Now that my hen weekend has come and gone, I thought it would be a good idea to set out the activities we did while we were away and make some recommendations on what went well and what didn’t, in case you are in the process of organising a trip like this one. We travelled to Bath, in the Southwest of England, which was my choice of location – it’s a great shopping town, with lots going on, without it being a loud and overcrowded party destination. It was the perfect location and I highly recommend taking a trip there if you haven’t already. We tried to organise some original activities that everyone would enjoy, but which were also a bit different, so that it felt like a unique trip which was still a lot of fun. Here’s what we got up to.
– Cocktail making
This was perfect for the first activity – it got everyone chatting and getting to know each other whilst making some delicious cocktails and preparing us perfectly for a fun evening. We got a room to ourselves, along with a bartender, to show us the ropes and get us learning some new skills in drink making, and it was something few of us had done before. We had a couple of girls on the hen who didn’t drink alcohol, but that didn’t stop them from getting involved and they were made to feel just as welcome as those ladies who were drinking the alcoholic versions. We had plenty of time given to us to finish our drinks, so we weren’t rushing them to allow for another group to follow, and that added to the relaxed and informal atmosphere. I highly recommend this as the first activity in your weekend, as it was just right to start a fun-fuelled time.
– Afternoon tea
This is something that lots of people are familiar and enjoy every time, so is always well received. Who doesn’t love sandwiches, sweet treats and tea to make themselves feel posh and sophisticated?! Again, we had a space to ourselves for this, so it was a great time to get some quizzes and games on the go, for a bit of extra fun! My mum had even brought some prizes along, to amp up the competition and get people excited in taking part. All games and quizzes were wedding related or in some way related to me and my boy, so there was a clear theme through everything and people knew what to expect. This was another couple of hours well spent, enjoying good food and chatting amongst ourselves, and was a super reasonable price for the whole experience. Afternoon teas vary, so look for reviews online, as they can be really helpful.
– Escape rooms
Everyone had such a blast with the escape rooms we had organised for one evening before dinner. It’s a simple idea – you’re placed in a room or several rooms and are giving a series of clues or puzzles to solve in an allotted time in order to ‘escape’. It’s such fun in a few groups like ours to try and work together to solve all of the clues and eventually win the game and is something that no-one in our group had done before, so it felt really unique and unusual. This was most people’s favourite activity and several people have commented on trying to find other places like this around the country, so that they can give it another go, so it was a huge hit! It’s always nice to try and find things that are a bit different and you wouldn’t find in every town and city, so that the entire trip becomes memorable, as it’s nice to stand out from all the other hen weekends that people will go on.
– Craft morning
Another fun and different activity we tried was a craft morning, for which we got to each make a wedding garter and have a bit of lunch before we headed home. It was surprising, considering the varying levels of creativity within the group, just how much everyone enjoyed themselves. People who wouldn’t consider themselves that way inclined really got into it and made some gorgeous end products. Again, we made this into a little competition, which I judged, so that brought out some competitive natures I didn’t know existed! There were a ton of different crafty activities to choose from, so I’m sure there would be something to suit each and every hen out there, and I’m hoping all of the hens will bring their home made garters to the wedding, so that we can pose with them and be reminded of the great weekend we had!
Tips and advice
– Keep organisers to a minimum
It’s so easy to get caught up in getting ideas from everyone when it comes to a hen weekend like this, but it’s better to keep organisers to a minimum so that too many opinions don’t spoil the overall atmosphere. Plus, it leaves more surprises for everyone, which is half the fun! Remember that the bride-to-be is the most important, so try to keep her in mind at all times when deciding on what activities to take on.
– Don’t try and keep everyone together all the time
People are bound to want to do different things in between the organised activities, so let smaller groups go off and do their own thing. Some like to shop, others like to chill at the hotel, you’ll have plenty of time to spend as a group, so don’t stress if people don’t want to spend the entire time in each other’s pockets.
– Overestimate the time each activity will take
You’ll likely need to walk between places and sometimes activities take longer than anticipated, so allow for that in your plans. As I said, we were encouraged to take our time whilst drinking our cocktails, so it was good that we left an hour or two between that and the booking of our first dinner so that we didn’t have to rush around.
– Try ice-breakers and quizzes
As well as the amazing organised activities, we also took along some games and quizzes to do whilst we had some quiet time, so that people could get to know each other better, have a little fun competing and enjoy the company of others. Some people in our group didn’t know each other as well as others, and this was the perfect way to introduce everyone in a fun way.
– Stay close to the action
We chose a hotel that was perfectly located right in the centre of the town, so that we could walk easily to our various destinations. We didn’t have to bother with taxis and we could pop back to the hotel to chill out or change super easily, which just meant less stressing and wasting time in general.