The nation’s capital shines as a romantic destination with the best date ideas, from its award-winning dining scene and outstanding attractions to its scenic monuments and more.

Heat things up in a hotel room with a fireplace

Sparks can fly when you can warm up by a fire without leaving the comfort of your room. Numerous DC hotels offer fireplaces in their suites, making for the perfect romantic vibe before or after a night on the town. The recently renovated St. Gregory Hotel and the Presidential Suite at Rosewood Washington, D.C. are great options, as are the three-bedroom Presidential Suites at The Watergate Hotel, the Royal Potomac Suite at the Ritz-Carlton, Washington, D.C. and the Royal Suite at the Four Seasons Hotel Washington, D.C.

Retreat to The Spa at Mandarin Oriental for sophisticated relaxation

You and your boo can indulge yourselves with a treatment (or treatments!) at The Spa at the Mandarin Oriental. The luxury hotel and spa offers a variety of services, like the Oriental Harmony massage featuring two masseuses, sure to melt your cares away. Continue the posh getaway with a stay at the hotel, featuring elegant design in a premier location that allows for splendid views of the Southwest Waterfront.

Attend a play inspired by the all-time romantic, William Shakespeare

Shakespeare Theatre Company stages the best of Shakespeare’s plays, as well as contemporary productions inspired by the ultimate wordsmith’s work. Even though the Bard of Avon has been dead for centuries, his influence can still rock a date night today.

Challenge your date to ping pong at a bar

Whether you call it table tennis or ping pong, Forrest Gump’s favorite game is a beloved pastime, and it’s especially delightful when paired with beer and bites. Fortunately, Washington, DC has numerous places to play ping pong and savor time with that special someone.

Enjoy a concert at The Wharf

The Wharf features three pristine music venues that add to DC’s already robust roster. The Anthem is an acoustically optimized, 6,000-seat concert hall that brings pure bliss to music lovers. Pearl Street Warehouse is more intimate, letting you and your date enjoy the artist up close while savoring all-American dinner fare, craft brews and cocktails. There’s also Union Stage, a dynamic spot that offers a packed calendar with a wide range of independent acts paired perfectly with beers and pizza from their Tap Room.

Lace up your skates and hit the ice

Washington, DC is home to some of the most unique ice skating rinks in the country. How many people can say they’ve skated under twinkling Edison bulbs on the National Mall, on the waterfront in a neighborhood 40 years older than DC itself or on the rooftop of The Watergate Hotel? There’s no better time to triple axel ‘round the District than this winter, so make sure to check out the city’s best ice skating rinks.

Enjoy romance on the water with an Odyssey Cruise

Reserve a table for two aboard Entertainment Cruises’ Odyssey Dinner Cruise on the Potomac River. The vessel was inspired by famous Parisian dinner boats that sail down the Seine. On the Potomac, you’ll glide by DC landmarks like the Washington Monument and the John F. Kennedy Center for the Performing Arts, providing the perfect romantic setting while you dine.

Buckle up for laughs at DC Improv

DC’s hub for the finest comedic talent around, DC Improv is a great Downtown destination for date night. The on-site restaurant means that dinner and laughs are on tap, as numerous local and national comedians pass through the Improv’s two showrooms.

Gaze at the stars in high definition

Looking up at the stars in the night sky is always romantic. However, in colder months, you would prefer to be indoors. Enter the Albert Einstein Planetarium at the National Air and Space Museum, a state-of-the-art facility that uses ultra high-def visuals that are 16 times the resolution of your HDTV at home. You can also check out the planetarium at Rock Creek Park, which is free to enter and holds special programs every Saturday and Sunday.

Get in touch with nature at Rock Creek Park

Even during the winter, Rock Creek Park serves as a scenic recluse from the city. Put on your winter coat and stroll through the 2,100-acre park, which includes historical attractions like Peirce Mill, as well as a nature center (step in for warmth, if you need to), picnic areas and playing fields. Inside the nature center, there’s also a planetarium, so you and your sweetie can stargaze.

About Destination DC: Destination DC, the official destination marketing organization for the nation’s capital, is a private, non-profit membership organization of 1,000 businesses committed to marketing the area as a premier global convention, tourism and special events destination with a special emphasis on the arts, cultural and historic communities.