How to Have the BEST Bachelorette Party in Glacier National Park
My bestie is getting married! I mentioned in the last post about my solo trip to Glacier National Park that the reason I was in Montana was to attend a bachelorette weekend. I had gone early because I like to do my own thing and wanted to ensure I got in some good, solid hikes. (If you haven’t read that post yet and are looking for Glacier info or solo travel inspo, then check it out HERE.) Now, back to all things bachelorette.
Y’all I am not normally the type to be into this kind of thing, but let me tell you this girls’ getaway was one for the books. Rachel’s bachelorette weekend in Glacier National Park was SO much fun that I felt I had to write about it. But should I? Could I? Does what happens in Montana stay in Montana?
When I bounced this idea off my bestie, she mentioned to me that back in the Spring, when we first started discussing the idea, she had been scouring the interwebs for info on bachelorette-ing in Montana. And with little success. She said having a resource for info on hosting a bachelorette party in Glacier would have been really helpful. And so, here we are. I’m going to tell you how to have the most kick-ass bachelorette party EVER in Glacier National Park. I’m not sure how many of you are getting married, or, if like my bestie, you feel unsure about having a bachelorette party at all, but if you are even considering the thing, then you should think about doing it in Montana.
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How to Have The BEST Bachelorette Party in Glacier National Park
Making the bride feel special is an essential part of any bachelorette party
1. Book a Cute, Cozy Cabin for your Home Base
Where you stay during a bachelorette party is important. Especially if it is not an early-twenties audience and clubbing-until the wee hours of the morning, then waking up and doing it again, are not the whole agenda.
You’ll probably be spending a good amount of time at your accommodation, even if you plan to be out and about. You’re not just there for sleeping, but for coffee and breakfast, getting ready, time in between outings. And if your bachelorette party involves outdoor activities, like ours did, then the weather will be a factor as well. An unexpected rain-in isn’t so bad when your cabin is cozy! The time spent in the cabin—or whatever type of lodging you choose—will probably be some of the most fun and memory-making times. Everyone can let loose at home, not just the wilder ones in the group. And there is space and time for sweet moments between the bride and her crew, and for those crewmates to get to know one another.
We found a cute, cozy cabin with just enough space for all of us (including couches, admittedly) that was affordable for everyone in our group of eight. I mentioned in my last post that lodging in Montana in the summer can be expensive. The cabin we picked was just the right balance of space, comfort, and affordability.
Check out where we stayed: Mountain View Log Cabin (airbnb.com)
Of course, the accommodation itself is not the only thing to consider when choosing a place. Location, location, location matters. We chose to stay in Bigfork, just under an hour drive from the West end of Glacier National Park, 45 minutes from Whitefish, where we planned to have our big “going out” night, and 30 minutes from Kalispell International Airport. There was enough land on the property that we did not have to worry about neighbors hearing our obnoxious laughter or being privy to our choice of music. A little privacy is always a plus at a bachelorette party!
Our cute, cozy cabin was the perfect home base for Rachel's Mountain Bachelorette Bash
2. Have the Best SWAG
Let’s Face it, a bachelorette party isn’t a bachelorette party without some themed swag. Our group mayyyyy have gone a little overboard in this department due to three different people (including the bride!) surprising the group with bachelorette swag & party favors. But it just added to the fun. We had tee-shirts, backpacks, hats, glasses, two varieties of Koozies and 2 scrunchie options (This scrunchie thing must be a new trend, but given how often I lose my hair ties, I am HERE for it.) Because our bachelorette weekend was at Glacier, we opted for mountain-themed apparel. If you are going to Glacier, or any other National Park for your bachelorette party, then might I suggest this cute “Last Trail before the Veil” collection for your bachelorette swag?
Good swag is a MUST for any bachelorette party
3. Get Your Game On
A bachelorette just isn’t a bachelorette without some themed party games, amirite?
