Whether you count down the days or dread the yearly transition, your birthday is always a very special day. And when it comes down to it, a few of them always seem to outshine the rest. There's your 18th, of course, when legally Mom and Dad can't tell you what to do (although, they probably still will). There's your golden birthday, when you turn the exact same age as the date you were born. And then there's your 21st birthday, aka, the age of legal drinking and also the day you're really considered an adult. But let's be real here — we don't always want to drink, and on a birthday like your 21st, it may feel like that's the norm. It can be a struggle to find things to do on 21st birthday without drinking, but we're here to help.
You may be thinking, how can you make your birthday as big of a celebration when you skip the drinks? As much fun as a boozy party can be, it's not for everyone, and there are still a lot of ways to have the 21st of your life. If there was ever a time or excuse to go all out on your birthday, it's your 21st birthday... and a day without drinking can be just as ballin'. So grab your squad, because these six booze-less birthday ideas are way too good to pass up.
1Hit Up Your Favorite Amusement Park
It's your 21st birthday, so why not throw it back to your preteen and teen years and hit up your favorite amusement park? Between crazy coasters and sugary carnival food, there's no time for drinking. Get there when the park opens, and stay till dusk. It'll surely be a 21st to remember.
2Catch A Flight Out Of Town
Hey, you're an adult now! If you want to go on a mini vacation out of town for the weekend with your main girls, you can and you should.
Plan on taking your mains away for a weekend to your dream city, or find a charming town nearby to chill and explore. If you're feeling adventurous, take the next flight out (in your budget, of course) and be spontaneous.
3Plan A Food Crawl
You're heard of a bar crawl, I'm sure. But what about a food crawl? Map out your favorite restaurants (or the ones you've been dying to try), and make a day out of hitting up each one. It's a food lover's paradise, and your tastebuds will certainly agree. You're only 21 once!
4Spend Time With Some Furry Friends
This is the perfect 21st birthday for the animal lover who simply can't get enough time with furry friends. Throw a party and invite all of your friend's dogs (and your friends, if you're feeling generous), and host the best dog-get-together of the year.
If you and your friends don't have dogs of your own, volunteer at the local animal shelter. Maybe you'll meet your perfect match to adopt. Happy birthday to you.
5Plan The Ultimate Day In
Don't feel like going all-out or making a big day of your 21st? No big deal. The ultimate day in can be just as fun a day as any other — just don't be afraid to treat yo' self, birthday queen. Eight episodes into a Netflix marathon? As DJ Khalid would say... "Another one." Don't forget your favorite movie snacks and a new pair of fuzzy slippers to complete the day.
6Go Big Or Go Home
Who says not drinking has to mean no partying? Bring the party to you in your city, and take advantage of what's offered.
Hit up all of the birthday specials you can, take a boat tour down your city's river, or host the biggest brunch possible. There's nothing wrong with a little luxury, especially on your big day. Get yourself some non-alcoholic sparkling cider (because that stuff's actually good AF), and toast to yourself. You're 21, baby.