21 Great Nashville Dates To Go On Right Now

Here’s how to warm up this winter.

Even through a mask, you can smell that love is in the air. Whether it’s a new relationship or someone that helped you weather the long winter, there’s somebody in your life that could use a little appreciation. Especially around Valentine’s Day, Nashville teems with fun and romantic opportunities to show your ardor or kindle some new flames. Here are some Nashville date ideas to steer you in the right direction.

Celebrate the season at Winterfest

Once you learn the pro tip to park at the edge of the Opry Mills lot and walk five minutes to avoid the pricey parking fees at Gaylord Opryland Resort (you’re welcome!), you can spend the money you saved to take part in some of the entertaining activities at Winterfest such as ice tubing, skating, bumper cars, and carriage rides. Normally, Gaylord takes a break from the seasonal extravaganza after New Year’s, but they've extended the fun until the first day of spring in this decidedly not normal year.

Sip a little vino on the sofa thanks to City Winery

Most people probably know City Winery is a fantastic venue to grab a meal and watch a socially-distanced show, but there’s also a fully-functioning winemaking operation within those cavernous walls. They offer virtual wine tastings of three bottles of their house made juice along with special add-ons of chocolate truffles and cheese for Valentine’s Day. Stay at home and pretend you’re out on the town.

Take a fun cooking class together

Brentwood, Online
Whether you prefer a virtual classroom cooking lesson from Top Chef alum Arnold Myint for his “Pad Thai is for Lovers” Valentine’s night class or a hands-on cookie decorating lesson from Gina Butler of Pie’s by Gigi, the couple that cooks together stays together. Plus you can enjoy eating the fruits of your effort and make a whole date night out of it!

Take an enjoyable carriage ride around downtown

Few things are more romantic than snuggling under a blanket in the back of a carriage while listening to the clip-clop of a steed pulling you on a tour of downtown Nashville. Sugar Creek Carriages offers narrated rides of various lengths, or you can go all out and splurge on the Cinderella carriage to make sure you’re the center of attention.

Check out the master of modernism at the Frist

The fabulous Frist Art Museum will play host to the only stateside appearance of an exhibition titled Picasso Figures, a display of more than 75 paintings, works on paper and sculptures from the Spanish master. Afterwards you can tell your date how much you appreciate the fact that their eyes are on different sides of their face.

Take a boozy art or cooking class together

Dabble Studio in the hippest part of Germantown offers both painting and cooking classes that are perfect activities for the artistic or culinary types. It's also BYOB, so be sure to bring a fine bottle of wine to get the creative juices flowing.

Enter a virtual world and play some really fun games

Digital Worlds Virtual Arcade features cutting edge VR technology to offer dozens of incredibly realistic games ranging from horror to action to shooters to sports. If your date isn’t the competitive sort, there are also games that revolve around music and dance to show off your creative, or just silly, side.

Partake in a couple “chambongs” at Marsh House

Really, who knew that the problem with champagne was that it took too long to drink? At least that’s what they’ve decided at the festive Marsh House restaurant in the Thompson Hotel where they’ve revolutionized bubble consumption with a device called a “chambong” which quickly funnels a glass down your gullet in seconds so you can get a head start on the frivolity. For Valentine’s, Marsh House is featuring a chambong and an oyster special for just $10 to accelerate the romance.

Take a vacation in your own hometown

Various locations
There’s a reason why Nashville is a tourist mecca—it’s a damned entertaining place to visit. Don’t let out-of-towners have all the fun when you can take advantage of the special Couples Getaway package from the Nashville Convention and Visitors Corp. Book a room at any of the participating hotels and receive a discounted Music City Total Access Pass which includes entrance to four local attractions from a list of more than 30 choices plus discounts at several other visitor experiences. Or check out Airbnb rentals nearby.

Order some sweets for your sweet

After years of lacking even a decent donut shop, the urban core of Nashville is now blessed with two fantastic bakeries where you can put together a box of exotic pastries, cookies and other baked goods to impress your beloved, because gift desserts have no calories (obviously). D’Andrews Bakery and Cafe offers all sorts of classic European pastries and other novel desserts, but trust us when we say that their Double Chocolate Dulcey Cookie is the most outrageous cocoa creation in town. Cafe Intermezzo is another Euro-inspired bakery and coffeehouse with a display cabinet of cakes and tortes that is well nigh on impossible to ignore.

