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How to Make Your Backyard Perfect for a Stay-At-Home Date Night

A couple sitting in their backyard by the fire



It’s not always easy to get away from the house for a romantic date night. Between finding a babysitter, booking a restaurant reservation, or just not having the energy after a long work day, it can sometimes be a challenge for couples to make time for themselves.


Here’s where stay-at-home date nights are the perfect solution. A charming night-in is waiting for you in the comfort of your own backyard. Check out the ideas below to get some inspiration for your next couple's romantic stay-cation.



How to Set The Mood:



1. Lighting

The proper lighting can drastically affect the mood of a date night.


Consider adding string lights, fairy lights, lanterns, or candles to your backyard set-up to enhance the atmosphere. You don’t want the light to be too overwhelming and bright, but you do want enough to be able to see and enjoy your evening.

Dim, warm lighting allows you to relax and enjoy yourselves. Wrap or drape any string lighting across backyard trees, pergolas, or deck railings. Scatter candles (safely) across surfaces where they won’t be a fire hazard. To take it a step further, invest in LED candles that you can control with a remote–some options even have dimming and colour-changing settings that you can adjust based on your preferences.



2. Decorations

Additional decorations can be included in your backyard date spot to elevate your romantic vision.


Think of the decor you might see at a restaurant and bring a similar to life in your outdoor space. Section off a dining area with comfortable chairs, a table cloth, tea lights, and a vase of flowers.

If you’re lounging more casually on the backyard grass, spread out a blanket, scatter some rose petals, and relax with your loved one.



3. Flowers

Along with scattering some flower petals around the area you’re spending time in or placing a vase with flowers on your outdoor dining table, consider using your backyard flowers to your advantage.



Couple hugging outside with roses in background


Set up your desired date spot around the flowers you already have in your garden. Arrange your picnic or movie area with your homegrown flowers as a beautiful backdrop.



4. Make it Cozy

There’s nothing better than a cozy night spent outside with the person you love.


Incorporating the elements mentioned above is the perfect combination for a relaxing atmosphere.



5. Privacy

Privacy is the key to an intimate date.


Use your backyard furniture to your advantage, or get creative. Consider hanging up modern tapestries around your desired date spot or investing in a portable partition to section off your space when you need a little extra privacy.



Now that you have the essentials for your romantic outdoor rendezvous, here are some ideas for your date night.



Date Night Ideas



1. Dinner Date for Two

A dinner date, even if it’s just outside in your backyard, can feel extra special if a little care and additional effort are put into the set-up.


Arrange a table setting similar to what you find in your favourite restaurant complete with a table cloth, flower arrangement, and candles. 

Order in from a take-out place you both love, or cook a meal for two. No matter what you decide to eat, the experience of sharing a meal outside is surely one you will remember–and might even want to turn into a regular date choice.



2. Backyard Movie

Love the feeling of going to a drive-in movie but don’t want to travel?



Couple feeding each other popcorn outside


Well, you’re in luck! You can capture the same feeling without leaving your home or spending extra money on movie tickets or high concession costs.

Set up a movie projector (an excellent investment for film lovers if you don’t already own one), hang up a white bedsheet to use as a movie screen, arrange comfortable seating around your make-shift theatre, and enjoy! Just pick out a film to watch, grab some of your favourite snacks, and you’re all set.



3. Watch the Sunset

Even something as simple as watching the sunset together can serve as a charming date activity.


This choice doesn’t require much preparation or extra materials, and you can use what your backyard already offers.

Keep an eye on the weather to ensure you won’t be rained out–and on a clear summer night,  make yourself comfortable on a blanket or some deck chairs. Relax and appreciate the beauty of a scenic evening sky.



4. Grill Night

Who doesn’t want an excuse to fire up the grill on a warm night?


Take this opportunity to barbeque some of your favourite summertime meals together. Make the process as interactive as possible so you and your loved one can make it an experience you’re both going to appreciate. Consider building your own pizzas side by side and enjoying the barbequed finished products while you watch the sunset or an outdoor movie.



