With Valentine’s Day coming up, many couples are looking for Central Florida date ideas to experience with their loved ones. Andrew and I have explored all over this area and I can assure you, there are plenty of romantic things to do in Orlando and around the coasts. This post is full of fun date ideas for Valentine’s Day or any other time of year!
I have mentioned many of these attractions in my Things to Do Guides for Orlando, Tampa, St. Pete and The Space Coast. However, I have tried to include ways to make these experiences more of a romantic date for this post. Of course, you would have just as much fun doing most of this list with family or friends, especially if you want a Galentine’s Day! I hope this list does spark some ideas for you and your significant other, whether you are looking for a relaxing, active, or nature Central Florida date.
Active Date Ideas in Orlando and Beyond
If you are the type of couple that likes an adrenaline-pumping date, this section is for you! I have scoured everywhere from St. Pete to New Smyrna for exciting date ideas for Valentine’s Day. Whether you want a workout or like experiencing something new, here are some active Central Florida date ideas.
Go for a Boat Ride
There is nothing more romantic then being on the water with your true love! There are all sorts of places throughout Central Florida to rent a boat, whether it be a paddleboat or a pontoon for a sunset cruise experience. You can also take a boat tour, and though that usually is not private, it can still be an entertaining date! Here are some ideas for different on the water dates in Central Florida
- Rent a Swan Paddle Boat at Lake Eola
- Take a Winter Park Boat Tour through the scenic waterways
- Enjoy a Dolphin Cruise in Clearwater or St. Pete
- Take an Airboat Ride in Titusville or Palm Bay
- Experience Dinner and the Sunset on a Yacht in Tampa
Play Mini Golf or Top Golf
Another classic date idea that you always see in the movies is playing mini golf. Central Florida has no shortage of putt-putt courses to challenge your significant other at! I prefer the more advanced form of mini golf that is starting popping up around here, commonly known as Top Golf. This is basically a driving range, but it has interactive games and a full bar and restaurant! You don’t need to be a golfer to have fun either. Here are some mini golf and interactive driving range options in Central Florida
- TopGolf – Locations in Orlando and Tampa
- Drive Shack – Located in Lake Nona, same concept as TopGolf
- Disney Mini Golf – Fantasia Mini Golf Course or Winter Summerland, both with cute themes
- Hollywood Drive-In Golf – Mini Golf at Universal’s City Walk themed to vintage movies
- Smuggler’s Cove Adventure Golf – Beachy, touristy mini golf in Madeira Beach
- Lighthouse Cove Mini Golf – Coastal Mini Golf in Cocoa Beach
- BigShots – Located in Vero Beach, also the same concept as TopGolf
- Pirate’s Island Adventure Golf – Classic touristy mini golf in Daytona Beach
Take a Paddle Tour
If you want to put your relationship to the test, you can always rent a kayak and see if you can keep the boat afloat! Jokes aside, Central Florida is full of excellent areas for kayaking, canoeing or paddleboarding. This is one of our favorite date ideas because we always see something new! You can rent a watercraft pretty much anywhere on the coast or you can take a tour for more of an educational experience. Here are some of the best places for a paddle date.
- Get Up and Go Kayaking – Clear Bottom Kayaking tours through Florida’s Freshwater Springs.
- Coconut Kayak Tours – Paddling from Fort De Soto for manatee views.
- Tampa Bay SUP & Kayaking – Tours and rentals for paddling the Hillsborough Bay.
- Sup Eco Adventure – Melbourne Beach tour with frequent dolphin and manatee sightings in the mangroves.
- BK Adventures Sunset and Bioluminescence Tour – Titusville tour at night with beautiful sunset views and the chance to see Bioluminescence!
- Inner Compass Eco Adventures – Kayak, Canoe and Paddleboard tours in Daytona.
Check out a Skate Park or a Bike Trail
For couples who skateboard or rollerblade, there are dozens of skate parks all over for an extreme Central Florida date idea. You can even find a few mountain biking trails for some rugged biking as well. However, for a more scenic experience, heck out one of the many Central Florida cycling trails.