Cliché as it may be, some get-to-know you games can actually be fun. We played Bachelorette Bash, which includes 6 different types of cards ranging from bride facts, never have I ever, truth or dare, and trivia questions.
In the more racy (but also cliché) bachelorette category, we went with Dick Head Hoopla. Silly? Yes. Ridiculous? Of course. But there is no way to not have fun playing ring toss on your friend’s head. And we love accessories at bachelorette parties. I would highly recommend purchasing this one.
Lastly, we played some good old fashioned card games—Kings, my favorite card game of all. While typically a drinking game, I have to tell you that this turned out to be just as fun sober as it used to be when I was getting crunk. If you don’t know what Kings is, then pull up a seat, I’ll explain.
If you already know how to play, then skip ahead to the next section. If not, then read on.
Kings is a card game that you play with a regular deck of cards. All of the cards will be used. Typically, they are distributed in a circle around a beer can in the center of the table. For some reason, we played just going around, picking up from the deck. Since no one was drinking beer, that option worked just fine. We let the bride go first, but if you care who goes first, then figure out a way to decide that part. Now, how to play:
A player will pick up a card and leave it face up on the table for the whole group to see. Each card triggers an action. These actions are based on “House Rules.” You can create all your own House Rules, but I am going to tell you ours. We had to get a bit creative and amend some of the typical rules due to things like it not being a co-ed game, and not wanting to be toooooo sloppy too quickly. The explanations for each rule are below. Feel free to keep what you like and change what you don’t. It’s your game!
A- Social Ace is often played as a waterfall. This means the player who picked the card starts drinking, the next player starts after that, and the next starts after that, and so on until every player is drinking. No one may stop drinking until the player before them does. As you can see, there is potential to get pretty messy with this one. We opted instead for a “Social”. Everyone toasts and takes a sip. All together now!
2- You The person who picked the card assigns a drink. Point to a friend, “You drink”
3- Me The person who picked the card must drink
4- Floor Hands to the floor. The last person to comply drinks. This is often amended to mean hand on the table, since getting to the floor can be a challenge in a big group.
5- High Five Okay, the real way to play this is 5 is for Guys. The men in the group all must drink. But alas, at the bachelorette, there were no men, so we had to come up with something different. We decided high-fives were as good as anything. Everyone at the table had to high-five someone, and whomever was left hanging with no high-five buddy had to drink. Womp womp.
6- Kicks In co-ed games, as mentioned 5 is for Guys and 6 is for Chicks. Since we were all women, we decided to have some fun with this one. We made 6 for KICKS and literally everyone had to kick their leg up in the air and the slowest person to accomplish this had to drink. This one was belly-laugh material. Just wait.
7- Heaven Each player must raise one hand to the sky, the last player to get their hand up must drink.
8- Pick-A-Date The player who drew the card, let’s call them Player A, will pick a “date”, Player B. Any time Player A is required to drink per the game, then Player B also must drink. I say required for a reason. If Player A *chooses* to take a sip of their drink, Player B is not required to drink. If Player B is required to drink per the game, Player A is not required to drink. Pick-A-Date is a one-way street. Although, with enough dates, the whole table could be drinking in unison!
9- Bust-A-Rhyme One of the funnest cards, IMO. The player who pulled the card will start out with a simple sentence. “I like to eat,” for example. The next player must say another sentence that rhymes. “I have big feet,” for example. Each player is only required to say one sentence, meaning they do not have to rhyme with themselves. This goes on and on until someone cannot come up with a rhyme. That person must drink.
10- Never Have I Ever Each player puts three fingers up in the air. The player who pulled the card will begin by saying something they have never done. If anyone in the group has done this thing, they put one finger down. The next player says something they have never done, and so on, until one person has all three fingers down. This person must drink.
Jack- Categories The player who pulled the card will pick a category and then give their answer. So player A, who pulled the card would say. “Category is Airlines. Delta.” The next player will name another airline. The next another, and so on until one person cannot think of an example and must drink. This can be anything; Cereals, hair styles, flavors of vodka, whatever is your pleasure.
