Athens, GA

12 Fun & Unusual Date Nights in Athens, Georgia

Crystal Jackson
Couple on carouselPhoto by sept commercial on Unsplash

Meeting for drinks might be a standard fun date, but it's not exactly innovative. For many women, drinking with a stranger doesn't seem like a safe first date activity either. Dating doesn't have to follow a script--staying within the lines of what everyone else is doing. It can even be fun!

Here are 12 fun and unusual date night ideas for Athens, Georgia:

1. Axe Throwing at LumberJaxe

If throwing hatchets at a target doesn't exactly bring to mind love and romance, you might have forgotten that dating is also supposed to be fun and not just making googly-eyes at each other over a candelit dinner. Head to LumberJaxe to grab a drink, throw some axes, and get to know your date in a relaxed, casual environment. Just remember to wear closed-toe shoes, and while you're waiting, you can enjoy fun games in the lobby like Giant Jenga and cornhole.

2. Play Games at The Rook & Pawn

Another relaxed date night idea is to have drinks and appetizers while playing a board game at The Rook & Pawn. I can vouch for this locale as a perfect first date location, and it has the advantage of its own parking lot--a rarity in downtown Athens. Just be aware that spaces are limited. Game rental is $7/day, and if you love it, you can even purchase a membership.

3. Catch a Movie at Ciné Athens

If this sounds like a boring movie date, think again. Ciné Athens is an independent art-house with a small theater that offers cozy, intimate seating as well as a full bar. They've been known to feature themed nights in the past as well--such as bad movie night, which is exactly what it sounds like. They would show a movie so terrible you know you'll have a great time laughing at just how cringe-worthy some films were. If laughing together isn't the bonding experience you were going for, consider the brand-new drive-in addition to snuggle up with your date.

4. Climb the Walls

Literally. Go indoor rock climbing for a fun, active date for lovers of adventure at Active Climbing. Check out prices and hours on their website, and for a discounted rate, Monday is Ladies Night, and Wednesday is College Night. This can be a fun way for athletic couples to get to know each other in a fun environment.

5. Jump for Joy

Is it the excitement of the first date or just the thrill of the trampolines? It's hard to tell when you take your date to Rush Athens. Rush After Dark on Saturdays from 8-10 pm could be a good option for an adventurous date, and Wednesdays have discounted rates for students. If you're dating on a budget, Tuesdays have a special 2 for $20 jump time.

6. Try a Moonlit Hike

Visit the State Botanical Gardens of Georgia for a Full Moon Hike. Each month, there is a guided hike on the night of the full moon. The cost is only $5, and while this makes a great date night, it's also perfect for individuals and families, too.

7. Escape or Rage With Your Date

Escape the Space offers escape rooms, so you might not want to book this for a first date unless you're confident it will go well. Coming soon, they'll be offering a rage room if you need to get out at any anger at your ex before starting something new with someone else. If you're not familiar with rage rooms, check this out:

8. Make Art

For a creative date, try ARTini's Art Lounge where you can create art while having a drink. Even if you think you have no skills, these classes will walk you through what to do to create a painting of your own. This can be a fun and creative way to spend a date night.

9. See a Cool Cover Band

For fans of Fleetwood Mac, check out the Rumours tour schedule to attend a cool cover band concert. They often come to the Classic Center and other area locations to perform. While I've attended many cover bands in Athens, Rumours remains my favorite.

10. Opt for a River Adventure

Go kayaking down the Middle Oconee River at Big Dogs on the River. The $30 rental includes parking, equipment, and the shuttle to the river. Call ahead for reservations and to check for weather conditions.

12. Farmer's Market

It might not seem like the typical date location, but visiting a farmer's market can be a great way to casually get to know someone in a relaxed setting. Meet up at the Athens Farmer's Market to grab a cup of coffee and shop local. If things go well, you could always shop for a picnic lunch and extend the date a little longer.

Thinking outside the box can turn a boring, awkward meetup into a truly good time whether or not there's chemistry between you and your date.


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Crystal Jackson is a former therapist turned writer. She is the author of the Heart of Madison series and a volume of poetry entitled My Words Are Whiskey. Her work has been featured on Medium, Elite Daily, Thought Catalog, The Good Men Project, and Elephant Journal. When she's not writing, you can find her traveling, paddle boarding, cycling, throwing axes badly but with terrifying enthusiasm, hiking, or curled up with her nose in a book in Madison, Georgia, where she lives with one puppy and two wild and wonderful children. Crystal writes about relationships, mental health, parenting, social justice, and more. Never miss an update. Subscribe to emails:

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