- Orlando Urban Trail – Scenic 3-mile trail for cycling or walking
- Orlando Skate Park – Park for Skateboarding, Rollerblading and occasionally BMX
- Lake Nona Bike Trails – Southeast Orlando Trail with over 44 miles of trails
- Riverwalk Tampa– 2.6 mile waterfront path for cycling or walking
- Ream Wilson Clearwater Trail – 13 mile corridor for cycling that connects Clearwater to Tampa
- Grapefruit Trail – Mountain biking trail on the Space Coast
- NSB Skate Park – One of the best skate pools in Florida
Take a Yoga Class Together
Couples that stretch together, stay together! I have become quite the yogi, and the few times a year that Andrew joins me is always an amusing experience. If you don’t take it too seriously, yoga is a great way to unwind with your partner. Even better, if it is at somewhere cool like a biergarten or the beach! Here are some Central Florida places to try yoga.
- Yoga in Lake Eola Park – Outdoor yoga offered every Sunday at 11 AM in Orlando
- Riverfront Yoga in the Park – Outdoor yoga classes every Sunday at 10:30 AM in Tampa’s Julian B Lane Riverfront Park
- Goat Yoga Grady Farms – Goat yoga classes at Tampa’s Grady Farms every Saturday Morning
- Beach Yoga Pinellas – Weekly beach yoga classes offered in Clearwater and Reddington Shores
- Namaste for One More at Intracoastal Brewing – Yoga at a brewery offered every Sunday in Melbourne
- OM Sunshine Yoga – Yoga on New Smyrna Beach every weekend
Visit a Theme Park
If you live in Central Florida, you probably have been to your share of the local amusement parks. However, going with just your significant other is a fresh experience if you have never done that before! To make it feel more like a date, you can have a themed day at the parks! This could be planning to just experience certain rides (only rollercoasters, only dark rides, etc.) or stick to a certain land. I also recommend reserving a nice meal or a special experience (like a fireworks cruise) if you can to make the day extra special!
Below are all the different Central Florida theme parks that would be good for a date. You can also go to a water park if the weather is nice!
- Disney World – Magic Kingdom, Epcot, Hollywood Studios and Animal Kingdom
- Universal Orlando – Universal Studios and Islands of Adventure
- Busch Gardens Tampa Bay – Part Amusement Park/Part Zoo
- SeaWorld Orlando– Part Amusement Park/Part Zoo
- Legoland Florida – Theme park and water park based on the classic building block toys
- The Water Parks – Typhoon Lagoon, Blizzard Beach, Volcano Bay, Aquatica, Discovery Cove and Adventure Island
- Icon Park – Orlando Eye Ferris Wheel, Aquarium, Arcade and Go Karting
- County Fairs – A little cheesy, but usually fun rides, fair treats and games
Go Rock Climbing or Take a Ropes Course
As long as you both do not mind heights, going rock climbing together can be an exhilarating date idea! Being without mountains, you will have to settle for rock climbing gyms all throughout Central Florida. On a similar note, ropes and zipline courses are also exciting outdoor ways to see new heights. Here are my recommendations!
- Aiguille Rock Climbing Center – Rockwall and bouldering gym north of Orlando in Longwood
- Orlando Tree Trek Adventure Park – Elevated Obstacle course and zip lines in Kissimmee
- Vertical Ventures – Rockwall and bouldering gym in St. Pete
- Empower Adventures Tampa Bay – Treetop obstacle course and ziplining in Oldsmar
- Treetop Trek Aerial Adventures – Ziplining and Ropes Course at the Space Coast Brevard Zoo
- ON The Edge Rock Gym – Rockwall and bouldering gym in Melbourne
- Daytona Beach Zipline Adventures – Treetop courses and 8 zip lines
- Daytona Climbing Company – Rockwall and bouldering gym in Daytona Beach
See a Sports Game
This may not be an active date for the two of you, but watching a sport game alone can be invigorating if you are a fan! Central Florida has many professional sports teams to see a game at and even more minor league and college sports teams. If you really want this to feel like a date, try and get on the jumbotron kisscam! Here are the main teams to check out for game tickets
- Basketball Games at the Amway Center – Orlando Magic
- Hockey Games at the Amway Center – Orlando Solar Bears
- Soccer Games at the Exploria Stadium – Orlando Pride and Orlando City Soccer
- Football Games at Raymond James Stadium – Tampa Bay Buccaneers
- Baseball Games at Tropicana Field – Tampa Bay Rays
- Hockey Games at Amalie Arena – Tampa Bay Lightning
- Spring Training Baseball Games throughout Tampa Bay in February and March
Relaxing Central Florida Date Ideas
If you prefer to unwind with your partner, then there are plenty of Central Florida date ideas for you as well. This section includes everything from a spa day to indulgent tasting experiences for a romantic time. Experiences like these are especially easy to find around Valentine’s Day, but you can still try this section of the list for a date any time of year. Here are some fun ways for couples to relax together.
