Things to Do in DC for Valentine’s Day

By Swingers

Valentine’s Day in Washington, DC can be a doozy! Luckily, we’ve rounded up 7 of the best ideas for your next DC Valentine’s Day.

Things to Do in DC for Valentine’s Day

DC doesn’t actually stand for Day of Cupid – but it may as well, because Washington DC is an amazing place to spend your Valentine’s Day. Strolling along the National Mall and having a romantic waterfront dinner are always solid date nights; however, this Valentine’s Day, we challenge you to think outside the box! To that end, we’ve compiled this list of seven unique ideas to help you celebrate Valentine’s Day in DC in style.

1. Challenge each other at Swingers, the Crazy Golf Club

A young woman smiles, drink in hand, watching another young woman line up her shot on a crazy golf course.

In this town of political rivalries, it’s no surprise that many Washingtonians enjoy a little competition. At Swingers in Dupont Circle, you and your date can channel that energy into mini-golfing and have a blast while doing it! Our Clocktower and Waterwheel courses are sure to get you moving, and you and your partner will definitely enjoy the challenge of trying to maneuver through them.

For a true Valentine’s Day treat, try a couple of New Romantics – our margarita-Moscow mule hybrid of Espolon Reposado Tequila, raspberry, lime, ginger beer and spicy tincture – or indulge with a bottle of Perrier-Jouët Champagne for two. Order your drinks to be delivered right there on the course, or take a breather in one of our retro cocktail bars.

A close-up of a heart-shaped sourdough pizza topped with pepperoni.

And when excitement turns to hunger, check out our fairy-lit food vendors. From the Dupont Circle Valentine’s menu, you can try heart-shaped pizza from Kneadza, Southern comfort food from Succotash and swoon-worthy chocolate-covered strawberries from Mah-Ze-Dahr. If all this doesn’t make for a perfect DC Valentine’s Day, we don’t know what will! Drop by anytime from February 8th-15th to take advantage of these unbeatable Valentine’s Day offers.

2. Enjoy gourmet coffee and fun decor at Urban Roast

A bar with red and white roses hanging from the ceiling, plus slate features and a red neon sign on the wall.

DC is crowded with coffee lovers, which inspired our next Valentine’s Day idea: a coffee break at Urban Roast. This great spot in Penn Quarter offers gourmet coffee, cocktails, waffle-and-bacon charcuterie boards and – most importantly for your Valentine’s Day ‘gram – blossom-covered walls and mood lighting. Come for the coffee, stay for the #aesthetic… maybe all the way until happy hour! (One neon sign advocates that you “Start with coffee, end with wine.”) And real coffee aficionados, don’t miss Urban Roast’s specialty brews, particularly the S’more Amore Latte. It’s just the drink for a day of love and espresso (which we often find go hand-in-hand.)

3. Marvel at beautiful butterflies at the Butterfly Pavilion

A close-up of a Monarch butterfly pollinating a flower.

Many butterflies fly south for the winter, but in DC, you can always find them at the Natural History Museum. The NHM Butterfly Pavilion, located within the Smithsonian Pollinator Garden, is a tropical oasis right in the heart of DC – and the only place in the district where you can see butterflies all year round. Walk through the Butterfly Pavilion with your partner, reveling in the warmth, the lush plant life and of course, over 40 different species of butterflies and moths! Look out for the pink-tinted Cattleheart butterfly and the lacy White Morpho.  We’ve heard it’s good luck if you spot them on Valentine’s Day.

4. Cultivate an artsy afternoon at Culture House DC

The exterior of Culture House DC, a former church painted in bright swirls and spots of colour.

For culturally cutting-edge couples, consider a Valentine’s Day at Culture House in southwest DC. What began as a Baptist church has transformed into one of DC’s coolest cultural centers, featuring stunning exteriors by regional artist Alex Brewer. Expect thought-provoking exhibitions inside and outside in their “Avant Garden”: a space devoted to murals, sculptures and more. Then again, you might prefer the intimacy of the gallery, which has put on some brilliant exhibitions in the past few years. Without a doubt, if you’re looking to delve into artsy discussions over a bottle of wine later, Culture House should be your first stop on Valentine’s Day.

5. See a February show at Union Stage (The Wharf)

A blue-lit stage crowded by people with their hands in the air.

Or for musical couples, why not spend your Valentine’s Day discovering new artists in DC? The Wharf’s Union Stage hosts musical events nearly every night, with live artists and DJs filling the space with incredible sounds and even better vibes. Have dinner on the waterfront beforehand, then settle into the venue with a draft beer and your date by your side! If you’re unsure about artists you’ve never heard of, you can always attend one of Union Stage’s candlelit tributes or themed club nights. This February alone, they’ve got events dedicated to ABBA, Rihanna, One Direction and even classic anime film soundtracks from composer Joe Hisaishi.

6. Take a daring dance class at Salsa with Silvia

A man and woman, both dressed in red, hold hands and move into their next salsa position.

Another stellar option for those who love to dance? Salsa classes with local dance legend Silvia Alexiev! At Salsa With Silvia, you and your partner can take a series of salsa and bachata – a slower, more sensual salsa – classes, at the end of which you’ll be masters of movement. You’ll learn how to lead and follow, dip and sway, and keep time with each others’ rhythms. All this is not just great for your dance repertoire, but for your intimacy too! And if group dance class sounds like a nightmare, fear not. Silvia’s also offers private lessons, which you can buy individually or as packages.

7. Sample comfort food and cocktails at Service Bar

Plates of comfort food including fried chicken, mac and cheese, enchiladas and French fries.

At the end of the day, the best Valentine’s Day is one where you can eat copious amounts of carbs. Service Bar in Cardozo is a fantastic place for this (right up there with Swingers, of course). From their signature fried chicken to mouthwatering mozzarella balls and fried eggplant with spicy honey – for the slightly more health-conscious among us – there’s no shortage of delicious dishes (plus six types of sauce for dipping!).

Keep the cocktails flowing for the optimal Service Bar experience as well. This Valentine’s Day, you’ll want to try the Strawberry Sayonara and the Rosé All Day: two potent pink drinks to keep you warm all the way home… before you collapse in the most satisfying food-and-drink coma of your life.

Thinking of going out of town for Valentine’s Day? Check out our post on 10 things to do for Valentine’s Day in NYC!

Swingers ~ The crazy golf club

We believe that life is more fun when there is an element of competition, and that competition is best enjoyed with friends.

Swingers, the crazy golf club takes the holy trinity that is crazy golf, street food and amazing cocktails and combines them all into one incredible social experience