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Fall in love all over again with the best things to do in Bloemfontein for couples

Let’s face it, the couch has become the unofficial third wheel in every relationship. It’s time to kick it to the curb and spice things up with activities that won’t have you snoozing by 8 PM.

Bloemfontein is here to rescue you from the clutches of boredom with its couple-friendly escapades. From star-gazing at the Naval Hill Planetarium to whispering sweet nothings at the botanical gardens, there are a lot of activities to rekindle that spark. 

Now, grab your partner and get ready to make memories that’ll last longer than the latest Netflix series you binged together!

Embark on a helicopter sightseeing adventure

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Address: New Tempe Airport

Phone: +27 (0)51 451-1717

Operating Hours:

  • Monday to Saturday – 7:30 AM to 6 PM
  • Sunday – 8 AM to 4 PM

Bloemfontein offers a unique way to experience its beauty with a private helicopter flight. My partner and I recently decided to try this for a special occasion, and it was an incredible experience.

As the helicopter lifted off, we were immediately struck by the stunning views of the city and its surroundings. The feeling of soaring above Bloemfontein and seeing familiar landmarks from a new angle was unforgettable.

This adventure is perfect for anniversaries or birthdays, providing a unique way to celebrate with your loved one.

Pro Tip:
For a comfortable helicopter ride, layering your clothing is key. It ensures you stay cosy whether it’s chilly or warm. Opt for closed-toe footwear over sandals for safety, and keep your hair tied up or wear a cap.

Learn about the wonders of the universe at Naval Hill Planetarium


Address: Naval Hill

Phone: +27 51 401 9751 

Operating Hours:

  • Open daily – 5 AM to 7 PM

Naval Hill Planetarium in Bloemfontein is the first digital planetarium in Sub-Saharan Africa and a fantastic place for a date.

When my partner and I visited, we were impressed by the modern domed theatre. At a show, we were transported into space with stunning visuals that felt incredibly real.

The 60-minute show was not only beautiful but also educational. We learned about stars, planets, and galaxies in a way that was easy to understand, and it was fascinating to see and discuss these cosmic wonders together.

Pro Tip:
Combine your visit to Naval Hill Planetarium with a trip to Boyden Observatory. It’s just a short drive away. You can extend your celestial journey with hands-on stargazing sessions that bring the wonders of the universe closer to you.

Enjoy a scenic walk at the Naval Hill Game Reserve

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Naval Hill Game Reserve is a hidden gem for couples seeking a tranquil escape into nature without leaving the city.

As we strolled through the reserve, we were greeted by the graceful presence of giraffes, elegantly moving through the landscape. It was quite a sight, one that made us feel like we were on a mini safari right in our own backyard. 

Along the way, we also spotted other wildlife like eland, blesbok, and zebra, adding to the charm of our adventure. And let’s not forget about the birds! The reserve is teeming with avian life, making it a paradise for bird watchers like us.

Pro Tip:
For a panoramic view of Bloemfontein, pay a visit to the Nelson Mandela statue at Naval Hill. It’s not only a tribute to a great leader but also the perfect spot to appreciate the city’s vast beauty.

Admire a diverse collection of African art at Oliewenhuis Art Museum


Address: 16 Harry Smith St, Dan Pienaar

Phone: +27 78 968 4300

Operating Hours:

  • Monday to Friday – 8 AM to 5 PM
  • Saturday & Sunday – 9 AM to 4 PM

Oliewenhuis Art Museum is a top-notch spot for couples looking for a cultured outing. The place is pretty impressive, housed in this Dutch-style building surrounded by wild olive trees, hence the name.

What’s cool is that it won’t cost you a dime to get in, so you can enjoy all the African art they have without worrying about your wallet.

There’s everything from traditional sculptures to modern paintings, all telling stories about Africa’s heritage and identity. It’s a pretty chill spot to just stroll around and take it all in together. 

Pro Tip:
Discover the natural beauty of the museum by exploring its four scenic walking trails. It’s a wonderful way to enjoy art and nature in one visit, as each trail offers a tranquil escape into the museum’s lush landscapes and diverse plants and wildlife.

Join a soccer or cricket game at Bloem Action Sports

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Address: 32 Curie Ave, Hospitaalpark

Phone: +27 82 499 0072 

Operating Hours:

  • Monday to Friday – 10 AM to 11:30 PM
  • Saturday – 9 AM to 10 PM

Bloem Action Sports offers a fun and unique date experience in Bloemfontein. My partner and I have enjoyed action cricket and soccer there, but they also have action netball if that’s more your style.

