No Reservation, No Problem: 6 Last-Minute Valentine’s Day Date Ideas

This year, skip the fancy dinner for a more out-of-the-box Valentine’s Day.


If you’re reading this article, it’s a few days before (or even the day of) Valentine’s Day and you haven’t made plans with your significant other. Maybe your favorite restaurant isn’t taking any reservations, tickets to your favorite show have sold out or you just don’t want to do the same old dinner date this year. 

Nonetheless, you still want to make your partner feel special and celebrate your love together. Here are a few last-minute ideas to help you do just that.


Cook a meal at home

You know what they say — the fastest way to a person’s heart is through his or her stomach. 

Serving a favorite home-cooked dinner is the perfect way to show your partner how much you care. Time, effort and genuine thought are put into the process.

Instead of one person cooking for the other, cook a meal together. A little teamwork will get the job done faster, with the added benefit of some extra quality time. 

Since Valentine’s Day is a celebration of all things love, your meal might also include aphrodisiac foods — foods that are thought to increase your sex drive — which include dark chocolate, alcohol, oysters, figs and strawberries. 

Plan a scavenger hunt around Pittsburgh

This out-of-the-box date idea will get you and your partner out of the house to explore Pittsburgh, visiting places that are special to the city’s history — or maybe just the history of your relationship.

Leave clues that will lead your partner throughout the city, stopping at iconic landmarks like the Duquesne Incline, Point State Park or the Cathedral of Learning. Guide your partner through this scavenger hunt alone to find you at the end, or travel together to decode every hint and clue.

If you and your significant other fell in love in Pittsburgh, replace some of these Pittsburgh landmarks with relationship landmarks: where you first met, where you had your first date, where you got engaged, and more. 

At the end of the scavenger hunt, the prize is up to you!

Make something fun

Arts and crafts aren’t just for kids.

This is a date that is super easy to plan at the last minute. One trip to your local arts and crafts store will get you all the supplies you need. Create special picture frames to hold photos of the two of you, paint portraits of one another, make each other friendship (or rather, relationship) bracelets — the possibilities are endless. 

They’ll love what you make them — no matter how terrible of an artist you are.

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Go on a hike together

If you and your partner are both active, a hike together is the perfect Valentine’s Day date. You two will spend time together, break a sweat and maybe even discover areas of Pittsburgh that you’ve never seen before. Visit one of your favorite local spots or find a different hiking trail to discover new sights and adventures.

No two trails in Pittsburgh are exactly the same. Some wind through nature-filled parks, some follow the riverside and still others run right through the city’s streets. If you have extra time on Monday, head out to one of the bigger parks in the greater Pittsburgh area such as Ohiopyle State Park in Fayette County.

If you need help picking the best hiking trail for your romantic adventure, check out our top 10 trails in the Pittsburgh area


Create your own spa retreat

Valentine’s Day is a day to reconnect with our partners and ourselves, and what better way to do that than to create a spa in your very own home?

A quick stop at your local drugstore can yield fun face masks, bath bombs or bath salts, lotions, foot masks, skincare products and more. You can even buy some nice eucalyptus-scented candles or essential oil diffusers to help make your home feel just like a real spa retreat. 

Take a fresh shower or bath, throw on a soft robe or your favorite pajamas and pamper yourself — and your partner — for the night. Take turns giving one another relaxing massages. 

After this at-home date night, you’ll both feel refreshed, rejuvenated and closer than ever. 

(This is a great Valentine’s Day idea for even those without a significant other, because who doesn’t need a little self-care night every now and then?)

Go full couch potato

Not everyone is an expert in the kitchen, a lover of crafting or a hiking fanatic, and that’s OK. This Valentine’s Day after a long Monday at work, you might just want to be a couch potato.

Throw on your comfiest pajamas and order dinner from your favorite takeout place. On a night when so many couples are looking to dine in, restaurants that depend heavily on to-go business might even be grateful. 

While you’re vegging out on the couch, watch a marathon of romantic movies together — or, if that’s not your thing, catch up on that one show you and your partner have been meaning to watch for ages.

At the end of the day, what you choose to do this Valentine’s Day isn’t what matters. As long as you get to share in each other’s company, it’s sure to be an amazing day. 

Categories: The 412