Added by on February 9, 2012

Romance on a Budget

With Valentine’s Day just around the corner, the pressure is on to think of the perfect gift to surprise that special someone in your life. Now for those of you who think that Valentine’s Day is just a scam thought up by greeting card companies and florists, never fear because there are plenty of ways to woo your loved one without breaking the bank and buying into consumerism.

Here are five romantic San Diego ideas that are sure to impress for under $20.

Paddle Boating

For the more adventurous couples, an open-air activity is ideal for romance. At Santee Lakes you and your sweetheart can sail your way through the scenery of the beautiful outdoors by renting one of their two-seater paddle boats for either $8 for a half hour or $11 for an hour. It’ll be fun to work as a team and you two can make a game out of who can spot the most ducks, turtles and rabbits. Not only can you get some fresh air, it’s a great way to live fit with the one you love.

Scenic Picnic

A home-cooked meal is always a great way to show somebody how much you care, but why not push that a step further by taking your food alfresco. Surprise your Valentine with his or her favorite snacks, package them up in a picnic basket and with a blanket in tow take your date to a surprise destination. I recommend the Torrey Pines Glider Port. Sitting on the cliffs overlooking the ocean, watching the paragliders soar off into the sunset is a romantic atmosphere that comes at no cost. Splurge on a bottle of champagne, or some chocolate covered strawberries. Bonus points if the chocolate covered strawberries are home-made!

Drive-In Movie

A blast from the past will remind your date of favorite childhood memories. At the drive-in you get all the fun of going to the movies without the hassle of noisy babies, cell phone ring tones and expensive snacks. You can snuggle up with your sweetheart and laugh out loud at your favorite jokes without having to worry about the inevitable “shhhh!” of irritation you would get at a movie theater. At the drive in you get two movies for the price of one and, with most drive-in’s charging only $7 compared to the whopping $11.50 charged in theaters, you can use the money you save to go to your local grocery store to grab some last minute goodies to munch on during the flicks.

Balboa Park Museum

Most locals avoid Balboa Park to escape from the tourists, and what a shame because it also happens to be one of the most beautiful parts of our city. Luckily, one of the best-kept secrets of San Diego is the perks you get just for being a local. On the first four Tuesday’s of the month, select museums at Balboa park are free for San Diego locals. Take a stroll around the park and make sure to pack a camera because, from the gardens to the architecture, Balboa Park is home to some of the most picturesque gardens and plenty of other spots are perfect for a couple’s photo opp.

Extraordinary Desserts

The name says it all. Skip the typical box of chocolates and treat your Valentine to this dessert haven. It’s a sweet tooth’s paradise here where the desserts are decadent and the decorations are divine. There’s nothing more romantic than a candlelight dessert for two, and at Extraordinary Desserts, you won’t be disappointed with their huge selection of sweets (my favorite is the Shangri-La cake. Yum!). I’d recommend sharing one of their specials. At only $11.50 you and your sweetie will have plenty of dessert to share, and each special is paired with one of their specialty ice creams. Just make sure that you get there early; this place attracts a crowd!

Not only are these ideas great for Valentine’s day, but these date-ideas can work for year-round romance. I say, make everyday Valentines Day by showing the love in your life how much you care 365 days a year.

Happy Valentines Day from Live Fit Magazine.

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