50 Valentine’s Day Ideas That Are Better Than an Overpriced Dinner (2024)

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50 Valentine’s Day Ideas That Are Better Than an Overpriced Dinner (1)Charlotte Hilton AndersenUpdated: Feb. 08, 2024

    Go beyond dinner and flowers with these fresh, fun Valentine's Day ideas for couples

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    Valentine ideas that are uniquely you

    Valentine’s Day is a holiday dedicated to all things love. Celebrating love is easy enough. The tricky part is figuring out Valentine’s Day ideas that celebrate your unique love.

    Start with some questions: What do you enjoy doing? How long have you been together? What’s your budget? Some couples love romantic movies, while others may enjoy spending quality time at romantic restaurants. Even something considered simple, like gifting a red rose to signify your love, is a Valentine’s Day idea that shouldn’t be overlooked.

    There’s no right way to spend Valentine’s Day, but if you and your number one are looking for new ways to celebrate your affection, consider these Valentine ideas for an extra-special Feb. 14.

    GetReader’s Digest’sRead Up newsletterfor more holiday tips, fun facts, humor, cleaning, travel and tech all week long.

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    Go to a botanical garden

    Ignite a spark of romance with this Valentine idea: Stroll through the lush pathways of a botanical garden hand in hand. Even in winter, the experience can be enjoyable, since you can swap the ordinary scenery at home with dazzling light displays, winter tours and snowy installations.

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    Go rock climbing

    Ditch the traditional dinner-and-movie routine for one of the coolest (and boldest) Valentine’s Day ideas ever. Rock climbing is a fun activity that can evoke trust, communication and the cute competitive side you may not have seen in each other since your first date!

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    Take a yoga class

    Embrace tranquility with a shared moment of mindfulness (and shall we say, flexibility too?). Picture it: The calming atmosphere, the gentle flow of poses and a serene escape from the hustle and bustle of your daily lives. This Valentine’s Day idea may help you and your partner connect on a deeper level.

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    Work on a puzzle together

    Working on a puzzle can be more than just assembling fragments; it’s a metaphor for piecing together your unique connection, especially if you’ve had a few hiccups in your relationship. So cozy up, grab some hot cocoa and put the puzzle (and your relationship) together, one piece at a time.

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    Go camping

    February might not be the best month to sleep in the great outdoors, but if you live in an area that’s warm all year, celebrate love with a romantic camping experience. Have deep conversations as you snuggle up together by the fire with roasted marshmallows and hot wine.

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    Recreate your first date

    Whether you’ve been together two months or 20 years, your first date was likely pretty memorable. Even if it was a comedy of errors, it obviously ignited something! For one of our favorite Valentine’s Day ideas, reignite that spark by recreating your first date, perhaps adding a Valentine’s Day rose to kick off the celebration and chocolate-covered strawberries to end it.

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    Create a photo album

    Go through your favorite pictures together—stopping to talk about all the memories—and put them in a digital album celebrating your relationship. You can print it out or share it online with some cute “happy Valentine’s Day” messagestoo!

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    Fill out love journals

    This is one of the Valentine’s Day ideas that keeps on giving: Make or buy a love journal in which each page prompts you to write a fun memory, a story or something you adore about your significant other. Share your books with each other on Valentine’s Day. This is also perfect for ladies celebrating Galentine’s Day, along with folks who are better at expressing their love in writing rather than talking.

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    Have a “favorite things” day

    Pick a few of your favorite things to share with your partner. They could be small, like a favorite lotion or rose color, or bigger, like hiking to your favorite view. Knowing why it’s meaningful to you will increase your bond.

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    Play Valentine’s Day bingo

    Print out our Valentine’s bingo card and challenge each other to complete as many items as you can throughout the day. Whoever gets bingo first gets to decide the evening’s activity.

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    Create a signature cocktail

    Having a signature drink for the two of you is a fun way to celebrate now and can become a tradition. Look up interesting recipes online, or take a mixology class together.

