12 first date ideas for Londoners6 min read

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Ewan Hollander

Just sharing things that interest me in the hopes that they interest others as well

Lets face it. London is a pretty big place with almost countless things to see and do. Here is a short list of 12 locations that would be perfect for a first date.

1. Swing at Swingers


No. Get your mind out of the gutter. Swingers was a popular crazy golf pop-up that has now found a home in an old WW2 bunker beneath the Gherkin. Take a (potential) future significant other for a night of cocktails, mini golf and food to one of the most interesting places around. What food you ask? Swingers has food stands from the likes of Pizza Pilgrims, Patty & Bun and Le Bab for you to salivate over. With two 9-hole course to pick from (The Lighthouse and The Windmill) you can have a great start to something special.

For more information or to book, check out their site… Swingers 

First Date

2. Take a first date tour around London Zoo’s Sunset Safari


Picture the scene. You match on Tinder with someone and after a bit of back and forth, you establish your mutual love of animals. What could be more of a perfect first date than London Zoo? Well… during the summer weeks, London Zoo hosts Sunset Safaris. That’s what! The successor to Zoo Lates, Sunset Safari allows you to travel through ZSL London Zoo after dusk. Enjoy music, festive fun, face painting and (of course) the animals. The unfortunate thing is, as we enter the winter months, Sunset Safari has now finished for 2016 and will re-open in May/June time 2017. Make sure you don’t forget your selfie stick when they start up again.

For more information and to find out future dates, head over to their site … ZSL London Zoo Sunset Safari 


3. Enjoy the sites of the city from Coq D’Argent


So you have got yourself a first date and want to start your evening with a drink and memorable location. So long as the weather is good, head up to Coq D’Argent and enjoy a drink under the starts, above The City. Transport yourself out of the hustle and bustle of London for a few sips and enjoy each other’s company while the world carries on below. If the weather isn’t suitable for the roof garden, head inside to the circular bar or sit down for dinner.

For more information or to book a table, go to their site… Coq D’Argent

4. Play dress up and watch a film with Secret Cinema


Almost like interactive theatre, Secret Cinema offers up immersive experiences that blend the boundaries between audience and performance. Offering up their unique take on cinema across varied locations and themes, treat someone to something truly unforgettable. Having offered up films like Back to the Future, Dead Poet’s Society, Star Wars: The Empire Strikes Back, Who Framed Roger Rabbit and more, these events will captivate and thrill you completely.

Join their mailing list to see future film experiences and to buy tickets… Secret Cinema


5. Play board games at Draughts


Touted as London’s first board game café, Draughts is a haven for couples who want to get to know each other of a meal, a drink and a game. Challenge each other to over 600 games from their enormous library. Spoilt for choice? Their staff are more than happy to offer suggestions of games to play. This is one place to be sure to check out if you want to really get to know someone (and see their competitive side)

Head to their site for their location, to book or even see a full list of their games… Draughts 


6. Talking about competitive streaks, challenge other couples to a pedalo race


Warning, things could get wet (it’s your own fault that your mind went there). In all seriousness, you wouldn’t want to fall in. London has several locations for you to hire a pedalo and compete against other couples to see who will produce the fastest and strongest offspring. There is Alexandra Palace Boating Lake, Battersea Park Boating Lake, The Serpentine, Moo Canoes, Boating in Regent’s Park Lake and many others. Price vary depending on the location and some of them you can pre-book.


7. Explore a different cuisine with Adulis


Make sure you are not too shy to eat with your hands. Described as Little Eritrea in the heart of London, Adulis offers some the best Eritrean dishes you can find in the UK. Named after the ancient Red Sea port, Adulis offers up both meat and vegetarian dishes. Head over here for a unique and intriguing menu filled with spice. If you have a sweet tooth, be sure to try the Ethiopian white wines. Hint… the post meal coffee ceremony is best enjoyed with popcorn.

To book a table, check out their site… Adulis 


8. Dress up in your best vintage outfits and head to Cahoots


Based in Soho, this subterranean escape from London will transport you back to the 1940’s. Enter the old air raid shelter and enjoy a cocktail den containing a replica 1940’s tube carriage, exposed brick walls, chandeliers and other nostalgia from a by-gone era. Enjoy the jazz and swing playing live band while you converse with a potential soulmate.

Cahoots take reservations which is great for those who hate queuing. To book, see their site… Cahoots 


9. Use the view from Sky Garden as the perfect backdrop to your first photograph


Sitting atop The Walking Talkie, Sky Garden offers a breath-taking 360’ view of London. Use the Thames, or The City, Or Southwark as the background to the first photographs you take together. Feeling peckish? Sky Garden also has a selection of places to eat to suit any pocket. Explore the indoor, rooftop garden and watch London turn into a tranquil place from such a height.

You will have to book to get up there. To book a place, go to their site… Sky Garden. Helpful hint… be sure to give yourself enough time to get through security.


10. Get your fill of Japanese cuisine at Inamo


Want to go somewhere impressive? Head to Inamo. With a cool ordering system (you use a digital screen on the table) and good food, Inamo’s is a sure fire spot to score a second date*. If you are lucky, you could potentially catch one of their lunch deals that offers bottomless Prosecco. With several locations (and more to come) across London, there is no excuse for not being able to meet here.

To book and get details of their location, check out their site… Inamo 

*Make sure to bring some conversation and a personality with you.


11. Stay up after hours with Museum Lates


Interesting exhibitions? Check. Good music? Check. Drinks? Check. Great atmosphere? Check. Museum Late events tick all the boxes for memorable moments. With museums such as the Science Museum, Natural History Museum, The British Museum and The National Gallery offering after hours events, there is no reason not to enjoy these for a first date. Just be sure to make certain you find out what your partner is interested in first.


12. Sleep together at 40 Winks’ Bedtime Story Nights


Since it started in 2009, Bedtime Story Nights have been offering Londoners an event that is “deliciously decadent and glamorous, taking the idea of a pyjama party but infusing it with amazing stories, music and cocktails.” Bedtime Story Nights are unique evenings that ooze charm and humour. With at least one event a month, you will need to be quick to book these before they sell out.

To book and get the location details, head over to… Bedtime Story Nights


Do you have a favorite first date location? Did someone take you somewhere memorable? Let us know in the comments section below!

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Ewan Hollander

Just sharing things that interest me in the hopes that they interest others as well

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