Struggling to find new, exciting and fun date ideas? Whether it’s a first date or you’ve been together for years, finding new and exciting date ideas to impress your loved one can be a challenge. With the Northern Beaches as your destination you will have lots of great activities to plan an unforgettable romantic date. Enjoy the fresh air on a walk, a thrill seeking adventure, our stunning beaches or unwind with a glass of wine admiring a beautiful view.
Find inspiration below with our guide to fun date ideas on the Northern Beaches.
For the foodie
1. Take a distillery tour
Manly Spirits is located in Brookvale’s industrial area and is a trendy spot with stand-out drinks and food offerings to fuel the evening. Impress your date with a tour of the distillery which gives you the opportunity to touch, taste and smell their raw ingredients and learn about Australian botanicals and gin. For $30 per person you’ll get a tour, followed by a 5 spirit tasting flight. Once you have found your favourite, head to the bar to order and pair it with some delicious bar snacks.
2. Bar hop around Manly
Take your date somewhere with good drinks and great vibes. The most important thing about a bar date is getting to know someone and not having a conversion drowned out by the music. Start your night in Manly’s speakeasy, The Cumberland and then make your way down the hidden laneways and checkout one of the many cosy bars along the way. With standout bars including Donny’s, In Situ, The Hold and Belgrave Cartel.
3. Go on a coffee date
If you are looking for a low-pressure first date, take your date to a coffee shop. Spoilt for choice, the Northern Beaches has lots of amazing coffee shops and baristas that are all great spots to have a romantic date with a cup of your favourite beverage.
Try starting with one of the many beach fronts cafes spotted along all the coast while taking in the views with that special someone. If the date is going well, continue with a scenic walk along our world class beaches.
4. Enjoy the Brookvale craft breweries
Brookvale on Sydney’s northern beaches has a growing craft beer industry where you and your date can easily hop from one brewery to another tasting some of Australia’s best craft beer.
You have a choice of 5 breweries to explore, all within walking distance of each other. For extra brownie points, join the 4 Pines Brewery Tour which includes a behind the scene and 5 tastings of their award winning beers.
5. Put romance on the menu
You can’t go wrong with going the traditional route of wining and dining your date. The Northern beaches has plenty of venues to take your special someone for a romantic dinner. Impress your date with some of these local favourites – Bert’s Bar and Brasserie, Pilu Freshwater, Dunes Palm Beach, Manly Pavilion and Garfish Manly.
For the adventure-seeker
6. Have a go at stand-up paddle boarding
If your date is on the sporty side, renting a couple of Stand up paddleboards (SUP) and taking to the calm waters of any of our beautiful bays is the perfect way to spend a magic day. If you are learning you can take a lesson with a guided tour to make sure you get the most out of your date. Avalon SUP has a twilight tour where the bottom of your board is fitted with LED lights that will light up the water as you paddle. If you are looking for a great location to SUP check out our list of top 5 places to Stand up Paddle board on the Northern beaches.
7. Kayak Sydney Harbour
Are you are keen to see our beautiful Sydney harbour from a new angle? Rent a kayak from Manly Kayak Centre and get out on the water to explore the harbour for an unforgettable date. Hire a 1 or 2 person kayak and discover Manly’s secret beaches and make memories with this exciting dating idea.
8. Go whale watching
Looking for a great winter date option? Say hello to the giants of the sea with a whale watching tour from Manly or Palm Beach. From Palm Beach you can join a Fantasea whale watching cruise for an unforgettable whale watching experience for you and your date, plus magnificent Pittwater views.
From Manly, there are various whale-watching cruises on offer. Ocean Extreme is Sydney’s fastest high speed inflatable boat which will take you on an exciting cruise. You and your date will enjoy close up views of some of nature’s most awesome and majestic creatures giving you a date that you will remember for years to come.
If you are looking for a great spot to whale watching on the Northern beaches have a look at our list of our top spots for whale watching on the Northern Beaches.
9. Head to a rock climbing gym
Take your date for some rock-climbing fun at Rockhouse in the back streets of Brookvale. They change the routes weekly to make the date more exciting. It’s one of the more active dating ideas Sydney has to offer and a great couple’s activity.