The best part is the atmosphere. It’s so lively and competitive. It’s perfect for couples looking to have some fun together and maybe even show off their skills a bit.

Plus, they cater to all levels, so whether you’re a pro or a total beginner, you’ll fit right in. 

Pro Tip:
The centre offers cosy braai facilities. Enjoy a personal touch to your sports day with a relaxing, self-catered picnic in a charming setting.

Plan a Saturday visit to the Boeremark Farmer’s Market

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Address: Joachim van Brug, Langenhoven Park

Phone: +27 84 919 1676 

Operating Hours:

  • Every Saturday – 8 AM to 12:30 PM

Every Saturday, Boeremark Farmer’s Market becomes a hub of local activity, offering a delightful array of fresh produce, homemade treats, and sizzling braais. 

One of the highlights for us was indulging in the variety of local delicacies on offer. From artisanal bread to mouth-watering pastries made with locally sourced ingredients, there’s something to tempt every palate.

But what really sets the Boeremark Farmer’s Market apart is its vibrant atmosphere. We found ourselves striking up conversations with friendly farmers and vendors, learning more about their products and the local community.

Pro Tip:
Before heading to the farmers market, create a comprehensive checklist to ensure you don’t forget essentials like change, bags, and marketing materials. 

Reserve a table at Bella Casa for a romantic evening


Address: 31 President Steyn Ave, Westdene

Phone: +27 51 448 9571

Operating Hours:

  • Monday – 12 PM to 6 PM
  • Tuesday to Saturday – 12 PM to 10 PM
  • Sunday – 11:30 AM to 3 PM

Having spent many evenings at Bella Casa, I can confidently recommend it as a prime spot for couples seeking a memorable dining experience in Bloemfontein.

The restaurant’s reputation for serving the delicious pizzas in town is well-deserved, and its selection of Italian dishes never disappoints.

What I appreciate most is the reasonable pricing, making it accessible for couples looking to enjoy a special meal without breaking the bank. The space is tastefully designed, creating a pleasant atmosphere perfect for romantic dinners. 

Pro Tip:
Choose Bella Casa’s shaded terrace to enjoy a cosy dinner under the stars. It’s the perfect spot for couples to savour the night breeze while dining alfresco.

Pack a basket for a serene picnic at Free State National Botanical Gardens

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Address: Rayton Rd, Dan Pienaar

Phone: +27 51 436 3530

Operating Hours:

  • Open daily – 8 AM to 5 PM

The Free State Botanical Gardens is a gem hidden amidst the rocky hills of Bloemfontein, and it’s the ideal spot for a peaceful retreat. Recently, my partner and I decided to have a picnic there, and it turned out to be a delightful experience

What’s great about this place is the abundance of birdlife. We brought along our binoculars and spent some time spotting different species while enjoying our meal. 

In addition to the birds, we also encountered a few reptiles sunning themselves on the rocks. It was fascinating to see them up close, adding an unexpected element of adventure to our day.

Pro Tip:
For those moments when a picnic doesn’t fit your mood, the Bloemfontein Botanical Gardens offer a serene dining spot. @Botanical invites you to relax and enjoy a meal amidst the garden’s natural splendour.

Witness the rehabilitation of diverse animals at Zanchieta Wildlife Rescue


Address: Helena Road Waterbron

Phone: +27 72 200 3272

Operating Hours:

  • Open daily – 9 AM to 5 PM

Zanchieta Wildlife Rescue is not your typical tourist attraction. It’s a non-profit wildlife sanctuary where rescued animals find a safe haven. The vibe there is so peaceful. You can spend hours wandering around, taking in the sights and sounds of the animals.

One thing I really appreciate is the guided tour they offer at 4 PM when they feed the animals. It’s quite a sight to see. Even if you can’t make it for the tour, the staff are super friendly and willing to share info about the animals.

Knowing that all the money you spend there goes directly towards caring for the animals makes any bumps in the road totally worth it. 

Pro Tip:
Fair warning: the road to the sanctuary is a bit of an adventure itself. It’s a dirt road, but consider it the first step to a memorable journey where you’ll connect with nature and each other.

Schedule a couples’ massage at De Oude Kraal Estate and Spa


Address: N1, South Bloemfontein

Phone: +27 51 5640 733 

De Oude Kraal Estate and Spa offers a wonderful escape for couples seeking relaxation and romance. 