Enjoy Live Music or an Outdoor Movie
Experiencing the arts with your significant other, whether it be music, a movie or a show, is a fun way to grow closer. I find experiences like this to be some of our most memorable dates! Concerts are always a blast, but even a simple performer at a restaurant can be great too. Even though movies are a typical date, most movie theaters are not the most romantic spots, so I prefer an outdoor screening with a little picnic. Here are some spots that usually have music or movies going on.
- Dr. Phillips Center for Performing Arts – Currently offering a Frontyard Festival with outdoor shows and movies.
- Garden Theatre – Historic Theatre in Winter Garden with theatre and musical performances.
- Leu Gardens Movie Night – Monthly movie night outdoors at the Leu Gardens.
- Silver Moon Drive-In Theatre – Central Florida’s only Drive-In movie theatre in Lakeland.
- Sparkman Wharf – Frequent weekend live music spot in Tampa.
- King Center – Space Coast theater hosting concerts and plays.
- Wickham Park – Free movie in the park monthly.
- Daytona Beach Bandshell – Outdoor concert series by the beach.
Take a Class Together
With the business of life, a date night can be a great time to learn something new together. Even if you are not that artistic, you may be surprised by each other’s painting skills at a Painting with a Twist Night. Other’s dates like this include pottery making, candle making and cooking classes! Here are some Central Florida spots to learn something with a loved one.
- Truffles & Trifles – Gourmet cooking classes in Orlando.
- The Splatter Room at Pinspiration – Create a work of art at the Paint Splatter Room.
- Painting with a Twist – Painting Classes available throughout Central Florida.
- The Rolling Pin – Cooking classes and demonstrations in Brandon.
- The Gathering Table – Cooking classes for a variety of cuisines in Melbourne.
- This Little Light of Mine – Candle Making classes in Downtown Melbourne.
- The Hub on Canal – Creative classes of all kinds in New Smyrna Beach
Go Shopping (And try this TikTok Challenges!)
Depending on your personality, shopping may not be that relaxing. I find that outdoor shopping centers at places like Disney Springs make the experience a lot more enjoyable, so I have included a bunch of areas like that below. However, to make your shopping experience feel even more like a date, you can try the TikTok Target Challenge. This can be done at a target, or any downtown or shopping mall. Basically, you come up with a short list of things and each partner buys it for the other. For example, the list can be; favorite drink, favorite animal, favorite color, something that remind you of them. Have each person try and find a little something for each item on the list and then see what they come up with! This can be especially interesting at a downtown with lots of thrift stores! Here are some places to try this challenge out at.
- Disney Springs – Shopping and dining complex at Walt Disney World.
- Dellagio Town Center – Outdoor shopping mall in Doctor Phillips.
- Ybor City – Boutiques, vintage shops and dining in Tampa.
- Downtown St. Pete – Waterfront shopping and dining district in St. Pete.
- Cocoa Village – Historic downtown with small businesses and restaurants.
- Downtown Melbourne – Shopping, restaurants and bars on the Space Coast.
- Canal Street Historic District – New Smyrna Beach shopping area with galleries, antiques and dining.
Try a Food or Drink Tasting
Another great way to try something new with your partner is to experience a food or drink tasting. This can be in many forms, but my favorite is to try different beers from a craft brewery. Getting a flight is the perfect way to sample a variety of beer that you may be skeptical of tasting.
