Here's How to Plan a Bachelor or Bachelorette Party That'll Please Everyone
So you’ve been tasked with planning the ultimate bachelor or bachelorette weekend. It’s an exciting endeavor, but before the fun begins you have to figure out all the details that go into such an event. After all, it’s the last hurrah before they walk down the aisle, so it’s got to be good.
The best bach parties are all about balance. You’re getting all your bud’s best friends together, and while blowing his or her expectations out of the water is certainly a priority, making sure the whole group has fun is important too. It comes down to nailing your location, packing list, and lineup of activities to create the perfect celebratory weekend.
The Best Bachelor and Bachelorette Party Destinations
There are nearly endless options when it comes to choosing the destination, but certain hotspots have garnered premium bachelor and bachelorette party status and should be at the top of your list. Some probably come to mind quickly: Las Vegas, Miami, and New Orleans, to name a few. But to get off the beaten path, spots like Austin, Nashville, Palm Springs, and even Montreal and Costa Rica are making names for themselves in the pre-wedding party scene.
Adventure-seekers will love the outdoor activities available in Montreal and Costa Rica, both of which boast adrenaline-junkie endeavors such as river rafting, biking, hiking, and more. Costa Rica’s zip-lining courses and surf beaches are legendary. Plus, when it’s time to hit the town, each spot offers opportunities to drink well and enjoy the good life with your group.
If the idea of posting up poolside then partying all night sounds like the perfect way to celebrate, Palm Springs, Nashville, or Austin may be your best pick. Palm Springs is known as one of the best spots in the U.S. to pool-hop, while Nashville and Austin are filled with boutique hotels in the heart of town that offer poolside cabana rentals and close proximity to the cities’ bar scenes. Frosé will be flowing all weekend—until you switch over to craft beer or cocktails courtesy of the destinations’ popular breweries and distilleries.
What to Pack for a Bachelor or Bachelorette Weekend
When it’s time to pack for the celebratory weekend, consider your destination and to-do list. You’ll want to edit down your clothing and accessories to only essentials—especially if you’ve got to leave room in your suitcase for party favors for the rest of the group.
Stick to comfortable clothing like active-wear during the day, and pack your best party attire to put on when it’s time to hit the bars. Swimwear is a must, particularly if you’re headed somewhere warm; but even in the winter, you can expect to hit the hot tub. Places like Palm Springs and Montreal can experience drops in temperature at night, so don’t forget a layering piece or two even in the summertime.
And if the sight of those stag or hen parties in head-to-toe matching gear isn’t your speed, there’s a more practical and stylish alternative. Design a pair of our custom sunglasses for everyone so they can shield their eyes from the sun during daytime activities (and conceal their hangovers). The custom shades start at $25 each and are durable enough to make it through even the most debaucherous weekends, so they’re affordable party favors that people can actually wear again. For $5 more per pair, you can add polarized lenses to knock out glare and guarantee more bearable post-party mornings.
What to Do the Weekend Before It’s Time to Say “I Do”
Once you’ve picked your place and set the date, it’s time to plan an itinerary of epic activities to keep the festivities flowing all weekend. Here’s where the balance comes in: Ensure the whole group’s happy by countering the bar-hopping or brewery tours with outdoor activities that are equally fun.
Where the Best Bachelor and Bachelorette Parties Get Their Drink on
It’s safe to say your group intends to spend ample time drinking—isn’t that what bach parties are all about? Whether you’re posting up in Palm Springs or chilling in Costa Rica, there’s no shortage of nightlife to keep the fun going all evening. The SoCal desert city is filled with top-rated hotel bars and local haunts. Check out swanky Mini Bar at the Parker Palm Springs or the Amigo Room at Ace Hotel & Swim Club, or hit up the Bootlegger Tiki for throwback tiki cocktails like Mai Tais. The Costa Rican town of Jaco has lively late night spots, from the beach club Jaco Blu to trendy Le Loft right in the center of town.
If your buds consider themselves champion drinkers, there’s plenty of day-drinking opportunities to indulge in as well. Montreal is home to several craft breweries, while Nashville and Austin offer nearby wineries and distilleries with tours and tastings. In the French-Canadian city, the Montreal Craft Beer Tour is a great way to hit can’t-miss breweries and see the town during the three-hour tour. Vodka lovers should hit up Deep Eddy’s tasting room in Dripping Springs, Texas for cocktails, while whisky drinkers will enjoy one of Nashville’s many nearby distilleries.
When You’ve Had Enough to Drink, Head into the Great Outdoors
Realistically, you’ll want to spend a bit of the weekend outside of bars. In fact, a dose of fresh air may do your group well after a night out. Austin’s location on the Colorado River and proximity to Lake Travis and Lake Austin mean plenty of water activities, from paddle-boarding to boating. Or, catch rays at Austin’s affordable natural swimming hole, Barton Springs. There’s even a man-made surf park to the south-east of downtown—and it happens to have an on-site brewery.
Even wintertime parties have opportunities to enjoy the outdoors. Montreal’s got nearby ski resorts so your group can hit the slopes (Bromont is a favorite), Palm Springs desert climate means you can hit the pool in winter months or camp at nearby Joshua Tree National Park, and Costa Rica stays warm year-round—take surf lessons or head inland for a day of ATV riding and zip lining.
More Helpful Tips to Plan the Best Bachelor or Bachelorette Party
To make the most of the last moments of freedom, give guests ample notice about when and where the festivities are taking place. They’ll need to make travel arrangements. Planning for a holiday weekend can mean more time together, but note that accommodations and activities may be more expensive.
Speaking of accommodations, whether your group is small or sizable, going in on an AirBnb or VRBO is almost always your best bet. You can find a home centrally located in your city, which means walkability (and fewer pricey rideshares). Plus, having everyone under one roof makes for a more fun vibe.
Bachelor and bachelorette parties are supposed to celebrate the betrothed of course, but they’re also one of the best chances to get festive with friends from near and far. Take advantage of the time together by having a blast before that big walk down the aisle.
Written by Zoe Ward for Knockaround