Uncliched Birthday Ideas to Celebrate the Big Five-Oh

Air Balloons in Cappadocia

It is known that there are things that only get better over time. Take, for instance, cheese, good wine, books, designer and antique things and, I believe, we, lovely human beings, are among them.

When we’re in our 50s, we know exactly what we want and how to get it. However, when asked how I was going to celebrate my half-century, I didn’t know what to say.

As usual, I immediately rushed to my computer and started looking for what the Internet “thinks” about celebrating such a significant date and what ideas it offers for spending this day so that it will be remembered forever.

Here is what I have found so far.

Depending on the budget, there are many different options, from theme parties to private jet or yacht charter, from spa treatments to plastic surgery. I have to say that this is quite exciting, but definitely not the way I would like to celebrate my 50th birthday.

I love the idea of learning something new on this day by taking a sommelier course or a cooking lesson. It might also be fascinating to attend a memorable event such as a rock concert, fashion show, or sporting event. Despite the fact that I am in awe of all these ideas, I feel that I am still missing something.

I believe that celebrating the big 5-0, should be both challenging and extremely vibrant. In other words, I need a tremendously memorable experience. By experience, I mean some activities, the memory of which will remain in my mind forever. I already said once that we can’t take things with us to the grave, but we can take our impressions there.

So, with all this in mind, I picked up a few ideas from the internet and from the people I spoke to and sorted all of the options into specific categories. I hope those who are thinking about how to celebrate their birthday will find interesting ideas for themselves here.

‘Hobby Groups’ experience

In general, I love interacting with people. That is why I usually attend a lot of different classes and workshops (well, before covid I did that). I believe that all these hobby groups are a great way not only to acquire a certain skill, but also to meet people who have common interests with yours.

Depending on how many people you plan to invite, you can join a group or arrange a private lesson exclusively for your guests. It’s up to you but pleasure is guaranteed anyway.

There are many classes and workshops, but I have selected a few that really match my desires at this point in time, or that left a lasting impression on me when I attended them, and I would like to repeat them.

Cooking workshop
Cooking workshop
  • Art party, where you can discover the magical world of creativity by painting your own masterpiece while sipping wine, taking pictures, listening to music and dancing.
  • Cooking show, where you can take part in a master class with a professional chef and prepare your own culinary delicacies. Then, of course, get rid of everything cooked, washed down with wine. And then you can also listen to music, dance and have all kinds of fun.
  • Team sports, where you can have fun with your teammates by playing netball, volleyball or ice hockey. And in the continuation of the party, you can arrange an awards ceremony with songs, dances, and so on.
  • Dancing class. Essentially the same as team sports, but more suitable for companies with a female dominance (or 50/50).
  • Quest or VR Adventure. It’s a good way to escape from everyday life and completely immerse yourself in a fascinating plot. It can be a quest room with a carefully designed interior and many mysteries and traps, or a quest performance in which you have to interact with the actors. And if you arrange a team battle with zombies, robots or aliens in Virtual Reality, the surge of emotions will be 10 times greater.
Team battle in virtual reality
Team battle in virtual reality

You can also enjoy other experiences as you celebrate your birthday, such as a pottery lesson, a choir or music lesson (or even a competition), an amateur theatre production, bowling, golfing, paintball, hiking and much, much more

Extreme sports experience

It is well-known that extreme sports relieve stress. The chemical dopamine, which is produced by the brain, will help us stay happy. By doing extreme sports like wall climbing or jumping from an aeroplane, we can see the world from a different perspective, which also gives us a sense of satisfaction.

One more benefit of extreme sports is boosting our self-confidence which can have such a positive impact on all aspects of our life. It also helps to train the respiratory and cardiovascular systems, which can serve as the prevention of a large number of diseases.

Can you imagine how many benefits extreme sports have? This is why the idea of doing extreme sports on my birthday seems very attractive. Recharge yourself with adrenaline for the entire upcoming year, isn’t it cool?

Obviously, there are many kinds of extreme sports. I have selected just a few of them that I would like to experience.

I love height. That is why I prefer flying sports. Here joy is mixed with delight, and admiration is complemented by the bright colours of the landscapes seen. I like this idea. Especially, if take a flight to some spectacular place as Cappadocia.

