What Should You Do for Valentine's Day in Tacoma?

Tacoma has a romantic side—tucked into cute parts of downtown or located along the Waterfront, you will find plenty of things to do in Tacoma for Valentine’s Day. No matter what your taste is, or whether you’re an advance planner or a last-minute scrambler, there's a romantic night out for you and your sweetie to enjoy.

And if Tacoma is ever just not enough, a half-hour drive north opens up all the many romantic Valentine’s day options in Seattle.

01 of 06

Go to a Show

  catscandotcom/Getty Images 
901 Broadway, Tacoma, WA 98402, USA
Phone +1 253-591-5894

There are few better matches than dinner and a show. Pairing a performance at one of Tacoma’s theaters with a dinner downtown or on nearby Sixth Avenue can be a sure way to win over a heart or entertain your date for an evening. The Theater District is centered around Ninth and Broadway and includes the Pantages Theater, Rialto Theater, and Theater on the Square. Any given weekend, you can find musicals, dramas, and musical performances. The theaters themselves often offer package deals combining dinner and a show for a slightly better price.

Tacoma Musical Playhouse at the far west end of 6th Avenue is another option. While it's a smaller theater, its shows are high caliber and often share performers with 5th Avenue Theatre in Seattle.

02 of 06

Dine at a Romantic Restaurant

Pacific Grill Tacoma
Photo courtesy: Pacific Grill
1924 Pacific Ave, Tacoma, WA 98402, USA
Phone +1 253-272-8200

While the idea of a romantic restaurant varies from couple to couple, there are some options where you just can’t go wrong. Top romantic restaurants in Tacoma include the intimate and delicious Indochine and Pacific Grill, both located on Pacific Avenue in downtown. Indochine's atmosphere is particularly romantic with hardwood booths, curtains, exposed brick, and a fountain at the center of the restaurant. If you want an upscale experience, El Gaucho is the place to look, while next door, The Melting Pot is yet another popular downtown option.

If you like restaurants with a view, Stanley and Seaforts, perched high above the city, is another excellent option. Stanley and Seaforts is classic, a bit old-fashioned, and has service that will make your evening feel special. Any restaurant with a view lends itself well to romance, and there are many spots with beautiful water views in Tacoma, especially those along the Ruston Way waterfront.

If you want something a little quieter and not as expensive, perhaps look to the Proctor District in North Tacoma, which has options like Pomodoro Italian restaurant, Europa Bistro, and La Fondita. Or for something a little different, start your day with breakfast at one of Tacoma’s best breakfast spots.

03 of 06

Stroll Along the Ruston Way Waterfront

View of Mt. Rainier from Tacoma
Thomas Wilson / EyeEm/Getty Images
3001 Ruston Way, Tacoma, WA 98402, USA
Phone +1 253-756-7886

Yes, it’s a bit cold out in February, but all the more reason to take a stroll along the water—you will likely be one of the only couples on this often-crowded walkway. If you get too chilly, duck into one of the restaurants located here. Choose from cheaper options like The RAM or Duke’s Chowder House, especially if a beer and a burger is your idea of romance, or hit up one of the seafood restaurants if you want to enjoy something a little more refined. Options include The Lobster Shop, C.I. Shenanigan’s or Harbor Lights.

At the far north end of the Waterfront is Point Ruston, which connects directly to the Ruston Way Waterfront and offers up more restaurants, as well as a movie theater and water views. It's got romance written all over it.

04 of 06

Take a Walking Tour of Downtown

Union Station Tacoma
Kristin Kendle

Another option to get you out and about is taking a walking tour of downtown Tacoma. This can be a fine way to complement other Valentine’s Day activities if you both enjoy being outdoors or viewing public artwork. Sneak a kiss at the Bridge of Glass while you enjoy views of Tacoma, the Puget Sound and Mt. Rainier (as long as it’s not too cloudy).

Continue to 5 of 6 below.
05 of 06

See a Movie

700 Bellevue Way NE #310, Bellevue, WA 98004, USA
Phone +1 425-450-9100

You can always hit up a blockbuster at one of Tacoma’s many theaters. Cinemark at Point Ruston is the largest movie theater in Tacoma and has an inherently romantic setting, right along the water and surrounded by restaurants and lovely places for a stroll. The next closest larger cinemas are at Lakewood Towne Center and the Regal on 84th Street.

But if you want to enjoy a romantic atmosphere, look into more unique cinemas—Tacoma has two. Blue Mouse Theater is located in the Proctor District in North Tacoma and usually has one movie per week at a pleasantly affordable rate (under $10). Your other option is the Grand Cinema, near the Theater District. The Grand typically has avant garde and independent films for brainier sweeties.

06 of 06

Enjoy a Sweet Treat

Going out to dinner is popular on Valentine's Day, but if you and your date aren't so hungry and instead prefer to indulge your sweet tooth, there are many options. For one, many of those same restaurants offer delicious desserts too. Or look to one of Tacoma's bakeries. Granted, they may not be open late so this option works better for a morning snack or lunch.

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What Should You Do for Valentine's Day in Tacoma?