There are plenty of ways to incorporate arts and culture into date night. If you want an evening that’s fun, romantic, and maybe even educational, check out these ideas.
If there’s a museum near you, combine date night with perusing fine art. If you’re in a major city, there are likely many museum options from which to choose. But if you’re in a small town, there are still options to consider. Visit a small independent gallery downtown, then stop into a hole-in-the-wall pizzeria or brewery for refreshments after enjoying the art. You may even want to buy a print, which not only supports local artists but gives you a souvenir of the evening.
Whether you’re headed to the Met, the Louvre, or a small art center in your town, the dress guidelines are the same. Wear comfortable shoes that allow for plenty of walking; you don’t have to sacrifice style for comfort because there are heels and flats with cushioned footbeds and perforations to keep air circulating and your feet cool.
A little black dress is always a suitable choice for any museum, although you can go more casual with a T-shirt dress and a jacket on top for a small local gallery. If you opt for pants, a pair of flat-front dress pants and a cotton-modal tunic sweater with short sleeves is classic and elegant for any museum date.
Instead of going to the cinema, get tickets for a show at your local playhouse. Some cities have traveling troupes of performers who come through and put on limited-run shows, while others feature actors from the local community. A maxi skirt with ballet flats and a tunic or blouse is a comfortable, stylish outfit for watching a play. Another outfit to consider is black skinny jeans and heels with a flowing button-down blouse in a silky fabric for a study in balance and contrast. After the show, hit a local diner for coffee and pie and to discuss what you thought of the performance.
Concerts are always a good date-night option if you’re looking for something cultural to do. You can go to the symphony in a formal gown if you’re in the mood for a fancy date or see a modern act that you and your date agree upon. If it’s a first date, talk ahead of time to discover the type of music you both enjoy so neither will get bored. If you’ve been dating a while or are married, take turns choosing which musical act to see on different date nights. Maybe on one date night, you’ll see a country singer, while another may find you at the opera or a pop-music concert.
The outfit you should wear for a live concert depends on factors such as the weather and the type of music you’re seeing. You probably wouldn’t wear an elegant sheath dress and heels to a rock concert, but you could wear them to a jazz performance. Jeans, a short-sleeve tee, and cowboy boots are a must for a country-Western show, while boho dresses and high-rise jeans with crop tops—for a ’90s inspired look, of course—are good for alternative-music concerts and trendy music festivals.
There’s likely one or more historic areas in your town, although you could take a drive on date night to a notable landmark in a nearby locale. Some historic buildings and homes have tours during the evening hours, while others let you visit during the daylight only. If that’s the case, change date night into a day date.
Touring any building or area calls for comfy sneakers or walking sandals, which we love because they’re stylish, breathable, comfortable, and supportive no matter how many steps you get in. Capri pants are a classic option that you can wear with a sleeveless mock neck top for a casually elegant outfit. Or wear a keyhole-neck blouse with capris or wide-leg cropped pants.
Restaurants are a fail-safe option for date night. Rather than choosing the place you always do, branch out and select a restaurant that’s new to you both. Expand your horizons with a type of cuisine you’ve never before tried, which is sure to make your date night memorable. If you’re newly dating and have a favorite place that your date hasn’t been to yet, take them there. Some buffet-style restaurants offer a wide variety of world cuisines in one establishment, so you can try a variety of different things. When dressing for a restaurant date, wear a machine-washable outfit in case of an unexpected spill. Fit and flare dresses are cute, casual, and can be laundered in your home machine.
Planning a cultural date night can be fun and easy—especially if you do it together. Discuss with your date where they’d like to go and include your own suggestions. It’s likely by tossing around a few ideas, you can find a date-night destination that’s fun for both of you.