These Nashville Date Ideas Are Guaranteed to Be Romantic, Creative, and Actually Fun

For everything from first impressions to anniversary celebrations, these dates are guaranteed to impress.

While there’s nothing wrong with a little snuggling and binge-watching on a cold winter night, if you’re looking to add a little heat to your relationship, you’ll probably have to actually get out of the house. Luckily for you, Nashville has all sorts of fun activities that are ideal for a day or night out with your significant other. Whether you’re looking to get your heart rate up with a little mutual exercise or find your way to your beloved’s heart through their stomach, we’ve got some excellent suggestions to kindle a new fire.

Music City Brew Hop
Courtesy of Music City Brew Hop

Food and Drink Dates in Nashville

Nashville is blessed with more than two dozen excellent breweries, but they’re not all in the easiest locations to visit or travel between. Even setting up your own taproom tour via rideshare can be complicated and expensive, so that’s where Music City Brew Hop comes to the rescue. Trolleys travel along two routes making hour-long loops between seven breweries where you can hop on and off whenever the mood strikes you. Try an IPA at one spot and then enjoy a short tour of Nashville’s neighborhoods on the way to a pint of lager.

Downtown and the Nations
To truly know someone, you need to know what they love, and that includes whiskey. At Nashville Barrel Co., guests can sample from select barrels of award-winning whiskeys and decide their favorite together. The staff then fills a bottle of your pick to take home as a souvenir of your tasting excursion. At Pennington Distilling Co., whiskey lovers can act like master distillers as they taste through samples of Tennessee whiskey, bourbon or rye from different barrels and then craft a unique blend of barrels for their home bar to share later.

It’s difficult to keep up with the rapid growth of the Nashville restaurant scene (even with our help,) and many of the best old reliable restaurants find themselves overlooked in favor of the shiniest new options. Walk, Eat Nashville offers walking tours of both classic and new restaurants in several neighborhoods of town, including downtown, SoBro, East Nashville, Music Row, and 12 South. The knowledgeable guides share area history along the way as guests enjoy a multi-course “moveable feast” coursed out by the participating restaurants like a full meal including drinks at some stops. You won’t go home hungry, but at least you’ll walk off some of the calories along the way.

If cooking is part of your love language, find your way to the kitchen at Chef & I for one of their entertaining and informative hands-on cooking classes that cover topics ranging from knife skills to elevated home cooking and Southern classics. When class is over, your ticket guarantees your reservation to enjoy dinner in the main show kitchen upstairs where you can watch experienced masters at work as they prepare your meal.

At Present Tense, the knowledgeable sake sommelier stays ahead of the curve, even importing their own proprietary premium spirit from Japan. For a true luxury experience, grab a couple of seats at the compact chef’s bar for the full omakase service offered on Friday and Saturday nights. While a master chef and his sous create and present dish after dish of beautiful and inventive minimalist Japanese cuisine, the sake expert will always be at hand to suggest the perfect pairing for each of the more than a dozen courses. It’s a truly decadent experience.

Rudy's Jazz Room
Courtesy of Rudy's Jazz Room

Live Entertainment Dates in Nashville


In some towns, karaoke is a way to cast off your inhibitions. In Nashville, though, there are some serious singers at most local bars. Fortunately, there are also plenty of spots where the mood is loose and the lights are dim enough to prevent your performance from being immortalized on the internet. Lonnie’s Western Room usually features some fantastic country singers, but amateurs are always welcome. The Lipstick Lounge, a convivial gay bar in East Nashville, welcomes all kinds for karaoke, as long as you’re kind. Santa’s Pub is a favorite cash-only, canned beer-only, Christmas decorations-only dive bar near the Fairgrounds that is a favorite among locals looking to cut loose. Cross-eyed Critters Watering Hole, a wonderfully bizarre karaoke bar where a band of animatronic animals serves as the back-up band for singers, feels like being at a Chuck E. Cheese on peyote.

At this opulent subterranean lair beneath the Johnny Cash Museum downtown, guests dress up in their finery for an evening of eating, drinking, and dining in a space that rivals Hollywood’s famous Magic Castle. The cocktails are first-class, and the fine dining menu plans breaks between courses for trips to the small theater spaces to enjoy magic shows that range from close-up card work to telepathy to comedy. In order to preserve the secrets that are hidden below street level, no cell phones are permitted.