When we visited, we started with a soothing massage that immediately melted away our stress. The therapists were skilled and made sure we felt refreshed and rejuvenated.

A standout experience for us was trying their Merino wool treatments, which felt amazing and did wonders moisturising our skin. This unique treatment left us both with a radiant glow.

Pro Tip:
Take a stroll beyond the spa and immerse yourselves in the rustic charm of De Oude Kraal’s farm. Embrace the tranquillity of nature on a leisurely horse ride or a peaceful walk, surrounded by the farm’s beauty and wildlife.

Attend an open mic event at Aasvoël Klub

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Address: Kelly’s View Settlement

Phone: +27 84 559 8991

Operating Hours:

  • Open daily – 6 PM to 2 AM

Aasvoël Klub in Bloemfontein is a great spot for couples looking to enjoy a night out with a cultural twist. This cosy venue is known for its rustic charm and offers a mix of poetry, music, and stand-up comedy.

When we attended Cezanne Yzelle’s show, we were impressed by the quality of the entertainment and the efficient bar service.

The setup is fantastic. You can see the stage from anywhere in the club, so there’s no bad seat. The atmosphere is relaxed and inviting, making it easy to enjoy the evening. 

Pro Tip:
For the latest happenings, keep an eye on their Facebook page. It’s your go-to for all their exciting events! It’s a simple and surefire way to stay in the loop with the vibrant activities they offer.

Watch a live performance at the Sand Du Plessis Theatre

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Address: 12 First Avenue

Phone: +27 51 447 7771

The Sand Du Plessis Theatre is a fantastic destination for couples looking for live shows and cultural performances in Bloemfontein. As the top entertainment venue in the city, it offers a variety of experiences, from theatre productions to music concerts. 

My partner and I recently attended a performance of ‘Sleeping Beauty,’ and we were pleasantly surprised. Led by Xander Steyn, the show featured local talent with vibrant costumes, lively dance numbers, and plenty of laughs.

What I appreciated most was the variety of performances offered at the theatre, catering to diverse interests in theatre, music, or dance. Plus, supporting local talent adds an extra layer of satisfaction to the evening. 

Join the vibrant Mangaung Rose Festival

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Address: Urth Garden Centre

Phone: +27 51 451 1913

I’ve had the pleasure of attending the Mangaung Rose Festival numerous times. It’s a staple event in our city’s calendar, dating back to the ’70s, celebrating our abundance of roses.

My partner and I particularly enjoyed strolling through the flower exhibition and even entered the cut-rose competition for fun. We also tried our hand at the Rose Classic Bicycle Race, which added a bit of excitement to our date.

The garden and art tours offer a relaxing escape, perfect for a leisurely afternoon together. 

Pro Tip:
Pack light to keep your hands free and your mind at ease. A small backpack for essentials is all you need. Check the festival’s bag policy beforehand and consider a clear bag or fanny pack for convenience and security.

Take a tandem skydive with Bloemfontein Parachute Club

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Address: New Tempe Airport, Groenvlei

Phone: +27 82 089 3735

Bloemfontein Parachute Club, where you can experience tandem skydives, offers an adrenaline-filled adventure for couples seeking something beyond the ordinary date night. I’ve had the chance to try it myself, and it’s quite the thrill.

The view of Bloemfontein’s unique landscape during the descent is truly something to behold, adding an extra layer of awe to the experience. What’s reassuring is the expertise of the tandem master who ensures your safety every step of the way.

Pro Tip:
For a great skydiving experience, eat a regular meal to keep your energy up and avoid dizziness, but skip the big feast to dodge nausea. Hydrate more than usual to stay alert, but remember, alcohol is a no-go. It’ll only spoil the fun!

Catch a rugby match at the Toyota Stadium

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Address: At Horak Avenue, Willows

Phone: +27 51 407 1700 

Standing tall amidst the vibrant sports culture of South Africa is the Toyota Stadium. It’s a massive arena built back in ’95 for the Rugby World Cup, and it’s a sight to behold.

I’ve been there cheering for our local team, the Cheetahs, with thousands of other passionate fans draped in orange. The energy in that place is something else, especially when the game gets intense.

The stadium has top-notch training facilities too. I’ve sweated it out in their gym, and they have everything you need to stay fit. 

Pro Tip:
Before cheering on your team, treat yourself and your partner to a hearty meal at Braza. Their generous portions and grilled espetada (beef skewers) make it a top choice for a satisfying pre-game feast.
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