How to Plan a Girl’s Weekend in the UK – Plus My Top 5 Tips

It’s hard to believe that I’ve made it to my late 30s, and I’ve never had a weekend away with The Girls. It’s not by choice, I don’t have a large group of friends, but it doesn’t mean I can’t dream about my perfect girl’s weekend away. So it got me hitting that faithful google search engine to find what makes the ideal girl’s weekend getaway. Perfect city hotel? A luxury cabin in the woods? Glamping or travelling around Cornwall in a campervan? Please keep reading for planning an ideal girl’s weekend in the UK with my top five tips!

Woman Eating Bruschetta
Photo by Adrienn

When was your last girl’s weekend?


Being a Mum, I am guilty of taking no time for myself. If I have any time away, it involves a family occasion or a wedding. It’s hard as a parent to allow ourselves to consider just getting away for even a night with a friend and chilling out. It’s a tricky balance; you feel your children need you as a parent, whether they are five or 15.

Woman Walking Hand in Hand with a Boy Wearing Cap
It’s a tricky balance; you feel your children need you as a parent, whether they are five or 15.

When a Girl’s Weekend is Mentioned!

So when over a chat, the prospect of a weekend away to celebrate Bridget’s 40th birthday hangs in the air, you consider the usual bowing out altogether, you’ll pop in for a drink, or you find yourself trying to make it just a quick drink down the typical pub. Still, you are reminded that it’s Bridget’s 40th, the big Four Zero. How does it look when your longest friend is willing you to say yes? I have those friends, the ones who never turn up, pop in or cancel minutes before the taxi arrives. It hasn’t always been this way, but with age comes social anxiety. 

I asked a few of my friends what they felt about spending time with friends.

“I know if I go out, the kids won’t go to sleep”

“My partying days are well behind me! I’m now a coffee and cake kind of girl!”

“Weekend? I can barely manage a night out!”

Talking of social anxiety, is it just me or does being a parent make you want to stay wrapped in a duvet? A girl’s weekend is probably the last thing on your mind, but maybe it is what you need.

Woman Sitting on Wooden Planks
Social anxiety is a fear that does not go away and affects everyday activities.

Social Anxiety

I want to touch on this subject as it never really affected me in my 20s but very much in my 30s. So I’ve been that girl who cancels minutes before the taxi arrives or cries sickness when the thought of meeting up fills me with dread. Even as recent as my works Christmas party, I had to attend, and I guess with that in mind. If spending a weekend with a group of girls you barely know turns your insides in knots, or you know every one of them, but you don’t want them asking you about your divorce, then that’s okay too. In either scenario, I have two suggestions.

  1. Suggest a pre-planning meetup – you meet up in a neutral place, have a drink and can get to know each other before spending two days with them.
  2. If there are subjects you don’t want them to discuss, tell your closest friend that maybe they should keep clear of such discussions.

It Doesn’t Have to be a Bad thing!

Having anxiety surrounding social occasions is natural. I’m aware that the older I become, the more I stress about worst-case scenarios. From being left out, people not liking me, not having enough money, my children not settling at home, my husband ringing me at 3 am because the baby has been sick all over the bed (yes, this did happen), my mind is an overthinking mess. 

What I’ve Learnt about Spending Time with the Girls.

It’s not easy, I’m not going to pretend there is an easy fix, but I have a few little things that have helped me. 

  1. Get ready early – It sounds simple but if you’re getting picked up at 7 pm, allow two or even three hours to have a shower, add a special skin routine and pick an outfit (come on, we all know it was picked out a week ago) even if you do consider an alternative! If you find the time, stay in your dressing gown, listen to music, and have a cold drink (wine is optional but allowed if you’re not driving).
  2. Turn up the Tunes – Now, I’m a 90’s girl (boybands rule), so when I’m getting ready for a night out, I like to get ready with some good old 90’s tunes, and yes, I sing along at the top of my voice (sorry, neighbours). It helps me get in the mood. 
  3. Have a Plan – If, like me, you often find yourself the designated driver or you live nowhere near the others, have a plan so you know you will meet at least one friend en route or know where you will be going. I’ve driven miles before on my own, and at 12 midnight, the world can seem ‘different, but if your friends expect you at 7.30 pm, message them if you run late, and when you leave, message your partner/husband/baby sitter and let them know you are leaving. 

This would work whether a weekend break, one night stay over or an extended day out. Do a few little things to calm you down; it’s all in the planning! 