Queen- Questions Okay, this one is really fun, too. When a Queen is drawn, the player who pulled the card must turn to another player and ask a question. This can be literally anything. *The question is NOT to be answered.* The player who was just asked a question must turn to another player and ask them a question. The questions can be asked of any player, this is not meant to go in order of turn. Ask across the table, to the side, whomever you want. Questions cannot be repeated. This round ends when one person either answers a question, repeats a question, or is too overcome with laughter to take their turn. This person must drink.
King- Kings There is a lot of variety in the way that King cards are used. We chose to call this one “Ruler”, meaning whomever pulled the King makes a rule. This can be anything. “I don’t have to drink when it is my turn to drink.” “You must all refer to me as Queen Antoinette, her almighty, genius, sex goddess.” “No pointing, or you drink.” In other House Rules, pulling a King can mean something like sticking the card on top of the middle beer can, with the player who picks the last King chugging the entire can. We opted out of that.
4. Boat Through Glacier National Park
What is better than being on a boat? Being on a boat in the majesty that is Glacier National Park with a bunch of your friends! I can’t recommend highly enough doing one of the boat excursions by Glacier Park Boat Tours. You will get to see glaciers, wildlife, and the mountains from a whole different perspective. Plus hear about the history of the Park.
There are four different boat tours you can take with this company. Our group chose the Many Glacier boat tour, which consisted of two boat rides with a short walk in between and the option to hike for longer at the finish point. It was a great option for us because it gave us some flexibility.
The tour starts at the iconic Many Glacier Hotel, which I recommend stopping by even if you don’t do any tours. The lodge is at once cozy and expansive, with the feel of a Swiss chalet. The views of the mountains across Swiftcurrent Lake simply can’t be beat (at any other lodging in the park.) There is also a gift shop, a snack shop, and a proper restaurant. From Many Glacier Hotel, we boarded our boat and enjoyed a cruise across Swiftcurrent Lake. Our guide told us about the Hotel’s history, from building, to a devastating fire, an employee-run rescue effort, and its place in Glacier today. We also heard about the glaciers in the park, including Grinnell Glacier, which I had hiked to just days prior on my solo trip to Glacier Park.
Many Glacier Hotel is totally worth stopping by
Masks were required on the boat and if you are carrying bear spray, it does need to be zipped inside of your backpack, not sticking out of an external side pocket. Safety first!
On the other side of Swiftcurrent Lake, we disembarked, and took a short 10-minute walk to the next boat dock on Lake Josephine. I experienced a lot of déjà vu on this walk and on our later hiking excursion because this was exactly where my 11.2-mile hike to Grinnell Glacier had begun. The views were familiar which made me feel like a local—a feeling I love.
From this dock, we set off on another little boat cruise. Here, the guide talked to us about the wildlife in the park. It turns out the bears in Glacier National Park are 90% vegetarian. Wow! At the end of this boat ride, you will have the option to disembark and explore or turn right back around and head back to the start. If you are getting off the boat (and you really should) they will give you a ticket and tell the boat pickup times for a return ride.
5. Take a Hike
A Bachelorette Party in Glacier National Park would not be complete without a hike. Our group was composed of both hikers and non-hikers, but we all managed to do a bit of hiking after our Many Glacier boat tour. This hiking area is great for groups where not everyone is into hiking. The views get really beautiful really quickly with just a small amount of elevation. There are about a million hiking trails dispersed throughout Glacier National Park and there is something for every level of fitness and enthusiasm.
6. Feast Your Eyes
The Going-to-the-Sun Road is the main road that connects the West and East Glacier Park entrances and is chock-full of stunning views. Most of the popular hiking trails are along this road and there are scenic viewpoints all along the way where you can stop and take some (totes adorbs) group photos. The bonus is that this is like a mini road trip. And we all know how much fun a road trip with friends can be!
