20 Perth Date Ideas That Aren’t Dinner And Drinks
You've been on a couple of traditional drinks and dinner dates, things are going well and it's time to step things up a little and show your date you've still got some tricks up your sleeve. Luckily there are plenty of things to do in and around Perth that will make your date think you're oh-so-creative and clever and not at all like their boring ex who just wanted to watch Netflix all the time.
Here are 20 of the best dates in Perth that aren't dinner and drinks.
Stroll Through Perth’s Galleries
Whether you're into art or not, there’s something pretty romantic about strolling through gallery exhibitions and soaking up the cultural sights with someone. Plus, they also provide plenty of great conversation starters along the way—yay for avoiding those nervous awkward silences. The Art Gallery of WA has just been jazzed up with new art, and has a brand new rooftop bar with epic views over the city. There’s also the nearby Perth Institute of Contemporary Art, which can also be paired with a glass of wine and an epic grazing board at Picabar.
Head To Gin School
The Republic of Fremantle has a gin school, where you can distil your very own yummy gin. The 2.5-hour session will teach you all about the history of distilling before getting hands-on as you craft your very own bottle (which yes, you get to take home), from selecting your botanicals and building the perfect recipe to distilling it in their one-of-kind copper stills. Oh and don't worry, you'll get a gin and tonic on arrival with more drinks available for purchase at the bar if you're feeling thirsty.
Get Jazzy With It
For a rainy date night that you don’t just want to spend in: go straight to the Jazz Cellar. Park up with a pizza, BYO vino and then dance your absolute heart out to the most intimate, lively jazz you’ll experience in Perth. Or, why not stop by the Ellington Jazz Club or Pooles Temple for something a little more sultry? They're both open 'til the early morning, so you could hit them all in one night. And if you're down Freo way, hit up the Duke of George.
Indulge In A Boujee Staycay
With a quick trip to Bali off the cards, there’s never been a better time to become a tourist in your own city with a staycay in some of Perth’s best hotels. From boutique beauties such as Quay Perth, the unmatched heritage charm, and sophistication of the COMO The Treasury or the uber-trendy Alex Hotel, there’s no denying Perth has an irresistible selection on offer.
Go For A Hike
For those that have half a day and don’t mind going on a little mission, Serpentine Falls is less than an hour east of Perth and a pretty beautiful way to spend a day getting to know someone. Bring some snacks and a pair of runners (and a pair of bathers if you’re keen for a quick dip) and hike one of the three trails. We recommend the Kitty Gorge Walk as it only takes a few hours to do the return trip, which means you should still have enough time to grab a post-hike bevvie at Millbrook Winery if you want to keep the date going a little longer.
Head To Rottnest
If you really want to impress the pants off your date, head straight to Rottnest Island. Hire a couple of bikes (or take your own) and ride around the island, where you can tick off these winter-appropriate activities if you don’t jag sunny weather, or try a few new things you might not have done before. When you've had enough adventuring, head to the pub and grab a drink and a feed before jumping on the ferry to come home.
Throw A Few Darts And Sip Cocktails
Perth is home to the first Aussie outlet of the popular UK social dart experience, Flight Club. Inside this two-storey bar, which has a fun 1800s British fairground aesthetic (think vintage wallpaper, retro amusement park lighting and art pieces curated from UK flea markets), you can have a go at playing darts—a seriously underrated pub activity. At the bar, they sling some seriously fun remixes on classic cocktails like espresso martinis, old fashions and more. Back it all up with a DJ spinning party tunes all night, and you’re in for a damn good night.
Check Out The Swan Valley
While drinking wine might not sound like a groundbreaking date idea, we reckon it counts if you head to the Swan Valley and make a day of it. If no one is willing to be designated driver, jump on the train with your bikes and check out the Swan Valley Heritage Cycle Trail. There are three routes ranging from four to 32 kilometres and you can go as quick or as slow as you like, but be sure to stop and enjoy some wine and local produce along the way. While you're out there, you should definitely check out our favourite Swan Valley Wineries.
Take A Chilled Sunday Drive
Pack a picnic, download a couple of playlists and set off on an adventure. Whether you drive up the coast or head to the hills, you'll have plenty of time for road trip sing-a-longs and endless chats—after all, it’s better you find out sooner rather than later if your road trip music taste doesn't align, right? If you’re not sure where to go, check out our fave scenic drives in WA.
Mix Up Your Mini Golf
It looks like regular mini-golf just won’t cut it in 2021, with Glowing Rooms' out-of-this-world mini-golf course, designed by two German artists using glow in the dark paint and 3D special effects. And then there’s Holey Moley, with its fabulous novelty courses and super fun cocktails making for plenty of playful date energy. Go on and get competitive—loser buys the next round of drinks.
