So maybe you’re coming back to school from a summer romance. Maybe you wanted it to be this way or maybe your master plan to snag a significant other just didn’t go as planned. Have no fear! Anyone who has Tindered knows that the app is most effective in college towns anyways. Now that you’re back in Berkeley and your Tinder game is back for another exciting semester, it’s time to start thinking about where you should take your date(s). We’ve taken things like entertainment value, convenience and practicality into consideration. So, without further ado, here are five places in Berkeley and the surrounding Bay Area to take that special someone(s).
1. Memorial Glade
Perfect for a romantic picnic or a quick meet-up in between classes, the Glade offers both natural intimacy and a safe public setting. If you’re pretty serious about this Tinderella and want to get to know him/her, go in the evening and watch the sunset whilst snacking on prosciutto and other perfectly picnic-y snacks. If you’re trying to keep it casual and don’t know how long you’re actually going to want to hang out with this person (you may have another date lined up later that afternoon if you’re a seasoned Tinder user), meet up during the busy afternoon. Maybe even bring a frisbee so you can show off your coordination and relaxed personality. Whatever you’re looking for, the Glade is always a safe bet.
2. Caffe Strada
If you’re not so sure about the legitimacy of your Tinder date (i.e. they sound a little sketchy or are piling on the sexual innuendos), take them to a busy and open coffee shop. Caffe Strada is our favorite suggestion because, while it offers great ambience and often draws an attractive crowd, it sits on one of the busier intersections in Berkeley — College Avenue and Bancroft Way — right across from campus. Not only will you be surrounded by fellow Strada patrons, you’ll also be under the surveillance of a steady stream of passersby. No moves shall be pulled here. Cafes also make for good conversation spaces and are generally classic first date locations. They’re also good for interviews, but that’s beside the point.
3. The fire trails
Ahhh yes, the classic, not-too-strenuous nature hike. What better way to make yourself look outdoors-y while also not fighting for breath as you attempt witty and flirtatious banter. The views you receive from this sometimes-steep but mostly-short hike are also the perfect setting for deeper, getting-to-know-you conversation and opportunistic kiss-stealing. If you decide this is a little much for a first date, the fire trails are a great option for even a second or third date. Also, don’t forget to bring some refreshments so you can enjoy them together and toast to a great first date and many more to come.
4. San Francisco
Does your Tinder match come from outside of the Berkeley bubble? Props to you for expanding your mileage range! What’s a little long distance these days, anyway? But now, you can’t just casually meet up at the nearest coffee shop or campus landmark. There’s a likely chance the city of San Francisco will be an ideal in-between location. And luckily, SF is one of the easiest places to go for great entertainment options. Pack a picnic at Stern Grove, eat BiRite ice cream at Dolores Park, have tasty Mexican food in the Mission District, go to the Farmer’s Market outside the Ferry Building or see a show at Rickshaw Stop — the possibilities are endless. Just feel out your Tinder match and see what suits both of you.
5. Ici Ice Cream
What’s more romantic than a long wait for a scoop of freshly churned ice cream on quaint College Avenue? The answer is: literally nothing. In fact, you’ll probably run into other date-goers whilst picking out your flavor from the locale’s daily menu. The wait may seem arduous but it actually provides an ideal amount of time for deep conversation. The ice cream will be undeniably delicious (people love it on Yelp!) and you can even Instagram the experience if that’s your jive. We don’t know what it is, but there’s just something about taking a stroll down College Avenue, ice cream cone in hand, your newfound Tinder love’s hand in the other, that just makes us want to say “Awwwwwww.”