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Creative anniversary ideas for romantic couples

Looking for creative anniversary ideas that go beyond dinner and a movie? Check out these awesome suggestions for your best anniversary yet!

Couple holding each other on their wedding day with water in the background. The text overlay says, "Creative anniversary ideas for couples."

In today’s busy world, I think one of the most important things we can do is to make meaning of special days. And what could be more meaningful than your anniversary?

After all, it’s the day that you pledged your love to one another. The day you started a new life together. The day you went from it being You and I to Us.

When you think of celebrating your anniversary, you probably think of a candlelight dinner maybe followed by a movie.

While there’s nothing wrong with that, if you’ve been asking, “How can I make my anniversary special?” then check out these ten creative anniversary ideas that are perfect for romantic couples.

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For each one, I’ve included a time commitment, resources required (when relevant) and an approximate cost, so you can select something that fits both your time and your budget.

You’ll find romantic anniversary ideas to do at home to fun anniversary ideas that get you out and exploring new things and places.

While on your anniversary date, ask these anniversary questions for couples.

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Create an “actual re-enactment”

A wedding ring showing a shadow of a heart on a book of readings from a couple's wedding: they are about to reneact their ceremony as a romantic anniversary idea.

Time commitment: 1 hour

Resources required: Written copy of wedding ceremony and wedding album

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Approximate cost: Free

If you’re short on time and money then this is one of the best great creative anniversary ideas to give you all the feels.

Firstly, get the written copy of your ceremony. If possible have two copies of it each.

Secondly, sit down together. Play the music that you walked down the aisle to.

Then take turns doing any readings or other sections that were not done by you originally.

However, when it comes time for the vows, it’s all about you speaking those promises you made – whether it was one year ago or ten years ago.

Once you have completed your vows, then go through your wedding album together, and reminisce about your special day.

Make it an Artiversary

A couple looking at buying some art as a creative wedding anniversary idea

Time commitment: A morning or afternoon

Resources required: Either addresses of local galleries, antique stores, thrift stores, or markets.

Approximate cost: $5 to $5000!

My husband and I celebrated one of our anniversaries by going to an Arts Festival in a small town about 90 minutes from our house.

We were in one of the artist’s homes (where they were staging their art), and had our eye on a particular print.

Several elderly women were in the room when we were deliberating the purchase and they started talking about Artiversary – where they celebrated their anniversaries by purchasing a piece of art to commemorate the occasion.

We thought it was a great idea, purchased the piece, and put it up on our bedroom wall. Every time we look at it, we think about that special day.

The beauty of the Artiversary is that you can get your art from a local market, second hand store, all the way up to a private gallery, depending on your budget.

I’m a firm believer in having the items of your home have significance and beauty and purchasing something for Artiversary ticks both these boxes!

Put a twist on traditional gifts

A woman's hand holding strawberries that she has just picked: one of the couple's anniversary ideas in this post.

Time commitment: Varies depending on choice

Resources required: List of traditional gift ideas and your imagination.

Approximate cost: Varies depending on choice

Using the above link, check out the traditional gift for the year of your marriage.

Then think of an inventive way that you can celebrate your anniversary using that idea.

For example – the fourth wedding anniversary is fruit and flowers. You could celebrate this by going to a berry farm and picking strawberries together (something I did for my birthday this year that was heaps of fun!).

The fifth anniversary is wood, so you could go for a hike in the forest, make a bonfire on the beach, or purchase a special piece of furniture.

For your ninth year, which is pottery, you could attend a pottery making class together.

You’re only as limited as your imagination!

Create a memory box

A memory box filled with photos and other important couple memorabilia created as a creative anniversary idea.

If you’ve been looking for at home anniversary ideas then you should include this fun activity.

Time commitment: Two to three hours

Resources required: Photos, cards, tickets, any other memorabilia, and a memory box.

Approximate cost: You can go from budget with a plain scrapbook storage box, to splurge with this keepsake box.

It’s time to grab all the memorabilia that signifies your relationship and store in in an easily accessible place that you can take out and enjoy time and time again!

If you have opted for a smaller box, then create a new one for each year of your relationship. Each year you can celebrate your anniversary by creating the previous year’s box. 

If this is the first time you are doing this, take all the memorabilia you have stored in your relationship and gather it in to one place.

Work through the memorabilia, talking about the events they signify, and decide which ones make the cut into the box.

A top tip – select only ONE item to represent each event. For example, if you went to a show together, select from either the tickets, or the program. You don’t need all the things!

Make a time capsule

Several letters ready to go into a time capsule as a romantic couple's anniversary idea.

Time commitment: Two hours

Resources required: a time capsule container (this one should last 200 years) notepaper, and any mementos you wish to include.

Approximate cost: $30 – $60

This is another one of my favorite anniversary at home ideas.

At the 100th anniversary of my elementary school’s opening, we made a time capsule and buried it in the school yard. 

