Photography Provided By: Del Mar Highlands Town Center
Photography Provided By: Del Mar Highlands Town Center

10 Out-of-the-Box Date Ideas in San Diego—#7 Will Keep You Sharp!

It’s Time to Spice Things Up and Get Out on the Town!

The infamous 2020 introduced a new way of dating with FaceTime dates, socially distanced outings and lots of outdoor fun. Now that things are slowly returning to normal, it’s time to up your dating game. Check out these nine ideas to get you started. From rooftop movies and wine tasting to axe throwing and gondola rides, these dates are sure to leave your significant other in awe. San Diego Date Ideas


1 | Embark on a Flavor Journey at Del Mar Highlands Sky Deck

With nine restaurants, a central cocktail bar and a Brewers Deck featuring San Diego’s top craft beer and kombucha brands, it’s no wonder the all-new Sky Deck at Del Mar Highlands Town Center is a hotspot for date night. This idea behind this 26,700-square-foot culinary concept was based on Barcelona’s El Nacional, where different types of cuisine are served collectively under one roof. At Sky Deck, you and your date can dig into a variety of flavors (some created by Michelin Starred chefs!), including gourmet Milano pizza from Ambrogio 15, authentic Hakata-style Tonkotsu ramen from Marufuku Ramen, Greek street food from Zizikis, an elevated Thai culinary experience from Kiin Extraordinary Thai, modern American bites from Craft House Del Mar and J at the Sky Deck and don’t-miss desserts from Le Parfait Paris. Enjoy after-dinner drinks with Understory Bar‘s prolific collection of original cocktails and fine wine. Catch a flick at Del Mar Highlands Town Center’s Cinépolis Luxury Cinemas, then head over to Sky Deck for craft cocktails, cold brews and a hearty meal. This is date night done right!



2 | Play With Your Food at Tabu Shabu

Hey, hotshot, want a new spin on date night? Snag some hot pot cuisine at Tabu Shabu in North Park! This Modern Japanese restaurant is an ideal spot for those who like to eat…and cook for that matter! You’ll choose your broth, pick your grains and throw in some fresh veggies and hearty protein. In other words, you and your date can chef up together and create your own custom hot pot of deliciousness. But before you start in on creating your main course, begin your meal with an ice-cold Sapporo or warm sake, followed by a tasty appetizer like the crunchy garlic edamame, salmon seaweed poke or chicken veggie dumplings. Tabu Shabu has it all and offers an authentic Japanese hot pot experience—the perfect meal for a Friday night outing. Get ready to roll up your sleeves and slurp up some tasty noodles!

Location: North Park




3 | Enjoy a Decadent Meal at Ponto Lago San Diego Date Ideas


Slip into your chicest ensemble, and treat you and your sweetheart to a romantic meal at Ponto Lago. Located inside Carlsbad’s newly refreshed Park Hyatt Aviara Resort, Golf Club & Spa, this inventive Baja-inspired restaurant features a refined modern setting with an open-flame hearth kitchen that extends into the dining room. Everything from the chevron-style wood floors to the marble countertops and polished brass fixtures makes Ponto Lago an unrivaled dining experience. The menu is chock-full of local California cuisine, including sea-to-table offerings, and features a specialty selection of rare agave spirits, including small-batch tequilas, mezcals, piscos and cachacas. Feast on fresh seafood, including dishes like Pacific Manilla Clams, Striped Bass and Tuna Ceviche, and snag a seat on the patio at sunset for views of the dreamy Carlsbad coast.

Location: Carlsbad



4 | Catch a Flick Under the Stars at Rooftop Cinema Club

Movie dates are as traditional as dates get, but you can add a sparkling spin to your next movie date by watching on the big screen under the shining San Diego stars! Rooftop Cinema Club, located on the Manchester Grand Hyatt San Diego, shows everything from classics to newer flicks. Reserve tickets and learn more here.

Location: Downtown San Diego




5 | Enjoy Tater Tots and 80s Rock at Trailer Park After Dark

Don’t worry, it’s not an actual trailer park. This unique, eclectic bar is right in the heart of San Diego’s bustling Gaslamp Quarter. Snack on some yummy American comfort food, enjoy some rockin’ tunes and sip on some thirst-quenching cocktails. If you have an event you need reservations for, you can book a private trailer! Learn more about this fun experience here.

Location: Gaslamp Quarter



6 | Embark on a Wine Tasting Day Trip in Temecula

Photo by Kelsey Knight on Unsplash

While not directly in San Diego, Temecula wine country is the perfect Saturday day trip. Carter Estate Winery and Resort offers tastings daily from noon-5 p.m., allowing you to taste by the glass. Bonus: if you find one you love, buy a bottle to continue your date night later! If you’re looking for a weekend getaway, Carter Estate offers a two-night bungalow stay with their Sip & Stay package. Plan your wine tasting adventure here!

Location: Temecula


7 | Go Axe Throwing at North Park’s AxeVentures San Diego Date Ideas

A traditional game of darts is good for a weeknight hang with friends, but if you’re looking to level up your throwing experience, visit AxeVentures in North Park! Channel your inner Viking lumberjack and aim for the bullseye. Don’t worry if you’ve never been axe throwing before; the coaches at AxeVentures will give you a 15-minute lesson before you chuck a weapon at a piece of wood. Grab your friends, order some food and a drink and get throwing!

Location: North Park, Oceanside



8 | Share an Ice Cream Flight at Hammond’s Gourmet Ice Cream

Ice cream dates are a timeless classic. But there’s nothing worse than going to an ice cream shop and being unable to decide what flavor to get. Luckily at Hammond’s, you can get a flight of six flavors! You can pick three and your date can pick three—perfect balance! Plan your flavors, location and more here.

Location: North Park, Point Loma



9 | Sip Wine and Paint at Pinot’s Palette San Diego Date Ideas

Channel your inner Van Gogh with a wine and paint night! Offering a variety of in-studio and outdoor events, Pinot’s Palette in Liberty Station is the perfect weekend date spot. You’ll get to drink some good wine and test your artistic abilities, giving you something to keep and remember the date by! Click here to view the class schedule.

Location: Liberty Station




10 | Take a Gondola Ride Through Coronado Cays San Diego Date Ideas

Photography Provided By: Hotel del Coronado

Who says you have to fly to Italy to experience its magic? Get a taste of Venice with a gondola ride through the Coronado Cays. The Gondola Company offers a variety of packages to choose from, so you can customize your experience and sip some sweet beverages while doing it. These cruises take you through the canals and waterways of the Cays, letting you see San Diego through a new lens. Book your trip here.

Location: Coronado


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