The bachelorette party! Probably one of the most fun parts of getting married – especially because someone other than the bride makes most of the decisions and does planning. While the wedding and honeymoon are obviously a blast once they happen, the bachelorette party is something to look forward to from day one of being engaged.
When I got engaged in late 2018, my maid of honor and I started discussing bachelorette destinations right away. My original bachelorette party plans (NOLA) were cancelled this year, so I decided to plan myself a mini-bachelorette party in Leavenworth, Washington, the weekend before my wedding. Why did I choose Leavenworth? Well – we were getting married in Seattle, and I’ve actually attended a bachelorette party in Leavenworth a few years ago, for my good friend Kate (who you’ll see below in some pics wearing white).
If you’re the bride or maid of honor planning a blow-out bach or a bridesmaid coming up with ideas to help out, read on for literally everything you need to know to plan a Leavenworth bachelorette party.
In this post, I promote travel to a destination that is the traditional lands of the np̓əšqʷáw̓səxʷ (Wenatchi) and Yakama peoples, and the Confederated Tribes of the Colville Reservation. With respect, I make a formal land acknowledgment, extending my appreciation and respect to the past and present people of these lands. To learn more about the peoples who call these lands home, I invite you to explore Native Land.
Why Do a Bachelorette Party in Leavenworth?
I’m assuming you’re on this page because Leavenworth is already set as the destination for the upcoming bachelorette party you’re planning – but in case you’re just doing research to decide if it’s a place to party, here’s why it’s a great choice:
- Leavenworth is totally walkable – no Ubers needed! If you plan to stay near the center of town, you won’t need to worry about cars or transportation at all.
- It’s near Seattle, ideal for fly-in bachelorette party attendees. Because Leavenworth is near Seattle and the major airport there, gals from out-of-town can get there pretty easily.
- Leavenworth is a reasonable drive away. Seattle has some amazing weekend destinations, and Leavenworth is one of my favorites!
- It’ll feel like you splurged on a trip to Europe. Leavenworth is modeled after a Bavarian alpine town, and the bride will feel like you winged her thousands of miles away for a special treat.
Where the Bachelorette Party Should Stay in Leavenworth
There are a number of options in town, and it depends a lot on how many gals will be attending the bachelorette party. Here are three Airbnbs that I found for a group of up to 6 at $50/night per person:
- This in-town suite is super cozy and fabulously decorated for a group of ladies. From $262/night for six guests; book directly.
- Harlin Haus is a good option with plenty of space and a good location. From $232/night for six guests; book on Booking.com or directly.
- This downtown condo has mountain views, a balcony, and is right in the heart of it all. From $170/night for six guests; book on VRBO.
Hotels and B&Bs
There are lots of hotels, motels, and B&Bs in Leavenworth to choose from – even better, many are independently owned rather than chains! (There are some chain options too if you prefer that.)
Here are a few that catch my eye:
- Der Ritterhof Inn is a Leavenworth institution, thanks to their giant knight outside. Rooms aren’t fancy or fussy, but are budget-friendly. From $99/night; book on Booking.com or Hotels.com
- Obertal Inn has a great location near the river, and has nice, standard rooms. From $118/night; book on Booking.com or Hotels.com
- Bavarian Lodge is right in town, has great ambiance, and is committed to the Bavarian theme – which is especially good given the name! From $176/night; book on Booking.com or Hotels.com
Note: Don’t forget that with hotels, you’ll need to make sure you have enough rooms for everyone (understand whether rooms are allowed 2 guests or 4 guests!) and breakfast may or may not be included.
There are a few nice resorts outside of Leavenworth that you might choose instead – especially if the bride is looking for a quiet getaway kind of bachelorette party.
- Icicle Village Resort is actually on the edge of town, walkable but still away from the crowds. They have an on-property bar, mini-golf, a pool, and more. From $167/night; book on Booking.com or Hotels.com
- Sleeping Lady Mountain Resort is where I stayed on a winter trip to Leavenworth a few years ago. It’s a perfect getaway for the gals, but close enough you can drive to Leavenworth in a few minutes for daytime activities. From $195/night; book on Booking.com
8 Fun Bachelorette Party Activities in Leavenworth
As you start planning the bachelorette party, it’s important to know what you can do during your time in Leavenworth. Here are the fun group activities I’d suggest.
