Hey Jetlag Junkies!
Last week I told you an important truth about romance travel that I hope you took to heart: there is a huge chasm between planning a romantic getaway and making your getaway romantic. In my experience, a lot of travelers assume that the act of travelingisthe romance component. Friend, this simply isn’t true. Just like here at home, you have to be über-intentional if you want your travels to have that romantic flair. So, to help you along, I am going to share with you some of my favorite romantic date ideas that you can steal for your next trip to Europe.
Not like that, geez. Look, for anyone who isn’t afraid of heights, “getting high” is a sure-fire way to splurge on a romantic outing. There’s just something about being above the world that sends the sizzle factor through the roof. So, next time you want to go all out (and up) in Europe, try these big, romantic date ideas on for size:
- Hot Air Balloon ride over the wine country (particularly charming at sunset).
- Helicopter tour of the French Riviera.
- Ride a cable car from Chamonix, France to Courmayeur, Italy.
- Secure a private capsule in the London Eye.
- Eat breakfast at 10,000 feet atop the Schilthorn summit in Switzerland.
Cruise the Streets
Not since your sophomore year in high school has cruising the drag been a respectable date idea. You can definitely count on Europe to elevate a Friday night drive!
- Rev your engines with a Ferrari test drive in Italy’s Emilia-Romagna (home to the famous car maker).
- Tour the Ring of Kerry in Ireland (stop for a smooch and a selfie a few times along the way).
- Let the wind blow through your hair on one of the most scenic stretches in the world: the Amalfi Coast (hire a chauffeur so both of you can enjoy the view).
Here’s one that won’t break the bank: go out for dessert. In Rome, gelato is served until well past midnight, so grab your hot date and a double-scoop, and stroll hand-in-hand like the locals along the passegiata. When in Rome, right? Italy not on your travel menu? Here are a few other European sweet spots to savor:
- Sample 1,001 confections along the Boulevard Saint-Germain in Paris.
- Share fondue and cocoa beneath the Swiss Alps (chocolate & cheese are the key to this gal’s heart).
- Indulge in a midnight feast of churros con chocolate near Plaza Mayor in Madrid.
Minds out of the gutter, people. A great date has an air of playfulness to it, and that can be found in just about anything that lets you get a little messy. Try these (slightly) dirty date ideas on for size…
- Take a cooking or baking class together. Not only will you pick up a new skill, you’ll have someone to sample your work and wipe the flour off your nose.
- Lather on caldera mud in the Greek Isles. A short cruise from Santorini will land you at the the volcanic isle of Palea Kameni, home to amazing mineral-rich sulphuric baths. Other outstanding fountains of youth are yours for discovering in the Wadden Sea north of Germany, the hammams of Sevilla, and the geothermal Sicilian Terme.
Sleep like royalty.
Where the date ends is just as important as where it begins, so be sure you’re saying “bonne nuit” somewhere romantic. Sleeping in a castle is something every gal needs to experience at least once in her life, and there are plenty of charming options in the French, Italian, and Spanish countrysides.
Of course, these ideas only scratch the surface of my European date night (or day!) repertoire! But real talk: some destinations are just more romantic than others. The following romantic destinations offer an endless list of dreamy date ideas—from 5* wining and dining to simply soaking up the scenery:
#1 – Paris
I know, shocker, right? But seriously, if you can’t get lovey-dovey in the City of Light, you haven’t been paying attention to anything I’ve said!
#2 – Sarlat-la-Canada, France
This town is for sure one of the most charming in Europe, but it makes the romantic list for its proximity to all sorts of little adventures. From here, you and your sweetie can canoe the Dordogne River, visit pre-historic caves, sleep in a castle, and have breakfast in a hot air balloon. Talk about checking all the boxes!
#3 – Literally anywhere in Italy.
This isn’t a copout. Italy oozes amore and is pretty much guaranteed to make you feel like a teenager again. If you need to narrow your choices, read this.
#4 – Seville, Spain
I’m not sure which is hotter—the temperature or the Flamenco. Either way, this Spanish city is sure to get your blood pumping.
#5 – Amsterdam
You don’t have to visit the red light district to feel the love. Just board a horse-drawn carriage, snuggle up, and watch the bridges light up as you trot along the canals. Oh, and if you need to push it over the top, you can always go diamond shopping (Amsterdam is home to the world’s most famous diamond cutters).
Let me just lay it all on the line here, friend: your relationship will be significantly, nay, infinitely improved if you incorporate some of my romantic date ideas into your European itinerary. Dating while traveling (no matter how long you’ve been married) is the best.thing.ever. My hope is that you’ll get out and enjoy Europe together. I know it’s difficult to look past all of the historical landmarks, the endless museums, and the cultural land mines, but as I said last week, a hefty to-do list is a tough burden for romance to bear. Let your senses be your guide – no matter where you are. Listen to the music and poetry of street performers. Smell the market flowers and the fresh croissants outside the boulangerie. Behold the gently lapping waves of rivers and seas. And please, feel your heart beat a little bit faster when you realize just how lucky you are to share this place with the one you love.
P.S. Looking for a creative way to add some sizzle to your romantic getaway? I’m happy to bounce some ideas off of you. Shoot me an email anytime: firstname.lastname@example.org.