Ok, someone said it, “Let’s all hang out together!” But now what? Anyone who’s planned a group get together knows that pleasing all your pals with the activity list can be quite a task. Some might want to relax, some are ready for adventure, some will want to try something new, and some may even want to stay in their comfort zone. To help give you some options, we’ve rounded up some ideas for fun activities to do with friends. And who knows? You might even pick up some new hobbies (and stories) with your experience.
1. Take a Cooking Class
If there’s one thing that binds all of us together like a pizza dough, it’s our love for a good meal. And who hasn’t dreamed of creating an intricate dinner from scratch using fresh, local ingredients and learning about delicious new cuisines from around the world? Cooking classes are just the ticket, and there are plenty that fit every taste. Before you go, be sure to check out our handy guide to choosing the right cooking class.
2. Learn How to Give a Massage
Taking a spa day will be forever tempting, but it rarely takes much thought or effort to be on the receiving end of a massage. For a more zen experience, sign up your group for a massage class. Typically lasting an hour or two, these classes are taught by licensed therapists and focus on easy-to-replicate techniques that relieve stress and tension. You’ll all pick up a very useful new skill while feeling relaxed in the process. This activity is also perfect for those friends who don’t always need to say much when they’re together!
3. Take a Mixology Class
Craft cocktails aren’t going away anytime soon – unless it’s straight down the hatch. That’s what makes a bartending class one of our favorite fun activities to do with friends. Mixology classes put you on the other side of the bar, teaching the secrets behind classic cocktails and giving you the confidence and creativity to invent new ones. Bottoms up!
4. Take an Art Class Together
Deep down, everyone has something to express. Some people like wine, some people like watercolor — we like combining the two. Art classes – particularly BYOB (Bring Your Own Bottle) “sip n’ paint” classes – encourage and teach artistic types to unleash their creativity. There’s no experience required for any of these classes, so anyone can join. And since these teachers promote a laid-back and inclusive environment, it’s hard to imagine anybody in your group feeling left out.
5. Go Bowling
Bowling can seem like a default option for a potential outing, but it’s underrated in terms of fun things to do as a group. First off – you can’t be bad at bowling. Yes, some people are better than others, but if you stink at it and bowl a 26, so what? Laugh it off and bowl another round. Secondly, though it might not feel like exercise, bowling is an anaerobic activity that promotes more benefits than you might think, especially when it comes to developing strength and improving flexibility. How many group activities can do that, and be fun, too?
6. Sample Your Area’s Best Wines
Perhaps the most enjoyable of fun group activities for friends is to visit the local winery and try a few varietals. Wine tasting isn’t just for someone who lives next to Sonoma or Napa Valley. American Viticultural Areas exist in 33 U.S. states (even where you wouldn’t expect it, like Arizona, Colorado, Iowa and Rhode Island). And it’s not just an activity for wine connoisseurs. Even occasional wine drinkers will enjoy comparing flavors, detecting pleasant smells and showing off their wine-glass swirl technique.
7. Tour Your City Together
If you’re having trouble finding a common interest for every person in your group, or you’re just looking for an easy hangout idea with friends, consider taking a tour. Think about it, when was the last time you heard someone express how much they weren’t looking forward to taking a boat tour down the river? Or how much they weren’t excited for the evening ghost tour? People tend to like learning new tidbits about their city, whether that’s via Segway, bus, bike or on foot.
8. Stretch Out During a Yoga Class
While some people might not consider exercise to be an outing, yoga classes tend to be some of the most encouraging, enjoyable and positive group experiences. Yoga practitioners have been trained to adapt each stretch to a person’s needs, meaning every member of your group should derive physical or mental benefits from the practice. And those benefits are plenty. Yoga is known to lower blood pressure, relieve muscle pains and reduce stress.
9. Learn Some Moves in a Dance Class
Author Dave Barry once wrote, “Nobody cares if you can’t dance well. Just get up and dance.” This is true, but it can be quite energizing (and impressive) to know how to dance well, especially with the help of a dance class or two. This fun activity to do with friends is an ideal outing for wedding parties. Learn a few different moves (or perhaps even choreograph an entire routine) and you’ll be dominating the dance floor in no time.