On the other hand, if beer is not your thing, you can also check out a winery or a distillery! For non-drinkers, there is always a foodie tasting. You can pick up different cheeses or desserts from your local market and then have a tasting at home. Some places are even doing a home tasting this year, like a beer and donut pairing for GB’s bottle shop!
- Local breweries in Orlando, Tampa, and the Space Coast for beer tasting.
- Chocolate Museum and Cafe in Orlando
- Quantum Leap Winery in Orlando
- Visit a Food Hall and sample dishes from different booths – Armature Works, Sparkman Wharf, Hall on Franklin, A La Cart, East End Market
- Bear and Donut Pairing from GB’s Bottle Shop
- Saint Petersburg Distillery
- Cotherman Distilling Co. in Dunedin
- Copper Bottom Craft Distillery in Holly Hill
Visit a Spa
If you are in need of a spa day, making it a date can be a romantic way to celebrate Valentine’s Day or any times of year. With so many luxury hotels in the area, there are tons of options for getting a couple’s massage, facials and more. Here are some places to go for Central Florida date at the spa!
- The Spa at Four Seasons Resort Orlando
- Mandara Spa at the Swan and Dolphin Resort
- The Salt Room in Orlando
- Pallavi Spa at Clearwater’s Wyndham Grand
- Spa Oceana at St. Pete beach’s Don CeSar
- Space Coast Massage and Spa in Melbourne
- The Shores Resort & Spa at Daytona Beach
Check out a Farmers Market
One of my favorite weekend activities is checking out local farmer’s markets and it often becomes a date! Not only can you find something tasty to eat, but most farmers markets also have neat crafts and plants to purchase too. And the best part is you usually see lots of dogs! Here are some farmers markets to peruse for a lowkey Central Florida date.
- Winter Park Farmer’s Market every Saturday
- Orlando Farmer’s Market every Sunday at Lake Eola
- Lake Nona Farmer’s Market every Saturday
- Ybor City Farmer’s Market Every Saturday
- Dunedin Downtown Market every Friday and Saturday
- Space Coast Farmer’s Market every Saturday in Cocoa Beach
- Downtown Melbourne Farmer’s Market every Saturday
- New Smyrna Beach Farmer’s Market every Saturday
Visit a Museum or an Aquarium
Whether you are a couple that enjoys art, science, history or anything else, there is a museum in Central Florida for you! Visiting a museum is an entertaining way to bring out your inner child and curiosity. There are also lots of local aquariums for those interested in seeing the beauty of sea life. Here are all the museums and aquariums you can find in Central Florida.
- Charles Hosmer Morse Museum – Art museum known for large collection of Tiffany glass.
- Orlando Science Center – Hands-On science museum fun for all ages.
- Orlando Museum of Art – One of the largest regional art museums with classic and contemporary art.
- Orange County History Center – Historic courthouse with exhibits featuring local and regional history.
- Florida Aquarium – Huge aquarium in Tampa with a variety of sea life exhibits.
- Henry B. Plant Museum – Former Tampa Bay Hotel showcasing life in the Victorian era.
- Tampa Bay History Center – History museum with exhibits about Tampa’s Native American inhabitants and the growth of the area.
- Museum of Science and Industry – Science museum showcasing unique technologies, as well as a planetarium in Tampa.
- Salvador Dali Museum – Extensive art museum showcasing the surrealist art of Salvador Dali in St. Pete.
- Clearwater Marine Aquarium – Marine life rescue center and aquarium, renowned for being home to the dolphin from Dolphin Tale.
- Kennedy Space Center – State of the art complex showcasing the history and future of NASA.
- Ponce de Leon Inlet Lighthouse & Museum – Tour a Florida lighthouse built in 1887 and learn about the history through exhibits.
- Museum of Arts & Science – Daytona Beach Museum with exhibits featuring Florida Art and History and a Planetarium.
Central Florida Date Ideas in Nature
Lastly, for a mix of a relaxing and exciting date, I recommend an outdoor date in nature. For us, this usually involves walking around somewhere and taking in all the sights and sounds of the great outdoors. This may sound boring to some, but we usually see some pretty unique things and also have fun taking pictures too. Here are some places I love to go for a Central Florida date in nature.
