So you’ve long outgrown the wild all-nighters that Vegas and Miami have to offer. Well check out these unique locales for celebrating your (or a loved one’s) impending nuptials — hangover optional.
Plan the Best Bachelorette Party for Older Brides - Here are the Top 10 Places to Celebrate!
1. Portland, OR
Portland is a lot like Austin. It’s a quirky, foodie, music town — just with a few more umbrellas. OK, maybe I’m not selling it well. But here’s something Portland has over its southern sister city: It was recently named one of Zagat’s Top 17 Food Cities (which is especially great for groups whose taste for cheap bar food has long gone). Even better, encompassing all of the city’s weirdness is Portland’s karaoke scene, which, according to the The New York Times Magazine, “includes strippers, muppets and every song you can dream of.” Need more reason to go? Three words: tax-free shopping.
2. Santa Fe, NM
Santa Fe is known for its lively performing arts scene, its huge concentration of art galleries, and just really great eats — all within walking distance of each other. Depending on the time of year you travel, you can catch one of several cultural festivals, like the annual Burning of Zozobra. And when you’re ready to take a break from all that exploring, you can book a spa day (or weekend) at Ten Thousand Waves, a traditional Japanese-style bathhouse 15 minutes from downtown. Pro tip: Follow up your massage with some tasty sake — they have an extensive list offered at their on-site restaurant.
3. Memphis, TN
When you start planning your Memphis bachelorette party, think of the 4 B’s:
Blues (try BB King’s)
BBQ (locals recommend Central BBQ)
Broadway (and more performances at the Orpheum Theatre)
Boogie-ing (perhaps Paula & Raiford's Disco, spinning old school tunes from the 70s and 80s)...And that’s only the B-ginning.
4. Birds Landing, CA
There’s only one reason you’d go to Birds Landing — and that’s to go bird shooting. At fake birds, to be clear. Birds Landing and Hunting Preserve & Sporting Clays (*takes breath*) is a unique experience for a unique bride — and yes, beginners are totally welcome. Take a note from one bride and get into the (faux) hunting spirit with your most fashionable flannel. Then mosey on down to the diner for some eats. When you’re done doing your best Elmer Fudd, your group can venture back out to civilization for some wining and dining: Napa Valley is less than an hour away.
5. Charleston, SC
Classy. If that’s what comes to mind when planning a bachelorette party, then Charleston is the place to be. Channel your inner Southern Belles and grab some pre-dinner drinks at one of the many upscale bars on King Street (Stars Restaurant gets rave reviews for its rooftop area). Continue the fun nearby at The Cocktail Club, a speakeasy encompassing Charleston’s Southern charm (bonus: enjoy 1/2 off wine bottles and punch bowls on Sundays). And for ladies looking for a more laid back, um, sophisticated seaside experience (sorry, South Beach), Sullivan’s Island is just 15 minutes from downtown.
Trade in sands and sun for glaciers and wildlife — and you can experience it all from the comforts of a cruise ship. Alaskan cruises are some of the most popular in the world, and even better, there’s a cruise that suits any group. Just keep in mind: Alaskan cruise season only runs from May to September.
Start Planning: The 10 Best Ways to Experience Alaska
7. New Orleans, LA
Balancing out the debauchery of Bourbon Street is the wealth of culture New Orleans has to offer. From new additions to the town (try Israeli-inspired cuisine at Shaya, from a longtime New Orleans restaurateur), to local treasures (can’t go wrong with live music at). 10 years after Katrina, New Orleans has been dubbed “resilient and renewed -- which isn’t too far from how you’ll feel after a bachelorette weekend in this great city.
8. Calistoga, CA
Calistoga has two big things going for it: wine and water (hot springs, to be exact). The Northern California city has been a hot springs destination for nearly 2 decades. But bridal parties can enjoy this bit of nature in a more luxurious setting, by visiting one of the many hot springs resorts downtown Calistoga has to offer (from Calistoga Hot Springs to Indian Springs Resort). And with its location in California’s Napa Valley, Calistoga also offers up some world-class wineries — over 50 of them — including the historic Chateau Montelena.
9. Fort Lauderdale, FL
Leave Miami to the Spring Break set. Fort Lauderdale’s Strip upgrades your beachside experience with upscale bars, restaurants, and hotels. Take advantage of your proximity to the waterway by booking a sightseeing cruise during the day, or a gondola dinner cruise at night. And when you’re not soaking in the beach, head downtown to the Riverwalk Arts & Entertainment District, which boasts everything from concerts and broadway shows to, depending on the time of year, a festival you can sink your teeth into (next up: Stone Crab & Seafood Festival).
10. Las Vegas, NV
Now I know I said you’ve outgrown the wild all-nighters Vegas has to offer, but there’s another way to do Sin City that doesn’t involve walking The Strip with yard-long margaritas. See: group cooking and wine-tasting sessions with top chefs & sommeliers at the Bellagio Hotel; helicopter tours over The Grand Canyon; and one of the many shows by major music stars (Celine Dion, Elton John, Rod Stewart, Lionel Richie) who have taken up residency in Vegas. And if you do want to top your night off with a yard-long margarita, well, what happens in Vegas…..
This article was written by Lede Mariam.