Today we are welcoming a new writer to Bitten by the Travel Bug team!
Teresa Gotay is one of the OG’s of travel blogging, having founded what was one of the largest adventure and backpacking websites way back in 2008.
After meeting the love of her life during a backpacking trip to South America, she moved from New York City to Rotterdam to pursue love and a Master’s degree, which she has recently completed. Somewhere along the way, we met through mutual travel-loving friends and she hasn’t been able to get rid of me since!
She will be regularly writing about things she loves, including European weekenders, skin care & beauty, trip planning, and plenty more!
Her first article about hens party destinations seems to be a subtle hint for ideas of where I should be planning her Bachelorette party in Europe… Nice try, T! 😛
Call me crazy, but Hens party don’t necessarily have to be full of memories you don’t want to remember (or can remember). As a world traveller who met her fiance abroad, there’s no question that travel is a theme for our wedding. Especially when the bridal party is also from all parts of the world. Who doesn’t want to travel with their best gals to celebrate friendship, fun and one’s upcoming nuptials?
Here are some incredible travel ideas you should consider when planning your next Hen’s party.
But First… Plan!
A trip that will be just as memorable as the big day itself must require some kind of planning. Before you even think about booking flights and accommodation, consider making a plan and budget. Always begin with asking the bride who she wants to attend the party and are willing to travel. Consider the personal lives of those attending; perhaps someone is pregnant, attending University or recently unemployed. Also, make sure all potential travellers are in possession of a valid passport if you decide to go somewhere that requires a flight out of the country. If you do not have a passport you will have to make a CRB payment, for a background check to be done before getting a passport. When it comes to making a budget, I like to think about the length of the trip. Is it a quick long weekend getaway or a week that requires some days off from work? Perhaps create a Facebook group chat to discuss details about the party so everyone can have their input about what is feasible for every lady. Think about future costs as well such as dining, shopping and drinks!
Embark on a Greek Isles Cruise
Vistas of pristine white and sky blue rooftops against the orange sunset, the enticing aroma of fresh fig and the salty sea… are you also dreaming of Greece? If you’re thinking about planning a trip so lovely that it may almost compete with the bride’s honeymoon, there is no doubt that a cruise through the Greek Isles is the answer and is the type of trip that caters to every kind of traveller!
History lovers will enjoy embarking from Venice; a taste of the old world. The cruise also stops in Katakolon; the home of ancient Olympia where the Olympic games began.
Beach bums will love soaking up the sun on the beaches of Mykonos and Santorini.
But most of all, you’ll never be bored with a plethora of things to do on the cruise itself while you’re at sea. The cruise experience goes beyond wining and dining. Grab the ladies and enjoy a visit to the Canyon Ranch SpaClub for some serious R&R. There is even a Body Sculpt Boot camp if you want to indulge in all that incredible food and fit in the dress on the big day!
Take a bite of the Big Apple
Alicia Keys got it right when she sang that there’s nothing you can’t do now you’re in New York. Whether you’ve been once or you visit annually, there is always something new to see, do and eat. It is also a practical location; with airport connections worldwide. Also, it can be a fun trip no matter what time of the year you visit.
A winter trip with the girls can be fun whilst visiting the creative Christmas displays around Manhattan. Spring is a lovely time for admiring the cherry blossoms at the botanic gardens. Meanwhile, summer seems like it never ends in the city that never sleeps. Visit the high line for some great selfie group shots. But, the best time to visit New York is in the fall. It is the shoulder season with seasonable temperatures, great discounts on flights to get there and the opportunity to see fall foliage and to visit the epic Village Halloween parade.
Just don’t feel overwhelmed with so much to do! It’s impossible to do everything you want on a hen trip, so choose your favourite activities and go from there. As long as you don’t forget to take a walk over the Brooklyn Bridge to admire the view of the skyline behind you.
When I think of a typical hen party, I always vision girls sipping glasses of wine and telling fun stories amongst themselves. While a simple wine tasting can be done in any location, who wouldn’t love the opportunity to visit a vineyard? If you fancy visiting Europe or are located centrally, Spain and France are the two countries that should come to mind when planning and wine travel themed hen party.
My recommendation would be a spa and wine getaway to the medieval town of Laguardia in Spain for a taste of traditional Rioja wine. Or if you’re just too excited for some bubbly, a 2-day champagne tasting at Taittinger/Moet & Chandon in Reims, France could be a lovely way to start the wedding celebrations.
Keeping it Local with Luxury
Traveling doesn’t have to mean booking a flight and heading abroad. One can plan a hen party locally and still feel like you’re far away! There are plenty of ways to plan a hen party that has travel elements. Keeping it local with luxury can entail booking a day or two at a luxury hotel with your closest gals. Especially if the hotel has great amenities like a pool, spa or wellness centre.
Surprise the bride and take her to an afternoon tea at one of the best restaurants in town. There is nothing like getting all glam for some soothing tea and delicious bites.
One fun idea could be to rent a movie theatre and feature the bride’s favourite movie, or even a wedding-related movie like Bridesmaids. Extra kudos if the bride wears her dress for some amazing photo opportunities!
Speaking of photo opportunities, why not consider hiring a photographer for the day and capture the local fun you do with your bridal party? Take epic shots at fun landmarks. Maybe get a fun group shot at places that are significant to the bride and her bridal party, for instance, the place you met your maid of honour? (Hint, hint Nicole!)