The human need for connection is fundamental, and while romantic relationships fulfill one aspect of this need, friendships offer a distinct and equally important dimension. Friends become the pillars of strength during challenging times, the cheerleaders during moments of triumph, and the companions during the everyday adventures that make life extraordinary.
Recognizing the significance of friendships beyond a romantic context is an important step in cultivating a well-rounded and fulfilling life. As we navigate the maze of responsibilities, ambitions, and personal growth, our friends are the constant companions who lend a listening ear, share in our joys, and stand by us through thick and thin.
In the spirit of celebrating these meaningful connections, we’ve sought out 10 playful friend dates that you can embark on with your BFF. These activities are designed to deepen the bonds of friendship, create lasting memories, and remind you of the joy that comes from nurturing platonic connections. These ideas give you a good dose of quality time with your BFF while boosting your well-being, leaving you feeling fulfilled and rejuvenated. From outdoor adventures to creative escapes, these activities promise to bring joy, laughter, and a refreshing perspective on socialising.
Cook Together at The Pasta Academy
If your BFF loves Italian food, this is the activity to win them over! Learn how to make pasta from scratch at Pasta Evangelist’s Pasta Academy in Farringdon or Shoreditch. Led by the expert pastaio or pastaia, you’ll be taught the authentic Italian way to create fresh pasta using artisan techniques, just like ‘Nonna’ makes! Whether you want to replicate Orecchietta, a quintessential from the region of Puglia, master Malloreddus originating on the island of Sardina or pay homage to Amalfi’s lemons by preparing fresh ravioli filled with ricotta and lemon, decide which workshop to attend based your favourite Italian city to get a taste of the regions gastronomic delights.
Book a Sculpting Pilates Class Followed by Sushi
This might just be the most boogie friendship date, and we’re totally obsessed! Stretch and Sushi at Nobu London Portman Square begins with one of the signature Nobu Pilates classes; Power, Precision and Pure, that calls upon specialised Pilates equipment for that extra burn. Developed by Marsha Lindsay, this full-body workout will move through a sculpting sequence that’ll build up an appetite! Head on down to the world-famous Nobu restaurant post-workout where you and your bestie can tuck into a specially curated bento box prepared to perfection with the sashimi salad, an assortment of sushi, baby tiger shrimp, the cult black cod miso and spicy garlic vegetables with rice, while sipping on a non-alcoholic cocktail.
Get Matching Friendship Bracelets
Solidify your friendship at Astrid & Miyu’s welding studios all over London and further afield across the UK. Choose between a ring or bracelet in one of the dainty chains that are seamlessly welded into place. Opt for a matchy-matchy moment with your closest confidante to symbolise your friendship, or add personal touches with a selection of birthstone, zodiac and initial charms. If you’re feeling more daring, selected studios offer piercings too!
Go Walking & Talking
Get-togethers don’t always have to cost money, some of the best things in life are free, like wandering in one of the many beautiful parks and outdoor spaces in and around London. Our favourite spots for a walk in the London suburbs are Hampstead Heath, Richmond Park, Bushy Park, Battersea Park and Holland Park. Further afield, if you fancy a day trip, why not visit Ashdown Forest (which inspired The Hundred Acre Wood in Winnie The Pooh), Epping Forest, Painshill Park, Friday Street (the moniker of Paul Weller’s hit song) or for a challenging hike up Box Hill. Walking and talking with your best friend is one of the best forms of therapy and it’s FREE! Clear away the cobwebs with the fresh air and get that all-important vitamin D.
Book a Yoga Class & Brunch
Mission E1 in Spitalfields opened last year as Europe’s biggest yoga studio and has since launched Mæne, the perfect brunch spot post-class! Mission has the most varied, adventurous mix of classes and workshops from restorative Yin to inversions masterclasses, plus a whole host of movement sessions too! Garnering an incredible roster of instructors, you and your BFF will be well looked after at this cool warehouse-style studio. Mæne’s modern gourmet take on the brunch menu is to die for! Our top picks are the buckwheat pancakes with Earl Grey milk jam; smashed butter beans on toast with chilli and garlic oil and bubble & squeak hash, poached egg and piccalilli.
Get Baking at a Bread Workshop
Delve into the art of bread-making alongside your bestie at one of London’s best bakeries, The Dusty Knuckle on a bread workshop. The experts at the Dalston-based Bakery School are masters in making top-notch loaves and will show you the reign of how to make the Dusty Knuckle house sour, a 100% rye and a focaccia. Breaking down the process, you’ll get hands-on during this 5 and 30-minute workshop, developing a strong foundation in bread-making! You’ll be sent on your way with a sourdough starter to continue honing your new craft at home.
Get Creative with Pottery
Visit Muni, the sweet independent pottery studio in Battersea as a means to slow down, turn away from tech and create something beautiful alongside your bestie! The creative classes and workshops cover short taster sessions and wheel throwing (a la Ghost) as well as guiding you to create a specific object, from mugs to flower vases to kit out your home. Sessions are small and intimate, led by their team of pros who are there to impart some of their artistic flair to you. This wholesome activity will rekindle your arty side and if you both really take to it, why not book one of the courses to advance your skills together week on week.
Sing Your Heart Out
Did you know BAO, London’s cheap eateries synonymous with their light-as-air bao buns, has karaoke rooms? Inspired by the KTV rooms across Asia, you’ll find private rooms at Shoreditch, Borough and Battersea to sing and eat! This activity is better performed with the whole clan, where everyone can take to the mic to perform their favourite songs, whether it is a rendition of ABBA’s greatest hits, a step back into the 00’s era with the Spice Girls or a powerful ballad moment with Adele…the preloaded screen will chant just about anything you can imagine. Invite all the girls and put on a show for 2 hours while munching on bao buns…it is a guaranteed laugh that will put a smile on everyone’s face.
Zen Out at The Ancient Baths
Aire Ancient Baths is a mecca for relaxation and rejuvenation, where you and your best friend can zone out from the outside world! Just a stone’s throw away from Charing Cross, Aire spans a 4-storey restored 18th-century townhouse, transformed into an authentic ancient bathing ritual. The Ancient Thermal Bath Experience includes a total of seven baths, including the Caldarium set at a toasty 40ºC and the Flotarium, a salt-water pool to drift away your troubles. Loose track of time in this tranquil setting with your BFF, and if you’re looking to splurge, treat yourself to the ‘Escape Together’ experience with 1-hour massage.
Go Retro Roller Blading
For a nostalgic escape, head to Flipper’s Roller Boogie Palace in White City for a roller disco date with your bestie! Lace-up a pair of retro skates and glide to throwback classics in the neon-lit flagship roller rink. Taking inspiration from the West Hollywood ‘80s roller disco era, which had a renaissance in the 90’s too, Flipper’s Roller Boogie Palace is decked out in a cool retro-chic style, and doubles as a live music venue and a diner!