Whether you’re planning a first date or a special evening with your longtime partner, you’ll find a wide variety of options for food, fun, and other date night activities in Greater Lansing. Hold hands during a nature stroll or choose a heart-pumping activity like racing go-carts. If that's not your speed, there's always a traditional upscale dinner and an overnight at a local bed and breakfast or hotel.
We've rounded up our favorite fun, romantic, and unique ideas to help you plan your next date in Greater Lansing, Michigan!
Try Something New!
Did you know there's a beach in the middle of downtown Lansing? In addition to its riverfront beach, Rotary Park features an accessible kayak launch, a vibrant plaza with a large fireplace, a magical lighted forest, and a new venue for small concerts and events under the Shiawassee St. bridge.
Lansing Shuffleboard & Social Club
Right next to Rotary Park in the former Lansing City Market space, Lansing Shuffleboard & Social Club is officially open! The 11,000-square-foot space offers a variety sure to keep any date interesting, with five restaurants offering a diverse range of local food, two bars, an outdoor patio facing the river, and more. Coming soon: more restaurants, five shuffleboard courts to be completed in summer 2023, a dynamic roster of events including live music, and a private lounge.
Try a Cooking Class
Learning to make something new together is a great way to spend a date night! Greater Lansing is full of restaurants and bakeries that offer one-time classes. Learn how to make Turkish dishes at Social Sloth Cafe & Bakery, make brisket together at Saddleback BBQ, make pasta at Sweet Encounter Bakery, or bake a pie together at Sweetie-licious Bakery. Find even more options on our cooking classes page.
Dinner and a Movie
There's something special about sharing a meal with a significant someone, and not having to cook is a gift all its own. Lansing is home to so many locally owned restaurants offering both indoor or outdoor dining. We've chosen a few options that are tailor-made for romance.
This restaurant is located in the Eastwood Towne Center, next to The Hyatt Place hotel. Capital Prime offers premium certified Angus beef, free-range chicken, wild-caught fish and seafood, and tries to use as much local produce as possible. Capital Prime has a variety of special menus and can suit anyone's dietary needs! This is the place to go for a date night with a romantic atmosphere and delicious food.
Black Cat Bistro
If you're looking for a high-end menu with affordable prices, and elegance without stuffiness, Black Cat Bistro is the place to be! This downtown East Lansing restaurant boasts a seasonal menu, handcrafted cocktails, and even Sunday brunch.
Located in the heart of downtown Lansing, EnVie offers a French-American-inspired menu with elegant presentation. Cozy up near the fireplace or in one of the semi-private dining areas and enjoy fresh, quality ingredients, handcrafted cocktails, and top notch customer service.
Find more romantic spots in Lansing on our Romantic Dinner Ideas blog.
Add a Movie
Thinking of dinner and a movie? Choose between Celebration! Cinema and NCG Eastwood Cinema for a classic date night.
Greater Lansing has plenty to offer for the adventurous couple looking to change things up from your average date night. From axe throwing and football bowling to laser tag and escape rooms, it's easy to find indoor fun, no matter your age!
High Caliber Karting & Entertainment
There is so much to do at High Caliber Karting, located in the Meridian Mall! You can race high speed go-karts on two indoor tracks, test out a state-of-the-art racing simulator, try your hand at axe throwing or football bowling, and even kick around a game of pocket soccer! High Caliber also has a giant arcade along with a terrific bar and bistro. This is a great idea for those competitive couples, or even a double date!
Escapology at Spare Time Entertainment
Test your teamwork and try to escape from one of Spare Time Entertainment's Escapology rooms! There are several room themes to choose from, and once you're done, there's still bowling, arcade games, and bumper cars to choose from. Spare Time also has a restaurant with classic American food and many craft beers.
Speaking of bowling, you can also get in a few frames at Royal Scot or East Lansing and Mason City Limits Bowling Centers.
Hike the trails at Woldumar, Fenner or Harris Nature Centers, where it's easy to forget there's a city nearby.
Lansing River Trail
For those who enjoy the peacefulness of nature and the sights of the city, a stroll along the Lansing River Trail will take you from downtown to Old Town Lansing, where you can do some shopping or grab a bite to eat, or out to Potter Park Zoo. There are several free parking lots along the 17+ mile paved trail.
Paddle the Grand River
Rent a couple of kayaks from River Town Adventures and enjoy a cruise down the Grand River. River Town also rents out canoes and paddle boards to use at local lakes and rivers. Reservations are recommended.
Little Hawk Putting Course
Whether you and your partner are beginners or golf experts, Little Hawk Putting Course provides 18 holes on an immaculately maintained natural grass course with a variety of layouts. Putters and balls are provided, or you can bring your own!
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Arts, Culture, and Attractions
Visiting some of Greater Lansing's attractions will give you great conversation starters in the future.
The R.E. Olds Transportation Museum displays more than 50 vehicles manufactured right here in Lansing and tells the story of the entrepreneurial auto magnate Ransom Eli Olds.
Stroll through the Eli & Edythe Broad Art Museum on the campus of Michigan State University and marvel at the contemporary art within, as well as the building itself.
See anything from a Broadway show like Hamilton to a Lansing Symphony Orchestra concert or even a comedy show at the Wharton Center for Performing Arts, also located on MSU's campus.
Another option is to enjoy viewing some of the nearly 600 animals at Potter Park Zoo, which is open year-round.
Head to our attractions page for even more ideas!
Not ready for the night to end?
Head to the Graduate Rock Bar for a nightcap. Your date will be in awe of the stunning views from the rooftop bar and patio overlooking campus and downtown East Lansing. Twinkling hanging lights, classic American fare, and local beers and spirits make this a top contender for our favorite night out.
Or make a sweet date night even sweeter with dessert and drinks at Hooked. Grab a pastry; sip a coffee, wine, or beer; and peruse the books together at the area’s newest bookstore, coffee shop, and wine bar.
Make it a Weekend Stay-cation
Turn date night into a date weekend! Greater Lansing has many cozy B&Bs for you choose from. Below are a few that are guaranteed to make your weekend a romantic one.
The English Inn
Situated along the Grand River, The English Inn is an English Tudor home with nearly 20 rooms (all with private baths). You'll want to make reservations to dine at one of Open Table's 100 most romantic restaurants in the US or opt to dine outdoors in one of the enclosed conservatories pictured above.
The Nordic Pineapple
The Nordic Pineapple Bed & Breakfast is a beautiful and unique historic home built in 1861. This B&B sometimes offers special packages for the perfect weekend getaway!
Greater Lansing has so many things for you and your partner to enjoy. We highly recommend that you make reservations to ensure a seamless experience and avoid wait times.
Photo Credit: James Lenon, Tom Gennara, The English Inn, Sweet Encounter Bakery, and our social media #LoveLansing community.