Brace yourselves, we’ve got news. Valentine’s Day doesn’t have to involve Champagne, Prosecco, or any of the other variations on ‘romantic fizz.’
It doesn’t actually need a fluffy bear clutching a single red rose in a plastic tube either, but that’s another story.
Romance and love are beautiful things, but if we learn nothing else from movies and songs; we know that they both come in all shapes and sizes. Love is not a cookie-cutter thing. So, Valentine’s Day without alcohol? No problem. There are countless ways to show how much you care, and celebrate the day of love, without popping a single cork.
14 alcohol-free date ideas:
- Culture club
Arrange a trip to an art gallery or exhibition that your Valentine is itching to see. Whether it’s modern art, a mind-blowing installation or artefacts from a lost age, this is the kind of thing that truly stirs the emotions.
- Lunch of love
Are you a foodie couple? Book a table for lunch – instead of dinner – at a fabulous restaurant. It’s more casual, still special and there’s less chance of being surrounded by staff trying to flog you Champagne with a ridiculous ‘Valentine’s Day’ mark up.
- Road trip
Get an early start and jump in the car for a trip to the beach, another city or the nearest bit of beautiful countryside. Take clothes for all weathers and your Valentine’s favourite driving music!
- Movie night
Snuggle up for a romantic movie night (or day!), complete with fluffy socks, hot chocolate and popcorn. Choose from a brand new rom-com, cinematic classic, or something that tugs at the heartstrings.
- Skill set
Book a workshop that you can do together, with a touch of romance thrown in. There are lots of places that offer silversmith classes, for example. Why not go along and spend the day making each other a beautiful Valentine’s Day gift to treasure?
- Glamp or camp?
Whether your loved one prefers a fairy-lit yurt, with Moroccan throws and wifi on demand, or a two-person tent in a muddy field and marshmallows on sticks, going away for a night or two under the stars is a very romantic thing to do.
- The food of love
Whether you’re a skilled chef, or still wondering how not to burn toast, making the effort to cook for someone is a wonderful gesture. If you’re really new to all this, stick with easy things like smoked salmon and rocket salad and a simple pasta dish. Set the table nicely and add some flowers to really make it special.
- Make a mean mocktail
Going alcohol-free doesn’t mean that you can’t mix a decent drink. Invent a delicious mocktail dedicated to your Valentine. Think of their favourite flavours and ingredients and get experimenting. Don’t skimp on the posh glass and garnishes…think hibiscus, rose petals and soft herb leaves and get truly creative!
- Find some fresh air
Plan a walk somewhere interesting, beautiful, or both. Remember there’s no such thing as the wrong weather, just the wrong clothes, so go prepared and take a picnic with a few treats thrown in, and a flask of good coffee.
- Be big kids
Do some of the stuff we all loved as kids. Find a funfair, bowling alley or ice rink; eat hotdogs, doughnuts and other food that you probably don’t really approve of, and have the kind of the day that 12-year-old you would have sold a Gameboy for.
- Straight from the art
Buy a set of canvasses, some watercolours or oil paints and create a makeshift art studio in which you can have a bash at painting or sketching each other. If that’s all a bit too Jack and Rose (pre-iceberg) for comfort, take your materials outside and paint a landscape or the sunset. Even if you haven’t held a paintbrush since primary school, whatever you produce will be a sweet memory of the day.
- Treasure hunt
A treasure hunt is fun at any age. Treasure can be anything from a poem that you’ve written about your loved one, to their favourite chocolate bar or a pair of cinema tickets. You could try this in nearby woodland or a park…just plan it in advance and try to make the clues romantic, silly and not too easy!
- Get lost in music
Snag tickets to a concert, music night or festival that your Valentine will enjoy. Kicking back with some great sounds and the person you love is a tried-and-tested winning combo.
- Share a spa day
If you and your Valentine enjoy a bit of pampering, then lots of spas offer special couple’s packages. A massage, facial and sauna can be a glorious way to pass the time and you will emerge feeling super-chilled and relaxed, with very smooth, glowy skin.
We hope this round up has given you some tips to try or inspired a few of your own. Why not write each of them on a piece of paper and get your Valentine to pull three out of a hat to choose from?
When alcohol isn’t part of your life, you’ve got more time, energy and drive to try new things. In fact, try challenging yourselves to tick off as many of these ideas as possible!