15 Sustainable Date Ideas For The Eco Minded Couple

15 Sustainable Date Ideas For The Eco Minded Couple

With Valentine’s Day coming up, I figured it would be fun to write a post about sustainable date ideas. Though, you don’t need a holiday to go on a fun date! These date ideas will work regardless of the occasion. The list of dates I’ve whipped up are all fun, low-impact ways to spend quality time together. One of my favorite dates with Steve (my husband) is dinner and a movie. But sometimes we like to mix things up. Honestly, any time we spend together is valuable in my eyes. But when you want things to feel a little extra romantic, I suggest giving one of these date ideas a try. And, if you’re planning on popping the big question during the date, check out these sustainable engagement rings!

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15 Sustainable Date Ideas For The Eco Minded Couple

15 Sustainable Date Ideas For The Eco Minded Couple

1. Go stargazing

You can take a blanket you have at home, a pair of secondhand binoculars/telescope, and pack some plastic-free snacks. Simple and fun!

2. Go hiking

Find a nice spot near you or somewhere local you’ve never been before. Make sure to pack lunch/snacks and dress for the occasion. Even better if you find a hiking spot with a waterfall! And make sure to pick up any litter you find along the way.

3. Have a farm to table dinner

If you’re a good cook, challenge yourself to whip something up for your date that’s all from local farmers. Set the table with some candles made by a local artisan and you’ve got yourself a romantic dinner for two. Or, find a restaurant that does it for you!

4. Make DIY beeswax wraps together

There’s something so cute about crafting and making things together as a couple. Even better if it’s something eco-friendly and practical we can both use! I love this DIY beeswax wrap kit from SuperBee. It includes everything you need to make your own beeswax wraps (aka a sustainable alternative to plastic wrap). You can turn it into such a cute little indoor date by playing some music, grabbing some drinks, and just having fun with it. Every time you use it, you’ll remember the fun you had making it together!

5. Go for a bike ride

Even better if it’s somewhere scenic, like near the ocean, forest, or flower fields. It’s a carbon-free way to travel, but also a fun way to get in some exercise!

6. Have a plant-based picnic

Cook up some yummy plant-based dishes, or get some of your favorite vegan snacks. Pack them in a basket (any you already have will do) and grab a blanket from home you don’t mind laying on grass. You can also make homemade iced tea for the occasion! Here’s more info on how to have a zero waste picnic.

14 Sustainable Date Ideas For The Eco Minded Couple
Me + Steve during our engagement photoshoot!

7. Dinner + a movie

It may sound cliché, but it works. Make it extra sustainable by choosing a plant-based restaurant and a local theatre. Here’s how to stay zero waste at the movies by the way. Some theatres have even started serving popcorn and drinks in reusable containers too (like to Alamo Drafthouse)!

8. Go for (vegan) ice cream or donuts

There are a lot of cool vegan ice cream shops in NYC, as well as vegan donut shops. One I really want to try with Steve is Cloudy Donut, a BIPOC owned donut shop based in Brooklyn. We went once and they were all sold out! No wonder – their donuts look drool worthy.

9. Visit a botanical garden

There’s something so wonderful about being in a botanical garden. Admiring plants that are well cared for and loved will never go out of style. There’s plenty of cute photo opportunities, and memories to make!

10. Head to the boardwalk/beach

Nothing more romantic than a stroll down the beach right? A walk on the boardwalk is also fun too. Take a deep breath, smell that salty sea air, and observe nature around you. Or, grab a treat together on the boardwalk (make it eco by choosing something plant-based or low waste). Ask for a pretzel in a cloth napkin, or an ice cream cone (no plastic protector) for example.

Greenify-Me: 14 Sustainable Date Ideas For The Eco Minded Couple
The first photo we took after we got engaged! I was over the moon. That’s a sustainable diamond by the way.

11. Head to a sustainable local winery or brewery

Do you have a local brewery or winery? Go on a tour together! Supporting local businesses, instead of big businesses, is always a more sustainable option. You can ask them any questions about their process, where they source their ingredients from, etc. And maybe grab some samples to take home and drink together!

12. Head to a museum or art gallery

You probably don’t know it, but there’s likely a bunch of local museums near you that contain history native to your area. Sometimes you can find reduced prices or free tickets. Art galleries are also fun ways to support local artists in your community.

13. Take a dance class together

Experience gifts are great ways to reduce waste, and create wonderful memories! Plus, dancing is a fun skill to learn together, and there’s so much culture behind it. Whatever you learn can be applied when you get invited to events that have music too!

14. Paint something together

You don’t have to go to an art class for this one – just have fun with it! Grab an easel, a rock, a seashell, a bottle or waterproof paper and get painting! Using what you have in terms of paint supplies is always the most sustainable choice. But if you’re on the hunt for some new paint, be sure to checkout Beam Paints – a plastic-free, handmade, all-natural paint brand and 100% Indigenous family entrepreneurship. Or make your own from plant paints!

15. Head to a local café for a cup of tea/coffee

What are some mom and pop cafes near you? They’ll likely be the ones to sell organic coffee/tea. And better yet, they may even offer it in reusable cups! My local café Sips + Maker makes an amazing chai latte and Steve and I love all their vegan goodies. Totally beats Starbucks and Dunkin Donuts! Plus the atmosphere is 10xs cuter.

What do you think of these sustainable date ideas? Let me know in the comments below!

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By Ariana Storniolo (Palmieri)

Ariana Storniolo is the founder of Greenify-Me, a blog dedicated to zero waste and sustainability. Her work has also been featured on Going Zero Waste, Green Matters, Mother Earth Living and several other online publications.

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