Float the Wenatchee River
By far the most popular activity to do in Leavenworth on a bachelorette party (or for any reason) is floating the Wenatchee River that runs through town. I did it myself at my friend Kate’s bachelorette party!
You can rent floats from local outfitters like Leavenworth Outdoor Center (where we did), and then catch a shuttle up to the drop-off point. You exit the river right in town, which makes it easy to return your tubes and walk back to your accommodation.
Treat the Gals at a Spa
What is a bachelorette party without at least considering a spa treatment (I say considering because it may not work in everyone’s budget to do one – but if you can splurge on it, I would!). There are a number of spas in town (I provide links below in my suggested itinerary) and all offer a variety of services. So if you decide to spend time at the spa and not every gal can afford it, there are more affordable options like manicures and such.
Cider, Beer, or Wine Tasting
If your group is a bit more civilized (read: lame, also read: me), you may not want to go bar-hopping as part of the bachelorette party plans. In that event, you can still enjoy an adult beverage by doing a cider tasting (at Leavenworth Cider House), wine tasting (options include Icicle Ridge and Woodoo Winery), or beer tasting (breweries are listed below in the bar-hopping section. Cheers!
Enjoy Bavarian Cultural Events
Leavenworth is a Bavarian village, so it’s no surprise there are amazing cultural events to experience! While I don’t recommend planning to do a bachelorette party in Leavenworth during Oktoberfest or the Christmas festival (more on that below), you can still enjoy live music and other activities when there aren’t events going on. Front Street Park is the place where most of these will be centered, so staying near there is a plus.
Go Bar Hopping
Leavenworth has some great bars and restaurants to choose from if “getting crunk” is on the bride’s must-do list for her bachelorette party. (I honestly can’t stay that with a straight face – I’m just too old.) Here are some of my favorites:
- Icicle Brewing Company is my favorite by far, with a great outdoor space – and cool indoors too.
- Doghaus Brewery is understandably a fantastic place, and pet friendly!
- Blewett Brewing is another spot for beer and more; you are in a Bavarian town after all!
Loads of other restaurants have beer gardens, beer on tap, and other drinks too. I personally love to get a stein and sausage from Leavenworth Sausage Garten; Gustav’s has a solid back-bar and beer garden; München Haus is another fab beer garden; and Rhein Haus is an iconic spot in the center of town.
Try Other Off-Beat Options
Here are a few other options to consider; these may or may not work depending on your group size and the bride’s preferences.
Visit a Reindeer Farm
This was an activity I chose for my bachelorette party, and it was super fun! For the bride who loves cute animals, at Leavenworth Reindeer Farm you’ll get to visit and learn about reindeer, then spend 30 minutes in the pen with them feeding and petting them!
Take a Carriage or Sleigh Ride
A number of farms offer sleigh, carriage, and wagon rides depending on the time of year, including one that operates in downtown Leavenworth. Depending on the size of your party you may need to split up though!
Rejuvenate with a Yoga Session
If the bride is up for it or especially health-conscious, a yoga session is a great way for everyone to work up a sweat and bond during the weekend. There’s a hot yoga studio in town; check the schedule and book in advance if you’re a big group.
Skiing & Snowsports
If the bride is a snow bunny and you’re planning a winter bachelorette party, don’t forget that Stevens Pass is just a short drive from town. You could spend an afternoon catching fresh pow and end with an aprés ski treat back off the mountain.
Other Tips for Planning a Bachelorette in Leavenworth
You know me – I always have a section of tips before I launch into an itinerary. These are travel tips I’ve learned from visiting Leavenworth for a number of reasons, including two bachelorette parties.
Pick a Weekend without other Big Events
While it might seem like a great idea to plan a Leavenworth bachelorette party to coincide with Oktoberfest or the Christmas festival in Leavenworth, this is the exactly wrong time to add another special event to the mix. Leavenworth is packed for these weekends and you’ll have a hard time finding a place to stay, and restaurants and bars to get into without reservations. The bride won’t feel like the center of attention, which is really what a bachelorette party is all about!
Instead, opt for another weekend and choose a follow-up trip with a smaller group (including the bride, if she chooses) that can enjoy that event for itself.
