Destination birthdays

Oct 16, 2009 at 6:37 a.m. ET

We have all heard of destination weddings, but what about a destination birthday? If you or someone you love is celebrating a milestone birthday, consider a destination birthday event to an exotic locale or out-of-the-way retreat.

Friends having party on beach

In the past, though many people traveled for family reunions or weddings, not many made a special trip for a birthday. Destination celebrations for milestone birthdays have grown in popularity in recent years. People are now throwing birthday parties in places around the world from Italy to Palm Springs! Whether it's your 21st birthday or your 80th, consider making it memorable with a destination birthday.

Select a destination

Though Paris in the springtime might sound wonderful, it might not be financially feasible. Keep your guest list limited to close family and friends, and understand that everyone may not be able to splurge for the trip. If your budget is limited, consider a domestic hot spot like Las Vegas, Atlantic City or South Beach.

Consider a cruise

Cruises can be surprisingly affordable and a whole lot of fun. With so many activities on board, from sports to gambling, you are sure to have a blast on a cruise trip. Call the major cruise lines and check into group rates and see if they offer any perks for those celebrating a birthday.

Adventure or relaxatioN?

Most destination birthdays will fall into one of two categories -- for adventure or for relaxation. If you are looking for a spot to relax and unwind, a mountain retreat or remote beach location might be your best bet. On the other hand, if you are look for a wild adventure, consider heading to Central or South America, where you can enjoy everything from hiking and biking to whitewater rafting and deep sea fishing.

Get the package deal

When vacation with a group, it's often cheapest and easiest to purchase a package deal that includes lodging, meals and activities in an all-inclusive price. Many resorts in places like Mexico or the Caribbean have wedding coordinators on staff that plan destination weddings. These same people can be made available to help arrange your destination birthday too.

Make it special

For your Mom or Dad's 50th birthday, consider a destination birthday to fulfill some of their wishes. If there's something that they have always wanted to do (whether it's visit Hawaii or hike the Grand Canyon), try to make it happen. You can make it a small family trip and then secretly invite some of their friends and extended family to surprised them when they reach the resort or hotel.