If you thought dating was difficult in 2019, welcome to 2020 where a light kiss on the cheek might be a threat to the health of ourselves and those around us! We?re living in a world that presently feels a lot like a dystopian movie. I’m secretly, sort of, half expecting an actual Zombie apocalypse.
With London slowly coming out of lockdown, I’ve been thinking: What dates can Londoners go on that are minimal risk to their health and not wildly unoriginal?? Here are my top picks for dating in London 2020:
A Picnic With a Twist
Yes, yes, a picnic isn’t exactly innovative or original but it’s a classic for dating this summer, and one of the safest ways to date if you’re really not feeling the virtual options available. So how can you make a seemingly obvious choice a little bit more interesting? Make it a collaborative experience and throw in an element of surprise. Ask your date to bring three treats that they loved to eat in childhood, you do the same and then share the treats (the more ridiculous the better). This will spark a natural conversation about food and positive childhood memories. This gives you scope for learning about areas of someone’s life that might not come up so readily otherwise. Remember to take the biggest picnic blanket you can find or better still bring one each so you can keep a good social distance.
Go on a GoBoat
Sick of picnics in the park? Want to do something romantic and outdoorsy? Why not hire a GoBoat and opt for a socially distant date with a difference. The GoBoats are eco friendly, with low emission rechargeable engines and made of recycled and sustainably sourced materials. Operating in both Kingston and Paddington you can sail through lovely Little Venice, the Maida Hill Tunnel, Regents Park, London Zoo and Camden Lock. After your GoBoat ride spend some time in Merchant square which has great seating areas, a floating pocket park, street food and several restaurants with outdoor seating. Please note that you have to book the GoBoats online and in advance and read their safety guidelines ahead of your date!
Granary Square and Cole Drops Yard
Granary Square is a fabulous date spot in nearly any situation with outdoor food options, seating areas aplenty and the unique Gas Holders Park. There are hand sanitiser units all around King’s Cross and 100 public bike spaces for if you want to avoid public transport. Additional bike spaces are also being added and there’s access to Santander, Lime, Brompton and Jump bikes. Coal Drops Yard offers an array of eat-out options for food: Click here for a full list of eat in and takeaway offerings. Friday through to Sunday Canopy Market is a great option for some outdoor shopping. Challenge your date with the giant wordsearch, or maze, or do a spot of socially distant sunbathing in the lovely green areas beside the canal.
Outdoor Cinema at Bar Elba
Arguably one of the best rooftop bars in the city, Bar Elba in Waterloo is hosting some great date night open air cinema nights on Tuesday’s, Wednesday’s and Sundays throughout the summer. Their waiters serve popcorn, hotdogs, retro confectionery and cocktails directly to your socially distant seats. Tickets are priced from £15 per person and can be purchased here.
Cook With The Plant Hub
Feeling apprehensive about catching coronavirus? Or perhaps the weather just isn’t great. Why not plan a virtual first date with a difference? And have a vegan cook off! The Plant Hub delivers Italian food and wine directly to your doorstep on a Saturday. Most of their meal kits are for two people, but you can freeze the leftovers or save yourself from having to cook on a Sunday. If you’re already in a love bubble together and not socially distancing, this could be an opportunity to try out plant-based cooking together for the first time.
It’s really important that we’re respectful of our date’s preferences, and it’s wise to have a conversation ahead of picking a location to find out how your date feels about meeting in person. Respecting another person’s boundaries is vital at the moment and it’s essential that we stick to the government guidelines.