When it comes to first date ideas, the easiest option is usually to arrange to meet at your favourite pub or bar, and enjoy a bit of liquid courage while you get to know one another. Problem is, these dates are a dime a dozen (you’ve probably been on a few yourself) and if you really want to impress your date and get to know more about them, it’s a better idea to think outside the box.
The good news is, if you’ve been working with a dating agency or you’ve been messaging your date a lot beforehand, you’ll probably already have a pretty good idea of what they do and don’t like. After all, if the two of you have been matched together you’re probably interested in similar things. So using what you already know about them to your advantage, you can plan a first date that they’ll never forget.
But if you’re feeling stuck for ideas, don’t text them directions to your local Pizza Express just yet! We’ve put together a list of 15 fun and memorable first date ideas that are sure to bag you a second meeting.
1. Hit it off at Junkyard Golf
You’ve probably enjoyed a round of crazy golf in the past, but now you can take your golfing skills to a whole new level with Junkyard Golf. With multiple locations around the UK including in London, Manchester and Leeds, the courses are made up of junk (as the name suggests) like cars, bathtubs and old fairground equipment. And if you’re still not sold on the idea, you can enjoy a selection of beers or cocktails as you make your way around the course – this may, or may not, improve your game!
2. Get lost at an art gallery
If you’ve got a good eye for art and you love nothing more than wandering galleries in your spare time, then turn this into the perfect first date opportunity. Just be sure that your date has similar tastes and appreciates fine art just as much as you, otherwise you might find they quickly become disinterested!!
3. Cook up a storm together
Think Matt Damon and Minnie Driver swapping Pickles in Good Will Hunting, Julia Roberts being fed strawberries and champagne in Pretty Woman and of course, the unforgettable spaghetti scene from Lady and The Tramp. It’s true, food really is the way to our hearts. So what better way to spend a first date than creating something delicious together at one of the many cookery schools across the country. Plus, you can use this opportunity to get to know more about their favourite foods and whether they’re a dab hand in the kitchen… or not as the case may be.
4. Fall for each other at abseiling
An ideal date for thrill-seekers and something very different from your usual dinner and drinks, why not arrange to go abseiling on your first date? Whether you choose an inside venue or you want to take it one step further and abseil cliff faces or waterfalls, there are plenty of locations around the UK to choose from. So you’ll be able to find the perfect place for you and your date.
5. Get cosy at the (outdoor) cinema
A drive-in movie has been a classic first date since back in the 50s. Admittedly it didn’t go so well for Danny Zuko in Grease, but done right this can make for a very cosy first date. Sit back in your deckchairs or take your own picnic blanket, snacks and a bottle of fizz to relax with as you watch the movie.
6. Keep calm and do some yoga
Is your date an enthusiastic yogi? If you’re both fond of practising yoga, then why not find your zen together on a relaxing first date. Sign yourselves up to a class and you can show off your tree pose while they impress you with their inner warrior.
7. Take them for a bike ride
If you and your upcoming date both love the great outdoors, then why not enjoy a bike ride together – Great British weather permitting of course. You could take a picnic with you, stop for lunch or grab a drink at your favourite pub along the way. This gives you plenty of opportunities to stop, refresh and get to know more about one another.
8. Find yourself a quirky brewery
Unique craft beers and flavoursome ales have become very popular recently, with quirky microbreweries seeming to pop up on every corner. But these breweries aren’t just for the bearded hipsters among us, the cosy atmosphere and variety of taps to try make for a great first date – if they’re into beer of course! Just be sure to check that with them first.
9. Get creative at a pottery class
If Demi Moore and Patrick Swayze haven’t already sold you on the romantic art of pottery, then why not try it for yourself? Whether you’re throwing some pots or just decorating some ceramics, this can be a really fun and memorable way to get to know someone. And you don’t really have to sit behind each other!
10. Play to win at the arcade
Who hasn’t spent a great evening at the arcade as a child, playing Pac Man or Space Invaders, challenging your friends to the Dance Mat or playing endless games of air hockey? Apart from being a memorable first date, this can also be a great way to have fun, leave the stress of adult life behind and spend the night recapturing your youth.
11. Sing it loud at a karaoke bar
Karaoke dates can go one of two ways, because much like Marmite, you’re either a Karaoke lover or hater – so choose this date with caution. But if you’ve been working closely with your dating agency or you’ve conversed a lot with your future date, you may already know enough about them to know that they’d love a night on the mic.
Just make sure you warm up your vocal cords and practise your favourite song to ensure you make a good impression. Either that or make sure your rendition of Bohemian Rhapsody, Wonderwall or the Spice Girls ‘Wannabe’ is so energetic that they’ll be able to look past those bum notes.
12. Get them hooked at the aquarium
Fish. Not always the first thing you think of when you’re planning a romantic date, but the aquarium can make for a surprisingly charming evening. You can take a slow stroll around looking at some of the most weird and wonderful creatures the ocean has to offer and this can be the perfect location if you know your date loves animals.
13. Stroll along the beach
If you live near the coast, or you’re within driving/travelling distance, a romantic walk along the beach can be the perfect way to set the mood. And after, why not follow it up with one of Britain’s best loved traditions and grab yourself some fish and chips, or perhaps stop at a nearby pub for some delicious pub grub.
14. Dance the night away
Always been a little bit jealous of Patrick Swayze and Jennifer Grey? Well, the undeniable romance and chemistry that comes from dancing together can be yours too. Start your love story with a salsa lesson or try your hand at the Tango. But just be sure that your date loves to move as much as you do, because dancing can be a bit full on otherwise. Memorable – yes – but not for everyone, so just be sure you know enough about them to know that this is something they’d enjoy.
Alternatively, you could arrange to go dancing in a less formal situation, perhaps have a few drinks before hitting a club for a night of dancing. Just make sure you’re both wearing the right shoes!
15. Choose a hilarious team name at your local pub quiz
Want to impress them with your general knowledge? Then why not arrange to go to the quiz night at your local pub. These can be a really fun way of getting to know each other while having a laugh and a few drinks. Just be sure you don’t get too competitive!
Thinking of quirky and memorable first date ideas is much easier when you know more about the person you’re meeting with. At Ignite Dating, we take our time to get to know you, so we can ensure we match you with like-minded individuals who share similar interests. If you’d like to know more about our services, get in touch today.