50 Fantastic Birthday Party Ideas

Is a birthday for a friend, loved one, or yourself coming up? Are you looking for birthday party ideas? Following are several, and you’ll probably find at least a few you’ll love!

1. Outdoor Picnic Party

Keep it simple and inexpensive. Enjoy a birthday with good food and good friends with some clean, fresh air.

2. Movie Night Under the Stars

Head out back and set up the projector or haul out a whole TV. Even a tablet can do; all that matters is being together and being outside.

3. Casino Night

Go out with no more cash than you can afford to lose and have some fun at a casino. If there isn’t one close by and hopping a flight to Vegas isn’t in the cards, invite some friends over for some low-stakes card games.

4. Beach Bonfire Bash

There’s something about the beach at night. A bonfire is a timeless way to have some fun with family and friends.

5. Costume or Themed Party

You’re never too old to play dress-up for a party. Costumes are great for Halloween and other special days, and you can also make themes– for example, a particular decade.

6. Karaoke Party

Leave your shame behind and step up to the mic to ruin your favorite song. Don’t worry; everyone else is, too, and it’s all in good fun.

7. Game Night

Who says birthday party ideas have to be elaborate? Have some people over and just play some games you enjoy.

8. Wine and Cheese Tasting

Wine and cheese always make a popular social outing. It’s a fun way to celebrate a birthday while keeping things relatively simple for everyone.

9. Paint and Sip Party

Even if you’re not artistic, you can really enjoy this, especially at a studio where a pro guides you through each step. You might find that the more you sip, the better an artist you become!

10. Scavenger Hunt

Add some competition and adventure to your birthday party ideas. A scavenger hunt keeps everyone busy and reduces the awkward small talk that can take over a party.

11. Masquerade Ball

Take a trip back in time with an elegant masquerade ball. See how well you can recognize your guests when you can’t see their full faces.

12. Sports-Themed Party

For lovers of sports, try a birthday party built around them. It could be as simple as a trip to a sports bar or something more creative like dressing for a sport or decorating with one as a theme.

13. BBQ Cookout

Cookouts are always popular among birthday party ideas. Grilled food and cold beverages are time-proven ways for people to enjoy the company of others.

14. Camping Adventure

Outdoor birthday party ideas provide a change of scenery and an opportunity for new experiences. Spend an evening around a campfire and sleep under the stars.

15. Spa Day Party

Treat yourself and some friends to a spa day. Everyone needs some pampering once in a while.

16. Outdoor Adventure 

Lovers of the outdoors might prefer an outdoor celebration involving an activity they enjoy. It’s a fun, healthy way to celebrate a birthday and get some fresh air at the same time.

17. Outdoor Music Festival

When the weather’s right for it, an outdoor music festival is a great experience. The variety of artists and the vibe of the crowd can make the scene unforgettable.

18. Potluck Dinner Party

What are some great things about a potluck? How about a variety of foods, less cost, less mess to clean up, and everyone getting something they like?

19. Dance Party

Get out the speaker and dial up a favorite playlist. Then let everyone cut footloose!

20. Hawaiian Luau

It isn’t easy to get to Hawaii, but it’s easy to let Hawaii get to you. Bring the islands home with some traditional Hawaiian food and music.

21. Retro ’80s Party

Doesn’t it seem that people always rediscover the music, movies, and fashion of the 80s? If you grew up in the 80’s, you get to smile because you know exactly why they do: the 80s were awesome.

22. Garden Tea Party

Indulge your inner aristocrat for a bit with an old-fashioned tea party. You get bonus points for using the tiny teacups and holding them correctly.

23. Food Truck Fiesta

Who doesn’t like food trucks? Head out to a collection of them for a birthday party. Better yet, hire one to come to your home.

24. Board Game Marathon

See how late everyone can stay up playing one or more board games. Maybe it’s finally the night that you can finish Risk in one setting!

25. Trivia Night

There’s a reason so many bars and brewpubs have added trivia nights to their schedules: they’re a blast. Attend one for your birthday party or host your own.

