Whether you’re aiming to woo your latest Hinge date or keeping the romance alive with your partner of many years, date ideas can be a difficult thing to think up - especially if you’re trying to keep off the sauce.
Seriously, if you Google ‘things to do on a date’, we bet that around 99% of results involve alcohol. And, even worse, the couple of sober date ideas you do get are –let's face it – pretty boring.
We’re firm believers that all dates should be fun, regardless of whether you’re having a tipple or not. So, whether you’re T-Total, you don’t drink for health reasons or just fancy mixing it up a bit, it’s always good to have a bank of booze-free date ideas.
Go to a theme park
Nothing says romance like hurtling down a rollercoaster track, screaming at the top of your lungs, and squeezing each other’s hand until your knuckles are white. Right? A theme park is a solid choice if your significant other loves an adrenaline rush.
Thorpe Park is the go-to for you lot down south, with rides like Stealth, SAW – The Ride and Colossus (you’ll be glad you’re not drunk after being spun around its ten loops).
If you’re based further up t’north, give Blackpool Pleasure Beach a go. Ride ICON (the UK’s only double-launcher), if you pay a little bit extra, you can experience ENSŌ too. It’s a modification to the back row of seats that allows them to spin and twist freely for double the thrills.
Fancy turning your date into a romantic getaway? Alton Towers Resort has loads of accommodation options and rides like The Smiler, Oblivion and Wicker Man. One more tip: remember to pose for the camera. You’ll want that photo to show the grandkids.
Have a day at the zoo or safari park
We could learn a lot about love from the animal kingdom. Penguins search for the perfect pebble to gift potential monogamous partners, otters hold hands to ensure they don’t drift apart while sleeping and, if you’ve ever watched an Attenborough doc, you’ll have seen the grand displays birds put on to woo a mate. And to think we can barely get a text back.
If it’s a first date you’re going on, the thought of filling the silences without a bit of Dutch courage can be daunting. Spending the day wandering around the different enclosures at the zoo is great as each animal you stop off at provides new talking points. Bringing a picnic is sure to ramp up the romance factor.
A safari park date is always going to be a sober one because you’ll be driving through the park instead of walking around it. Luckily, a monkey attacking the car is quite the ice breaker.
Go somewhere with amazing views
Some things in life are just innately romantic, like flowers and Marvin Gaye songs. You can’t deny it, they just are. We are firm believers that beautiful views fall into that category. So, what better date idea than to go somewhere you can see for miles.
For London dwellers (or if you fancy taking a trip to the city with your beau), it doesn’t get much better than the London Eye. You’ll tick off all of London’s biggest sights during the 30-minute rotation and, if you really want to push the boat out, book the Cupid Pod experience. You’ll have the pod to yourself, perfect for declaring sweet nothings to one another.
More of a seaside kind of person? Blackpool Tower Eye has beautiful beach views on steroids. When the weather’s good (granted, that’s not often), you can see all the way down to Liverpool and the Isle of Man. Step out onto the SkyWalk, a glass walkway (380ft up), and take in the panorama. You might want to hold hands for that bit. You’re welcome.
Try something new together
As bonding experiences go, throwing an axe for the first time together seems like a pretty cool one. Sure, it may be risky because it’s not your traditional date but high risk, high reward, we say.
The Bear Grylls Adventure in Birmingham is a one stop shop for new activities to try – all of which are a hell of a lot safer when alcohol isn’t involved, like talking climbing and high ropes experiences. you can give Cupid a run for his money with archery lessons (please don’t aim your arrow at your date though, you’ll probably be asked to leave) or try your hand at indoor skydiving.
There’s an escape room there too. You need 4 or more people though, but good for a double date. It’s the biggest test for relationships since building IKEA flatpack furniture together.
You can even dive with sharks here (yep, real ones) - we told you it had it all. Don’t worry if you’re a beginner, you’ll learn all the basics of scuba diving (and get a certificate to prove it) then it’s into the tank with Nurse Sharks, Blacktip Reef Sharks and whole host of tropical fish. Pretty memorable, if you ask us.
At daysout.com, you can book the UK’s best attractions (y’know the proper FOMO inducing ones?) -- we know where’s perfect for you. Find your next adventure.