There are certain mainstays that come with Valentine’s Day: chocolates, cards, and going out to eat. But there’s no hard and fast rule that this day of romance must involve reservations, restaurants, crowds, and waitlists.
There are plenty of out-of-the-box options that thrill the heart, including the following:
Go for a Winter Hike
You don’t have to head to the hills to find a good hiking spot; in Colorado, you only need to walk down the street. A Valentine’s Day hike allows you and your partner to spend time together in solitude, holding hands, being present, and soaking up the wonder nature offers.
The temperatures plummet when the sun goes down, so an afternoon hike is typically a better option than an evening outing. Hit the trails, explore a creek, or snowshoe in the foothills before coming home to dinner in front of the fireplace.
Find a New Series to Binge-Watch
Sure, you can binge-watch any day, but with separate tastes, couples don’t always watch shows together. Work with your partner to come up with a series you can both agree on. From Ozark to Squid Games to The Stranger, you’ll find something that lures you in. You can even stream Riverdale and no one will ever know.
Round things out with a nice bottle of wine and a generous pour. You’ve heard of Netflix and Chill. This is Netflix and Fill.
Take a Train Ride
The Royal Gorge’s Valentine Train doesn’t run on Valentine’s Day, but you can get tickets for the days before (February 11th, 12th, and 13th). It’s a cost and time commitment, with many people opting to stay overnight in a local hotel, but it’s got romance coming out the caboose.
You can opt for a lunch or dinner ride as you wind through the canyon and enjoy libations from a fully stocked bar. Set off on a special adventure, enjoy breathtaking views, and make a Valentine’s Day memory you’re not likely to forget.
Sign Up for a Cooking Class
The Food Lab in Boulder offers several classes designed for different dietary needs and the pickiest of palates. These include courses on fondue, a pasta workshop, and one dedicated to vegan dishes. It also offers a Paris Valentine’s experience where you can learn to make mussels with butter, a classic French salad, and pan-seared fish with Beurre Blanc.
Classes tend to fill up fast, so don’t wait until Valentine’s Day Eve to make your move.
Mother Nature will need to act as your wingwoman on this one. If she parts the clouds to make way for a clear night, the sky is literally the limit. For those who live far away from the city lights, stargazing is doable from a rooftop. Everyone else might need to make a bit of a trek into the middle of nowhere.
There are all sorts of places to take in Taurus and give major props to Ursa Minor. Depending on where you live, try Peak to Peak Scenic Byway, Panorama Point on Flagstaff Road, Lookout Mountain, Rocky Mountain National Park, or Red Rocks.
Yes, Valentine’s Day is a time of love, romance, and intense pressure to get it right. Try one of the suggestions above and this just might be the year you impress even Cupid.