Love knows no borders – and no one knows that better than those who have found romance in another country. If you’re looking for a relationship, whether in your home country or abroad, you can up your odds in places known for their vibrant dating scenes.
These five cities, which we culled from lists by The Travel Channel, Travel and Leisure, and Conde Nast Traveler, include laid-back bars that make meeting people easy, trendy restaurants for that perfect first date, lush parks for romantic walks – and, most importantly, plenty of fun, friendly singles.
Buenos Aires, Argentina
Few places could be more romantic than the capital of Argentina and the birthplace of one of the world’s most sensual dances: the tango. “The nightlife lasts until 8 or even 10 in the morning,” said Catherine Huchan, an American who fell in love with an Argentine and moved to Buenos Aires five years ago. “Everyone [is] sweaty, dancing and so very happy.”
- Your normal nightlife in Buenos Aires: tangoing in San Telmo’s Plaza Dorrego. (Alexander Hassenstein/Getty)
Buenos Aires is a city that embraces romance to its fullest. “Everyone from teenagers to viejitos [older people] sit on park benches and gaze into each other’s eyes, make out, kiss sweetly, you name it,” said Huchan, who is also communications director for Virtual Dating Assistants, a service that helps men build better online dating profiles. Outside of park benches, socialising often happens over a bottle of local red wine in a romantic bar or in a boliche (nightclub).
Most expats live in Palermo in Buenos Aires’ northeast. The largest neighbourhood in the city, Palermo has its fair share of restaurants and bars, along with the Buenos Aires Zoo and botanical gardens. For those who want to live in a more historic area, Neoclassical architecture and cobblestoned streets give the city’s oldest neighbourhood, San Telmo in Buenos Aires’ east, a romantic European vibe. For an upscale night out, head to Puerto Madero alongside the eastern Rio de le Plata riverbank. Known as the chicest part of town, Puerto Madero also has the city’s most stylish restaurants – including Cabana La Lilas, which serves its famous Argentinian beef with a view of the docks.
Austin, United States
The offbeat Texas capital has nightlife as diverse as its dating pool. “There’s a saying here: if you don’t like the scene, move on to the next bar until you do,” said Chandler Jones, a sales coordinator at the Austin Convention and Visitors Bureau. Many bars and restaurants have outdoor seating with long communal tables that make meeting others easy – and with 110 people moving to the city every day, according to Jones, there is no shortage of opportunity.