Operated by national jazz/funk legends The Wooten Brothers, this subterranean jazz cave showcases the best in local musicians along with bigger touring acts. The speakeasy vibe makes for the perfect atmosphere to chill over classic cocktails and New Orleans-inspired cuisine while remembering that Music City offers a lot more than just country music.

Dance Lessons

Downtown and South Nashville
After a quick and fun lesson from the dance instructors of Stompin’ Grounds, you’ll be kicking up your heels and two-stepping your way around the room doing the Sweetheart Schottische while the bands at Bootleggers Inn and Whiskey Bent Saloon provide the accompaniment. For a retro jump dance experience, visit the studio at Swing Dance Nashville for lessons on how to do the Charleston or the Lindy Hop. Beginners are welcome as long as you leave your inhibitions at the door and give in to a good time.

Tee Line
Courtesy of Tee Line

Indoor and Outdoor Sporting Dates in Nashville

The Nations, Bellevue, and Antioch
Even though we’re between Winter Olympics when people become temporarily obsessed with the obscure sport of curling (which is sort of like shuffleboard on ice), the sport is still worth checking out. Ignore your pickleball-obsessed friends (who are often worse than CrossFit and keto fans) because Nashville has its first official curling center, Tee Line in West Nashville. If you’re looking for a more traditional date night on ice, both of the Ford Ice Centers in Bellevue and Antioch offer public skating sessions, but you’ll need to register in advance.

East Nashville and North Gulch
Since TopGolf opened up across the river from downtown, golfers of all abilities have packed it and taken aim at the large illuminated targets spread out over a huge field. Whether you’re successful at that or not, you can always enjoy the energy of the crowd, some surprisingly good food and drink, and any playful teasing that comes with it. Plus, TopGolf has an Angry Birds-inspired game if you’d rather fight pigs than chase birdies. The newly opened Puttshack brings mini golf into the 21st century with arcade game-inspired nine hole courses designed to level the playing field for players of different experience levels. Plus, you can carry your cocktail from the bar to the course or enjoy a shot between shots.

East Nashville, Berry Hill, and West Nashville
With three Nashville locations, you’re never too far away from one of Climb Nashville’s rock-climbing gyms. Whether you’re a beginner or an expert climber, you’ll find all sorts of fun challenges as you scale the multiple routes up walls studded with grips and footholds. Safety is job one, so staff will be happy to help instruct you on how to safely belay your date in case of a slip-up.

East Nashville
Inspired by the Finnish tradition of the benefits of a good hot soak, this East Nashville bath house includes a sauna, steam room, large hot soaking pool, plus private locker rooms so that you can decide whether to embrace “swimsuit optional” or not. Couples or small groups can rent out the entire space by the hour, and the spa provides Turkish towel wraps, bath towels, and basic cleansing products, so all you have to bring is yourselves.

Lane Motor Museum
Courtesy of Lane Motor Museum

Cultural Dates in Nashville

Art crawls

Various locations
In addition to the city’s reputation as a center of music, Nashville is blessed with some pretty talented visual artists as well. Many of them showcase their works in galleries and studios as part of monthly art crawls in various neighborhoods around town. The First Saturday Art Crawl takes place downtown around the urban core from 5 pm to 8 pm on the first Saturday of each month, the same day as the WeHo Art Crawl in the burgeoning Wedgewood-Houston neighborhood (opening and closing times vary; check individual galleries’ websites). Grab a date and enjoy some of Nashville’s finest boxed wine while checking out the art on the walls.

Even if you tell yourself that you have no art talents at all, you like to drink wine, don’t you? A couple of glasses and classes into it at Dabble Studio, and you won’t care at all whether your “happy little trees” actually look like angry bushes. The supportive attitude of the instructors makes any class a treat, and you’ll get to go home with a new creation to hang on your wall. Or in the back of the coat closet. No judging here.

Nashville’s lesser-known museums

Various locations
We’re big fans of Nashville’s most well-known museums, like the Country Music Hall of Fame, the new National Museum of African American Music, and the Frist Art Museum; but don’t miss out on some of Nashville’s more obscure collections. Make a day of visiting the huge collection of exotic vehicles at the Lane Motor Museum, discover the sidemen who made the legendary music at the Musicians Hall of Fame, and find out more than you ever wanted to know about The Dukes of Hazzard at Cooter’s Place.

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Chris Chamberlain is a food, drink, and travel writer. If Nashville was the Love Boat, he’d like to think he’d be Julie, your cruise director. In truth, he’s probably more of a Gopher. Join him on the Lido Deck on Twitter @CeeElCee.