It was getting a crazy long time ago and yet I still remember the excitement of placing the special items in the box and burying it. 

Even now I wonder when we were meant to dig it up and see what was inside.

You can channel this excitement and make a time capsule of your own. It doesn’t have to be all that complicated – at the most basic you can write a letter to each other outlining why you love each other and your hopes and dreams for the future.

Make sure you buy a proper time capsule container that can stand being buried for some time and then have a wee ceremony as you put it in the ground.

Aim to dig it up in another five, ten or twenty years.

Just remember to have some kind of marker so you know where to find it!

Have a progressive dinner

Couple dining at a restaurant where they first dated to celebrate their anniversary.

We’re over halfway through our list of creative anniversary ideas. Found your activity of choice yet?

Time commitment: Three to four hours PLUS some advance preparation.

Resources required: Restaurant reservations.

Approximate cost: $100

If you love food, you’ll love this fun idea!

A progressive dinner was popular back in the day – the idea being you would attend one person’s house for the entrée, one for the main, one for the dessert and so on.

This progressive dinner is a little different.

Make a list of the different places you’ve eaten out that have significance to your relationship. You might include where you went to on your first date, the restaurant you were at when he proposed, and the first time you went out for a meal and didn’t need to hire a babysitter!

Once you have them written down, assign one location to each chosen course.

Just make sure you are super careful when you make your bookings that you have time to eat at and travel to each one!

Go back to the first meeting

Couple sitting together at a cafe.

Time commitment: Two hours to overnight, depending on how far you take it.

Resources required: Restaurant reservations, possibly hotel reservations.

Approximate cost: Varies depending on options selected

We’ve seen it a dozen times in the movies or on a tv show. Long time married couple dresses up, arrives separately at a bar, and then imagines they are meeting for the first time.

You can assume alternate identities for this event – like Claire and Phil from Modern Family and their alter egos Julianne and Clive – one of whom may have a hotel reservation and invite the other up to their room to get to know each other a little better!

Set up a couple’s photo shoot

Couple jumping in the air woman holding a bunch of colorful balloons during a creative anniversary date.

Time commitment: Two to three hours for the shoot, and addition time preparing. Professional photographers will need to be booked well in advance.

Resources required: Photographer, props, venue

Approximate cost: Free if you take your chances with a friend or family member. Between $250 and $500 as a general rule for a professional shoot.

This creative wedding anniversary idea helps mark the passing of time in your marriage.

Sometimes we are so busy taking pictures of other people, we forget to do it for ourselves.

Reverse that this year with a couple’s photo shoot. You can either enlist an enthusiastic friend or family member to take the photographs for you, or hire a professional.

If you chose the latter, make sure your decision on who to hire is based on their reputation and portfolio- not their price! I speak from experience after some truly tragic wedding photos that haunt me still.

Make sure you take some time to think about where you want the photos taken and the kind of poses you want to hold. 

Go on a mystery trip

Couple driving in a convertible about to go on a mystery trip as their anniversary celebration.

Time commitment: A morning or afternoon.

Resources required: Plastic bag or container. Slips of paper. A sense of adventure!

Approximate cost: Varies, dependent on activities selected. You can set a budget- for example, $50.

If you’ve been wondering where to go for your anniversary, why not make the experience a little more fun?

It’s important to not just relive old memories, but to create new ones as well.

To do this activity well, you need to set a few guidelines. The activities you write down should be of roughly equal travel time, total duration and also applicable to the same time of day.

Take some small slips of paper.

On each slip, write down a place and activity you would like to go to.

When we did this recently, we wrote down “a freak shake in City A,” “lunch at a café and a walk along the beach at City B,” and “fish and chips in City C.” These were all suitable for lunchtime / early afternoon and each location was between 45 and 90 minutes from our house.

Fold over the pieces of paper and put them in a bag.

Jump in the car with the bag.

At the end of the driveway, pull out of the pieces of paper. That’s where you’re going!

Do some dreaming

Couple at home pointing to places on a map they would like to visit.

Time commitment: One hour.

Resources required: None

Approximate cost: Free

This is one of those sweet anniversary ideas that costs nothing yet gives you all the feels.

Sit down with your honey and start to brainstorm all the things you’d like to do in the next month, six months, year, five years and ten years.

Once you’ve done that, talk about how these dreams might become a reality.

Make a concrete plan of one action you can take within the next 24 hours to kick start one of those dreams.

Creative anniversary ideas

From at home anniversary ideas to re-enactments, from the free to the luxurious, these creative and romantic anniversary ideas for couples cover all the bases. They’ll blow those dinner and a movie ideas out of the water.

if you’ve been looking for creative anniversary ideas that go beyond dinner and a movie, I hope some of these ideas inspire and motivate you to create your most meaningful anniversary yet! 

Want greater connection in your relationship?

Then you'll want this freebie.

It's called The KISS Connection and it's a FREE 4-step everyday practice that will bring back that loving feeling.

Hit the pink button to grab your free copy today.

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