26. Pajama Party

You’re never too old to get comfy in your jammies. It might surprise you how much people will love partying in their PJs.

27. Bonfire and Marshmallow Roasting

Camping isn’t the only time you can enjoy an outdoor fire. In a safe location, build a bonfire and roast some marshmallows, tell ghost stories, etc.

28. Wine Tasting and Vineyard Tour

This popular adult activity is catching on with more and more people. In areas with a lot of vineyards, there are usually shuttles to safely transport you from one site to another.

29. Yoga and Wellness Retreat

For some, a birthday is an occasion to go away and come back better. Retreats can be perfect for that.

30. Road Trip

Turn a birthday into a long weekend or an extended vacation by hitting the road. Visit national parks, art galleries, museums, etc.

31. Art and Craft Party

If you like doing things with your hands, you might enjoy an arts and crafts party. Learn a new skill or hone an existing one.

32. Talent Show

Are talent shows just for elementary schools? Of course not! Grownups and kids alike have talents they can share.

33. Murder Mystery Dinner Party

Enjoy a good meal and get some entertainment and brain exercise at the same time. Follow the clues and try to figure out who did it before the reveal comes.

34. Ice Cream Social

Are you looking for an excuse to indulge in some ice cream? A birthday is maybe the best one there is.

35. Photo Booth Party

Rent a photo booth or go someplace that has one. Have fun with various poses, faces, and effects.

36. Science-Themed Party

Pick a favorite branch or a particular area that interests you or someone you’re having a party for. Plan activities, decorations, desserts, etc. with that in mind.

37. Superhero Costume Party

This is always a big hit with kids, but adults like superheroes, too. Dressing up as superheroes is colorful and fun.

38. Garden Party

Go outside and celebrate in a garden. If gardens are where everyone likes to be, there could even be some gardening to center the party around.

39. Dessert Party

Skip dinner and get straight to the good part! Serve up some of your favorites or invite guests to bring their own.

40. Movie Marathon

Stock up on popcorn and beverages. Then stay up all night watching a favorite trilogy or other collection of movies.

41. Car Rally

Attend a rally for classic cars, exotic cars, or some other theme. If you’re into big trucks, going to a monster truck rally will make your birthday one to remember.

42. Ice Skating or Roller Skating Party

Head out to a local rink for some skating and music. Your form might be a little rusty at first, but it’ll come back!

43. Charity Fundraiser Event

Instead of your birthday being just about you, it can also be for someone or something else. Host an event that raises funds for a favorite charity.

44. Beach Volleyball and BBQ

Beach volleyball is a ton of fun, and following it up with a BBQ and some cold drinks makes it even better. Finish it all off with a beach bonfire.

45. Bowling Night

Try the local lanes for some fun and laughs. If it’s been a while, use the gutter guards so you don’t embarrass yourself too badly!

46. Outdoor Barbecue and Games

Fire up the grill and have some delicious dinner with cold beverages. Afterward, play some outdoor games to keep everyone entertained well into the evening.

47. Cooking or Baking Party

Cooking and baking make fun party ideas for a group that’s into them. During the process, there will be a lot of great camaraderie and conversation.

48. Boat or Yacht Party

Celebrate in style by going out on a boat or yacht. If you don’t have one, that’s okay, because there are plenty of places that will let you rent one, even overnight.

49. Pottery or Ceramics Workshop

Let your inner artisan come out with a workshop on pottery or ceramics. Plus, you’ll end up with something you can use for years.

50. Rent Out a Movie Theater

TVs have gotten really big, but they still don’t come close to the silver screen. Imagine having an entire theater to yourself and your guests to enjoy a current hit.

There’s no shortage of great birthday party ideas to make a special day even more so. Whether it’s for you or you’re planning a party for a friend or relative, you’re bound to find a lot of ideas you like.


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Hi! I am a millennial mom with a passion for personal finance. I have always been “into” personal finance but got inspired to start my blog after a period of extended unemployment. That experience really changed the way I viewed my relationship with money and the importance of accessible personal finance education.