We went on a three hour walk to find the best spots in Lincoln for a socially distanced Valentine’s date

You’ll up your insta game in the process

When you’ve lived in Lincoln for a while, the place starts to become a little boring, (sorry but it’s true). Even more so now all the restaurants, bars, and pubs are closed – there is not much to do. There are only so many times you can visit the High Street, Cathedral Quarters or the Castle until it all becomes too familiar.

With the national lockdown being here to stay for another month, couples who want to see each other are stuck in a rut between delving into the great outdoors or having endless amounts of FaceTime dates.

And with this dilemma in mind, my flatmates and I decided to go to some new places we haven’t visited in Lincoln all in one day.

Overall the route took us about three hours, going to some of the best places for couples walks or date picnics in the city.

So sit down, grab your notebook and take some notes:

1. Arboretum

This little treasure just right to the Cathedral was our first stop. The park itself is massive, leading from the back of Lincoln College into this massive downhill space looking over the city.

As a group, we were pretty excited about the idea of a cool water fountain, and even more excited about a maze that hides in the park.

This is definitely a great walking spot for couples and a very romantic yet outdoor setting for those looking for a nice cool walk. Be warned though, to get to the Arboretum, you do have to travel up to Lincoln’s slightly less ‘steep hill.’

According to Visit Lincoln, “The Arboretum was originally designed and laid out between 1870 and 1872 by Edward Milner, one of the most celebrated Victorian gardeners of his time.”

2. Bishops Palace

If you’re searching for a more historic treat in the city, just a few minutes away from Lincoln Arboretum is Bishops Palace. Heading up this way you’ll get to stop by the Pottergate Arch which leads you to the medieval part of Lincoln.

Bishops Palace is a nice area to have a quick walk around or sit in the front area and see the views of Lincoln Cathedral and the medieval palace.

However when looking for it is quite hidden, with the archway in the far corner from the back of Lincoln Cathedral. It is well worth a stop if you decide to do a walking date, and also a big space to socially distance!

The inside of the palace is currently closed due to vital conservation work.

The original building was built in the 12 century but was modernised by Bishop William Alnwick in the 1430s.

3/4. Lincoln Cathedral and Castle

Lincoln’s Cathedral and Castle are the most obvious of sites to go to for a socially distanced date. The grounds at both places are large enough to have anyone sitting outside with a nice picnic or long walk.

Around the castle area, you can also do some more entertaining activities with your partner or friends. The area gives you free access to plenty of footpaths, great views, shops of Steep Hill, the castle walls, and the upper part of Lincoln.

And if you decide to do the full journey we took, this is also a nice stop-off point to sit on benches and relax.

Lincoln Cathedral hosts the University of Lincoln’s graduations every year, with celebrations also continuing in the castle courtyard. I’m keeping my fingers and toes crossed we all get to experience that after lockdown is over.

5. Ellis Mill

Despite Ellis Mill being currently closed for maintenance, and you can’t enter the grounds past this gate, it is still worth the visit.

With Burton Road chippy around the corner, you and your boo can visit the beautiful views of this more unseen side of upper Lincoln on Valentine’s Day. It is about a half an hour walk from campus, giving you some great time outside for a quick visit and romantic date.

It holds a lot of history in the more rural area of Lincoln, dating back to 1798 and being the only one standing in Lincoln currently.

The Mill is still in full working order and provides flour on windy days, according to Visit Lincoln.

6. West Common

If you’re a countryside girl like me, the West Common will be a place for familiarity. For my flatmates below, horses and muddy fields were one of the best experiences of their lockdown week.

The West Common is mainly just a grass track route, leading from West Parade down to Carlholme Road. It’s a great track to see the horses, and on a less wet day maybe even sit to have a picnic next to the field.

The land runs round the edge of the city and has its predecessor on the other side of the city, the South Common. The fields are also used for outdoor sports.

7. Boultham Park

Boultham Park is a secret treasure of Lincoln. It leads near the backend of Morrisons and shows visitors a big forest area, pond leading from Lincoln’s canals, a park, and plenty of space for outdoor sports. There is also a food stand and the ruins of a former manor house that used to live on the site.

If you wanted to spend your Valentine’s Day entirely outside, this is the place for you. There’s plenty of spaces for picnics, small football matches or just for a nice long walk.

Make sure to wear your welly boots though, as the land is currently very wet due to the pond overflowing. This park was purchased in 1929 by the City of Lincoln Council and opened as a public park for the people of Lincoln.

8. A walk to Skellingthorpe (not on the map, we did this another day)

Now if you and your significant other are up for trekking on Valentine’s Day, this 4.5 mile walk will be for you.

Completely leaving Lincoln altogether, you can walk on a public footpath straight towards Skellingthorpe.

It’s a great way to take some time out of the day with your partner, with beautiful views and once again more historic land to read up on. If you want to trek further on Valentine’s Day, you can always do the Skellingthorpe Old Wood Walk as well!

We hope you try out the spots we did, and if you’re brave enough, you can even follow our own route above (beware of the blisters you may obtain though.)

Related stories recommended by this writer:

The seven best places in Lincoln to take a walk in lockdown 2.0

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