Where to Go on a Date in Atlanta This Fall
Think beyond grabbing drinks.
Dread it, run from it, cuffing season arrives all the same. There’s just something about the nights getting colder that make people yearn for deeper connections and more meaningful relationships in their lives. These cooler months set the perfect backdrop for slow burning romance, so don’t get left behind in the summer because you’re unwilling to switch things up this fall.
Whether you’re focused on making an unforgettable first impression on an eye-catching Atlantan or aiming to build a relationship that survives the holiday season, dating is the first step. So we’ve put together a comprehensive guide to date ideas in Atlanta, from special seasonal outings to year-round options as well. Here are 20 ways that you can cozy up with your special someone this fall.
The Georgia State Fair may be OTP as hell and only in town for 10 days, but year in and year out, it proves to be one of the best fall dates in Atlanta. As usual, it’s held at the Atlanta Motor Speedway, and for just $10 per adult, you and your date can explore everything that the fair has to offer—funnel cake, turkey legs, carnival games, fun rides, and wonky attractions. Plus, if you submit your email on the official Georgia State Fair website, you get a coupon for free admission on Monday, October 4, and Wednesday, October 6.
As the summer-long Cocktails in the Garden event series comes to an end, a magical new exhibition sets up shop at the Atlanta Botanical Garden. From Tuesday, September 28, to Halloween, dozens of scarecrows handcrafted by local artists, crafters, and youth groups will be spread throughout the garden. Walking amongst the scarecrows in garden is sure to get both you and your date into the fall spirit without all of the scares, and if you both fall in love with the Atlanta Botanical Garden, there are several other seasonal events to be on the lookout for this fall, such as the Great Pumpkin-Carving Fest and the Fest-of-Ale.
One of the coolest additions to Atlanta this year has been Puttshack, and in addition to being a fun family getaway during the day, it also makes for a great date after dark date night as well. Playing mini-golf has always been fun, but with Puttshack’s stunning technology, the entire experience has been elevated. Without having to manually keep track of score, you’ll be able to throw back some of Puttshack’s signature Hennessy Island cocktails and get as much flirting in as possible.
You know those corn mazes that people in movies always get stuck in? Well, it turns out that Uncle Shucks in Dawsonville has been creating challenging mazes in corn fields for two whole decades. So if you’re interested in seeing if you and your significant other are collectively bright enough to escape Uncle Shuck’s 15-acre corn maze, this fall is the time to do it. Corn Maze tickets are only $15, and they also come with access to the after-dark bonfire and unlimited wagon rides.
If you think your date would be up for a scary outing together, then you should take them to a haunted house to see who’s the brave one in the relationship. NETHERWORLD Haunted House is currently open for its frightening 25th Season of Screams, and from now until November, you and your date will be able to brave this year’s haunts, RISE OF THE NETHERSPAWN and RETURN TO PLANET X. Just in case you both chicken out though, there are still other less spooky things you can do at NETHERWORLD as well, including escape rooms, laser tag, and a trip to the HOUSE OF CREEPS Monster Museum.
3 Parks Wine Shop has an amazing weekend special that allows guests to indulge in a cost-efficient three-part wine tasting. On Fridays from 4 pm to 7:30 pm, Saturdays from 1 pm 6 pm, and Sundays from 1 pm to 5 pm, 3 Parks pours three half glass tastings of wine for just $15 per person, so if you want to vibe out with your crush at a low-key wine tasting, this intimate date should definitely be on your radar.
Going to Six Flags Fright Fest would be a thrilling experience for you and your date, but in addition to some good Halloween-themed fun, it would also give you the opportunity to get to know them even better. Unless you’ve never been to Six Flags before, a significant amount of your time at the amusement park is spent in lines, waiting to get on rides. However, as you hope to get more familiar with your boo this fall, that may not be such a bad thing. Whether you use your time in line to get off your corniest jokes or share your most embarrassing stories, just make sure you use it to bond with your date.
Old Fourth Ward
Sure, you can always woo someone by taking them out on a super expensive dinner date, but if you and your date have been there and done that, add a twist to the classic dinner date by becoming the chefs. On select Tuesdays throughout the fall, Bellina Alimentari is offering Italian cooking classes, including a fresh pasta course and an authentic Italian-style pizza walkthrough. In addition to being able to eat your tasty creations, you’ll also be treated to various bites and cocktails from Bellina Alimentari. The classes sell out fast, so grab your tickets as soon as possible.
