique first-date ideas that help you get out of your comfort zone while you pump the adrenaline together.
Related: Waterpark Date
- Skateboarding / Longboarding: This is either a great opportunity to show off your skills or teach your date something cool.
- Nature Reserve or Botanic Gardens: Enjoy the beautiful and unique nature in your area. It’s a fun way to connect in a peaceful environment. And you’ll likely learn something new about nature while you learn a lot about your date.
- Rodeo / Country Dancing: Put on your cowboy boots for some extra, old-timey fun. Check out country dancing nights at dance studios, bars, western-themed restaurants, and breweries. Many put on a mini dance class before pumping the tunes and putting on a full country dance party.
Related: Rodeo Date Idea
- Library: Whether you both love books and want to explore, or want to take advantage of an interesting, free event at the library, there’s sure to be a date idea for anyone.
Relate: Free Date Ideas
Fun First Date Ideas
- Go-Karts: One ride around a go-kart rink is pretty affordable for an unforgettable first date. And you’ll get a little adrenaline rush which can be a great thing to ease the nerves and relax.
- Paddle Boat / Canoe / Kayak: Take to the water together for a “rapid” adventure. Most rivers and lakes offer rentals to make this date really doable.
- Escape Room: There’s something so fun about solving riddles and puzzles to escape in a set amount of time. You’ll learn a lot about how a person thinks, and how well they do under pressure all in the first date! To make it cheaper, you can make it a group date night with your friends if you thin your date is up for it.
- First Friday Walk: An excellent way to discover the city you live in and your date. Play tourists to your own city or a nearby city while you walk through a metro neighborhood. Best of all, it’s usually free!
- Zoo Date: There’s something about walking around animals that will help with the small talk or potential awkward silences. And zoo dates often bring up childhood memories and experiences that help you really get to know each other.
- Virtual Reality Arcade: Have you seen these immersive experiences popping up? They’re a fun twist on arcade games. And they add just enough novelty to make it a really fun first date!
- Laser Tag or Paintball: Strategize with your date for a rush of fun. It’s a great way to get a little friendly competition in and work together towards a goal.
- Swing Dancing: A swing dancing class is another fun, active option with a classy, romantic twist. There’s plenty of opportunity for conversation and a lot of laughs while you figure out this new activity together.
Related: Active Date Ideas
- Karaoke: A great ice-breaker activity, but hopefully not a deal-breaker from bad singing! Check out a karaoke cafe or bar for one of our favorite unique first date ideas!
- Sports Game: From a baseball date to soccer, watching a live sports game can provide entertainment with enough for conversation too! Also, if you and your date share a mutual interest, playing in a game might be even more fun.
- Pottery Class: You can go all cheesy “Ghost” style if the date goes well. But all jokes aside, it’s an engaging, artistic date to give a try.
- Axe throwing date or Knife throwing: For the ultimate “thrilling” first date. Don’t worry, there are coaches to walk you through, and it’s a fun date whether you’re excellent or terrible at this activity!
- Group Board Games Date Night: Another affordable, safe option. Especially if it’s a blind date. You could also do a game night for two with a game from our 100 couple games list.
- Short Hike: Hit the trail for a slightly more athletic version of the “walk in the park” date. Plus the outdoor environment is a naturally calming and beautiful space that tends to bring out the best in most people!
See our Hiking Date Idea tips here.
- Aquarium: Explore awesome marine life and have a lively conversation along the way. It’s a great place to learn and experience new things. And there’s plenty of time to talk and connect while you explore exhibits.
Relate: Aquarium Date night
- Racquetball/Pickleball Date: You can often find free courts in parks or high schools. You’ll just need to bring the bat and ball.
- Seasonal-Themed Date: go sledding, try a hayride, float in tubes, or dance in the rain. Whatever season of life you’re in, or whatever season of time you’re in, there’s a great season date to do. Celebrate the season and upcoming holidays for a fun first date night,
Related: Pumpkin and Chili Fest Date
- Service Activity: Try a date you’ll feel good about afterward, especially if it leads to a second date! Try a soup kitchen, meal packing, or simply an “Acts of Kindness” date.
