Valentine’s Day always presents a challenge: What should you give? Where should you eat? How do you make the day extra special?  How do you raise the bar from last year?

Perhaps, instead of buying things, you can try giving your significant other the gift of shared, memorable experiences.  Here are some ideas for you:

  1. Plan a trip to the beach.
    Spend even just a day and a night at a nearby beach to breathe in fresh air and to connect with nature and with each other.  Ditch your devices and take a nice stroll by the water, go barefoot and get the benefits of grounding on the sand. Bring along a frisbee or volleyball and maybe team up against some other people for a fun pick-up game! At night, spend time watching the stars.
  1. Work out together.
    Be it group boxing, CrossFit, yoga, going for a run or even a dance class, sweating it out together helps you bond. Who knows? This could be the start of a healthy habit you can do long-term!
  1. Learn something new.
    Feed your minds. Go to an art class, learn how to cook your favorite cuisine, go for a wine tasting, or even a coffee appreciation class. Or spend time at the museum.
  1. Conquer mountains together.
    There are so many easy day treks with jump-off points within a couple of hours from Manila. Take on the challenge of trekking together, take plenty of photos and enjoy the journey! For the hardcore, go camping and snuggle in your tents as the temperatures drop at night.
  1. Go on a couple spa date
    Nobody says no to a spa day. There are plenty of options in and around the city. But book ahead to make sure you get a slot!
  1. Plan a healthy picnic.
    Pack some cheeses, grapes and apples, spiced nuts and maybe hummus with veggie sticks! Enjoy with a bottle of red wine (organic if you can manage it). Remember, presentation counts for a lot! So choose the perfect spot, pack everything with care, and make sure to bring a blanket for you to sit on!

Yes, these things do take time and preparation, but there’s nothing better for deepening relationships than the gift of lasting memories.