Whether it’s holding hands and sipping hot cider as you wander through a pumpkin patch or enjoying a cocoa in front of a roaring fire while the snow gently falls outside, we’re approaching that the time of the year when those cozy thoughts run through your head.
Generation Z calls it “cuffing season.” We’re too old to use cool slang like that, but there is truly something about the colder, darker months that makes you want to escape to somewhere that looks like it stepped right out of a Hallmark movie.
Dating advice website, MyDatingAdviser.com set out to find these romantic destinations and ranked 170 contenders. While making their choices, they looked at three key dimensions: weather, food and activities. Towns with long winter seasons, greater snowfall and more cafes, restaurants, bakeries, crafts retailers, bookstores and parks ranked higher.
Sounds a lot like Idaho, doesn’t it? We thought so too, so we scrolled through the list and discovered that Idaho managed to put four cozy cities on the board! Which ones? Let's take a look so you can plan an in-state vacation!
Stanley ranked was an impressive #3 behind Stockholm, Wisconsin and Stowe, Vermont. In choosing Stanley, the dating site said:
“Located at the foot of the Sawtooth Mountains on the banks of the Salmon River, Stanley is the ideal place to disconnect and get a taste of Idaho frontier life. Hike the Fishhook Creek Trail, ride horseback at Mystic Saddle Ranch, take a paddleboat out on Redfish Lake, and visit the nearby Boat Box, Hot Springs.”
We don’t know about paddleboating in the winter. We’d probably opt for snowmobiling, backcountry skiing or snowshoeing but there’s no doubt that the Sawtooth region in the winter is absolutely breathtaking. According to the dating site, which pulled their weather data from the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Association, it’s downright frigid too. The average winter temperature is 12.5 degrees, the winter season lasts about 3.2 months and they get an average of 75.9 inches of snow.
Nearby Ketchum checked in at #21.
This author feels very, very strongly about #28 mostly because it’s a central part of her own love story. That spot belongs to McCall. Forgive the switch to first person here, but McCall Winter Carnival was the first major public outing my husband and I went to together after we started dating. That entire weekend was absolute magic. So much so that we go back to recreate it every year. He even timed his proposal to coincide with the fireworks over Payette Lake.
Even during the year where there was no Winter Carnival, McCall was still adorably cozy. We booked an off season trip to Shore Lodge and we’ll never forget the experience. From complimentary s’mores around the firepit to throwing on cozy robes and enjoying a coffee as the sun rises over a frozen Payette Lake, it was truly a dream.
Finally, at #34 is Wallace. We’re not surprised! The little mining town oozes charm any time of the year, but they do Christmas big during the first two weeks of December. Lights downtown, craft fairs, gingerbread contents and a magical parade…it’s exactly what MyDatingAdviser was looking for when it came to winter activities.
They had the second highest restaurant score out of all four of the Idaho towns. You know that ranking is legit when they’re home to Idaho’s “Best Hidden Gem Restaurant!” For more about the restaurant and Wallace in general, click HERE!