Wanting to do something creative and fun with your S.O. for date night? We all need a little help thinking of memorable ways to spend time with your favorite person every now & then. Even for just a night out with that cute girl from math class, here are a few cheap & super fun date ideas near the University of Tennessee Knoxville for us college students in Knoxville!
Ijams is a blast! It’s an outdoor area in the middle of urban Knoxville. There’s hiking, water activities, biking trails, outdoor education programs, recycling trips, and so much more. Ijams is the perfect adventurous getaway without the hustle and bustle of tourists you’d encounter in the Smoky Mountains.
2. Family Bowl Strike and Spare
Don’t let the building’s appearance fool you, this place is fantastic for date night! Rentals are super cheap (it’s all under $5!). They have weekly specials every night of the week including all you can bowl until 12-2am. They also have their own bar! Get competitive with your bowling game and pig out on overly cheesy classics for dinner. You’re bound to have a blast.
3. Painting with A Twist
Painting with a Twist is a unique way to create your own art. You’ll go to an art studio, receive a step-by-step art lesson, and the best part? It’s BYOW. Bring your own wine. That’s right, drink your wine and create a masterpiece at the same time!
4. Knoxville Zoo
The Knoxville Zoo is a wonderful date idea for couples who love animals. Lions, tigers and bears! Oh my! Make your way around the hidden trails hand in hand enjoying the variety of animals and activities. Don’t forget to get your matching elephant shirts on the way out.
5. First Fridays
First Fridays are a local happening in Knoxville. First Fridays is another art event going on downtown. The First Friday of the month, all art galleries are open and FREE! Even if you aren’t the biggest art fanatic, you’ll enjoy walking around downtown Knoxville with your boyfriend/girlfriend taking in the sights and busy nightlife.
6. Fruit and Berry Patch
The Fruit and Berry Patch is a wonderful date idea! Just a short drive away from UTK, the Fruit and Berry Patch is open year round. Locally owned and operated, couples can drive right through the vast fields of fruits and berries and pick all your heart desires. Prices vary by weight and buckets are provided. To add to the fun, they just opened a full restaurant serving peach BBQ sandwiches and fresh fruit pies and smoothies.
7. Escape Game Knoxville
Escape Game became a sensation late last year. You’re trapped in a themed room filled with puzzles and clues that will lead you out. You have an hour to escape or fail your mission. This is a great problem solving activity to see how you and your partner work together under pressure.
8. River Sports Outfitters
Yes, River Sports Outfitters is an outdoor retail store, but it’s also a gateway to wonderful outdoor dates! While you can buy your own gear, River Sports Outfitters also provides rentals. Whether you want to bike one of Knoxville’s many Greenways, paddleboard down the Tennessee River, or go camping on top of East Tennessee’s many mountain peaks, River Sports Outfitters has just what you need to create wonderful memories with your boyfriend/girlfriend.
9. Market Square
Looking for something completely free with tons of options? Market Square is the perfect location. Shopping, eating, outdoor concerts and movies … Market Square has it all! Located within walking distance to the University of Tennessee – Knoxville, Market Square is the most popular hangout for young adults looking to explore town.
10. James White Fort
This one is for the history buffs out there. James White was the founder of Knoxville and served in the Revolutionary War. The Fort was White’s own log cabin home and is full of early Southern history. For those couples who love Knoxville’s history, James White Fort is the place to go.
11. Knoxville Botanical Gardens
Another nature date! The Knoxville Botanical Gardens are a must-see. Just a few minutes from downtown, the Gardens are open to the public for free every day of the year. Couples can walk through various walking trails, experience massive overflowing gardens or visit the urban agriculture center. This date is not only free, but educational as well!
12. Women’s Basketball Hall of Fame
For the sports lovers out there, the Women’s Basketball Hall of Fame is a can’t miss. It is the only place in the world that honors all levels of women’s basketball. A little under $8 per person, the Hall of Fame is worth it for an afternoon for a one-of-a-kind basketball experience.
13. University of Tennessee
Even if you’re not a student, the University of Tennessee is a wonderful place for a date. The University hosts many free events on campus such as movies, plays and concerts. Couples will enjoy numerous outdoor art pieces, historical Civil War landmarks and a pretty cool rock!
14. Sunsphere/World’s Fair Park
The Sunsphere itself is pretty fascinating. It offers the best panoramic views of the city, and it even has a restaurant at the top! If that’s not enough for you and your lover, the Sunsphere is situated in the middle of World’s Fair Park. The Park has multiple fountains and walking trails, and they even host pretty unique events like concerts and the Biscuit Festival! Catch this area at the right time, and you’re in for a fun time.
15. Your own backyard!
What’s a better bonding date than your own backyard? Cook dinner together, sit outside talking, enjoy the sunset or hang out playing board games. Depending on what you guys like to do, dates in your own backyard could be the most memorable dates you’ll ever go on.