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St Andrews date spots: the finest and foulest

Not a music article, Erin? No, it’s not. Even wildly successful niche student bloggers need a change of pace. 

Having been around the block, so to speak (and in St Andrews, it really is just one block), I have had my fair share of dates in this golf fetish of a town. My partners on these ventures? Lovely! The venues? Not so much. With today being Valentine’s Day, here are my top 3 best and worst date spots in the town that views sleeping with your sister as acceptable.  

Third best: BrewCo 

My favourite pub if I have money, BrewCo has a quiet atmosphere despite often being full. This, paired with a local pint, makes for good conversation. If you go early enough, you can get weirdly day-drunk and nearly set yourself on fire with their cute wine bottle candles. Plus! You will inevitably run into someone you know, so if your date is going badly, you can always be rescued by the arrival of your friend/acquaintance/tutorial buddy/arch nemesis/aunt who is in town for some reason. However, as mentioned, it is pretty expensive for a pint, so my top tip is to get a date who’ll pay for you to make it more affordable. Hello, golfers! 

Third worst: The Botanic Gardens (in winter) 

Why? Why would you go to a place with plants when they’re all dead and hibernating? It’s probably raining, and you’ll end up slipping on paths that you thought were cobbled (they weren’t). There is literally nothing to do, so you’d better hope you’re good at chatting and looking sexy under grey skies, because that’s all that’s going for you there. However, if you’re a student (which you probably are) entry is free, so that’s…something. A garden full of sticks and grass? For free? Wow! My advice is to wait until summer when you can both comment cluelessly on how pretty the plants look, or date a botanist who can regale you with Latin in cold weather. 

Second best: The Aquarium 

I love fish, man. One of my favourite places to go anyway, the aquarium is a great place to take someone and talk about your sheer lack of knowledge of fish and sea-related exploits. Look at the meerkats! Aren’t they adorable? This is a fantastic date spot if you’re shit at conversation (couldn’t be me personally), because you can just look at fish and do the (extremely hard) kid’s quiz together. Well romantic, innit? It is £13 for student entry at time of writing but I think this is worth it personally. You can’t even get a stuffed toy for £13 in this economy. 

Second worst: The Old Course 

Of all the scenic walks and pretty places in St Andrews, why are you here? There are an infinite number of options for cute sightseeing in this little town, so why are we at a golf course? If you end up here, hope your date is hot because there is absolutely fuck all else to look at. Unless you’re actually playing golf, being here is pointless. Arguably the most boring grass-related view, the Old Course provides little in terms of entertainment except marvelling at self-driving golf bags which speed around like fucked-up rectangular WALL-Es, and the aged men in polo shirts who own them. I, personally, hate golf, so this is (almost) my worst nightmare. However, perhaps the only plus of a golf course date is that if it doesn’t go well, your chances of being hit in the head with a projectile is a lot higher than in a cute café, thus saving you from mildly creepy questions or a monologue on the virtues of your feet. 

First place: The Cheesey Toast Shack 

Very underrated, in my opinion, the Cheesey Toast Shack is a bit of a trek for those who are obviously used to being chauffeured around their private school campus via limousine. However, in terms of value for money, ambience, and conversation topics, I’d say it tops my list of best date spots in St Andrews, limited though they are. What better way to break the ice than make an idiot of yourself trying to navigate a toastie? Or valiantly fighting the seagulls who try to make a pass at your lactose-filled carbohydrate package? Once you’ve proved your valour, the beach is readily available for a long walk (or there are benches if you’re lazy) making it the perfect place to segue from food to a wander to your next location. If you’re lucky, maybe that’s your bedroom ;)  

Dead last: Costa 

Right. I feel this really does not need elaboration, but I will continue nevertheless. Taking pride of place as no one’s favourite café chain, Costa serves a shit coffee, and in a town where the resident to café ratio is about 2:1, you’re just being lazy if you choose to go here. ‘But Erin, maybe I can’t afford a lot, and this is the cheapest coffee around!’ This is an absolute fallacy, friends. Voyager (yes, the CBD shop) does a particularly affordable coffee, so if you’re tight on cash and need to go for a coffee and a walk, that is the place to go. Don’t ever try and doubt my word again. There are an infinite number of coffee vendors in St Andrews, so go literally anywhere else. Support somewhere local! South Street has several far better venues where you can sit down, for example, or you could even venture to (shudder) Pret if you’re a whore for chains. Flex your subscription (you Londoner wannabe fuck). Janetta’s is also a good alternative, if it’s warmer weather than this, or you eat ice cream in cold, tit-freezing conditions such as these (the morally wrong choice). 

TLDR: Bibi’s is my favourite café, and if a date’s first choice is ever Costa, I will be leaving on the spot.  

Secret surprise overall winner!! GO SOMEWHERE ELSE! 

Shock twist! No, I am not joking. Export yourself out of this town and experience a good date. This isn’t the 9th century anymore, and people travel more than 10 miles now. Anyone who knows me will know that I’m not lying.  

All my best date experiences have been far away from this secluded hole for those who wear Acne Studios scarves. Although it shouldn’t really matter what you’re doing with your partner as long as there’s chemistry —  my god! — some variety really helps. I know some of you lot really hate Dundee for whatever reason, but there’s a cute place called the Bach in the centre of town which does a really sexy brunch and a great coffee. Or go to Edinburgh and experience the real world! An Old Town pub crawl is far more enjoyable than running into everyone and their mother in Aikmans, or wherever you choose to frequent. Quite literally, fuck off. It’s very refreshing to get away from the weird number of Ohio residents that have ended up here, and even if the date goes badly, at least you get to have at least few minutes (if not 2+ hours) to unwind on public transport afterwards and wonder if you’re destined to be forever alone while listening to Mitski or something.  

So, happy Valentine’s Day, lovers and those who celebrate. I hope you’re not looking at this article for inspiration, because it’s definitely too late, and these date spots are definitely not good enough for Valentine’s Day. Have some class. Take them to a restaurant or cook them dinner. Bake them mini cheesecakes and raspberry coulis. Or, radical thought, consider their interests and do something you both enjoy! 

Hope the sex is good! 





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