The Top 10 UK Sten Do Locations

Growing in popularity, Sten Dos are a joint celebration for friends of both the bride and groom, where everyone can spend time together as a group and bond before the wedding day. Over the past year, searches for ‘sten party ideas‘ have increased by +40%, highlighting that the traditional idea of a separate stag and hen do is changing.

With June, July and August being popular months for Sten Dos to take place, we have revealed the top UK locations for a Sten Do. The study is based on factors such as restaurant, transport and accommodation costs, as well as the number of group activities available and the chances of nice weather.

From a city trip in Newcastle-upon-Tyne to seaside fun in Southampton, here are the score rankings of the top UK cities for a Sten Do.

The top 10 sten do locations

The top UK locations for Sten Do’s:

  1. Liverpool
  2. London
  3. Leicester
  4. Birmingham
  5. Leeds
  6. Middlesborough
  7. Southampton
  8. Coventry
  9. Portsmouth
  10. Newcastle-upon-Tyne

1. Liverpool

With an overall score of 51, England’s UNESCO city of music, and the host of last year’s Eurovision Song Contest has been crowned as the top UK city for a Sten Do. There’s plenty to see and do, with 194 attractions for groups to choose from, whether it be visiting the Royal Albert Dock or taking a trip back in time to The Cavern Club.

Also, Liverpool has 72 accommodation options to choose from at an average cost of £135.29 per person for two nights, low taxi prices and an average three-course meal per person being £30.00, Liverpool is a more budget-friendly option. From the city’s top rated ‘Greek Taverna’ restaurant to Mexican food at ‘La Parrilla’, there are lots of cuisines to tuck into as a group.

Closest Mecca Bingo club: Birkenhead

2. London

Coming in second is England’s capital city, and if you’re looking for attractions to experience as a group, you will be spoilt for choice with 760 options, including Borough Market and Hyde Park.

Also, with the largest choice of accommodation options and restaurants for large groups, finding somewhere to stay or go for dinner will be easier, however make sure you book in advance and expect to pay a higher price than other UK locations.

Closest Mecca Bingo club: Camden Town

3. Leicester

If your Sten Do guests are foodies but also want value-for-money, then Leicester is a great choice, with one of the cheapest average costs for a three-course meal across all UK cities, at £25.00 per person. Also, with the average cost of a drink being £1.90, the group will be able to grab a morning coffee without breaking the bank.

Accommodation is also more reasonable than in Liverpool and London, at an average cost of £108.55 per person for two nights. However, booking ahead of time will be needed as there are only a limited number of options for 26 people. Overall, this is a great budget-friendly location compared to other UK cities.

Closest Mecca Bingo club: Leicester

4. Birmingham

Known as the second city of the UK and the cultural hub of the Midlands, Birmingham ranks as the fourth best Sten Do location. Compared to London and Liverpool, activities cost less on average, so you can have a jam-packed itinerary for less, whether you go chocolate tasting at Cadbury’s World or see a concert at Symphony Hall.

If your group are foodies, Birmingham is a great option as the city has a strong culinary scene, with 675 restaurants suitable for large groups, and is moderately priced at £30.00 per person on average for a 3-course meal.

Closest Mecca Bingo club: Acocks Green

5. Southampton

Landing a place in the top five is the picturesque port city of Southampton, which has the highest average temperature of 21.90 (°C) and a lower rainfall than most UK cities, with an average of 53.27mm across June-August,

If you’re wanting to have a Sten Do filled with outdoor activities, then Southampton is the place to go, with top group attractions such as the Woodmill Outdoor Centre or Riverside Park, Also, the average cost of a three-course meal per person is also a reasonable £25.00 per person, so a great way to finish a day of group activities.

Closest Mecca Bingo club: Rosehill

Mecca Bingo spoke to relationship expert, Georgina Sturmer, to offer her expertise on how to navigate a Sten Do as a large group.

Top tips for navigating a Sten Do as a group

  • Communication is key –

“The nature of a Sten Do might mean that we are doing unfamiliar activities with new people, so it’s important to communicate and consider any compromises that we might need to make”.

  • Bonding before the big day –

“Embrace the opportunity to build connections. In a mixed ’sten do’ crowd, especially if the two groups don’t know each other that well, there’s a real opportunity to have fun and build connections before the wedding itself, and you might even make some new friends!”

  • Trying new things –

“The idea of a mixed ’sten do’ crowd helps to do away with the stereotyped notion of a ‘girls only’ hen do and a ‘boys only’ stag do, which can be a better reflection of our friendships and lifestyles. This may lead to different experiences you wouldn’t have done on a typical stag or hen”.

  • Embrace the dynamic –

“A joint celebration of both the stags and hens is an entirely different dynamic. However, this means everyone gets to enjoy the festivities together as a precursor to the events of the actual wedding. It helps avoid any awkwardness about who will be invited to the wedding.”

For more interesting insights, stay up to date with our blog and check out our socials below.


  • Firstly, we found the top UK cities by population – Largest UK cities 2023 | Statista and looked at data around the top 22 UK cities from this
  • For average rainfall and average temperature, we used UK climate Averages from Met, 1991-2020 for the months of June-August, as this is when sten dos are usually organised for. We used from the closest climate station to each UK city
  • For Taxi Costs, we used Taxi 1hour Waiting (Normal Tariff), Numbeo, 22/05/2024
  • For number of attractions, we used Trip Advisor and looked at each city by Things to Do and then attractions with the ‘Good for Big Groups’ filter for a total number of attractions
  • For the average cost of an activity, we used Numbeo to find the average cost for Tennis Court rent (1 hour on weekend), divided by 4 to get the cost per person and Cinema, International Release, 1 seat for each city. We then used Tripadvisor to find the top 3 Escape Rooms in each city and looked on their websites to get the cost per person for a game on a Saturday on average. We then worked out the average activity cost from the tennis court, cinema ticket and escape room costs per person.
  • For Number of accommodation options in each city we used an online booking platform, and searched for accommodation for 26 adults, 5th-7th July 2024, less than ½ a mile from the city centre, to find the total number of results/options
  • For the cost of accommodation per person, we used an online booking platform to work out the average cost of the top 25 accommodation options, based on the sort by of ‘Top picks for groups’
  • To work out the number of restaurants, we searched on Tripadvisor for restaurants in each city with the filter of ‘Good for Large Groups’
  • For the average three-course meal cost per person, we looked at ‘Meal for 2 people, mid-range restaurant, three-course’ on Numbeo, 22/05/2024, data collected within the last 12 months. We then divided by 2 to get per person
  • We used Numbeo data for a coke/pepsi (0.33l bottle), water (1.5l bottle) and a cappucino (regular) to work out the average cost of a drink
  • As the average hen do party size is 13 people (1), which is the same as a stag do (2), Mecca Bingo looked at attractions and restaurants ‘Good for Groups’ on TripAdvisor, with the assumption that a sten do would involve around 26 people
  • Once we gathered all the data, we ranked each city for every factor and gave 10 points to the top city and so on
  • From this, we were able to calculate a total score for sten do locations