Visit a Garden
There are so many gorgeous gardens to see all over Florida and this is one of the best ways to spend an outdoor date. You can see and smell all sorts of pretty flowers, as well as observe other interesting natural features like waterfalls, animals and trees. If they let you bring a picnic to the garden, that makes for an even more fun experience!
- Harry P. Leu Gardens in Orlando
- Bok Towers Gardens in Lake Wales
- USF Botanical Gardens in Tampa
- Sunken Gardens in St. Pete
- Rockledge Gardens on the Space Coast
- Sugar Mill Botanical Gardens in Port Orange
Central Florida is known for it’s fresh produce and you can find fruit to pick here all year. The best time for fruit picking is in the winter, when berries and citrus are in season. However, there are some farms with mango and other tropical fruit picking later in the year. Here are some U-Pick fruit experiences for a very Central Florida date idea.
- Bekemeyer Family Farm in Winter Garden – Citrus and Strawberry Picking in the winter
- Pappy’s Patch in Oviedo – Strawberry Picking in the winter
- Ever After Farms in Mims – Blueberry picking in the spring
- Deer Park in St. Cloud – Peach picking in the spring
- Dooley Groves in Ruskin – Citrus Picking in the Winter
Explore a Nature Trail
Though you would be hard pressed to find some elevated hikes in Florida, there is still lots to explore at sea level! Nature trails are an adventurous way to view your hometown and see what creatures live around you. I have seen alligators, deer, dolphins, manatees, turtles, birds of all kinds and more while touring some of the nature trails below. If you want to liven it up, you can make your own nature BINGO card and get competitive too! Here is an extensive list for places to take a nature walk in Central Florida.
- Tibet-Butler Nature Preserve in Southeast Orlando
- Oakland Nature Preserve west of Orlando in Oakland
- Little Big Econ State Forest east of Orlando in Geneva
- McKay Nature Park Trail in Tampa
- Lettuce Lake Regional Park in Tampa
- Ritch Grissom Memorial Wetlands in Viera
- Turkey Creek Sanctuary in Palm Bay
- Coconut Point Sanctuary in Melbourne Beach
- Erna Nixon Park in Melbourne
- Merritt Island National Wildlife Refuge in Titusville
- Doris Leeper Spruce Creek Preserve in New Smyrna Beach
- Tiger Bay State Forest in Daytona Beach
Visit a Zoo
For a chance to see animals that don’t naturally live here, going to the zoo is always a fun Central Florida date idea. There are three different ones in the area, so anywhere in Central Florida should be less than an hour from one. Most offer upgraded experiences to interact with the animals too! In addition, If your loved one has a favorite animal (like penguins or giraffes) this can be your chance to surprise them with the experience of a lifetime!
Go to the Beach
This would not be a list of Central Florida date ideas without mentioning the beach! The coasts are lined with so many excellent free, beach parks for sunning and swimming. To make an extra special date, book a luxury picnic through a service like Picnic by the Water. They will set up a glamorous picnic spot and bring you food! You can also go at sunset or sunrise to get a romantic view. Here are my favorite local beaches.
- Honeymoon Island State Park in Clearwater
- Upham Beach in St. Pete Beach
- Spessard Holland in Melbourne Beach
- Canaveral National Seashore in Cape Canaveral
- 27th Ave Park at New Smyrna Beach
Take a Day Trip to the Springs
The freshwater springs of Central Florida are a sight not to be missed! If you have the whole day, it is worth it to take a drive to the springs. There you can explore, kayak or swim with your significant other. Here are the best springs for a Central Florida date.
- Blue Springs State Park in Orange CIty
- Wekiwa Springs State Park in Apopka
- Rock Springs Run State Reserve in Sorrento
- Weeki Wachee Springs in Spring Hill
Know Before You Go: Fun Central Florida Date Ideas
This list is pretty extensive, so hopefully you and your loved one could find something appealing to do on it! No matter what experience you decide on, I always recommend going into it with an open mind and a sense of humor. Above all, that is the true key to a successful date!
What is the best Central Florida date you have ever been on? Andrew and I have had so many, but I would say my favorite recently we spent at the Leu Gardens and then a brewery after! Let me know yours in the comments. If you need more ideas, check out my 101 Things to do in Florida guide here.