    Start with sexting

    Use technology to build anticipation throughout the day by sending each other sexy pictures and chats. By the time you meet up, you’ll both be in the Valentine’s Day spirit. For fun, sprinkle in some hilarious Valentine’s Day memes. If your partner has a funny bone, they’ll surely enjoy the silly and flirty conversation.

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    Take a relaxing staycation

    There’s nothing wrong with adding relaxation to your list of Valentine ideas. Use the holiday as an excuse to fully disconnect and escape somewhere together. Plus, you don’t have to go far to make it fun.

    Kiss on a mountaintop

    Nothing is more romantic than Mother Nature’s grand displays. Go on an outdoor date and take a hike together (maybe even check out the sunrise over the mountains or the sunset at the beach).

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    Make homemade gifts

    Whether you’re on a budget or trying to be more creative, make a rule that you can only gift each other something homemade. Top it off with ahomemade Valentine’s Day card to really make the DIY extra special and personal.

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    Write each other an annual Valentine’s letter

    Write your sweetheart a love note expressing your gratitude and what you adore about them. Include quotes about love to help them reminisce about your romantic moments throughout the years. Both new and long-term couples will strengthen their bond and have a yearly keepsake.

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    Take a romantic bath together

    As far as Valentine’s Day ideas go, this one is among the sexiest. Go all out with the bubbles (or bath bombs!), candles, music and rose petals to create a romantic bath. Enjoy the tech-free quality time together.

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    Play love-song karaoke

    Load up a playlist with romantic songs and serenade each other karaoke-style. It’s one of those Valentine’s Day ideas that will have you laughing and swooning (but mostly laughing).

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    Make a romantic breakfast

    It doesn’t have to be dinner to be romantic! In fact, morning larks may find a loved-up breakfast (in bed?) or brunch to be way more romantic.

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    Share a sexy playlist

    Music is a great way to bond emotionally. Start a shared playlist, and each of you can add your favorite songs to get in the mood. And if you’re still wondering what to write in your funny Valentine’s Day card, lyrics from their favorite sexy song will do the trick! Be sure to share what it is you love about the song—and your lover.

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    Go shopping together

    Rather than stressing out about choosing the perfect gift (and then picking something random), go shopping as a couple. You’ll learn what your partner likes, and it’s a fun activity.

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    Create a couple’s vision board

    Talking about and planning your future together is a great way to bond on a deeper level. Create a vision board with things you’d each like to accomplish, then figure out what you can do together. Not only will you connect with your significant other, but you’ll also improve your relationship communication.

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    Take turns planning the fun

    Planning a Valentine’s Day celebration often comes with a mountain-high list of expectations (many of them unrealistic), so reduce the pressure by taking turns planning. You can alternate years or split the planning for that day—one of you plans dinner, the other chooses an activity.

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    Bond over a new cultural experience

    Is there a cuisine you’ve been dying to try? A country you’d love to learn about? A language you’d like to practice? Valentine’s Day is the perfect opportunity to create a fun cultural experience together.

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    Work up a sweat together

    Exercise releases natural hormones, which can improve your sex life. Pick an activity you will enjoy together, like a Valentine’s Day fun run. You can always shower off the sweat together afterward!

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    Gift an experience

    Flowers, chocolate and candy are great, but experiences are often a lot more meaningful than things. Schedule an activity during which you can create memories together, like an escape room, a morning hike or a paint-and-sip class.

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    Stay home and chill

    Valentine’s Day ideas don’t have to be fancy, which is why we love this low-key activity. If your lives are busy and you’re always on the go, the best Valentine’s Day celebration may be to skip the high-priced dinner and do something at home.

    Count the stars

    Nothing is more romantic than laying under the stars together. If the weather permits, take a blanket and a stargazing app and spend some quiet time watching the night sky (or not) together.

