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Man and woman on a holiday-themed date. They are bundled up for winter and holding mugs of cocoa. Holiday lights twinkle in the background.


Looking to cozy-up with your crush this winter? We’ve got you covered.

Penelope James   |   Fri, 1 Dec 2023

We don’t know about you, but the holidays bring out the romantics in us. Twinkling lights, festive parties, the promise of a new year ... we’re suckers for it all. The dreamy ambience of the season is hard to resist, and though we don’t all celebrate the same holidays, The Vibe staff feels an extra sense of love and light this time of year.

That’s why we couldn’t help but compile a list of our favorite holiday-inspired date ideas. Take a look at what we’ve come up with and then share some of your own … after all, ‘tis the season of love and connection!

Tour holiday lights or visit a local winter wonderland

There’s something super magical about the twinkle of holiday lights, so why not make a date to tour them with your match? You could spend a romantic evening exploring your nearest city's most beautifully decorated neighborhoods, or do a quick search to find an “official” holiday light display near you. Some towns and cities even offer bus or carriage tours to help you take in the top local displays, which can add an extra-special touch to the experience.

If a light tour isn’t quite up your alley, visit a wintry park or botanical garden (bonus points if they have a winter-themed exhibit). The serene beauty of a natural landscape can be very romantic, and there’s nothing better than snuggling up with your date as the snow begins to fall.

Meander through a holiday market

Many cities and towns also host festive holiday markets, which are filled with unique crafts and goods, yummy foods, and seasonal entertainment. Christmas-themed markets are probably the easiest to find, but the great thing is that you don’t even have to celebrate the holiday to enjoy the scene and get swept up in the cheerful vibes. Walking around a light-strewn market with a cup of hot cocoa in your hand and a cute date by your side? Merry everything to everyone!

Plan a holiday-themed scavenger hunt

Here’s a fun one for the DIYers among us: create a list of holiday-themed items or scenarios to find around your city or neighborhood, and spend the day trying to capture them all on camera. Some could be generic, like “find a holiday-themed window display”; others could be more precise, like “find a silver menorah with blue candles sitting next to a Christmas tree with gold ornaments.” The more random you get, the longer you can spend searching, which can be a playful and adventurous way to explore your city together.

Go ice skating

Looking for a date that’s more seasonal than holiday-specific? Go ice skating! In our opinion, the most romantic ice-skating venue is an outdoor pond or rink that’s encircled by lights, but even if you have to go to an indoor arena, there’s still plenty of magic to be made. Pull on your mittens, lace up your skates, and hang on tight to your partner ... it’s time to do some laps with your love.

Attend a live holiday show or host a movie marathon

Another way to bring a little fa-la-la to your love life is to take in a holiday-themed performance. Whether it's The Nutcracker, a holiday concert, or a local theater production of a festive classic, attending a performance can be a memorable and cultural date experience. If theater isn’t your jam, why not plan a holiday- or winter-movie marathon? Choose a mix of classic and newer seasonal movies, create a comfy setup with blankets and pillows, and spend the day watching them together. (Don't forget the popcorn and holiday-themed snacks!)

Go cocoa tasting

If you’re a big fan of all things hot chocolate, plan a sweet cocoa-tasting extravaganza. You can visit several local cafes to critique which has the best cup, or stay warm and cozy by setting up your own tasting at home. Pair your pipin’ hot bevs with various winter or holiday treats, and rate your faves while you enjoy this made-for-rom-coms romp.

Volunteer together

Finally, why not share the holiday spirit with others by volunteering with your partner at a local non-profit or community event? There are so many wonderful organizations that are in particular need during the holiday season and colder months, and there’s nothing more festive than showing up and sharing some love with your community.


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