Burlington is known for its socially conscious vibe, its tasty Ben & Jerry's ice cream and cult indie rock band Phish. It's also a place that's packed with activities that celebrate its rich local scene -- from restaurants that stress Vermont-grown ingredients such as heirloom tomatoes and grass-fed beef to outdoor sports that take advantage of the dramatic Adirondack mountains. In fact, you'll never lack for date night ideas in Burlington, whether you're the sporty type, a fan of the arts or a foodie. This vibrant city caters to all types.
Burlington was once known for its college-type food. It now boasts a number of upscale restaurants that make for a very pleasant way to spend a night with your special someone. Take your date to L'Amante for delicious Italian food flavored with local ingredients. The atmosphere is sleek but informal. Try the bruschetta and New York strip. If you're in the mood for French food, swing over to Leunig's Bistro. Its cozy atmosphere and alfresco dining option makes it a great date night pick. Try the tangerine and yellow curry scallops or go traditional and enjoy the beef Bourguignon.
Enjoy Live Music
Burlington has a healthy live music scene. Red Square is welcoming to both club kids and those who want a more low-key date night. Come early for the live bands which play in the open air, weather permitting. Stay later for D.J.s and dancing. Nectar's is better for those who want a mellower musical experience and enjoy reggae or rock. This is the place where Phish first began playing. Higher Ground features both the best local and national acts. If you're looking for a cheap date option, the Battery Park Free Concert series offers free shows on Thursday nights in July.
Go on a Tour
See a new side of Burlington and take your date on a tour. If you love boating, consider Lake Champlain Shoreline Cruises, which offers a murder mystery dinner cruise, a sunset cruise with onboard snack bar, a music and dancing cruise and a lobster dinner cruise. Those who love thrills and chills might prefer the Queen City Ghost Walk, available in the fall before Halloween, which gives an introduction to Burlington's haunted places. Art lovers and budget daters will enjoy the free First Friday Art Walk on the first Friday of every month.
Buy local and people watch with your date at locales distinctive to Burlington. The Church Street Market is open until 7 p.m. most nights and has over 100 shops and restaurants plus events such as the Discover Jazz Festival in June. Sample a hot chocolate and some truly divine truffles at Lake Champlain Chocolates. Take in the local scene at Waterfront Park while strolling the boardwalk or chatting with your date on one of the swinging benches. If you want more privacy, head out to Perkins Pier to watch the sunset on one of the benches.