This article, written and photographed by Charlotte Geary, originally appeared in Modern Reston magazine.

If your date night routine is getting a little too, uh, routine, then it’s time for something new. Whether you’re looking for free date ideas or something more extravagant, I have lots of suggestions for things to do in the Reston area of Northern Virginia.

Summer night at Lake Anne Plaza in Reston, Virginia
Go for classic romance with a rented boat at Lake Anne.

BE ROMANTIC

☐ Rent a boat for two at Lake Anne or Lake Fairfax.

☐ Pack a picnic and sit at the shores of Lake Audubon.

☐ Win a prize at a carnival.

☐ Cuddle in the swing at the Lake Anne canal.

☐ Visit an art exhibit at the Greater Reston Arts Center.

☐ Ride the Capital Wheel over National Harbor.

☐ Pick flowers at Burnside Farms.

☐ Walk along the historic streets and waterfront of Old Town Alexandria and visit the Torpedo Factory.

☐ Explore Meadowlark Gardens and surround yourself with flowers.

☐ Go dancing at Colvin Run Dance Hall.

☐ Take a river cruise on the Spirit of Washington or the Odyssey.

 

Lake Anne Jazz and Blues Festival in Reston, Virginia
Sweep her off her feet at a summer concert.

TAKE IN A SHOW

☐ Go to a show at Wolf Trap, the National Park for the Performing Arts.

☐ See the latest theatrical production by Herndon’s NextStop Theatre.

☐ See concerts and community theater at Reston’s CenterStage.

☐ Head to a free summer concert at Reston Town CenterLake Anne, or Herndon.

☐ Hear live music at Kalypso’s Sports Tavern or Cafe Monmartre.

☐ See a comedy show at the Arlington Cinema and Drafthouse.

☐ See a show at the Kennedy Center and watch the sunset over the Potomac.

 

Lake Thoreau in Reston, Virginia
A walk around the Lake Thoreau trail can end at a restaurant at South Lakes Village Center.

GET ACTIVE

☐ Walk around the two-mile Lake Thoreau trail, and end with a sunset view from the dam or a restaurant.

☐ Bike along the W&OD Trail.

☐ Hike along the Potomac from Riverbend Park to Great Falls and back.

☐ Go indoor parachuting at iFLY Loudoun.

☐ Play at a driving range with all the comforts of a bar at Topgolf Loudoun.

☐ Book a paddleboard session with Surf Reston.

☐ Go ice skating at Reston Town Center.

☐ Take a free outdoor yoga class.

☐ Soar down the slides at the Water Mine water park.

☐ Go rock climbing at Sportrock Climbing Center.

☐ Walk around Lake Newport and take in the spectacular fall foliage.

☐ Fly kites at Baron Cameron Park.

☐ Rent a kayak or canoe at Fletchers Boathouse on the Potomac.

 

Three Fox Vineyards in Delaplane, Virginia
Three Fox Vineyards is one of many fun and romantic places to spend a beautiful afternoon.

HAVE A DRINK

☐ Relax an afternoon away at a winery.

☐ Taste the latest beers at the Lake Anne Brew House.

☐ Check out the huge, new Tysons Biergarten.

☐ Sample Herndon’s local brews at Aslin Beer Co.

☐ Take a wine tasting class at Washington Wine Academy.

☐ Have a glass of wine on the beautiful courtyard of Clifton’s Trattoria Villagio wine bar.

☐ Sample the wines at the Tasting Room Wine Bar.

 

Udvar-Hazy Air and Space Museum in Virginia
The Udvar-Hazy Air and Space Museum offers an IMAX theater, observation tower, and tons of cool planes and spaceships.

USE THOSE BRAINS

☐ Learn a new art technique at ArtSpace Herndon’s Design and Wine.

☐ Team up as a double- or triple-date, and try to conquer the Escape Room.

☐ Visit the Udvar-Hazy Air and Space Museum.

☐ Go to a seminar through the Smithsonian Associates and learn about history, art, or science.

☐ Explore Colvin Run Mill and learn about 19th Century life.

☐ Take a cooking class together at Cookology.

☐ Take a weekly class together at the Reston Community Center.

☐ Explore the exhibits or take a class at the Workhouse Arts Center.

☐ Head back in time at Mount Vernon.

 

What did I miss? Do you have great date ideas to share? Let me know in the comments!

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Charlotte Geary

CHARLOTTE GEARY

I photograph fascinating people, and I teach other people how to do it, too.

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