Loves going out and about in Canberra and writing about her adventures! Also addicted to coffee, high teas, escape rooms, and dressing up.
Published June 25th 2019
Twelve ways to celebrate your adult birthday
When you're a child, your birthday is THE BEST DAY EVER. You get lots of presents and sometimes your parents throw you a party with all of your friends and you get even more presents, or you get to go to your favourite places and do your favourite things and basically, everything is all about you. And you very proudly tell everyone how old you are and they tell you how grown up you're becoming and you feel really special and really good about yourself.
When you're an adult, however, birthdays may not be as exciting as they used to be when you were a child. For one thing, you don't go around happily telling everybody how old you've turned! Unless we're celebrating a significant milestone such as a 30th, 40th, or 50th, and unless you're part of a lovesick, very newly married, very cashed up couple (such as the newly married man I heard about who treated his wife to a surprise weekend away to New Zealand for her birthday last year and this year treated her to a helicopter ride and lunch at a winery!), there are many of us adults out there who actually don't make a fuss about our birthdays.
But our adult birthdays should be fussed about! Now, we may not always celebrate with helicopter rides or weekend trips away to New Zealand, but we can celebrate our birthdays in other memorable, special ways. If you have a birthday coming up or a loved one's birthday to plan, then here are twelve ideas to celebrate, and all without having to leave Canberra.
1. Indulge in a high tea. I don't think there's a better way to celebrate a birthday than with a super fancy, absolutely indulgent and sophisticated high tea! There are many high tea options in Canberra now, from the elegant, traditional afternoon buffet-style high tea served at the Canberra Hyatt to the whimsical, cocktail-infused high tea at White Rabbit, to the more relaxed, casual, burgers and beer high tea of Beef N Barley on the Kingston Foreshore. Go here to find the high tea that's perfect for you.
A truly unique, exciting and absolutely unforgettable way to celebrate a birthday. An escape room is essentially a physical, immersive and very interactive adventure game where you and other players are placed in a specially designed room. You've got to solve the puzzles to get out, and you're only given just one hour to escape. There are several different escape room adventures in Canberra to experience, such as The Vault (a post-apocalyptic, end of the world adventure), The Hotel (where you are locked up in a creepy abandoned hotel), Mission Identity (think spies and Mission Impossible) and House on the Hill (a creepy adventure set in a witch's house). For more information on escape room experiences in Canberra, go here and here.
3. If you love Harry Potter, have a magical birthday party at Quizzic Alley. I'm sure there are plenty of adult Harry Potter fans out there, so why not indulge in your obsession with a Harry Potter-themed birthday party? Especially now that Canberra has its very own Harry Potter-themed store! Quizzic Alley is Canberra's purveyor extraordinaire of all things Harry Potter. With its impressive collection of official Harry Potter merchandise (and the largest in all of NSW and the ACT), Quizzic Alley will, like Professor Severus Snape's potions, bewitch your mind and ensnare your senses. And Quizzic Alley hosts magical birthday parties as well. The birthday witch or wizard and all of their guests will get to experience a bewitching potions and science class, hosted by a Professor. It'll really be like learning at Hogwarts School of Witchcraft and Wizardry! Go here to find out more about Quizzic Alley.
4. If your birthday is in winter, enjoy a day in the snow at Corin Forest. Sometimes it can be hard to celebrate a birthday if it falls during the brutal Canberra winter (as mine does!). So why not celebrate it in the snow? It's winter, after all! And the good thing is, you don't need to leave Canberra to have fun in the snow. Corin Forest is Canberra's very own winter wonderland, and it's just a short drive from Tuggeranong. You can go tobogganing, learn to ski, go snowboarding, have a snowball fight, build your very own snowman or snow woman, and then warm up in the comfy lodge afterwards feasting on woodfired pizzas and roasting marshmallows over the open fire! To find out more about Corin Forest, go here.
5. Go on a GoBoat adventure across Lake Burley Griffin. Celebrate your birthday in the water with a GoBoat! GoBoats are eco-friendly, self-drive boats, powered by silent, electric engines that can seat up to 8 people. You don't need any special licence to drive, you don't need any previous boating experience (the boats are very simple to handle) and you don't even need to bring a life jacket, as it's already provided for you. All you need to bring is your guests, your party food and drink, and your sense of fun and adventure! Read here for more information about GoBoats.
We are very lucky that Canberra is only a short drive (or helicopter ride) away from some amazing, award-winning wineries. Such as Four Winds Vineyard at Murrumbateman. Here you can feast on wine as well as delicious wood-fired pizzas. It's the perfect venue to host your birthday celebration. To find out about the Canberra region's other excellent wineries where you can also celebrate your birthday, visit Liquid Geography, the website of the Canberra District Wine Industry Association.
7. Do something fun and active. Why not have a ten pin bowling party for your birthday? Or why not try rock climbing or go karting? You can even celebrate your birthday with an indoor glow in the darkmini golf party. Or for something completely different and quirky, gather your friends and family together for some urban axe throwing on your birthday!
8. Celebrate your birthday with board games.
If you love board games, then the Copper Dragon Tavern in Tuggeranong and Guild in the city are the perfect venues for your birthday event.
9. Celebrate your birthday at one of our national institutions.
If you love animals, then spend your special day at the National Zoo & Aquarium. Or have a blast at Questacon (it's not just for little kids, after all!), or spend your birthday with Monet and other masters of art at the National Gallery.
10. Celebrate your birthday at the movies.
Watch the latest flicks in style and comfort for your birthday at the gorgeously lush Palace Electric Cinema in New Acton or at the Dendy Premium Lounge.
11. Spend the day at Hall.
Located just north of Canberra city centre, the historic village of Hall offers plenty of rustic charm and great food for your birthday. Feast on some yummy, award-winning bombolini donuts at Kynefin café, or enjoy a scrumptious pizza and wine lunch at the 1882 Bar & Grill. Go here to discover the delights of Hall.
12. Enjoy a picnic with your family and friends.
We're very lucky here in Canberra that we've got plenty of lush green spaces that are just perfect for picnics. Not only are they picturesque locations-they are also well-maintained and well-resourced. So why not choose your favourite spot, pack your picnic basket, and celebrate your special day with a picnic with your favourite people? Go here for some ideas on where to celebrate your birthday picnic.
And don't forget that your birthday won't really be a birthday without a cake. So make sure you have one! If you don't have the time to bake a cake or your baking skills are not the best or don't exist at all, then read my article here to find out where you can get a ready made or custom made cake in Canberra.
However you celebrate your adult birthday, whether it's an escape room adventure, a picnic with friends, a high tea, lunch at a winery, a helicopter ride, or just with a cake, be sure you make a fuss. Because it's still your special day, after all!
"An Irish Birthday Blessing
May you live a long life
Full of gladness and health
With a pocketful of gold
As the least of your wealth
May the dreams you hold dearest
Be those which come true
May the kindness you spread
Keep returning to you."