Fortieth birthdays should be a special celebration. It's a decade of increased confidence and wisdom where all of the hard work and initial decisions of youth seem to hit their stride. If you're coming up on this milestone birthday and you're unsure of how to celebrate it, we gathered some 40th birthday ideas to choose from, whether you're looking to mark the occasion with a small, medium, or large group. You could sit at the chef's table of a buzzed-about restaurant, or do all of the tourist-type amusements in your town. And if you really want to, you can have a dance party in your own home. No matter what you choose to do on your big day, throw caution to the wind. Given that this is an important birthday, it's worth it to make a lasting memory.
Here are our picks for the best 40th birthday party ideas.
Do a Dare That You've Never Been Brave Enough to Do
What if you've always wanted to go bungee jumping or swimming with sharks? Whatever you've debated doing for fun over the years, but ended up talking yourself out of, now is the time to go for it. Just make sure one of your friends is ready with a camera.
Act like a Tourist for a Day
Tourists have notoriously bad reputations, but really, sometimes they see the best a place has to offer. Instead of balking at the bus tours or waving off certain crowded landmarks, join in. See the view from the top of the Empire State Building in the morning before the lines are long, go white-water rafting in the Grand Canyon, or rent a convertible to drive down the Pacific Coast Highway. It's worth it.
Book a Spa Getaway
A spa is always an escape from the hectic pace of life, and that's why it can be particularly rewarding as a birthday present. Research spas that have the best massages, or soaking pools, or even views, and head there for a weekend.
Ask If Your Favorite Restaurant Can Create a Personalized Prix-Fixe Menu
If you've been going to the same restaurant for years, ask if you can create a menu of your favorite things to enjoy with a small group.
Try to secure a private room to dine in, so you and your friends have plenty of room to celebrate and make the space festive.
Project a Movie in Your Backyard
Think of a movie that always brings a smile to your face. Now imagine watching it from your decked-out backyard, which can be decorated with string lights, cozy blankets, and plenty of lawn chairs. Also make sure that there's enough popcorn and snacks for everyone, too.