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    Create a scavenger hunt

    Make the day into a fun game by creating a scavenger hunt of love notes. Each note can remind your loved one of a happy memory together, with the last one leading to a romantic dinner spot. Add the first clue to your Valentine’s card.

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    Try a new dessert recipe together

    Put on your aprons (perhaps only your aprons) and cook up a newdessert recipe. Find one online or create your own. Then take turns feeding it to each other.

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    Create a piece of art

    Get creative and paint, sculpt, draw or craft something that commemorates your relationship. New couples can make something that can be added to, like a collection of matching painted mugs, while long-standing couples can honor their years of memories with a sculpture or photo collage.

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    Play an adult game

    Dice, cards, board games, role play—whatever type of game you enjoy, there’s an adult version of it, and Valentine’s Day is the perfect time to try something new to spice up your sex life. Valentine’s Day ideas can be as subdued or racy as you’d like, and this one brings the heat.

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    Hit up a comedy show

    Laughing together can be incredibly romantic and sexy. Check out a live Valentine-themed improv or get tickets to a comedy show. Feel like staying in? Cuddle together on the couch and stream your favorite movies. Or ditch the flicks and tell each other Valentine’s Day jokes.

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    Go thrift-store gifting

    On a budget? Head to your favorite thrift store and make thrifting one of your Valentine ideas. Each of you gets $15 and 30 minutes to find the perfect Valentine’s Day gift for the other. If you have a few more dollars, pick out the perfect date-night outfit for each other—and you have to wear whatever your partner picks!

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    Play a modern Newlywed Game

    Like Valentine’s Day trivia, the Newlywed Game is all about quizzing your partner. This classic game is just as fun for couples who’ve been together for one year as it is for those who’ve lasted 50 years or more. For more fun, play it with other couples who’ve been married for different lengths of time.

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    Create a date jar

    Who says romance is only reserved for Valentine’s Day? Write down romantic date ideas on paper and put them in a jar. When date night rolls around, pick an idea out of the jar and prepare for an adventure with your love.

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    Cook a new dish

    Instead of going out to eat, flex your culinary skills and cook a nice meal together. Bonus points if you make a dish you’ve never tried before.

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    Volunteer

    Give back to your community on Valentine’s Day by volunteering at a local animal shelter, soup kitchen or another community organization or nonprofit. It’s a great way to bond with your partner and spread the love you share.

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    Stream romantic movies

    Snuggle up on the sofa with comfy blankets and tasty snacks for a romance-themed movie marathon. Pick your favorite sentimental love flicks or rom-coms to watch and enjoy a relaxing (but romantic) night in.

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    Share love poems

    If you and your partner enjoy poetry, pick your favorite love poems and read them to each other. Or write your own love poems and exchange them. It’s a romantic, personal and incredibly sweet activity; plus, you get to keep the poems as souvenirs of an unforgettable Valentine’s Day.

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    Solve a murder mystery together

    Nothing says romance like solving a fictional crime, right? Order a fun detective game and spend Valentine’s Day entrenched in mystery with your special someone. There are plenty of chills and thrills to go around.

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    Visit a museum

    Visiting a museum on Valentine’s Day is an excellent date idea because you get to spend quality time with your date and learn something new in the process. It’s a true win-win!

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    Have a fort picnic

    This is one of the cutest Valentine’s Day ideas, especially for those who want a delicious meal but don’t necessarily want to head out to dinner. Channel your inner child and build a fort in the living room. Then pack a romantic picnic and share a meal in your special fortress. Stream a movie or play some romantic music for added fun.

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    Take a dance class

    As the old saying goes: It takes two to tango. Put on your dancing shoes and take a dance class with your love for a unique Valentine’s Day experience.

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    Make a relationship scrapbook

    Time to get scrappy! One of the best low-key, but sentimental, Valentine’s Day ideas is making a relationship scrapbook. Grab some pictures and special notes to paste into the book, all while reminiscing about your favorite romantic rendezvous. Bonus points if you write down cute Valentine’s Day pickup lines in the pages for future laughs.

