Romantic camping tops our list of favorite getaways, and there’s no better time to try it out than Valentine’s Day. With a bit of planning, a Valentine’s Day camping trip can be a sweet (and socially distanced!) way of celebrating, allowing you to focus on and connect with your partner in the great outdoors. So skip the stuffy prix fixe dinner this year, and check out our most romantic camping ideas.

Pick the Perfect Location.

Choose a meaningful location for your campsite—ahead of time. This place might be an old favorite or one that’s long been on your bucket list, or perhaps just a great spot to view the sunset or sunrise. And however warm and fuzzy you’re feeling inside, remember that it’s still winter outside—so you may need to call ahead to ensure that camping is allowed during the off-season. If you’re heading to a traditional campground, try to snag a quiet spot, free from the distraction of noisy neighbors.

Take It Easy.

Once you’ve chosen a campsite, consider how you’ll get to it and what types of activities you might do in the area. If you’ll be spending the day hiking, snowshoeing, kayaking, or biking, try to keep the pace a bit more mellow than usual. Allow yourselves to get lost in conversation and enjoy each other’s company—and avoid getting exhausted and sweaty before your romantic evening begins.

Keep Warm & Comfortable.

What’s a camping trip without a roaring campfire? The fire offers warmth and light, and naturally draws people together. The best way to enjoy it? In a comfortable chair, of course! We love side-by-side rocking chairs—they help the body relax and let you keep the conversation going until late in the night. In fact, our FirePit Rocker™ was specifically designed for this, with a low-ride seat and mesh backrest. For those who prefer to be cradled in a less structured, quilted seat, the MaxRelax Pod Rocker™ is the perfect choice. Both chairs are easy to carry and set up, so all that’s left to do is to add a few big, cozy blankets.

You should also be sure to check the weather forecast before heading out, and pack accordingly. It never hurts to pack extra clothing layers, hats, and mittens. If you’re new to wintertime camping, check out our “Warm Up to Cold Weather Camping” blog post for more tips!

Wine & Dine.

A delicious dinner is a must for your romantic camping trip—but don’t waste quality cuddling time on food prep. Choose a meal that is special yet simple to prepare, and do what you can ahead of time. Our favorite: season a steak to your liking, and vacuum-seal or wrap it in a foil packet along with cut veggies. At dinnertime, your meal is completely ready to toss on the grill.

For meals with more prep involved, remember that nothing ruins a relaxing, romantic dinner like stress. Think ahead about the space you’ll need, and how to keep everything you need organized and at your fingertips, or at least off the ground. A camp kitchen like the Slim-Fold Cook Station™ has plenty of storage, so it can help keep you sane and the mood light.

Depending on what’s on the menu, you may also want to bring along a small camp table. Our recommendation: the Compact Camp Table 25™, which is just the right size for dinner for two.

Pictured: Slim-Fold Cook Station

Bring along a bottle (or two) of a favorite wine, and your campsite meal is instantly elevated. Just be sure to pack a corkscrew and a pair of unbreakable wine glasses. For colder nights, you may want to opt for hot beverages, such as a rich hot chocolate. Don’t forget dessert, either! The standard heart-shaped box of chocolates is much more enjoyable when shared by the campfire, in our opinion. End the meal with traditional s’mores, or get creative with a dessert that can be cooked on the grill.

Set the Mood.

The moon, stars, and campfire may be all the ambiance your Valentine’s Day celebration needs, but you can always add a few special touches. Unscented pillar or tea light candles can enhance the mood lighting—just use caution to keep the wrong sparks from flying.

Inside the tent, use a string or two of battery-operated lights to create a cozy, intimate atmosphere. And of course, sleeping under the stars is extra romantic with a double sleeping bag. Do your best to appreciate the nature around you and the person with you—and simply enjoy the evening!