If you’ve been appointed maid of honour to your bestie, then you’ll know that ushering your friend into married life can feel like a huge responsibility. There’s so much to organise when it comes to the big day: making sure everyone is in the right place at the right time, keeping the bride’s nerves at bay, not to mention all the flowergirls’ excitement levels in check. It all takes some next level maid of honour skills.
But no task is more daunting than organising the hen party activity days. With so much pressure to make it the best day – or weekend – your girl gang have ever had, it’s no wonder being chief bridesmaid can start to feel like a burden and not an honour at all.
If you’re mid-panic right now, not sure how to please everyone and make it a weekend you all remember forever, then take a deep breath and relax because we’ve got six of the best hen party activity day ideas to get your planning going. So gather all of your girlfriends together and throw around some of these ideas, and start to enjoy your role as chief bridesmaid again!
1. Blow Dry Party
If you want something girly and fun, but your standard spa day experience is just too been-there-done-that, then celebrating your hen do at a blow dry parlour is just the ticket. These little hair havens have been popping up all over the country recently and they’re one of those ideas that you can’t believe no-one has thought of before. Your bride gets to hang out with her hens in the most glamorous of surroundings, sipping Prosecco and gossiping. And when you leave, you’ll all be groomed to perfection and party-ready for the night’s events.
2. Karaoke Party
Live out your pop star fantasies for one day, and take a trip down memory lane, recreating some of your favourite pop videos with a private karaoke experience. Your lead singer and her backing vocalists will get your own private booth for the afternoon where you can sing your favourite songs together, along with drinks on tap and the chance to pretend you’re Madonna for a few hours. What more could any hairbrush-singing girl group want? And you can even take away a recording at the end of it all as a momento. If you’re brave you could even give them out as wedding favours.
3. Cocktail Making Classes
Learn an essential life skill (sort of) with a professional mixologist and leave, not just a bit tipsy, but able to take over from the barman in the evening if you order a drink he’s no idea how to make. This is a fun-packed way to spend a few hours together and something everyone can join in with. For the non-drinkers, there’s virgin cocktails to get to grips with. For drinkers, it’s the perfect way to kick start the evening’s antics.
4. Dance Classes
We’ve all seen those videos of the bride and her hens surprising the groom and gathered guests with their choreographed flashmob at the wedding reception. And yes it’s been done to death, but who cares? It’s a great way to spend some quality time with your bride squad and learn a few new dance moves. Private group dance classes are available at many dance studios now and they’re a brilliant way to spend a hen weekend, and a great laugh even if your cha-cha-cha leaves a lot to be desired. And if you can persuade everyone to perform it at the wedding reception then why wouldn’t you? Come up with an original song and you could even find yourselves becoming the next viral internet sensation.
5. The Spa
Yes, yes, we know. It’s hardly an original idea, but it is a popular option for a reason. It accommodates everyone on the hen from those problematic pregnant hens to the bride’s mum and even her gran. There’s a treatment for them all, and for those who don’t like massages and facials (no, we don’t understand how anyone can not like those either), there’s always the option of just lying by the pool all day, unwinding, gossiping and reading magazines. It’s the perfect pre-party to the evening, it gets everyone involved and it’ll be ten points to you. Treat the bride to a luxury treatment and arrange for her hair and make up to be done for the evening and you’ve got yourself an even bigger success.
6. A Beach Party
Whilst lots of hen weekends now consist of a trip abroad and a chance to top up the tan before the big day, not everyone can afford that, so why not plan a beach party in the UK? We might not have the nightlife of Ibiza, or the stretches of white sandy beaches of the tropics, but there’s no reason you can’t have just as much fun by the sea in good ol’ Blighty!
There are plenty of amazing luxury house rentals by the coast in Britain that would make a great place to host a hen party. And once you’re there, you don’t even need to leave the house and have all the hassle of getting into town for your celebrations. If the weather’s good, you can have a BBQ on the beach or on the balcony, drink as much as you can stomach, and if anyone in your girl gang is musical, persuade them to bring along their guitar for some impromptu jams on the sand.
With a bit of luck, you’ll be able to spend the day sunning yourselves, working on your tans, and relaxing in preparation for the night’s events. It’s the perfect chilled out weekend for brides who love that kind of vibe, and incidentally, this could just work out much cheaper than your average hen do night out too, so it’s great if your participants are on a budget. You can take along all your own booze and food, and even make it into a whole ‘Hen-Fest’ weekender with hot tub hire, a private performance from a local band and even a private butler (in the buff!) if you want the VIP experience! Another benefit of having your beach party in the UK is that you can take along all those friends and family members who wouldn’t have been able to afford the time off work, or the expense of a hen weekend abroad.
Hen parties are your chance to send your friend off into married life in style. Whilst it’s nice to try and be original with your ideas (no-one wants a repeat of a weekend they’ve done a dozen times before), it’s more important that you think about what your bride will enjoy the most and what will allow everyone she wants to be there, to join in.
Remember to plan in advance, as last minute rush-jobs are bound to bring disappointment, not to mention raise your stress levels. And delegate. You don’t have to organise everything yourself. Get a committee in place and utilitise everyone’s strengths. And finally, remember to enjoy yourself. Your bride-bestie needs you in fine form so don’t get so strung out you can’t have any fun.