Hen Party ACTIVITIES
A hen party, or bachelorette party, is the female equivalent of a stag do and is held for the bride shortly before she gets married. Considered as something of a rite of passage, a hen party provides the bride and her closest female friends and family members with a chance to have a final celebration together. Typically it is arranged by the maid of honour, and will last anywhere from a day to a weekend, happening a few weeks ahead of the wedding ceremony.
The format of a hen party varies and will often include a mixture of activities, with the possibility of some pampering and a hotel stay. Combining daytime and evening activities allows the group to get the best of both worlds and there is no reason why the adrenaline-pumping activities should be solely reserved for the stag do.
For hens looking to cram a selection of treats and activities into one weekend, there are plenty of cities around the UK that can offer the full package. From city escapes, to coastal towns, or countryside retreats – there are numerous destinations that offer luxury hotels, fine dining and outdoor activities without having to travel too far at all. Daytime activities provide the perfect platform for individuals within the group to get to know each other if they don’t already, and then the party can move onto somewhere a little more relaxing should they wish.
Organising a hen do?
Take a look at some of our top tips below to help you plan the perfect party and then take your pick from what kind of activity will best suit your group. Already got it sussed? Then head over to the activities page and start putting together the perfect day or weekend by finding out what’s available near you.
Choose your format
Are you looking to go away for a day, a weekend, or even longer? Naturally this will depend heavily on budget. Will there be a mix of day and evening activities? If so, it makes sense to avoid planning a big night out before an early start the following day. Cocktails before a pamper session might be ok, but a heavy night before a bungee jump probably won’t end well.
When choosing the activity, it’s worth taking into account the interests of the bride, and the ages, physical abilities and numbers of the group in general. Although it might be tempting to invite every friend, colleague and far-flung family member, it’s a good idea to keep numbers under control from the outset. Over the top hen parties complicate planning and bookings, drive up costs and will make it difficult to ensure everyone feels included.
Plan ahead, set your budget and then stick to it…
Planning a party of any sort always takes a lot longer than you think, and a hen do is no different. Don’t be fooled into thinking that many hands make light work – involving more people in the organisation could slow the decision making process down. There is no harm in starting early – even if it’s just investigating prices and ideas, and you may want to limit the decisions to the bride and maid of honour. If it looks to be expensive and may require time off work – whether that is to travel to a destination, to do the activities themselves, or to sleep off the hangover – then you will need to notify everyone in advance and be flexible with dates.
Once you have set a date, ensure that you don’t price anyone out of attending by keeping costs down where possible. No doubt the bride would rather be surrounded by her nearest and dearest in attendance than to jet off to a far-flung country with just a couple of counterparts. Make sure you book early and book together – don’t leave it up to individuals to sort themselves out, someone will always forget.
Pick your destination
Once you’ve got your date and a target budget, it’s time to settle on location. If you’ve got your heart set on a specific activity, then your location may be driven by this. Equally, if there is a spot that holds sentimental significance to the bride, then it makes sense to search for activities and accomodation in that area.
Have a solid plan with just a little room for manoeuvre
Once you’ve chosen your format, budget, destination and activity, you’ll have a good backbone to your getaway. Around this you will also need to consider food and drink, transport and any filler activities, games, or alike. The bigger your party, the more crucial this will be – as trying to get a walk-in pampering session for 20 people just isn’t going to happen.
Bring the group together
The hen party may involve a mixture of the bride’s mother, childhood friends, relatives, colleagues, and any number of other individuals. Introductions should be made early on to bond the group and ensure maximum enjoyment for all. The activity you choose will be a make or break in this sense. It may be worth opting for a competitive activity that involves a few teams early on in the weekend to help everyone get to know each other.
In summary – do your research, plan ahead and get everyone involved and you’ll be on the right path.
Need some inspiration?
Take a look at some of our recommended activities below to get the ball rolling.
Relax and unwind
Sometimes you just want some downtime, and when better to have it than a trip away from the boys? Whether it’s a pamper session or a view from above, it’s easy to find something for everyone.
Spa Days: A perfect option to relax from the stress of wedding planning, and suitable for a group with a range of ages.
Sightseeing Flights: Enjoy a helicopter ride over the countryside or city, during the day or at night and feel like a celebrity.
Hot Air Ballooning: A once-in-a-lifetime experience, letting your group take in the sights whilst hanging out with friends and sipping on a glass of champagne.
Something a bit different
Why settle for the typical hen party, when you can include one of these activities and take your day to the next level?
Zip-Wire: Soar through the trees and over the landscape and enjoy the rush of racing your friends and family as you see the world from a new perspective.
Zorbing: Definitely not one to attempt on a hangover – run, roll and bounce your way around the zorbing course in giant inflatable balls. This activity will literally have you head over heels.
Stand up Paddleboarding: A little more slow-paced, paddleboarding is a great summer option as it’s up to you whether you’d like to stay dry or get wet as you take on the rivers and lakes of the UK.
Go hard or go home
Want a once-in-a-lifetime experience for your hen do that will make it truly unforgettable? Well these options are certainly that, although they’re not for the faint-hearted!
Bungee Jumping: What could possibly compete with jumping off a tall structure with your closest friends and family members? One thing’s for sure – the videos would certainly be worth showing at the wedding.
High Ropes Course: A great group activity that not only offers a platform for bonding with team mates, but it can be scaled up or down to accommodate any number of people and is suitable for nearly all ages and fitness levels.
Jet Skiing: Better suited to smaller groups, jet skiing can be done on lakes or seas, and will give your group an adrenaline rush as they race around on the water.
Break the mould
Don’t let the boys have all the fun. Book up one of these activities to make sure your group gets to do something they’ve never done before and will give you plenty of topics for discussion at the dinner table later.
Drifting Experience: This can be done individually or with a group, with you in charge or with an instructor, and will involve your car taking corners at speeds and angles that defy its ability to grip. Not only will it get your blood racing but it’s sure to put a massive smile on your face.
Rafting: Why canoe down a calm river when you can navigate white water rapids at speed? A great one for mid-sized, thrill-seeking groups that are happy to get a little wet!