Women Sitting Painting and Drinking Champagne
Chose activities that suit everyone

Talking of planning…

My Top Five Tips for a Girl’s Weekend

  • It’s in the Planning

Whether you decide on a city shopping trip, a London theatre trip, or a spa retreat in Dorset, make sure it’s something you are all happy to do. Looking for a spa day or break for your group? Make sure you all agree to a spa weekend before you find that Evie doesn’t like or want to go and feels uncomfortable and miserable the whole time.

It’s also best to note that only one or two people plan the trip, or you split different tasks with a different girl. So one accommodation, one trip out, food and drink etc. You don’t want three girls looking at accommodation and no one looking at restaurant reservations or excursions. 

  • Setting a budget

It can be overwhelming when everyone brings their ideas to the discussion. If it’s for a special birthday, it might be worth it to surprise the birthday girl. Now, budgets will significantly impact the type of accommodation, activities, and length of the trip. Planning is usually a must, so others can save. 

A hen weekend in Morocco will cost considerably more than a glamping weekend in Hampshire, and the last thing anybody wants is to get to the airport and realise that Becky has less than six months left on her passport (yes, this happened to a friend). So if a weekend in Morocco is the goal, set a reasonable budget that suits all the girls. 

  • Alternative’s to getting away.

Sometimes with all the best intentions, it’s just not that easy to pack off for the weekend and head down to the west country, but with garden parties on the rise, it’s never been easier to do something a little closer to home. Hire a tipi-style tent, and you’ve got a night or two glamping. Fancy a pamper without the budget? There are day spa packages on Groupon or directly with some hotels that include treatment and use of the facilities and won’t break the bank. If it’s a summertime event, pack a beach bag and head to your local beach (if commutable distance) or your local lido if you have one. 

Another favourite among my friends is a day at a local festival. It doesn’t have to be miles away. Many villages, towns and cities do music, food, wine, car, surfing, and kite festivals, to name just a few and have reasonable priced day tickets. 

Perhaps you have some pregnant ladies attending, or Mum is tagging along with the mother-in-law-to-be; activities should consider all ages. Maybe an afternoon tea will be delivered directly to your door

Group of People Riding Red Boat
You want to have a few activities over the weekend.
  • Excursions/Trips

A thing often overlooked is the activities with no main focus, like ‘theatre’ or ‘beach’. You want to have a few activities over the weekend. A place to eat, stroll around a beautiful village, toasting marshmallows. 

Google and local guides are your best friend, with many apps at your fingertips for booking most things.

  • Top Destinations

A list wouldn’t feel complete without a cool destination guide.

  1. Bath – Shopping, sightseeing and culture.
  2. Newquay – Beach, surfing, bars and an average nightlife
  3. London – Shopping, theatre, sightseeing, museums and a great nightlife.
  4. Brighton – Shopping (The Lanes), beach, bars, nightlife and general party atmosphere. 
  5. Cotswolds (I say it generically) – Walks, tours, sightseeing, forests, retreats. 

These are just a few of my favourites; there are plenty more, like Dublin, Edinburgh, Norfolk, Cambridge, Manchester, and Liverpool, to name a few. We visit Cornwall every year, so I wrote a mini travel guide. Explaining why we should all be having weekend breaks there.

Related Posts:

Final Thoughts

Ultimately, the decision is what you enjoy as friends or individuals. It has been said that ladies of a certain age often use their weekend of freedom to consume the contents of a bar and sleep all day on the beach. At the same time, this may still happen. Many girls are looking for a relaxing break away from cooking, cleaning and talking about anything other than the shape, size and colour of their child’s poo (believe me). 

People Toasting Wine Glasses
Remember the aim, have fun, celebrate a birthday, pending marriage, divorce, or just for fun!

When are you Booking your next Girl’s Weekend?

I know that a weekend shopping trip sounds stressful with my friends but a day at a festival taking in some local bands until the sun goes down is me now! Believe me, it wasn’t when I was younger! 

Remember the aim, have fun, celebrate a birthday, pending marriage, divorce, or just for fun! Because guys seem to do it all the time, right? Take hundreds of photos for the gram and make the best memories!

Have I inspired you? Have you never been on a girl’s weekend? Does it feel you with dread, or do you love the idea? Would you please comment and let me know below? 

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  1. Amazing post! Thank for the tips!

    1. alittlebitsocial2 says:

      Thank you for taking the time to read it and to write a comment, I appreciate it!

  2. What a fun post! A girls weekend getaway is always a good idea and you highlighted some great tips and tricks to make it even easier to plan!

    1. alittlebitsocial2 says:

      Thank you for taking the time to read and reply. I really appreciate it 🙂

  3. This post is great and seriously making me pray for the end of all this Covid stuff so I can get planning!

    1. alittlebitsocial2 says:

      I know what you mean! I can’t wait to be able to actually plan some things! Thank you for reading 🙂

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