1. Take her to a ball game
Doesn't matter if it's major-league, minor-league, or even high-school ball. "I often recommend that my couples go to a baseball game," says Howard Markman, Ph.D., coauthor of 12 Hours to a Great Marriage and a psychologist at the University of Denver. "You sit close together, you're out in the sun, and it gives you time to talk as friends." Of course, under no circumstances should you go out and buy Tigers tickets! So, in the interest of our Detroit-based readership, there are 24 more things on our list you're sure to enjoy together.
2. Climb a volcano
Add some hot to your relationship. Molten-volcano hot. There's something about remote, dangerous places that sets the scene for romance. And few places are as remote or dangerous as the mouth of a live volcano. One of the best is in Villarrica, in south-central Chile. Expect an arduous guided climb of 8 hours, but at the end, your passions will be inflamed by the sight of all that hot, gooey lava. Then ski back down. See chile-ravel.com/solnieve.htm for more information. And for a closer-to-home location, visit Mount Capulin, an inactive volcano in New Mexico, where you can actually climb inside the cone.
3. Go to Beverly Hills
And go big. A weekend spent glittering beside the glitterati at Raffles L'Ermitage in Beverly Hills doesn't come cheap -- it's an "if you have to ask, you can't afford it" deal -- but there's just no substitute. If you can separate yourself from your bed (with sheets spun by virgin Egyptian silk moths fed truffles, champagne, and manna), you can check out L'Ermitage's sumptuous amenities: The spa, salon, and pool are beyond compare, and the menu at Jaan, the hotel's humble restaurant, is highlighted by a $45 salad. Ouch. Yum!
4. Take her shopping . . .
but you pick the clothes "Men don't hate shopping because of the money. It's the sitting on the boyfriend couch at Ann Taylor that we don't like. But what guy wouldn't be enthused about a mall trip if he knew that every 2 minutes a beautiful woman would pop by to model a sexy outfit he'd selected? If you agree to buy, she'll agree to model.
5. Get naked!
Pour peppermint schnapps in her belly button. Sip it. Then kiss her breasts and blow on the spots you kissed. The peppermint schnapps and air will cause a cool sensation and heighten arousal, says Ava Cadell, Ph.D., a Los Angeles sex therapist. And do some shopping at adult-toy online sites, and at the grocery store. There's a whole world of flavors and textures out there to play with. Once you get past the headlong plunge to sex, you'll ask yourself what the hurry was, anyway. Delayed pleasures remain the most gratifying ones, especially where her body is concerned.
6. Drive the Pacific Coast Highway in a convertible
This drive -- arguably the most spectacular in the country -- offers stunning scenery, plenty of things to explore, and stop-offs at major destinations like San Francisco, Los Angeles, Yosemite, and San Diego. The PCH is a combination of U.S. 101 and California Route 1. Start in San Diego and take 101 North, which dips along the Pacific Ocean to L.A. Then proceed through Rodeo Drive, Beverly Hills, and Mission Santa Barbara. Stop at Hearst Castle, one of the nation's largest historic-house museums, to check out the breathtaking overlooks (800-444-4445 for information). After the castle, continue heading up the rugged coast through Monterey and then east into the Sierra Nevada. Take some time to admire Yosemite's cliffs and alpine peaks, and finish your trip at the sea in San Francisco.
7. Take a home pregnancy test
Test positive. Freak out. Call your parents. Go shopping for baby clothes. Buy a baby-names book. Eliminate Britney and Ashton as options. Start looking at colleges . . .
8. Run a marathon
Training for a race together is a crafty way to get in shape, spend time as a couple, and stay motivated. You'll have someone to talk to during those tedious long runs, you'll push each other, and you'll have to answer to your partner if you skip a workout. Visit runnersworld.com for training schedules and a calendar of marathons. And if the mere act of running 26.2 miles isn't exciting enough, choose an exotic location -- like, say, China. The Great Wall Marathon is every May.
9. Shoot each other out of the sky
Go to aircombatusa.com and find a location near you where you and your girl can fly dueling fighter jets. Take out your unresolved relationship issues while trying to blow each other to smithereens from the cockpits of SIAI Marchetti SF260s. For real. These are not simulated flights. Loser buys dinner. Hope that it's her -- this little date will cost $2,000.
Turn dancing into dirty dancing with an Audi-Oh vibrator, which pulsates to the speed and intensity of whatever beat is playing. Have your lady wear the discreet harness with butterfly vibe underneath her panties. Then bump and grind to throbbing music at a club, or as you play deejay at home. This is one remote you won't fight over. $80. babeland.com
11. Play in the sand
Run up the 750-foot dunes at the Great Sand Dunes National Monument and Preserve in southern Colorado. Roll down. Roll around. nps.gov/grsa
12. Build something for your home
Home improvement demonstrates a commitment to making something you share more beautiful, requiring tools like communication, teamwork, and glue guns. "Couples come together and really communicate, sometimes for the first time in years," says Paige Davis, host of TLC's Trading Spaces, in which couples swap homes and redecorate. "I've seen romances rekindled." If demolition isn't for you, focus on projects that require artistry instead of sledgehammers. The Web site kitguy.com sells the means to make everything from birdhouses to porch swings and in-house saunas. But whatever you build, remember, "The key to fun is to try new things and forget about making mistakes," says Davis. Screwups can always be fixed.
