Long walks on the beach are always a summer treat, but fall foliage and sweater temperatures make it possible to enjoy these magical autumn dates.
All things must pass — including 90 degree days, dips in the ocean and outdoor dining (super sorry about that last one). Instead of lamenting the end of summer, these 10 great fall date ideas will make you happy to see the season change. Grab your boots, order a pumpkin latte, and prepare to fall in love (for the first or 100th time) while experiencing one of these perfect fall outings.
1. Any given Sunday
Like football? You’re in luck — because games make the perfect autumn date. “Who doesn’t get excited for summer to end when there’s football to watch basically every day?” says Sarah Patt, a matchmaker at It’s Just Lunch Houston. “Whether you cheer for the same NFL, collegiate or local team, or you cheer for rival teams, turning a football game into a date is a great way to have it all. Tackle a tailgate together for some pregame fun before heading to the stadium for one of fall’s favorite activities. No need to have to wait for the highlights when you can enjoy the excitement of game day together.”
2. Bring on the bonfire
“As the weather begins to cool down, use it to your dating advantage. Find a fire pit or remote beach where you can build a fire and set the stage for romance,” Patt says. “An autumn evening gives a great opportunity to cuddle by the fire, which is absolutely appropriate for a cool fall night. Make sure to bring along a bottle of wine or cocoa and Baileys Irish Cream to sip as you roast some s’mores with your special someone.”
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3. Organize your own Oktoberfest
“Some may say the way to a man’s heart is through beer. If this is true, Oktoberfest will excite your man this fall,” Patt says. “If you can’t travel to Munich, find a local Bavarian celebration to grab a stein together while enjoying a würstl, brezen or kraut, and ‘prost’ to fall!”
4. Sample the flavors of fall (or cook with them together)
Any date that involves eating is a good one in my book. “From apples and pumpkins to pears and sweet potatoes, autumn’s selections of fruits and vegetables excites foodies this fall,” Patt says. “Search out a spectacular seasonal menu for a fall-themed cooking class to whip up your own pumpkin ravioli or butternut squash risotto. This date could be the perfect pairing to see if you cook well together.”
5. Hit the trails
Outdoor dates are not reserved exclusively for summer. “Just because summer is over doesn’t mean you have to hibernate just yet,” Patt says. “A cool day can be the perfect weather to enjoy a scenic hike. Pack a fall-inspired picnic and hit the hills to enjoy the changing leaves and fresh fall air.”
6. Go apple picking
“When we go apple picking, we spend the time not just picking apples but also talking about the scenery, our future, and evaluating how we are doing on our goals for the year,” says Marcus Kusi, a husband, father and blogger on Our Peaceful Family. “We usually take pictures for future memories. After picking the apples, we get apple cider, cider doughnuts, and pumpkins for Halloween. What makes us enjoy this date together is the bonding, laughter, picking apples for ourselves and friends, and the opportunity to look at nature. Time just flies by when we pick apples together.”
7. Have a scary movie marathon
“Re-watch some of your favorite Halloween-themed or scary movies,” says matchmaking and dating expert Stefanie Safran at Stef and the City. “Halloween movies get you into the spirit of the season, and scary films make it easy to cuddle up together.”
8. Take a fall foliage drive
“A drive to admire the changing colors of fall is a great way to change up the scenery, especially if you live in a major city,” Safran says. All you need is a car, some snacks and each other.
9. Visit a vineyard
You don’t have to be wine expert to partake. You just have to be interested in wine. “Most vineyards offer wine tasting classes, so you can learn a new skill together. Brewery tours are also widely available if wine is not for you. Sample the upcoming fall and winter ales,” Safran says.
10. Attend a harvest festival or fair
Many cities and even small towns come alive in the autumn (which is ironic considering the trees are technically dying) and often host festivals or fairs where you can sample local food and drink. Search for events where you can watch performers, or simply stroll through the streets and take in the sights and smells of this amazing season.