Here’s the thing that people tell you about relationships but you never believe until you are in one:
THEY TAKE WORK
They take time and effort from both parties!
But there are things you can do together which will keep you both happy.
The classic, the crowd-pleaser, of course, is travel.
There’s just something about waking up to a different view, exploring exotic lands and, let’s face it, the absence of your mother in law!
Europe is yours to explore!
Sometimes, all you need to do to make a relationship stronger is get away.
Leave all of your baggage (including worries and problems) behind to focus on what’s important: yourself and your loved one.
As we learned from Janet Jackson, the best things in life are free so embrace travel and cherish experiences with your partner rather than things – life becomes a lot easier this way!
“The best things in life aren’t things.”
– Art Buchwald
So take your partner and leave the adjacent Brady Bunch in the dust, even if it’s just for a weekend.
As for a destination, it doesn’t matter much where you go as long as you go!
That being said, Europe is always a good place to start…
First off, it’s pretty small in comparison to other continents so you can cover a lot of wildly diverse cultures in one go.
And if it’s romance you’re looking for look no further – Europe oozes romance – from the gondolas in Venice to the love-lock bridge in Paris, there is no shortage of romantic rendezvous in Europe.
Alternatively, you will always have Paris.
Gather your strength and walk up the Eiffel tower, arriving to a view that will do nothing to help you catch your breath.
Doing things with your partner that raise your heart rate brings you closer and reminds you of a time when just sighting your lover made you feel this way.
Look out in awe as the lights of the city twinkle and shine like a dusting of glitter.
The Parisian summer, in turn, brings with it an opportunity to do something so different, special and romantic that you will tell the story until all your friends have heard it thrice: Diner en Blanc.
You take your partner (and half a kitchen) to a secret location where you dine among thousands, dressed head-to-toe in white. It’s referred to as a “mass chic picnic in a public space.”
Diner en Blanc is not just restricted to Paris. Many other European cities host these yearly dinners too.
The experience is sure to be unforgettable, not to mention a great exercise in team-building with your significant other.
If all else fails, make like Hepburn and Peck and have yourself a Roman Holiday.
It’s not called Rome-ance for nothing.
You will find, I guarantee, that nothing puts the dolce back into your vita like a trip to the old boot.
Paris may be called the city of love, and sure, that tower is pretty nice at night, but think of the most famous romance of all time – that of Romeo and Juilet, not François and Charlotte.
Italy, I say, is the real nation of love – passionate, heart-a-flutter, irresistible love.
When in Rome, don’t do as the tourists do. Waiting in line is the number one killer of a nice day and tourist groups are the natural enemy of romance.
Exactly nothing is going to happen to you if you don’t see the Sistine Chapel, trust me. It is lovely, of course, but this is about your relationship.
Grab some fine, fresh Italian food and head to the park for a picnic – the gardens of the Villa Borghese are ideal.
Go to an open air cinema on a summer night (you’ll have many to choose from) and watch an old Italian movie without understanding much of what is going on – your full attention should be on the moment, the ambience and, of course, your partner.
Go for dinner, not to a place in a guide book but somewhere with a bit of history and culture.
Try cafe Canova-Tadolini, the old workshop of an famous Italian sculptor and his lover.
Alternatively, dine alfresco on a sidewalk table. It’s amazing how some of the city’s busiest roads by day turn into romantic corridors of dining by night.
Enjoy being in the present moment with your partner, appreciate your cultural surroundings and just feel the love!
Once diner is done, why not take a walk along the Tevere.
Don’t be shy about showing your affections: ditch the dainty hand-holding and intertwine like two strands of perfectly cooked Italian spaghetti.
Tell me you can’t hear Paolo Conte singing it’s wonderful, it’s wonderful.
Time seems to have stopped in the eternal city, and the place just breathes romance.
Well, just you wait, because next, you’re heading to Amalfi. A day trip from Napoli in a rental car, this coastal drive could make lovers of mortal enemies, so imagine what it can do for you!
Seeing these ancient rocks rising forever from the sea will show you that life is but a dream. Every corner you turn will be more beautiful than the last.
The magnificent sky, the eternal sea and the towering rocks will make you feel small and somewhat insignificant.
This is when you both realise that life is short and together you have the opportunity to make it as fulfilling and as rich as you like.
Beauty like this is meant to be shared and experienced, so make sure you appreciate it, as a couple, more often.
Experiences like these are the building blocks in the foundation of a truly happy life.
Wherever you decide to go, travel always seems to makes you come out on the other side a better couple, in ways staying at home just can’t.
There is something about the camaraderie, the reliance on each other and the sharing of experiences that just strengthens bonds.
And it’s not restricted to just a plane to travel. A short drive to a bed and breakfast in the next town or a hike at the nearest national park can be just as satisfying.
The point is to get away from your everyday routine and shake things up a bit.
Go somewhere where no one knows you and return a little bit new, different. An excited, invigorated couple is a happy couple!