Old Fourth Ward
For an impressive open air date, take your lover interest to The Roof at Ponce City Market. Offering a beautiful rooftop view of Buckhead, Downtown, and Midtown, Skyline Park boasts several activities that you and your date can take part in, from rooftop amusement rides to Coney Island-style games. There’s plenty of space for photo ops, access to cocktail bars and incredible food, and (most importantly!) plenty of opportunities to win your date a prize that they can cherish long after the date is over.
Show your crush how creative you can be by having a private at-home paint-n-sip, courtesy of The Paint Factory. The Black-owned paint-and-sip company brings painting parties to its patrons, complete with live step-by-step instructions, sketched canvases, easels, paint, brushes, and aprons. With it being held at you or your date’s home, you won’t even have to BYOB because it’ll already be there. Just pour a glass of that special bottle of wine that you’ve been saving and enjoy the romantic, intimate, and artsy occasion.
As far as first dates go, you can’t go wrong with grabbing a cup of coffee, and you’ll definitely get cool points if you take your date to Victory Coffee at 900 Dekalb Avenue NE. In addition to serving its lattes in some picturesque glasses, Victory’s front patio offers patrons a serene view of Dekalb Avenue, right in front of a MARTA track. Get to know the beautiful person sitting beside you while sipping on great coffee and watching MARTA trains whiz past you.
Love is not only in the air—it’s in the water too. Once a month, the Georgia Aquarium hosts Sips Under the Sea, a 21+ event that gives visitors a boozy perspective of one of Atlanta’s favorite tourist attractions. Tickets include after-hours admission to the aquarium as well as access to onsite cocktails and dining options, so if you and your date both enjoy drinking and gazing at aquatic animals, go ahead and secure your tickets before they sell out.
The High Museum of Art is a tried and true Atlanta date option, and for a more cost-efficient trip, visit on the second Sunday of the month, when admission is free for all visitors. Just remember that due to COVID-19 health and safety guidelines, you need to act fast and reserve your free timed tickets online. Once you do that, you’re all set for one of the coolest free dates in the city.
If Instagram is life for both you and your date, then head to Culture Experience ATL, an interactive photo exhibit that features more than 20 Atlanta-related photo ops. Learn your date’s angles and take them through Atlanta’s rich history and culture, from Freaknik to HBCU homecomings. It’s sure to be a fun and quirky date, and while the typical date will only yield a selfie or two, some time at Culture Experience ATL will fill up your camera roll with great flicks that show off your outfits and your pop culture knowledge.
Fernbank’s monthly event series “Fernbank After Dark” is an adult-only event that happens every second Friday of the month, featuring unique after-hours experiences. No, that doesn’t mean sexy time near the dinosaur bones, but visitors do have access to alcohol and live music while enjoying fascinating science demonstrations. With upcoming themes like “Potions and Poisons,” “Makers and Shakers,” and “Holiday Party,” Fernbank’s recurring after-hours event is a surefire way to impress the nature and science lover in your life.
Lenox Square, Buckhead
Even as it gets chillier out, you can’t go wrong with treating your sweetheart to some sweets. If you really want to wow your date with an aesthetically pleasing dessert, you should take them to Amorino. Paris-level dessert luxury awaits you there, where gelato artists will shape delicious flavors of frosty sweet cream into edible flower petals. Seriously, how romantic is that? Also, get the French/Italian café’s macaroons, gelato cakes, pastries, and even their version of pancakes and waffles for breakfast, if things really work out.
With all of the incredible restaurants in Atlanta, the sheer number of places where you can take your date out to eat can be overwhelming. If you’re looking to have a truly special experience, however, skip that spot that y’all always go to and make a reservation at Lazy Betty, where you both can enjoy a six- or eight-course tasting menu, which you can enjoy in the dining room or on the patio. Also, each of the tasting menus can be enhanced with wine pairings.
Sometimes the best dates are the ones without frills, gimmicks, or bills. If your pockets are tight, but you still want to spend some one-on-one time with your boo, invite your date to take a stroll with you through Piedmont Park. And if you and your date do happen to get a little peckish or chilly, you can grab some food from an in-park restaurant like Willy’s Mexicana Grill or Park Tavern.
The dinner-and-a-movie formula is pretty hard to screw up, but if you’re still willing to take our advice, skip the chains and opt for a movie-going experience that both of you will be sure to remember. Plaza Theatre is absolutely killing it with its parking lot-turned-drive-in theater, and the Springs Cinema & Taphouse is a great weekend drive-in solution for anyone straddling the northern perimeter. However, there will probably never be a better date night deal than Atlanta’s legendary Starlight. You can bring your own food and drink, and it only costs $10 to watch two movies from the sanctuary of your car, looking up at a big giant screen like they used to do in old romantic movies.