Bring a restaurant meal home 

Various locations
While there’s nothing quite like a romantic dinner out at a fantastic restaurant, local establishments also realize that fear of catching a virus can be a bit of a buzzkill, even on Valentine’s Day. Fortunately, several of your favorites are obliging with special carryout menus that you can serve on your own plates at home and enjoy by candlelight. Some of our favorite offers include Etch, where Chef Deb Paquette has put together a four-course meal kit for two highlighted by a Morrocan Beef Wellington and Sinema, who is offering a three-course carryout deal with three appetizers, a choice of entrees, and a brown butter chocolate chip skillet cookie for dessert. The Loews Vanderbilt Hotel has a special “Loews to Go'' three-course dinner available, with choices from three apps, two entrees, and S’mores cake for dessert, plus you can add on a bottle of bubbles. Or, if you’d rather stay on-premise, you can sign up for their “Rekindle the Romance“ package with a $60 food and beverage credit, a welcome amenity featuring champagne and chocolate toffee brittle, one in-room movie, and complimentary parking.

Make some sweets with your sweet at the Goo Goo Shop

The Goo Goo is Nashville’s iconic cluster candy, raising local blood-sugar levels for more than a decade. Their quaint-as-heck candy shop downtown offers cooking classes in the back of the building where you can learn about the history of the confection, make your own Premium Goo Goo and sample some treats from their dessert bar. Some evening classes also feature wine pairings, so you might want to seek those out specifically.

Keep your eye on the calendar for great events

Various locations
Finding fun things to do is deceptively difficult -- even in a wild city like this one. That's why we keep a regularly updated, comprehensive calendar of the best possible events, activities, and things to do in Nashville. Some of your best date ideas will inevitably come from there.

See the city's finest murals and Instagram the hell out of your relationship

Various locations
From the angel wings in the Gulch to the Welcome to Nashville sign on the side of Reese Witherspoon’s building in 12 South, Nashville is a selfie city, so set up your own personal scavenger hunt of some of the most iconic street art in town. You’ll also discover that most of them are within a block of a decent bar, so make a drinking game of it!

Treat yourself to breakfast in bed

West Nashville
The iconic Nashville breakfast spot Loveless Cafe is famous for their morning meal, but do you really want to schlep all the way out to Pasquo on Valentine’s morning? We say nay, and fortunately they’ve been kind enough to share the recipe for their Red Velvet Waffles which you can also use to make heart-shaped pancakes if you haven’t invested in a special waffle maker. Either way you go, these blood red treats are a terrific way to kick off a day of romance.

Break out of a locked room together

Although it might be easier with a bigger group, the Escape Game will let couples play by themselves as they attempt to solve the clues within the allotted time to be released from a locked room, or you can take part in their online virtual challenges. Think of how proud your date will be of your teamwork and chemistry together—if you manage to figure it out.

Knock a few balls and knock a few back on the green

East Nashville
Since TopGolf opened up across the river from downtown, it has been packed with golfers of all abilities trying to hit a round ball with a crooked stick into large illuminated targets spread out in front of them on 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. Since the hitting bays have always been socially distanced for safety since before it was cool, you’ll feel better about being out and about.

Make your own candles

Berry Hill
You never know when Nashville will get struck by another ice storm and the inevitable power outages that accompany the icepocalypse. The light on your phone won’t hold out forever, so you’re gonna need some candles. Make your own artistic and fragrant tapers at Paddywax Candle Bar where you can design custom candles using a variety of aromatic oils. You might as well at least smell nice while you’re huddling in the dark waiting for the utility crew to arrive.

Take a loop around the lake

Oak Hill
If you've never had the pleasure, Radnor Lake State Park is a pristine natural area right in the middle of a Nashville suburb. Multiple trail options range from a flat and peaceful stroll around the lake to fairly rigorous trails that take you up on top of the rides for some breathtaking views.

Take a tour of the newest Nashville treasure

Lots of cities have thought about dedicating a museum to the impact of African-American performers on all sorts of musical genres, but Nashville was the first place to actually put a shovel in the ground and built one. The National Museum of African-American Music is a magnificent addition to Lower Broad with multiple galleries highlighting the role of Black musicians in art from the 17th century to today. It really is a marvel, and you should immediately add it to your to-do list.

Put together a box of local love

Who doesn’t like receiving some sweet gifts for Valentine’s, especially if they’re from local small businesses? (Anyone who answers “no” to that question doesn’t deserve a present anyway!) Visit Music City has put together a special “My Nashville Valentine” gift box filled with candy treats, a stocking cap and a candle all made by local artisans, and Batch Nashville has been the go-to source for Music City-inspired gift collections for years. They’ve a whole passel of gift box options themed around whether your beloved likes their chocolate with charcuterie, bourbon, or more chocolate.

Chris Chamberlain is a food, drink, and travel writer based in Nashville. Follow him @CeeElCee.
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