Date ideas, no reservation needed

With Valentine’s Day coming up this week, I thought I’d put together a list of fun ideas you can do with your Hunny without having to make a dreaded reservation for the usually over-packed restaurants. Also, it’s a great way to save some money!

1. Be a tourist in your own province

Can you say that you’ve explored the beauty of Ontario? Most of us continue to live our busy lives between work and home in our cities and dream of traveling to far off places. But there’s just as much beauty and culture in our very own towns. We just don’t take the time to explore what’s local! My husband and I are huge fans and participants in this. Since I feel my soul is truly nomadic, I find that I need some sort of adventure break for inspiration and really, just to break up the monotony. Here are some things we’ve done in the past:

  • Waterfall chasing – Hamilton is the waterfall capital of the WORLD. Isn’t that insane? Have a look at the list of waterfalls available for you to see. Some are very close to each other so you can definitely see more than one in an afternoon. Most sites have well-groomed trails and are open in the winter and summer.
  • Big Things road trip – I am a huge fan of road trips. I think some of the best parts are the towns and sites you stumble upon on your way to a destination. One winter weekend, we decided to check out some of the “Big Things” Ontario had to offer. Stuff like the big nickel in Sudbury, the big loonie twoonie in Campbellford. There are also big Muskoka chairs, big animals like the groundhog in Wiarton, naturally, and even cheese!
  • Provincial and National Parks – This is an easy one. I just open up Google maps and look for provincial or national parks we haven’t been to yet. We pack a lunch and snacks and head on out! On their official website, you can filter the parks by activities (like hiking trails, camping, fishing, dogsledding) and facilities (picnic shelters, pools and docks).
  • Festivals – Ontario is full of festivals, especially in the summer. One fun date we had in the fall was going to the Cranberry Festival in Bala and doing the Cranberry plunge!

2. City Food Crawl

Instead of just going to ONE fancy restaurant, list some smaller, diner or hole in the wall spots that are known for the “Best __________” – insert food item here.

3. Try a new hobby together

This is actually something I love doing by myself BUT would equally be great with my partner. Take art or dance classes, find a sports league to join, crafting at home, start home-brewing your own beer, build something together. My favourite “hobby” is planning our next trip 😉

4. Stay home and cook a meal together

This is becoming an everyday thing now that we’re in “Power Saving” mode. Honestly though, there is nothing better than home cooking! Find a new recipe you want to try, shop for ingredients together and split up prep tasks such as vegetables to cut. Set the table and light those candles!

I hope these help spark some new energy into your “let’s try and save money” dates!

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