For the outdoors enthusiast
10. Bike the Northern Beaches
Take your date on a two wheel adventure through the Northern Beaches. Narrabeen Lagoon is the perfect spot for a cycling date. The 8.6 km (5.3 miles) ride winds around the foreshore of the lagoon where you will enjoy views of the ecosystems, wildlife, cultural heritage and historical icons. In Narrabeen you can hire a bike from either Narrabeen Lakes Bike or My Ride Narrabeen. Another great ride is to North Head or along the Manly foreshore. In Manly you can rent a bike from Manly Bike Hire.
11. Head to the beach
Summertime is the perfect time to have a date by the ocean. The Northern Beaches has 21 stunning ocean beaches for you to have fun in the sun. We think ocean views, sunshine and swimming make the perfect recipe for a successful date.
12. Learn to surf
Spend your date on the waves by learning to Surf. Manly Surf School is one of Sydney’s most renowned surf schools who teach both private lessons and small groups. Whether you are a beginner or pro, a private surfing lesson will guarantee for some laughs and a little bit of competition.
13. Go on a scenic walk
Put on your best active wear before you embark on a scenic hike with your date. Thankfully the Northern Beaches is home to some of the most spectacular walks in Sydney. Some favourite hikes for a date are Manly to Spit, North Head, Narrabeen Lake, Barrenjoey Lighthouse and Long Reef Headland. Autumn and spring are the perfect time to have a hiking date.
For the cultured
14. Attend a local event
If it’s the right time of year your date might coincide with one of our local events. Taste of Manly, Sydney Surf Pro and Manly Jazz are some of our most popular events. Have look at our Manly Event Calendar to see what’s on in Manly.
15. Channel your inner artist
Combine painting and wine for the ultimate date night. You and your date will be given step by step instructions to create a masterpiece that you get to take home to commemorate the date. Across the Northern Beaches we have plenty of venues that offer a paint and sip nights. Some favourites are Pinot and Picasso either in Newport or Manly and The Pottery café in Collaroy.
For the fun-loving
16. Take your date on a bowling date
Ten-pin bowling is a great way to get to know your date and engage in a bit of cheeky competition. At Zone Bowling in Dee Why you can get a great deal on Friday and Saturday nights, where you can combine two games of bowling with a beverage. If the date is going well, you can check out some of Dee Why’s local bars or restaurants.
17. Play a round of mini golf
Bring out your competitive side and play a round of mini golf. It is a classic date night option that anyone can enjoy. Pittwater Golf centre in Narrabeen has a 36-hole pirate themed mini golf course, exploring caves and shipwrecks.
18. Watch a game of NRL
If your date is a rugby league fan you can catch a game at Brookvale Oval. If you are visiting the area between the months of March and October, you will be able to watch an NRL game played by the Manly Warringah Sea Eagles. Make sure you checkout when they are playing their next home game.
19. Get spooked on a ghost tour
If your special someone likes to be spooked, The Q station Ghost Tours are definitely worth experiencing. Enjoy one of Australia’s most haunted sites with stories of ghosts and paranormal occurrences entwined throughout its history. The 2.5 hour lantern lit guided tour will take you to the some of the most haunted spots on their property.
20. Do an escape room
For an out of the box date night, book an Escape room experience. Try to escape the themed rooms at Room Eight by solving a series of riddles and puzzles before the 60 minutes run out Manly’s Room eight offers a range of scenarios for 2-6 players. Whether it’s a long-term partner or a first date, an escape room will give you unforgettable experience.
21. Snorkel Cabbage Tree Bay
If you’re up for a unique date idea you can hire a snorkel and a mask and explore where time slows down and the local residents put on a show. You can rent a snorkel and a mask from Manly Dive centre or jump on a tour with ECOTREASURES. If you are lucky you might spot a friendly blue grouper, turtle or giant cuttlefish. Check out our list of top places to Snorkel on the Northern beaches.
22. Plan a sunset picnic
Pack a picnic blanket, a hamper filled with local produce or grab a take-away from a nearby restaurant or cafe. Having a sunset picnic while watching the sun set over Sydney Harbour can be one of the most romantic things to do on a date.
If you want someone to create it for you contact ‘Purely Picnic’ and they will set up a picture perfect picnic in your favourite spot. With so many places to choose from, we have tried to make it easier by putting together a list of some of our favourite picnic spots on the beaches.
23. Learn to throw an axe
Sparks and axes will fly at Brookvale’s newest axe throwing experience, Kiss my Axe. Learn from the pros and challenge your date to a fun and friendly game of axe throwing. If you visit Kiss my Axe on a Tuesday and Wednesday, they have a date night special for $99 per couple. They also run a tournament with the other couples on the night.