- Acro Yoga Class: This is a great way to get more comfortable and trusting of each other. Plus, even if the date doesn’t go well, you’ll learn a new skill and have a ton of new experiences.
- Shooting Range: Get your adrenaline rush by pulling the trigger in this controlled environment.
- Unique Holiday Festivities: Halloween haunted houses, Christmas sleigh rides… or look for a more novelty holiday like National Donut Day if there isn’t one coming up and get free donuts! The possibilities are endless.
- Museum or Special Exhibit: The more unique the museum or exhibit you find, the more conversation starters for your date!
- Fun Run: Color runs, glow runs, mud runs… all of these you can optionally walk too! Plus it’s an easy way to get in an active date idea while promoting conversation.
- Thrift Store Fun: Dress each other up in goofy or stylish apparel. And, if you find something you or your date likes, it’s not an expensive gift.
- Trampoline or Bouncy Park: As the infamous lyrics from House of Pain Say, “Jump around!” Feel free to unleash your inner child with this fun activity that makes a great date.
- Epic Puzzle: Probably a 1000-count puzzle is enough for one evening, as long as it isn’t a polar bear in a snowstorm.
Related: Puzzle date night idea
- Chocolate / Candy Factory or Novelty Shop: You can often enjoy samples and grab new, unique flavors of your favorite treats.
- Kite Flying: If the wind is right, then it’s the perfect timing to take advantage of this affordable activity.
- Unique Sports Event: Watch Roller Derby, college Quidditch matches, bocce tournaments, or something else you discover in your area.
- Volunteer: Look up JustServe.org for some easy volunteer opportunities in your area. You’ll get your endorphins going and do some good while you get to know each other.
Low Key First Dates
- Brunch: If this first date is especially for somebody new, this is a low-commitment but quality way to get to know them better.
Related: Brunch date idea
- Frozen Yogurt / Self-Serve Ice Cream: Probably the simplest, easiest first date option if you need a last-minute or late-evening idea. This is a caffeine-free version of the first brief meetings at coffee shops.
- Concerts / Theatre / Movies in the Park: A highly affordable way to take somebody to a quality show. Or, a unique alternative to dinner and a movie.
Related: Movies in the Park
- Mocktails and Card Games: Recreate your own “casino night” without losing a ton of money over it.
- (Busy) Park Walk and Dessert: This is a great, simple option that keeps you a little active and distracted, but also focused enough to chat.
- Improv Comedy Show: This is a very low-key but high-quality first date option to share each others’ sense of humor.
Related: Improv Comedy Show Date
- Trivia Night Out on the Town: These are most often held at arcades, pubs, grills, and bars. Just Google, “Trivia Night near me.” And grab a great appetizer and drinks to enjoy while you get your trivia night on!
- Bike Ride/ Tandem Bike Ride: This is the perfect, laid-back, and fun activity if the weather permits.
- Side Attractions at the Mall: You can find bungee rides, back massages, Merry-Go-Rounds, and more! Pretend it’s 1999 again and go cruise the mall together.
- S’mores with a Campfire or Bonfire: A delicious way to take advantage of cooler temperatures and stay comfy outside.
Related: S’mores Bar Date
- Farmer’s Market: Local markets hold plenty of surprises beyond vegetables – they often have food trucks available too.
Related: Farmer’s Market Date
- Drive-In Movie Date and Drive-In Theatre: Th is another unique twist to the dinner-and-movie formula. And it’s more acceptable to talk, cuddle, and makeout during a movie should you feel inspired!
Related: Drive-in Movie Date Night Tips
- College Show and Campus Walk: A discounted cultural experience with a stroll through beautiful architecture and landscaping.
- Group Movie Night Date at Home: Make your own novelty popcorn and enjoy a classic show with some other couples. Bonus if you do an outdoor movie night.
- Picnic: Make your meal, order take-out and find a unique, beautiful spot to enjoy. Parks, lakes, and more. Check out our picnic date ideas for tons of ideas!
Related: Romantic sunset picnic date night
- Scenic Drive: If you and your date are more familiar with each other, this would be a safe option to enjoy.
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Photos: Andrew Millet Photography
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