Plan Far in Advance
In a similar vein to the above advice, once the bride (or maid of honor) decides that Leavenworth is the place for the bachelorette party, start planning and booking as far in advance as you can. Especially during the summer months (between May Day festivities and Oktoberfest, to use two big events on the Leavenworth calendar), most hotels and vacation rentals will be booked up months in advance… Leavenworth isn’t the place to plan a last-minute bachelorette party!
Note: My friends and I did score a relatively last-minute spot to stay for my Leavenworth bachelorette because of the coronavirus pandemic. That’s not common, so plan to book a place at least three months in advance – though longer if you want a peak summer weekend!
Make Sure You Account for Travel Time
One last thing to consider when planning a bachelorette party in Leavenworth is the travel time it takes to get there. It takes between 2-2.5 hours to drive to Leavenworth, and longer to get home due to inevitable traffic.
Keep that in mind when you work out arrival times on Friday and departure times on Sunday. Also don’t forget to work out who’s riding in which cars, since everyone will need to drive to reach Leavenworth! (There’s a tiny regional airport 30 miles from Leavenworth, but it’s not likely anyone will fly in there!)
Sample Leavenworth Bachelorette Party Itinerary
To help make your life even easier when planning this bachelorette party in Leavenworth that you’ve been tasked with, here’s a rundown of how I would plan one (having attended one for a friend and having done my own there!).
Friday: Arrive & Drinking Games
Assuming everyone needs to work at least a little on Friday, plan to head out mid-afternoon if possible. (For those in the Seattle area, working a half-day is a great way to compromise so people don’t need to burn an entire day of PTO.)
After the 2- to 2.5-hour drive to Leavenworth, arrive and check in at your accommodation, then relax. You can also run to the grocery store to stock up on food for breakfasts and/or drinking supplies, if that’s part of your plan; there’s a Safeway on the edge of town.
One small benefit of the dining restrictions in 2020 was that many restaurants now offer take-out and some even have delivery options. So keep things simple and place an order that everyone can enjoy “at home” for the night. Then it’s time to break out a drinking game to break the ice and introduce everyone to one another.
Note: For my bachelorette party, I bought a Harry Potter drinking game. You can see more of all of the HP bachelorette goodies I love on my Harry Potter blog.
If the bride wants to go out, there are plenty of bars and options to do that tonight and tomorrow. Refer to my “Go Bar Hopping” section above to help her pick one.
Saturday: Morning Float, Afternoon Spa, Evening Out
After a fun, and hopefully not too crazy night in, it’s time to start exploring Leavenworth! First, I recommend doing breakfast at your accommodation if you can – to help keep this budget-friendly for all the gals.
Then it’s time to head to start your river float. Most of the float providers open at 11am; when I went for my friend Kate’s bach, we rented floats and did the two-mile float with Leavenworth Outdoor Center. In fact, you can see our pictures on their website!
After floating, cleaning up, and a bite of lunch in town, it’s time to head to the spa! There are several spas: the Alpine Spa at Icicle Village Resort and the Aspen Leaf Spa at Sleeping Lady Resort. (These are ideal if you’re staying at either of these resorts, but they are open to non-guests.). The Posthotel also has a spa. All three offer body scrubs with different products – that’s my spa go-to, and will leave the bride glowing!
In the evening, it’s time to get dolled up and head out on the town (possibly for a second time). This is the night where all the gals should dress in black (re: my destination bachelorette packing list) and let the bride wear white if she chooses. You could start with a wine, beer, or cider tasting, then enjoy dinner somewhere before a night of bar-hopping.
Sunday: Brunch, One Last Activity
On your last morning, it’s time to splurge on brunch to help everyone recover from the night before. Louie’s Cafe is a great option with traditional breakfast and diner food; Sandy’s Waffle & Dinner Haus is obviously also a good choice.
If you have time before departing, this is a good chance to do one more activity: you could all go try some yoga to help you feel a little better after a weekend of indulgence, or go meet the reindeer at Leavenworth Reindeer Farm. (Depending on when you visit, they may have babies!) Or, you could just stroll through downtown Leavenworth, admiring the architecture, souvenir shopping, and listening to any Bavarian music performances happening that day.
There you go! That’s literally everything you need to know to plan an epic Leavenworth bachelorette party that the bride will never forget. Have any other questions? Let me know in the comments!