Wedding fun doesn’t have to just last a couple hours (or consist solely of watching drunk relatives try to dance). With pre-wedding activities like the ones I’ll share below, you and your guests can have an unforgettable experience celebrating your big day! Best of all, enjoying these experiences will ensure you spend more time celebrating this new chapter and less time stressing over all those wedding to-do’s.
Whether you’re planning an intimate ceremony or something big, an at-home or destination wedding, there are many ways to celebrate and spend time with loved ones leading up to your vows. From renting a boat and planning an adventurous scavenger hunt to participating in a cooking class to having a unique rehearsal dinner, I’ll share fun ideas for every couple and their loved ones.
You might also be interested in reading: Where to Elope: Tips for Choosing the Perfect Place to Elope
Pre-wedding activities are the perfect way to focus more on having fun with your partner, family, and friends and less on wedding chaos. Aside from your typical engagement party, bridal showers, and bachelor and bachelorette parties, there are many fun ways to celebrate your wedding in the days before tying the knot.
It’s important to remember to appreciate and enjoy pre-wedding days, especially because wedding planning can be stressful. Here are some of the best ways to do that!
If you’re saying “I do” in a destination by the water, renting a catamaran for you and your guests is the perfect way to hang out and enjoy a unique experience. Many destinations, including a few of my favorite elopement and intimate wedding locations like Mexico, Greece, Hawaii, and the Caribbean, offer opportunities for getting out on the water for a daytime tour, sunset cruise, or fishing excursion.
You might also be interested in reading: Venue Idea: Wedding on a Boat
A winery or brewery tour is ideal if you’re looking for fun but relaxed pre-wedding activities. Many places like Northern California, Italy, and France offer amazing winery tours. On the other hand, just about anywhere also has breweries, whether small or big, that you can tour and enjoy craft beer with your loved ones to celebrate your big day.
One of the most unique things you can do with or without your guests is a scavenger hunt, whether you want to entertain your guests while you prep for your wedding or enjoy this with them.
A scavenger hunt is a cool way to explore your wedding destination while your guests get to know each other and spend time together. Leave clues around your accommodation or the city you’re in that lead people to the next place. At the end of your scavenger hunt, your guests can all join for a celebratory get-together or activity.
This one’s great to do alongside or without the scavenger hunt. And you can make your welcome dinner or party simple or extravagant, big or small! A welcome dinner or party is a very customizable way to celebrate and hang out with your partner, friends, and family.
As an elopement photographer, couples I’ve worked with always love a dinner or party at a cool villa in places like Italy, Ireland, or really anywhere. I mean, imagine having your loved ones enjoying delicious food and drinks together at this gorgeous lakeside villa in Ireland!
You can also book a venue for your welcome dinner or party in just about any destination. Again, there are endless ways to make this pre-wedding activity work!
One of the most memorable things to do with your friends and family before your special day is to participate in a cooking class together. Many places offer a local cooking class where you can prepare authentic fare, then enjoy your meal together.
Note: A wedding photographer who helps with planning (like Wild Aisle Photography!) can help you find and book your pre-wedding activities like cooking classes and more.
What better way to decompress during all the wedding stuff than with a group yoga class? This can be an activity for all your guests to do together (if you book well in advance) or something you offer as an option to your guests. And you can also join in with your love, of course!
What’s a wedding celebration without delicious food? A food tour is my absolute favorite way to explore a new city – walking around, seeing sites, eating delicious food and learning local traditions…what could be better?? Most big cities offer a guided food tour that usually lasts a few hours and also offers other historical or cultural insight into your destination. Such a great way for you and your guests to explore your wedding location!
One of the best pre-wedding activities anyone can enjoy is a pool or beach party! Whether you’re having a beach wedding somewhere like Costa Rica or anywhere else where you can rent an accommodation with a pool, you can do this activity just about anywhere.
Make your pool or beach party a whole-day affair with drinks and food or a nighttime get-together with a bonfire. There are lots of exciting ways to do this!
If you and your guests like to get active, hiking is an ideal activity to enjoy before your big day. Going on a hike is a great way to appreciate a new place and take care of yourself while you’re celebrating a wedding, where you might be eating and drinking a lot!
Not that active? A simple hike to enjoy nature is just as enjoyable and can include all your guests.
Not only is a spa day a romantic way to spend quality time with your love before you tie the knot, but it’s also a relaxing activity your guests can appreciate.
Many spas offer a group package, or you can share spa information with your guests to book as they please for a solo or couple experience. If you’re getting married somewhere with natural hot springs like Iceland, it’s such a fun way to unwind and spend time together!
Pre-wedding activities always include a rehearsal dinner! Make it extra special by having a unique dinner for your bridal party and loved ones.
After your rehearsal at your wedding venue, do something special to celebrate. Here are a few fun ideas:
If you’re getting married somewhere like Hawaii or Iceland, whale watching is a must-do and such a fun activity to do with your guests! Of course, it depends on whether you’re getting married during whale season, but if the timing works out I highly recommend booking a whale-watching tour. For more info about getting married in Hawaii, check out this blog post.
Pre-wedding activities are the perfect way to celebrate your big day, spend time with your loved ones, and make sure they also have a memorable experience. No matter how big or small your wedding is, there are so many ways to have an unforgettable celebration!
As an elopement and destination wedding photographer, I love helping couples create those special moments and capturing them. If that sounds like what you’re looking for on your special day, reach out and let’s get this adventure started!
January 4, 2023