How to Have the Best Bachelor Party Without Ending Your Engagement

You're getting married -- or your buddy is -- and it's time for one last single-guy party. You want it to be a celebration of the best parts of being single and hanging out with your friends. But a lot of the stereotypes about bachelor parties are a little too wild. You don't want an epic party that destroys your relationship before you even walk down the aisle! Here's how you can still have a guys-only blowout that you won't have to hide from the spouse-to-be.

Key Planning Tips: Get the Details Right

You want this bachelor party to be something the groom will always remember -- in a good way. Make sure the guest list includes people who actually get along and that the dates will work for everybody. The most challenging part of planning a bachelor party may be coordinating dates and times, not what you do in the time together. And remember the one who must be happiest with the plans is the groom-to-be. Don't schedule a golf trip if the groom likes video games more than sports.

Get Wild in the Great Outdoors

Few things are more manly than spending time with the bros in the great outdoors. If the groom likes being outdoors, take him out for a camping trip or fishing trip. Hiking, hunting or kayaking can be a lot of fun. If you're not as sure about where to go or how to plan it, you can always hire a company like Backroads to plan your outdoors weekend. Whether you plan it yourself or hire someone, make sure to include lots of beer and plans for a bonfire.

Go Big and Extreme

Like life on the edge? Extreme sports make you feel powerful and alive. You have a lot to choose from in terms of extreme sports, like skydiving, bungee jumping and scuba diving. You could even combine extreme sports with a bit of nostalgia for your younger days by getting out your skateboards.

Go Classy and Upscale

Want to feel like a baller? You might have to dig deep for some extra cash, but try going all out for a whiskey tasting. You can go to a high-class bar or craft distillery and ask for a private tasting for the male side of the wedding party. It's alcohol for sophisticated types who care more about the quality than the quantity.

Hit the Open Road

Few things are better for bonding than a good old road trip. Load up the car with the guys, bring tons of snacks, and head for someplace fun but a bit cheesy, like Graceland or Atlantic City. Or you may want to cross the border into a whole different country and go to Mexico or Canada. Try asking the Tour Guys to help you plan a customized walking tour in major Canadian cities. A rock and roll tour in Toronto or a tour of secret spots in Vancouver, maybe?

The Old Classic

Is there any bachelor party more typical than Vegas, baby? It's a classic for a reason. Go for the whole experience: take in a show, eat a cheap steak dinner, gamble as much or as little money as you can afford to lose. If you want to do something more memorable than just hanging out in the casino, try the Downtown Brew Festival or Fremont Street.

The bachelor party is the time when the groom gets to enjoy one last weekend of freedom as a single man. It should be a blast -- but not so much of one that it ruins the wedding. Have a well-planned dudes-only weekend, and then have the groom show up with a Manly Band on hand to exchange with his spouse. Send him sailing into married life with happy times to remember from his single days hanging out with the guys.

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