The key to keeping your relationship strong is spending quality time together, and for many couples, that means setting aside at least one night each week for date night. If you’re looking for unique and romantic date night ideas in the Fairfax County area, here are a few great options that aren’t just your standard dinner and a movie.

Go on a hike. Instead of date night, plan a date day and hit a local trail for a day of hiking. Check out Lake Fairfax Park or Riverbend Park for scenic water features and sweeping views that create a romantic and peaceful backdrop for your date. For some bonus points, pack a picnic for the two of you to enjoy once you’re ready for a break from the hike.

Take a cooking class. Do you enjoy learning new things together? Taking a cooking class is a fun and sweet way to learn proper culinary techniques, and you’ll even be able to use what you learned to make future date night dinners at home. In Fairfax County, cooking classes are available at places like Culinaria Cooking School and Cookology.

Dine al fresco. Now that the weather is warming up in Fairfax County, replace your usual date night dinner spot with somewhere that offers outdoor dining. There’s nothing more romantic than sipping a glass of wine under the stars, so consider dinner at a spot with al fresco dining, such as Sweetwater Tavern, Chasin’ Tails or El Fresco.

See a drive-in movie. Plan an old fashioned date night at a drive-in movie. The annual Starlight Cinema movie series at Trinity Centre takes place every Saturday evening at 6 p.m. — and best of all, it’s totally free to attend!

Plan a board game night. If you want to keep your date night at home, a board game night is a great way to let loose and bond with your partner while having some silly fun. Gather your favorite board games, some snacks and a refreshing beverage for a night of friendly competition, and if you’re feeling a bit more social, invite another couple for a double date night in.