There’s no law that says your bachelorette party has to involve dick straws.
You don’t have to wear a tiara and a sash, take shots off of strangers’ bodies, and puke in your cab ride home, waking up the next morning to lashes on your pillow and pics on your phone you do not remember.
If the one-size-fits-all bachelorette party isn’t your thing, it doesn’t mean you have to forgo one altogether – you can just have a bachelorette party that’s more you.
While Las Vegas, Nashville and Miami remain the most popular bachelorette weekend destinations, there’s another option for brides-to-be that want another vibe entirely. If you’re a bachelorette who’d love a laid-back, relaxed, naturey weekend with your girls, Sun Valley, Idaho, just might be your spot.
Located in the Wood River Valley and surrounded by the Sawtooth Mountains, Sun Valley is famous for its ski areas at Bald Mountain and Dollar Mountain. But there are all-season outdoorsy options in Sun Valley, as well as restaurants, breweries, spas, boutique hotels and woodsy lodges, and even an active arts and culture scene. Locals describe Sun Valley as a small mountain town with big life experience. It’s also famously dog-friendly, with lots of pet-friendly hotel options, so you can even bring along the real love of your life (don’t tell your fiance you said that.)
Here are some ideas for the perfect Sun Valley bachelorette weekend (no cliches included).
Downtown Ketchum is where you’ll find lots of great restaurants, from all-organic healthy spots to sustainable breweries. Check out Barrio 75 for specialty tacos, tortilla chips made from heirloom corn, and over 40 tequilas you can sip while taking in patio views of Bald Mountain. Or have a fancier night out and sample the Northwest cuisine at The Grill at Knob Hill Inn. You can even book the private Fireplace Room and play (low-key, chill) bachelorette party games around its grand communal table made of reclaimed wood.
For breakfast, Bigwood Bread serves up tasty brunch basics as well as homemade bagels (the town’s water mineral content is similar to the water in New York, they say) and sweet treats like sticky buns, almond croissants and giant cinnamon rolls. Or, you can detox from just thinking about the bachelorette weekend you could have had with a pressed juice and smoothie bowl at all-organic spot Glow.
You could make your bridesmaids stand in line for hours outside a dance club and then pay an obscene amount of money for bottle service, or you could all go to Zenergy of Sun Valley, a spa that has everything from massage to skin treatments to acupuncture.
Get individual treatments or book a spa party for your bridal party. Or get active with skiing (there are more than 2,000 acres of it), hiking or biking on an expansive network of trails, or yoga with dozens of indoor and outdoor options. One place in town, Studio Move Ketchum, even offers a gravity-defying yoga class that integrates aerial silks. Or, go all-in on the Western vibe with horseback riding at Sun Valley Stables. They offer multiple horseback experiences, including a leisurely 90-minute trail ride to the top of Dollar Mountain with unbelievable views of Bald mountain and the entire Wood River Valley. You can even book a group wagon ride for your entire bridal party for the most anti-bachelorette bachelorette.
Rugged, woodsy, luxury, quirky — there are tons of lodging options to fit you and your friends’ personalities. Check out Limelight Hotel or Hotel Ketchum for an in-town, all-the-amenities experience. Live the ski chalet life at the charming Knob Hill Inn. Soak in the history of the country’s first destination ski lodge and stay at the Sun Valley Lodge. Spread out and rent a house with Natural Retreats and Alpine Lodging. You can even rent a yurt — a yurt! — at Galena Lodge. They’ve got several to choose from, including one with a wood-fired sauna and one conveniently located next to a sledding hill.
Just like weddings, bachelorette parties should be about you and what’s authentically fun for you. If giant inflatable engagement rings make you cringe, but mountain views, laid-back adventures, and relaxing with your friends in a beautiful place make your heart sing, then ditch the dicks and check out Sun Valley for your bachelorette weekend destination.
Marla Caceres is a freelance writer for G/O Media Studios.