13. Do whatever she wants to do -- and like it!
The happiest couples are those who can find enjoyment in sacrifice, according to a study in the Journal of Marriage and Family that tracked 73 couples over 13 years. "Taking pleasure in your partner's happiness enhances mutual satisfaction," says Howard Markman, Ph.D., a psychologist at the University of Denver. "Find out what your partner really wants to do (even shopping for curtains), make it happen, and enjoy it. It'll save you thousands in therapy." Ideas: Massage her scalp. She'll love having your hands in her hair. Or get side-by-side massages at a spa, or sign up to take a partner massage class. When you get home, jump jointly into the shower. There's nothing sexier than washing your woman's hair. Except having her wash yours.
14. Crash the pool at a luxury resort
. . . because nothing's more fun than being bad.
15. Go diving in Sipadan
Never heard of it? Neither has anyone else. That's why Peter Greenberg, Men's Health Travel Detective, recommends it as one of the world's greatest dive spots. Located off the northeast coast of Borneo, Sipadan is Malaysia's only oceanic island. Encompassing a tiny 30 acres, this place is orgasmic for divers, featuring a spectacular and precipitous reef wall that plunges more than 1,900 feet. Getting there is part of the adventure. First, you fly to the capital of Sabah, Kota Kinabalu. Then you connect to Tawau. Then you drive to Semporna. Then you hire a catamaran to take you to the island. Exotic! Start planning now at borneo.org/ajwt.
16. Serenade her
Actually, pay a street musician to do it. Slip the corner fiddler a 50-spot to follow you and your date for the evening. The background soundtrack will make it feel as if you're in a movie. It's spontaneous, fun, and romantic.
17. Go to dinner at a superfancy restaurant
"During the meal, you're allowed to talk only about sexual fantasies," suggests Patricia Love, Ed.D., author of Hot Monogamy. "There's something very erotic about being public and being surreptitious about your sexuality." Bonus mission: Order foods that are delicious and lascivious at the same time.
18. Get cooking
Like home improvement (see #12), it's about the journey, not the result. "It's an opportunity to create something special as a couple," says celebrity chef and restaurateur Bobby Flay. "So the crème brûlée doesn't set. Who cares? It's just the two of you." See "What's for Dinner Tonight" at menshealth.com.
19. Go to Barbados
Rich folks like Prince Charles, Jerry Seinfeld, and Cindy Crawford stay at the Sandy Lane Hotel on the serene west side of the island, where a three-room penthouse costs up to $7,000 a night and the cheapest rooms during peak season are $950. But there's a less expensive way. Greenberg suggests renting a Toyota and driver for $200 a day, then heading south to the Silver Rock Hotel (246-428-2866), which goes for $120 a night with a balcony and full ocean view. The Silver Sands Beach, where world-champion windsurfers train, is just outside. Go between May and the end of December, the off-peak months, and most rates are discounted up to 50 percent. Don't leave without sampling the flying fish.
20. Challenge her to 'strip PlayStation'
What's more fun than cleaving your partner's head off with a laser scimitar? "Competing with your partner in a playful environment can help you work out some aggressions," says Jennifer Worick, coauthor of The Worst-Case Scenario Survival Handbook: Dating and Sex. "Strip video gaming is fun and sexy. Every time a character is killed, you must remove a piece of clothing." For the ultimate in hot gaming action, try Dead or Alive Xtreme Beach Volleyball for Xbox. DOA has more T and A than any game out there -- it's basically soft-core porn.
21. Spend the night in an igloo
For a thrilling, once-in-a-lifetime experience, you can't beat the Kakslauttanen Hotel and Igloo Village in the Finnish Laplands, well within the Arctic Circle. It ain't cheap. It ain't convenient. But you'll definitely get close as you huddle for warmth. Each igloo contains a bed made of snow draped with blankets and reindeer hides. Even when the mercury dips below -40 degrees F outside, the igloos keep couples toasty at around 6 to 8 degrees F as they sip locally distilled Finlandia vodka and watch the aurora borealis light up the night. The Finns guarantee that any child conceived under the northern lights (best viewed September to April) will be male. See www.travel.fi/int/kakslauttanen for more information. Or build an igloo in your yard next time it snows. It's nearly as fun.
22. Go to an art museum
Forget the art; your mission is the art of foreplay. Stand close and speak in hushed tones about the exhibits . . . the other people . . . and what you want to do to each other when you get home. It's also nice to make the occasional soul-baring observation in a setting where it doesn't sound too lame. Plus, there are always at least a few naked pictures, some dark nooks and crannies, and a decent cafe.
23. Get naked!
Make your own art -- on each other. Pick up a chocolate tattoo set ($15) at early2bed.com. It includes a jar of chocolate body frosting, stencil sheets, and a paintbrush. Lick off.
24. Make out under a waterfall
If you find yourself in Kauai, Hawaii, and the abundant natural beauty, welcoming locals, and crashing surf don't leave you feeling completely satisfied, there's something wrong with you. But if you need to spice things up, take an Air 1 Kauai helicopter to the bottom of a waterfall. They fly with the doors off, so every seat has a first-class view. One caveat: Air 1 Kauai also flies all the island's rescue missions; if they get a call, they'll drop you off wherever you are and come back later. Then again, where better to be stranded? hawaiian.net/~interisland
25. Just make out!
Have a make-out date at least an hour long, says Joannides, with no below-the-belt contact. It's fun, teenage-style!
[Via Men's Health]