  • Hot Air Balloon ride. You can go up into the sky with the whole company, and then have a picnic and share your impressions of the flight.
  • Paragliding. This is more for a small group of guests and takes more courage than flying in a hot air balloon. However, seeing the world from a bird’s eye view is a breathtaking event.
  • Gliding. I reckon this experience is more suitable for a limited number of your guests (two or three) because, as I learned, this is more of a professional sport than entertainment. But it’s worth a try. Gliders rise into the air like birds with outstretched wings, take off in updrafts, plunge into three-dimensional space and fly silently with an eagle’s view of the world. I can imagine how amazing it is.
Glider flight
Glider flight

There are other extreme sports options such as skydiving, helicopter or sports jet flying, etc. Your choice depends entirely on how much you are willing to take the risk and how much adrenaline you want.

If you are into extreme driving, there are several options, such as F1 or V8 style racing cars. The same goes for water activities like scuba diving, windsurfing or kiteboarding, whatever it is if you like it then go ahead. As I mentioned, I’m more drawn to the sky than underwater.

Life-changing experience

For those who are longing for change, there are experiences that can shift the direction of your life. So, your birthday could be a turning point for you. Why not?

Instead of gifts, you can ask your guests to devote time to something dear to your heart. This could be volunteering at an animal shelter, helping to build a house or teaching children. This is a wonderful experience that you and others will definitely remember. After that, you can still go for brunch or dinner.

Below I give a few more options that seem relevant to me at this stage of my life.

Spiritual retreat
Spiritual retreat
  • Go to Peru for an Ayahuasca spiritual retreat.
  • Purge your closet and donate it to charity.
  • Rescue the puppy from the shelter and bring it home.
  • Renew your wedding vows. If you are engaged, tie the knot.
  • Write the longest gratitude list and spend your entire birthday in meditation.
Entertaining experience

Any entertainment will mean free space and an overall clear mind. You will find yourself staying sharper and freer. It reduces your negative emotions like stress, anxiety, and depression. These things are both mentally and physically draining.

It is suitable for those whose friends share your tastes. For example, if you have friends who are good at art, then you can go with them on a hike to private galleries and hunt for works of art together. And if you’re lucky, bring home a purchase, and then there will be a double reason to celebrate. This is how I spent one of my birthdays a decade ago.

Basically, here is a list of several options.

Rock concert
Rock concert
  • Go to a rock concert or a comedy show.
  • Take a museum tour.
  • Spend the day at an amusement park.
Relaxing experience

If you feel like you need a getaway for your body and mind, the best way to do it is to spend your birthday in a soothing environment. A relaxing experience can also reduce fatigue, anger and frustration, and improve concentration and mood. To do this, you can:

Listening to the waves
Listening to the waves
  • Go to the beach and listen to the waves. You can do it alone (why not? I did it last birthday during lockdown), or with your friends all day long.
  • Get a cosmetic enhancement. Make it a social event by gathering a group of friends and heading to a Korean day spa (they usually have multiple levels and relaxation rooms), or simply have fun with your friends at your local beauty salon. Either way, there are a few hours on the menu to pamper yourself.
Other experiences
  • Get a tattoo or piercing. A fun and perhaps completely unexpected way to celebrate this milestone. Just imagine what your children’s faces will look like when you show them.
  • Try your luck at gambling. You can bring Vegas to your home by hiring a card dealer, dimming the lights, and betting on money. You can even buy a felt poker table top to add ambience.
  • Have a game night. There is no need to learn bridge rules overnight. Bring board games instead and play all night long.
Enjoying the tattoo

Almost every birthday I went on a journey. I thought that starting my personal year from a new place and receiving a charge of new impressions is an integral part of my life. I still think the same way (only the pandemic doesn’t yet allow us to turn around and go flying).

However, for my birthday, I would like to combine several experiences. I have an idea in my mind to get a tattoo, probably in advance. And then get lost in one place of this wonderful Planet, admiring the bright colours of the landscapes seen during a balloon flight or glider. At the same time, for accommodation, it would be nice to book “chambers” in one of the castles in France or the UK. I’m not sure about this plan, but why not dream.

Flying on air balloon over the Castle
Flying on air balloon over the Castle

Anyway, I have time to think more, especially since there are still some ambiguities related to covid. Time will show. I’ll keep you up to date.

What ideas do you have for celebrating your birthday?


  1. Super list! I had my big five-oh… waiting for the next one (just kidding). Bookmarked the article, it is great to have such a list on hand – to do something exciting with the reason or even without. Thanks for the ideas!

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