On February 14, treat your special someone to a fun outing, an entertaining escapade or a romantic adventure
Valentine's Day doesn't always have to mean flowers, chocolates and expensive jewellery. If you and your sweetheart want to try something different, we have plenty of ways for you to celebrate your love this year by spending quality time together.
1. Plan a home cinema date
Turn your home into a romantic mini-retreat by switching off your cellphones, lighting some candles and simply paying attention to a great film and each other.
2. Go ice skating
Glide around together on outdoor rinks at Robson Square in downtown Vancouver, Shipyard Commons and Grouse Mountain in North Vancouver or Whistler Olympic Plaza.
3. Pack up an outdoor picnic
If weather permits, arrange an outdoor picnic. Be sure to bring extra blankets and a big Thermos of a hot drink.
4. Splurge on the Scandinave Spa
Scandinave SpaPlan a jaunt to Whistler, and be sure to include a day at Scandinave Spa. At this serene hydrotherapy spa, repeating the three-part cycle of hot (wood-burning sauna, steam room, hot tub), cold (Nordic waterfall, cold plunge pool) and relax (indoor solarium, outdoor fire pit) is the perfect way to release tension. Even more relaxing: the spa doesn’t allow cellphones—or any talking at all.
5. Sign up for a cooking class
Take a cooking class together. Schools such as The Dirty Apron offer classes in cuisines ranging from Italian to Thai to Hawaiian.
6. Go to a cat or bunny café
Treat your animal-adoring sweetie to an afternoon at Catfe, Vancouver’s longest-running cat cafe, or The Bunny Cafe, which is filled with adorable adoptable rabbits. Off-leash dog parks are other great spots to enjoy some entertaining animal antics.
7. Go for a walk
Or even better, take a leisurely and romantic stroll at sunset.
8. Enjoy a poulet bouquet
JukeSend your special someone a bouquet—of fried chicken. Each of the Let’s Cluck fried chicken bouquets at Juke features eight pieces of crispy (and gluten-free!) chicken.
9. Go to an art gallery
Spend a lazy morning strolling through a gallery, such as the Vancouver Art Gallery or the Art Gallery of Greater Victoria.
10. Experience high tea
BacchusPretend you’re a couple out of Downton Abbey’s bygone era while indulging in high tea at local hotel restaurants like Bacchus or Notch8.
Recreate a special moment from your relationship, such as dining in the restaurant where your very first date took place.
12. Keep your head in the clouds
Photo Credit: Keegan Pearson PhotographySpend a day at the Sea to Sky Gondola in Squamish. After a picturesque 10-minute ride up in the gondola, you can enjoy snowshoeing, tubing and more while breathing in the crisp mountain air and admiring the spectacular views of snow-capped peaks and Howe Sound in the distance.
13. Get your flower fix
Instead of buying flowers, admire outdoor greenery at serene spaces such as VanDusen Botanical Garden, Dr. Sun Yat-Sen Classical Chinese Garden or The Butchart Gardens.
14. Lock in your love forever
If a landmark near you officially follows the love lock tradition, add a lock of your own. Be sure to write your names and the date on it first—or even get the lock engraved.
15. Find some snow
Plan a day in the snow, whether that means skiing, snowboarding, snowshoeing or simply admiring it through the window of a ski chalet. Don’t forget to bring hot cocoa.
16. Wine and dine
TojoDress up in your wedding finery (if it still fits!) and go out for a special meal, such as the plant-based Valentine’s Day dinner at Do Chay or the omakase menu at Tojo’s.
17. Get a massage
Book a spa treatment for couples, such as side-by-side massages, then relax together while massage therapists knead away your tension.
18. Try a virtual cooking class
The Lazy GourmetSign up for The Lazy Gourmet’s special virtual Valentine’s cooking class for two on February 14, and receive all of the instructions and ingredients needed to make Beef Wellington, mushroom duxelles, truffle cream sauce and more, along with wine and flowers.
Hop aboard BC Ferries and do a mini-getaway to one (or several) of the Gulf Islands.
20. Eat pizza
NightingaleHave a cozy pizza night at home. Queue up a fave romantic flick on Netflix, or put on your favourite playlist and heat up a Nightingale pizza (or two) in your oven—they taste as good as restaurant pizza, but they’re available in grocery stores such as IGA and Urban Fare.
21. Visit Capilano Suspension Bridge
Visit the Instagram-worthy Love Lights at Capilano Suspension Bridge Park in North Vancouver. From February 4 to 28, love is in the air and the park is filled with lights installations along with special events for the most romantic time of the year.
22. Eat breakfast in bed
Fresh Ideas Start HereTreat your bae to breakfast in bed. If cooking isn’t your forte, cheat a little by ordering something already made from a foodie destination such as Fresh Ideas Start Here (FISH), which makes a 'Breakfast in Bed Kit' filled with B.C. crab cakes, B.C. salmon cakes, B.C. smoked lox and more.
23. Fly sky high
See beautiful B.C. from high in the air on a flight with Harbour Air or Helijet, then explore other regions of this spectacular province.
24. Dine at Hawksworth Restaurant
Hawksworth RestaurantDress up in your most chic outfits and enjoy cocktails at an elegant spot such as Hawksworth Restaurant.
25. Get away
Organize a getaway to Harrison Hot Springs Resort. Soak your cares away in the rejuvenating natural mineral hot spring pools. The resort’s two indoor and three outdoor mineral pools are therapeutic for the body, mind and soul.
26. Try out a local catering company
Railtown Cafe and CateringCook dinner for your special someone. Or, if you’d rather let the catering experts toil away in their kitchens while you reap the benefits, order a Valentine’s to-go package from Railtown Cafe and Catering.
27. Have a little fun
Compile a series of outdoor clues (where we first met, where we first kissed, etc.) that eventually lead to a big surprise. We’ll leave it up to you to decide what that surprise should be.