7 Memorable First Date Ideas
The pressure of planning the perfect first date should never be underestimated. Will the two of you have anything in common? What if you do something to embarrass yourself? And, what the hell do you wear to show someone that you've made an effort, without looking like you've stepped straight out of The Great Gatsby (believe us when we say that fedora hats and flapper headbands are not first date material...)?
Whilst there are some elements that are simply out of your control, getting the destination right will help to get things off to a good start. With that in mind, we’ve rounded up some of our favourite first date ideas in Hertfordshire, from adrenaline-fuelled activities to traditional candle-lit dinners. So come on, it's time to get planning, you old romantic you...
For the wild at heart
As the age-old song goes "the animals went in two-by-two", so where better to pair up than on a romantic trip to Paradise Wildlife Park, set in the idyllic Broxbourne countryside? Pay a visit to snow leopard couple Jessie and Panja, or Paradise power couple Tilly and Nam Pang the red pandas. And, if you're looking for something that's sure to dazzle your date, this Valentine's Day Paradise are launching a totally new experience; Dine with the Lions. Enjoy a three-course dinner while overlooking Paradise’s beautiful white lion pride.
The puurfect place to feel the love...
For the one with a sweet tooth
If the thought of a formal setting, and (potentially) three courses of 'getting-to-know-you' conversation has you feeling a little hot under the collar, why not skip the starters, give mains a miss, and dive straight into dessert? The Waffle House and The Pudding Stop - both situated in St Albans - are among some of our recommendations for sweet treats, and offer the perfect relaxed environment for a low-key first date.
Did someone say hot Dutch apple waffle..?
For the one with a need for speed
Quietly harbouring a competitive streak? Take your date to Rye House Karting, for a casual (or combative) lap around this historic racing circuit. Tear around the track and let the chase begin on a karting adventure perfect for an adrenaline first date. With karts that go up to 50mph, it’s certainly one way to get the heart racing.
Ready, set, romance...
For the old-school romantic
For the old-school romantics among you, looking at our suggestion to jump behind the steering wheel on a first date with more than just a little apprehension, fear not. We'll admit that when it comes to a classy and classic first date, you really can't go wrong with a romantic restaurant reservation. And, with its idyllic lakeside setting, superb service and numerous awards to its name, Auberge du Lac provides the right mood for every occasion.
Table for two?
For the outdoor explorer
An oldie but a goodie. Greet your date with a cup of coffee or a hot chocolate, and enjoy a pressure-free stroll around your local area getting to know one another. Many of Hertfordshire’s gloriously green parks sport the coveted Green Flag award, the ultimate benchmark for some of the best outdoor spaces in the UK, making them the perfect backdrop for a romantic ramble.
Walk this way...
For the code-cracker
Avoid any awkward moments or cringe-worthy silences as you and your date work together to hunt out clues, crack codes and solve puzzles. Head to the Breakout Rooms in Watford for a date with a difference. With 60 minutes on the clock, you'll learn a lot about how your date's mind works as you manoeuvre together to escape danger, and you'll certainly have a lot to talk about over a drink when you make it through to safety!
Escape any awkwardness...
For the live entertainment enthusiast
Let others do the hard work for you with an evening of live entertainment at one of Hertfordshire's many theatres. From the Gordon Craig Theatre in Stevenage to the beautifully art-deco Broadway Cinema & Theatre in Letchworth, you're sure to find a show to suit your date's mood. And, if you're looking for something a little out of the ordinary, free tickets are often available to hit TV shows at the famous Elstree Studios. Get behind the scenes to where it all begins and see the film sets and studios that make up some of your favourite TV shows.
Lights, camera, action...