How to plan the perfect mother-daughter outing

May 4, 2012 at 12:00 p.m. ET

Whether you want to treat your mother or spend quality time with your daughter, here are a few ideas for how to get in some bonding time.

Three generations of a family

Mother’s Day is the perfect excuse for mothers and daughters to spend the day together. It’s so much more special than sending flowers or an impersonal card. Deciding what to do can be a lot of pressure, but it doesn’t need to be! Take into consideration everyone’s likes and dislikes (don’t spend the day at the park if Mom has terrible allergies, for example) and enjoy a laid-back day together. Here are a few ideas for the ultimate mother-daughter outing.

Check out the ultimate Mother's Day gift guide >>

Spa day

This is a classic Mother’s Day activity, and for good reason: It’s the definitive girl’s day out. Spend a day together pampering yourselves, whether with mani-pedis, relaxing massages or a trip to the salon. It’s the perfect opportunity to spoil yourselves and get the chance to gab and catch up. Book ahead, as Mother’s Day is sure to be particularly busy at the salon.


While going to the zoo is obviously a great choice for kids, it can also be a fun way for adults to spend a day together as well. A touch of nostalgia, plus time spent strolling through lovely landscaped paths observing awesome animals, makes for a wonderful outing. If you’re lucky, maybe you’ll spot some mama animals with their adorable babies.


For those who like a little culture with their Mother’s Day, head to your local museum. Kids might enjoy the natural history or science museum, while adults would appreciate an art exhibit. Pick one, or consider museum or gallery hopping. And don’t forget, moms always love a stop in the museum gift shop! You might even get a few ideas for the perfect Mother’s Day gift.

teaHigh tea

For something a little different, locate a place where you can take afternoon tea, Eloise style. There’s something fun about feeling dainty and royal over tea, scones and clotted cream. Often upscale hotels offer high tea, and many places have a Mother’s Day special.


Since Mother’s Day always falls on a Sunday, brunch is a natural choice. You can make it at home, but even more fun is going out to a special restaurant. Much like high tea, many places have special Mother’s Day brunch menus, so check ahead and consider making reservations.

Get inspired with these unique Mother's Day brunch recipes >>

Bake at home

If leaving the house or trekking all over town doesn’t sound appealing, then stick close to home and choose an activity you can do together. Baking together is a great way to bond. Consider making some special family recipes, which will have even more meaning. Best of all, you end up with something yummy at the end of the day!

More Mother's Day inspiration

Celebrating Mother's Day with the whole family
5 reasons to celebrate Mom
How to throw a Mother's Day tea party