8 perfect Alabama date ideas for Valentine’s Day
Treat your sweetheart to the best our state has to offer with one of these unique date ideas for Valentine’s Day.
Go for a hike
There’s nothing more romantic than sharing a beautiful view with the one you love. Luckily, Alabama is filled with gorgeous natural features that are begging to be explored. Chase waterfalls at Little River Canyon in Fort Payne, DeSoto Falls in Mentone, or Noccalula Falls in Gadsden. If mountains are more your speed, head to Cheaha State Park or Monte Sano State Park where you can extend your day hike into a weekend away with a cabin rental or some good old-fashioned tent camping.
Spend the night at a charming B&B
With Valentine’s Day falling on a Sunday this year, a weekend getaway is an ideal way to spend the holiday. Have the quintessential Southern experience with some R&R in the renovated historic homes at Magnolia Springs near Gulf Shores or Lake Guntersville Bed & Breakfast, where you can enjoy decadent French toast with a view of the lake.
Impress your date with a gourmet pre-fixe meal
If going out for dinner and drinks isn’t in the cards due to COVID this year, you can still celebrate with a gourmet meal from the safety of your home. Birmingham restaurants Helen and Automatic Seafood & Oysters both are offering prix-fixe four-course meals. Helen’s is $100 for two and includes rabbit dumplings and a chocolate peanut butter tart. Automatic’s is $100 per person and features crab beignets, oysters, caviar, and poached lobster.
Sit and sip at a local vineyard
Share a bottle of wine against the romantic backdrop of one of Alabama’s many vineyards. Ozan Vineyard & Winery near Calera is offering a socially distant Valentine’s Day Wine, Spirit, and Sweets deal where guests can choose between five wine tastings or four spirit tastings both paired with sweet treats. For something extra special, add on a train ride from the Heart of Dixie Railroad Museum Depot as part of the winery’s special Valentine’s Day experience.
Pack a picnic for a garden stroll
Wicker baskets and red-and-white checkered blankets never lose their charm. Find the perfect spot for a picnic at Bellingrath Gardens near Mobile, the Birmingham Botanical Gardens, or the Huntsville Botanical Gardens. Bonus points if you source your picnic goodies from local cafes and sandwich shops.
Explore Alabama’s most romantic town
With streets lined with Spanish moss-draped trees and spectacular views of Mobile Bay, Fairhope is as picturesque a town as it gets. Explore downtown’s twinkle-lit Frenchmen’s Quarter where you can indulge in chocolates at Fairhope Chocolate or peruse bookshop/bar Page & Palette. Cap off a romantic weekend with a couple’s massage at The Grand Hotel’s world-class spa.
Take a cooking class
The only thing better than eating a delicious dinner together is cooking a delicious dinner together. While it may be difficult to attend an in-person cooking class this year, Williams & Sonoma is offering a virtual class from Top Chef Claudette Zepeda where you’ll learn to make umami-glazed roasted chicken with Peruvian potatoes and vanilla crepes spiked with pineapple vinegar cajeta. For Birmingham lovebirds, the Grand Bohemian Hotel offers Kessler cooking classes where you’ll perfect homemade pasta, gourmet tapas, or expertly grilled dishes. For oenophiles, try the hotel’s 90-minute wine blending class.
Spend Valentine’s weekend on the farm
Spoil your valentine with a romantic weekend among the rolling hills of Pursell Farms. Stay in the newly built luxury 40-room inn, take a bike tour of the expansive grounds, and play a round of golf together. For adventurous couples, book a UTV mountain experience or an afternoon clay shooting. As part of the Valentine’s Weekend at The Farm package, you can enjoy a chef-prepared four-course dinner for two at Pursell’s signature restaurant Arrington, as well as 20 percent off treatments at the Spring House Spa.
Tara Massouleh McCay is a writer and editor based in Birmingham, Alabama. She was previously associate editor at Birmingham magazine and has been contributing to local and regional publications since 2015. She loves sports, spicy food, and above all the art of storytelling.