The Going-to-the-Sun Road requires an additional ticket beyond your park entry fee, but fret not. It is only $2 per vehicle. This helps to ensure that the gorgeous byway is not congested with traffic. Tickets sell out far in advance, so once you decide to book your Bachelorette trip to Glacier National Park, get your Going-to-the-Sun pass right away. If you haven’t done this (like we didn’t) there is still another option! A small number of tickets go on sale for the last-minute folk 48 hours in advance. We wanted Friday to be our big day in Glacier, so on Wednesday morning, five of us were up, logged in on our computers, and ready to buy when the ticketing window opened. The tickets will sell out very quickly. Be up before 8am Mountain Standard Time to try to get yours!
And if you still couldn’t manage to get your hands on a Going-to-the-Sun pass, I’ve got another backup for you. The GttS road entry ticket is only required between 6am and 5pm. That means you can go before 6am, when it is still dark, or you can go after 5pm. In the Summer the sun does not set in Glacier until 8:30 pm, so you will have plenty of time, and probably some gorgeous sunset views, if you go later in the afternoon.
For more information or to purchase entry tickets to Glacier National Park and the Going-to-the-Sun Road, click here: Fees & Passes – Glacier National Park (U.S. National Park Service) (nps.gov)
7. Make a Splash
Spend the day at Flathead Lake. Flathead Lake is just an hour South of Glacier National Park and is a great place to spend the day relaxing. With any luck you’ll have sun-shiny beach days for your bachelorette weekend in Montana. Unfortunately for us, the weather was gray, drizzly, and too chilly for a dunk in the lake.
Our rainy day at Flathead Lake was still tons of fun
8. Party in Whitefish
Saturday’s for the GIRLS! (It was during our bachelorette weekend in Montana, anyway.) Whitefish is a cute town near Glacier National Park that has plenty of restaurants and bars to choose from. There is shopping and a nice little downtown area, making Whitefish the most “city” out of all the little “cities” and towns around Glacier.
This is the place we chose for our “Big night out” Saturday night. (Every bachelorette weekend has to have one of these, right?) We dined at Casey’s and planned to go out barhopping from there. But after drinks at the house, drinks with dinner, and drinks upstairs at the club above Casey’s, we ended up having to call it an earlier night than expected. Call us cheap dates, we were back at the cabin by midnight! To bed? That’s another story.
9. Dance Your Face Off
Your bachelorette party in Montana will NOT be complete without dancing your face off. We danced in the house, we danced in the club, we danced in the car, we danced in the mountains. This was a dance FEST. It was the first bachelorette party I have ever attended sober. Having quit drinking a year and a half ago, the opportunity to dance my face off just doesn’t come up all that often these days. This was one of my favorite parts of the weekend. Just having fun dancing with my girlfriends. Make sure your accommodation has ample space for a dance floor, ensure that someone brings a speaker, and might I suggest learning the WAP dance after a night out?
It’s a side note, but if you are interested in hearing about why I quit drinking, then feel free to check out this post: Six Months of Sober: Why I Quit Drinking
I'm not allowed to show dancing pics, but I am allowed to show THIS.
10. Watch your besties become besties
One of the great things about a bachelorette party, is that friends from different walks of life get to meet one another before the wedding. High school friends, college friends, work friends, etc. With any luck, they will hit it off and want to dine, dance, chat, and hang out with one another on the big day. No shade to a regular degular bar crawl bachelorette party, no hate to Vegas or Nashville or Charleston—some of the most popular bachelorette destinations in the country. But just consider how much more bonding can come from doing something not just fun, but awesome for your bachelorette. Something adventurous. Catch-your-breath beautiful. An experience you or the others may not have ever done otherwise.