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    Create a time capsule

    Now this is a fun activity that preserves a timeless relationship. Gather photos, letters and other mementos of love to put in your own time capsule. As you work on your capsule, you’ll be reminded of when and just why Cupid decided to shoot his arrows your way. Bury it this Valentine’s Day and make a vow to dig it up on a future Valentine’s Day.

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    Read a book together

    Bookworms, this idea is for you. Head to your local bookstore on Valentine’s Day and pick out a book for you both—this could be a romance book, thriller or another genre of interest. Take some time to read it and then come together to discuss it. It’ll be your own little book club!

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    Set up an at-home spa

    Pamper your partner without leaving the house by setting up an at-home spa. Grab face masks, massage oils and other spa essentials for a relaxing night in.

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    Book a hotel for the night

    Looking for a change of scenery for Valentine’s Day? Book a hotel just for the night. Spoil yourselves at a romantic hotel with room service, access to a hot tub and plenty of other special amenities.

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    Plan a romantic getaway

    If you’re looking to go all-out with your Valentine’s Day ideas, one of the best options is to plan a romantic getaway for your special someone. This doesn’t have to be a huge vacation, either—a romantic weekend getaway is just as special! Pack your bags and hit the road to celebrate your unbreakable bond.

    Additional reporting by Kelly Kuehn.

    Originally Published: February 03, 2022

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    Charlotte Hilton Andersen

    Charlotte Hilton Andersen is a health, lifestyle and fitness expert and teacher. She covers all things wellness for Reader’s Digest and The Healthy. With dual masters degrees in information technology and education, she has been a journalist for 17 years and is the author of The Great Fitness Experiment. She lives in Denver with her husband, five kids and three pets.

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    Now, let's discuss the concepts mentioned in this article.

    Valentine's Day Ideas for Couples

    Valentine's Day is a holiday dedicated to celebrating love, and it can be a great opportunity for couples to do something special together. The article suggests a variety of Valentine's Day ideas that couples can consider to make the day extra special. These ideas range from traditional activities like going to a romantic restaurant or exchanging gifts, to more unique and creative options. Here are some of the concepts mentioned in the article:

    1. Go beyond dinner and flowers: The article encourages couples to think beyond traditional Valentine's Day activities and explore new ways to celebrate their love.

    2. Consider your preferences and budget: The article suggests that couples should consider their own preferences, interests, and budget when planning their Valentine's Day celebration.

    3. Botanical garden: Going to a botanical garden can be a romantic and visually appealing experience, even in winter when there may be light displays and winter tours.

    4. Rock climbing: Instead of the usual dinner-and-movie routine, couples can try rock climbing as a fun and adventurous activity that can foster trust and communication.

    5. Yoga class: Taking a yoga class together can provide a shared moment of tranquility and mindfulness, allowing couples to connect on a deeper level.

    6. Puzzle: Working on a puzzle together can be a metaphor for piecing together a unique connection and can be a fun and cozy activity for couples.

    7. Camping: If the weather permits, couples can celebrate love with a romantic camping experience, enjoying deep conversations by the fire.

    8. Recreate your first date: Recreating the first date can be a nostalgic and sentimental way to celebrate Valentine's Day and reignite the spark in the relationship.

    9. Create a photo album: Going through favorite pictures together and creating a digital album can be a meaningful way to celebrate the relationship and reminisce about memories.

    10. Fill out love journals: Couples can make or buy love journals and write fun memories or stories about each other, providing a way to express love in writing.

    These are just a few of the ideas mentioned in the article. There are many more suggestions, such as creating a signature cocktail, having a "favorite things" day, playing Valentine's Day bingo, and many others. The key is to find activities that resonate with you and your partner and create a memorable and meaningful Valentine's Day experience.

    Please let me know if you would like more information on any specific idea or if you have any other questions!

    50 Valentine’s Day Ideas That Are Better Than an Overpriced Dinner (2024)
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