It’s happening. You’re seeing someone special. After sorting through a seemingly endless sea of duds, you’ve finally found someone with whom you’re really hitting it off. The standard “Which of these three bars that I know do you want to go to again?” isn’t quite cutting it anymore.
When sparks are flying, you want to create memories that you can look back on for years to come. The dates you two go on should be as special and unique as the love that’s growing between you both. And do you know what the most important date is, after the first one. That’s right. The second date.
Whoa. Did we say love? Too soon…? Too bad. Because here are 55 things to do on a second date.
1. Show you’ve been listening. If she mentioned that she loves thrift shopping, plan a surprise outing to a flea market. If he grew up fishing, head out to the lake.
2. Go on a kayak tour, or spend the day paddling around the river.
3. Feed the ducks at the park. Compete to see who can gather the biggest flock.
4. Visit a community arts/craft show and check out the local talent. The gift options don’t hurt, either.
5. Take a BYOB painting class together. Artistic talent or not, some Liquid Courage will get your creativity flowing.
6. Volunteer at a local charity. Whether it’s helping at a soup kitchen or walking dogs at the SPCA, you’ll be doing something valuable with your time together by helping others.
7. Build a bonfire on the beach at night. There’s a chance it’s illegal where you live (Jones Beach, Long Beach — super illegal), but that will just add to the thrill.
8. Go beyond the standard ice cream cone and find a unique gelato shop. Combine flavors for some exceptional tastes.
9. Find an obscure museum or collection of oddities.
10. Pick fresh fruit at a local farm. Take your apples or strawberries home and whip up some delicious pies.
11. Go biking for a more scenic view of the city. If you don’t have your own bikes, use your city’s bike share program.
12. Climb a hill outside the city limits. Watch the sunset from the top and see the skyline light up for the night.
13. Go for a hike in the woods, and remove all unnecessary distractions from city life.
14. Take a fitness class together like kickboxing, spinning or dancing.
15. Trade in a pub crawl for a “coffee shop crawl” or “appetizer crawl” for a more memorable night on the town.
16. Check out the tourist hotspots that you’ve always ignored. There’s probably a reason so many people go to them, after all.
17. Attend a wine tasting class, so you can experience and learn to talk about some of the finer things in life.
18. Play pool together, or visit an arcade bar for a fun night of classic games and brews.
19. Depending on the season, do some fun activities outside like driving to see foliage in the fall or ice skating in the winter.
20. Experience the awesome luxury of a brunch cruise.
21. Purchase some disposable cameras and visit the local park for some shots without the smartphones. A whole hour before the photos get developed? Anticipation is the best part!
22. Relive your childhood by building a pillow fort. Eat dinner or watch movies in there.
23. Head to a local fair or carnival and ride the Ferris wheel. If you’re lucky, you might get stuck at the top of the ride, ’till 3005.
24. Have a cooking competition where you each prepare the same dish.
25. Learn something new together by attending a drawing, pottery or writing class.
26. Make up a scavenger hunt, then spend the day completing it around the city.
27. Grab dinner at food trucks and eat as you wander through cool neighborhoods.
28. Go geocaching. No matter how long you’ve been living somewhere, you’ll discover new nooks and crannies together.
29. Check out a film festival. It’ll be way more interesting than whatever blockbuster is out in theaters, and you can find out each other’s opinions on art and film.
30. Go see some live music at a local bar.
31. Take a free walking tour of your city. Even the most jaded New Yorker doesn’t know everything about his or her local history. See your home together through new eyes.
32. Buy edible body paint and have a steamy, creative night in.
33. Does one of you miss having a pet? Hang out in the park and pet other people’s dogs. (Here’s an amazing guide on how to do this in a socially acceptable way.)
34. Go to a comedy club and laugh at someone else’s pain.
35. Take a ballroom dance class. Good dancing never goes out of style.
36. Most cities have First Friday events, or something of the sort. Use the free entry to check out all the art galleries.
37. Go to an art museum and take turns posing like the portraits and sculptures.
38. Take a stroll through the local botanical gardens.
39. Turn a home project like repurposing furniture into a fun, two person activity.
40. Go rock climbing. You’ll build trust while you work up a sweat.
41. Go running together. Couples who exercise together are statistically more likely to stay together.
42. What did your new friend want to be when she was little? Plan a date around making that true for the day. Astronaut? Air and space museum. Dancer? A trip to the ballet.
43. Go to a hands-on museum. You’ll have a blast doing experiments and remembering all that middle school science and history.
44. Walk a bridge at sunset and watch the sun set over the water or behind the city.
45. Turn your living room into a cinema by projecting movies onto the wall or a white sheet.
46. Visit the bookstore. Share your favorite books and find new stories together.
47. Spend the night in playing your favorite board games.
48. If it’s fall, go somewhere where you can see the leaves turn.
49. Go to a beer or food tasting together. You can compare what you did and didn’t like, learn more about the culinary world, and get a delicious snack.
50. Still have your old student ID? Go ahead and “student rush” some theater tickets for an affordable night out.
51. Start walking. At every intersection, switch off deciding which way to go. After 15 minutes, look around and go to the first restaurant you see.
52. Climb trees in the park and laugh at all the weird stares you two get.
53. Make cookie dough into fun shapes like animals or flowers, then try to guess what the other person made post-baking.
54. Make reservations at your S.O.’s favorite restaurant, then take him on a winding, blindfolded walk there. The anticipation and surprise will make dinner extra nice.
55. Pantless Netflix binge. It’s not fancy, but if you really think this relationship is going somewhere, you need to know that you two can just hang out and enjoy a show together.
Life is too short to sit at stuffy restaurants, agonizing over whether you should go for the steak you want or stick with the cheaper salad. Have a wild second date. Get out there. Get your hands dirty together. Make a fool of yourself. If it’s love, it’ll be a whole lot more worth it than another round of cocktails.
Still feeling uninspired? Check out these other amazing date ideas and make your second date truly special.
P.S. Wanna know a secret? Second date ideas also work for third dates too. Think of this guide as the gift that keeps on giving.