Rachel’s Montana bachelorette party was the Best in part because of the amazing people she knows and in part because of the location. The gals at our bachelorette shindig still got drunk enough to do the WAP dance in public on a sidewalk. But we also hiked through lush mountain scenery, peered down at turquoise waters, watched for grizzly bears—and SAW ONE!, witnessed the divine in the shape of green mountains and valleys and waterfalls in the distance, clutched our pearls through a zero-visibility section of a high-up mountain road in the early morning fog, saw freaking GLACIERS! Standing there, so tiny, in this vast place of beauty, one cannot help but to feel inspired, in awe, a sense of euphoria. And when seven other women are standing by your side, experiencing the same thing, a kind of tight, special bond forms. You’ve done something grand together.
The eight of us who took part in Rachel’s bachelorette party in Glacier Park are still communicating daily in our group chat. We are all excited for the wedding in three weeks, not only because we love Rachel and wish her and JT a lifetime of happiness, but because we get to reunite with our new pals! I cannot freaking WAIT to see these girls again. The WAP teacher, the “mom” of the group who gives great hugs, the one with the craziest stories I am still haunted by, the one who put it all together for us—the one we call Regina George, the one who is “so not a hiker” but as it turns out fell in love with Montana, The actual mom of the group who had some surprising tricks up her sleeve and stories in her arsenal.
Rachel, our bride, has said time and time again that watching her besties become besties was her favorite part of the bachelorette weekend in Montana. And I think everyone in the group feels this way.
Consider having your bacheloretty party in Glacier National Park and just see if it isn’t the best pre-wedding decision you’ve made.
BONUS: Take 1,000,000 photos or it DIDN’T HAPPEN
It’s a beautiful place, take photos. People on the trail and on the Going-to-the-Sun Road loved seeing us in our “last trail before the veil” swag. They struck up conversations, said how great we looked (we know, but thank youuu!) and mentioned time after time what a great idea this was for a bachelorette party. Those passersby and generous photo-takers were part of the inspiration for this post. Your photos won’t do the scenes at Glacier any justice, but you will be so happy to have them later to remember your kick-ass bachelorette weekend in Montana.
Now enjoy some more bachelorette photo magic <3
And those are my top 10 tips on having the BEST bachelorette weekend in Glacier National Park EVER. If you are considering an out-of-the-ordinary bachelorette weekend, you should definitely consider Montana! As I said, we were a mixed group of hikers and non-hikers, nature lovers and city-gals, and every single person had a BLAST at our bachelorette weekend in Montana. As a matter of fact, we are still talking daily in the group chat we started weeks ago. To all you future brides reading this—Congratulations! I hope your last trail before the veil—wherever that may be—is a freaking BLAST! <3
If you have any questions about throwing a bachelorette party in Montana or visiting Glacier National Park, feel free to get in touch via the comments or my email! Always happy to hear from other travelers. If you have other awesome bachelorette destination ideas, please share with the class!! Leave them below for all to see!
Happy weekend y’all, safe travels, and much love.
I’m crying. Reading this brought back all the same emotions of hysteria, love, exhaustion, and complete and utter JOY.
Thanks for the recap Tone. Selfishly, it made my freaking day to read it, and was like the cherry on top of the most bomb ass trip.
This would have been the PERFECT thing for me to find back in March when I was searching, and definitely would have quieted my concerns I initially had that maybe Montana wasn’t for everyone. So glad I was selfish and picked it anyway. Lol.
Love you Tone, and all my homies on this trip!!!
Awwwww I’m so happy you liked it. It was tough to figure out how to capture the awesomeness of the weekend, not spill too many secrets, and give solid info to others looking to plan their bachelorette parties. I also am SO glad you picked Montana! Truly one for the books!
I loved reading this! First, you are a talented writer because I just relived our experience! Second, even if I weren’t on this trip I would be planning one ASAP!! Thank you for capturing everything and sparing the dancing photos!! Loved this trip so much!!
awwww Kate that is so sweet. First, thank you so much for taking the time to read and for stopping by to leave a comment. Second, I am so glad you got to relive it because that is totally how I felt while writing it! Best news– we get to sort of re-live it again at the wedding! I am so glad everyone had such a great time– even the ones who were skeptical about the whole hiking-in-the-mountains part 🙂
Can’t wait to see ya soon!