5. Picnic

Setting up an atmospheric picnic in your backyard can be the perfect low-effort–yet swoon-worthy–evening for you and your partner.


Spread out a blanket and include your most-loved finger foods and snacks. If you’re stuck on ideas about what to eat, a summer picnic is a great opportunity to make a charcuterie board of your choosing.



6. Midnight Swim

If you have a pool, then it’s time to make good use of it.


While an afternoon swim during a hot day is refreshing, consider taking a dip at night with your partner. Invest in some floating pool lanterns and tiki torches to set the mood, and enjoy an effortless romantic evening spent in the comfort of your pool.



7. Campout

Who says the only way to camp is to travel somewhere to do it?



Couple with baby in a tent in their backyard


Make good use of the outdoors without having to load up your car and drive hours away from home to get there. Pitch a tent in your backyard, and treat your own outdoor space like you would a campsite.

The beauty of a backyard campout is that all of your at-home comforts are just steps away from your tent if you need them while keeping the novelty of sleeping outside under the stars.



8. Outdoor Lawn Games

Having an assortment of outdoor lawn games can be a great addition to any date night.


Consider purchasing and setting up games in your backyard like cornhole, ring toss, giant Jenga, croquet, or badminton.



9. Bonfire

Bonfires are the perfect summer gathering spot for big groups and intimate dates alike.


Arrange some chairs around the fire, get comfortable with some blankets, and bring some marshmallows to roast alongside your date.



10. Board Games

Similar to lawn games, board games can provide hours of low-key fun.


Select the board games suited for two or designed for couples that you and your partner enjoy (or use this chance to try out some new ones!), settle in around your outdoor table, and have fun. Not interested in typical board games? Pull out a pack of cards, pour your favourite drinks, and pass the time with some popular card games.



11. Trivia Night

Countless businesses host weekly or monthly trivia nights, and many have made them virtual during the pandemic. Join a session and see how much you know as a couple.


Alternatively, each person can come up with a series of questions to ask the other and turn it into a competition to see who knows more. Agree on a prize that one person can win, and sit back for a night of good-natured competition.



12. Wine and Paint Night

Wine and paint nights have become massively popular over the past few years. Tutorials can be found on YouTube, or you can join virtual classes hosted by local businesses.


Bring this activity outside into your yard and enjoy the outdoors while you and your spouse sip some wine and paint keepsakes you can appreciate even after the night is done.



13. Scavenger Hunt

If you’d like to be creative and show off your date-night planning skills, then a scavenger hunt might be the answer you’re looking for.


Even if your backyard isn’t large, maximize all of the space you have and come up with clever clues to place around your space.

You can also place clues around the interior of your home, with the end of the scavenger hunt leading to your backyard with a romantic dinner or movie waiting for your partner as a cute reward.



14. Couples Yoga

What better way to unwind and relax after a long day than to participate in some couples’ yoga together?



Couple doing yoga on their deck.


Set up two yoga mats on a stable, flat surface in your yard (towels or light blankets would work for this as well), make sure you have enough lighting to see what you’re doing and don’t forget to dress comfortably.

Join a virtual class with a local yoga studio in your area (or choose one of the countless videos of yoga sessions on YouTube) that you can pull up on your laptop or stream through your projector.



15. Mini-Golf

If you love golfing, then this date night activity is definitely for you.


Look online for some backyard inspiration for different ways you can set up your at-home mini-golf course, and get to work. Some layouts are elaborate, while others are simple. Increasing the difficulty as you make your way through your yard can be a great way to bond and add a little friendly competition into the evening for the two of you to enjoy.

Just make sure you have putters, golf balls, and a general idea of how you want to set things up. And most importantly, have fun!




The next time you’re scratching your head and wondering what you and your significant other can do together for a date night, try one of these ideas.


You don’t need to leave your home in order to have fun together, and your backyard is the perfect setting for a romantic night-in that you’re sure to remember.




Paul Hickman at 9:00 AM
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