As a follow-up to my previous article that shared some Austin-y date ideas for summer and fall, here are a few of my local picks for nights out these upcoming winter months as well as some ideas to look forward to for spring.
Decorate a Christmas tree along Highway 360. This excursion includes a trip to the nearest Hobby Lobby or Michaels to scoop up the most obnoxious (or cute) Christmas décor you can find. Find a good-looking tree along the highway and go to town with the ornaments and tinsel. Afterward, keep the Christmas spirit going by sharing a spiked hot chocolate or coffee drink from Halcyon.
Brave the Ice Rink at Whole Foods. If you’re confident in your ice skating abilities, head to the upstairs deck of Whole Foods downtown and skate around the miniature outdoor rink they set up each season. It’s kinda cheesy and always a little crowded but definitely a good time. Hand-holding is pretty much guaranteed.
Get cozy with S’mores and Coffee. Halcyon is a hip coffeehouse in the warehouse district that serves the perfect combination of coffee and boozy beverages. Have the s’mores for 2, listen to the live music if there’s a band playing and enjoy the people watching if the convo takes a turn for the worse. I’m a fan of the Long Island Iced Coffee.
Watch a movie with your feet up at Violet Crown Cinema on 2nd Sreet. Violet Crown shows indie and award- winning flicks and offers a full bar and food menu to enjoy during the films. The best part about this theater though is the front-row seats: Reclining leather chairs with ottomans.
Warm up with some Japanese soul food at Ramen Tatsu-Ya. This spot up north is one of my favorites and I cannot wait until they open their south location. The prices are great, the Ramen is delicious, and drink selection is unique. Being the brainchild of two local DJ’s-turned-chefs, a great atmosphere and good vibes are a given. There’s usually a line outside the door to get in, but don’t let that deter you – it moves quickly!
Catch a Buzz at the Spoetzel Brewery. Did you know one of Austin’s favorite beers has been brewed just a few hours outside of the city since 1909? Put on a good playlist and enjoy the mini road trip south to Shiner, TX. The Spoetzel Brewery is open for tours Monday through Friday, during which you can gain a little beer knowledge while you sip on some of your favorite Shiner flavors. Did I mention the tour and tastings are free? Prosit!
Nerd out over Old School Video Games at Pinballz Arcade. Grab a 6-pack or a bottle of wine (it’s BYOB) and enjoy countless hours of flirty competition over your favorite classic arcade games. You don’t have to be a serious gamer to enjoy the over-200 games of every type – from hundreds of pinball machines to PacMan to Air Hockey. You’ll have a hard time getting bored in this place.
Create or hunt for local art in an #atxfreeartfriday adventure. ATX Free Art Friday is a weekly citywide art scavenger hunt that anyone can participate in. To play, collaborate with your date and create a new piece of art. Hide it somewhere in the city for others to find – by posting a photo clue to Instagram with the hashtag #atxfreeartfriday. If you’re not feeling super creative and just want to hunt for art – that’s cool too! You’ll have fun searching around the city with your date and (hopefully) end up with a rad new piece of local art.
Commit to an Overnight Adventure and Go Glamping in Marfa, TX. If you’re feeling a little wanderlust and ready to commit to a weekend getaway with your date, go ahead and reserve a teepee or safari tent at El Cosmico in Marfa, TX. You’ll appreciate the romance of the laid-back and culture-packed town. The locals are friendly, the art galleries are impressive, and the desert night sky is gorgeous. Your Instagram feed and your date will thank you.
Rent Bikes and Cruise around the city. The weather is warm, your date is gorgeous, and the day is beautiful. Sounds like the perfect occasion to rent a couple cruisers from Barton Springs Bike Rental and take a rolling tour around the bike-friendly city. While you’re in the neighborhood, stop by Juiceland for a refreshing and healthy pick-me-up.
What are some of your favorite local date spots? Fill me in with a comment below – I’m always looking for new ideas!