Hit The Ice And Cosy Up
It may be hot out, but there is a way to escape it all. Just throw on a beanie and prepare to cosy up at one of Perth’s top ice rinks. We suggest hitting the Sunday social session because who can go past those disco lights and poppy DJ mixes—it’s just screaming out for some cute hand-holding. If it all gets too much you can always grab some hot chocolates and cosy up on the sidelines. As to which rink to hit, head to Cockburn Ice Arena—there's a rinkside bar attached so you can enjoy a well-earned post-skate beverage.
Have A Food-Loving Day At The Fremantle Markets
If you prefer to bond over your love of food but are looking for something a little more fun than the traditional dinner and drinks sitch, you can’t beat a day wandering around Freo markets, tasting your way from stall to stall. Come armed with an empty stomach and this hit list of all of our favourite spots and set out on your own special foodie adventure. Sharing is 100% encouraged.
Let Your Tastebuds Take Flight
Take a seat in the stunning digs at Republic Of Fremantle's bar and distillery and sample all their award-winning sips for only $25. Your flight comes complete with their signature vodka, full-bodied gin and aromatic gin along with a selection of sodas, tonics and seasonal garnishes so you can keep it neat or mix it up however you like—just remember to order the flight before 7pm. If you’re heading to the city instead, try Varnish on King’s legendary whiskey and bacon flight. You get to try four styles of pork expertly paired with four types of whiskey, all for just $43. But if whiskey really isn't your thing, treat yourself to the rosè and bacon flight instead.
BYO Booze On A Self-Skippered River Cruise
Want to take in the sights of Perth’s most iconic attractions from the Swan River, but don’t have a skipper’s ticket? No problem, as Nauti Picnics have fibreglass boats you can take for a spin, that don’t require having any qualifications. All you’ll need to do is familiarise yourself with the operating rules before you head off. Once you feel ready to go, pack your own snacks and booze (or order one of their pre-made grazing boards), and mosey up the Swan River on a choose-your-own-adventure. Did we also mention you bring your dog too? Read up on this awesome Perth adventure here.
Kick back At An Outdoor Movie
One of the best things you can do on a warm night is head to one of Perth’s many outdoor cinemas for a dose of nostalgia, a blockbuster or an artsy foreign film. Each venue keeps upping the ante with festival-like venues, gourmet food and drink, and live music. There’s also the Galaxy Drive-In for an old-school movie you can watch from your car. On Tuesdays, it’s only $22 per car, but if you can’t make it during the week, catch a weekend movie.
Get Crafty During A Paint & Sip
A Paint and Sip class lets you get creative in a relaxed environment, aided of course by a glass of vino in hand! It’s a fun and memorable activity that really lets your artsy side come out. There are a few locations around Perth where you can book in a class—we’ve rounded up a few here.
Combine Retro Games with Half Price Wings
Palace Arcade is Perth’s one-stop shop for all things retro game related. Challenge your date to a play-off and head down for their Wednesday Super Sessions at any of their locations (in Fremantle, Northbridge and Vic Park). Think half-price wings (drool) and free games all night when you spend $20 at the bar. You heard us. Don’t forget about their MASSIVE pizza slices, which are too darn good to pass on.
Get A Little Competitive With 10 Pin Bowling
If you’re keen to break the ice asap, challenge your date to a game of 10-pin bowling at Strike Bowling, home to good drinks and eat too. Strike is also home to escape rooms and karaoke rooms for ultimate fun. Strike is opening another Perth location this February at the new FOMO spot in Fremantle, so keep your eyes peeled.
Go On A Mystery Picnic Hunt
While a park picnic with your partner always hits the spot, why not add a little adventure into the equation? Mystery picnics with Amazing Co reimagines a classic date activity. If you both love a bit of puzzle-solving and some healthy teamwork, this experience is for you. You use your phone to solve clues, each one sending you to a different location to pick up gourmet picnic ingredients. You’ll finish the scavenger hunt at a picturesque location with a basket full of goodies, where you enjoy your well-deserved picnic.
Have A Laugh
Let some of Australia's funniest stand-up comedians keep you entertained at the iconic Comedy Lounge, or check out The Brisbane Hotel’s Oasis Comedy Club, jam-packed with talented jokers for a night to remember. Grab a drink and settle in for an evening of laughs. After all, you wanna know you’ve got the same sense of humour before progressing much further.
If you'd prefer to keep it traditional, you can always work your way through Perth's best restaurants.
Image credit: Emma Bryant, supplied