19 Ways to Celebrate Your First Wedding Anniversary

A pair of heart balloons surrounded by tree leaves to signify a first wedding anniversary.

While it’s true that your wedding anniversary by definition comes once a year, your first anniversary only happens once! The pressure is on; how do you pull off the perfect first anniversary—one that reflects your first year of marriage and that you’ll think about for years to come? Read below for some romantic and fun ideas that will wrap up a year of firsts.

1. Have a Naked Cake Party

Okay, we’re starting with a bang, but hear me out. It’s common tradition to freeze a slice or two of your wedding cake and eat it together on your first anniversary. But what better way to eat it together than in the buff? (Hey, you’re married—you’re totally allowed!)

2. Surprise Each Other

Use this anniversary as an opportunity to get creative. Each person can make something as a gift or each of you can plan activities for half the day. This way, you keep things exciting up to the very last second.

3. Go on a Trip

A man and woman celebrating their first wedding anniversary on a tropical vacation in a pool of water.

Getting away from your everyday routine can be a great stress reliever. Go on a trip together and savor some precious time alone.

4. Revisit Your Honeymoon Spot

A great way to celebrate your first wedding anniversary is to revisit your honeymoon spot! This trip will bring back memories of the first time you were there and remind you of a time when you were just married—perfect for an anniversary.

5. If You Got Married at a Hotel, Spend a Night There

Book a stay at the place you got married and visit all the places you remember together. Reminisce about the day you said “I do.”

6. Take Time off Work and Stay at Home

A young couple standing in their apartment and hugging as they celebrate their first wedding anniversary.

Sometimes, the best way to relax is to just stay home. Decide to “stay in” together.

7. Go to an All-Inclusive Resort

What better way to bond than to have every need taken care of for a while at an all-inclusive resort? The less you have to worry about on vacation, the more time and energy you have to focus on each other and enjoy yourselves.

8. Go to Disney World or Disney Land

This is a fun way to celebrate a first wedding anniversary for most people, but especially if you’re both Disney fans. You’d be surprised at the luxury available at these parks; it’s not just for kids!

9. Go Backpacking

A young man and woman sitting in front of a campfire with their dog to celebrate their first wedding anniversary.

If you’re the kind of couple that hates sitting around and likes a challenge, this trip is for you. Not only will backpacking be exciting, but it’ll require you to work as a team. This anniversary has the potential to be a treasured memory all of its own.

10. Get Massages

What better way to connect than to get a couple’s massage? Get comfortable and relaxed while you enjoy each other’s company.

11. Do Whatever Relaxes You, and Then Do Something Exciting

This is a two-part celebration. Dedicate half the day to relaxing and the next half to something exciting. Perhaps your version of relaxation includes sleeping in and breakfast in bed. Then you could go out in the evening and see a show followed by salsa dancing. It doesn’t matter what you do, just as long as it’s relaxing and fun for you.

12. Get a Pet

A young couple laying on a blanket in the park with a small dog between them as they celebrate their first wedding anniversary.

Some people just love animals. What better way to remember your forever day than to add to your little family? This can be an all-day event with shopping for the pet to bringing it home!

13. Celebrate with Paper

Did you know the first anniversary is traditionally celebrated with gifts of paper? Well now you do. Celebrate by writing (on paper!) letters to each other reflecting on the year. Maybe you can even write updated vows now that you’ve completed your first year of marriage.

14. Check off Bucket List Items

Commit to checking off items on your bucket lists. Maybe this includes seeing rare sights, going to exotic places, or maybe volunteering somewhere. If you’d rather, accomplish all the small items and spend the rest of the day relaxing.

15. Pick out Jewelry Together

A young man and woman celebrating their first wedding anniversary by shopping for some jewelry.

Maybe you never got the wedding band you wanted, or you want to upgrade your engagement ring. Or maybe you just love jewelry! Either way, a little bling never hurt anybody. Have fun picking out new pieces that celebrate a first year on the books.

16. Sleep Under the Stars

Spend the night with nature and point out constellations while you remember an awesome year. What a romantic night!

17. Disconnect

If you need to, warn everyone there’ll be no way to contact you. Pretend you’re on a plane and turn all devices off. This way you can keep your focus where it needs to be—on the two of you!

18. Talk to Each Other

A young couple hugging and and laughing together as they celebrate their first wedding anniversary.

This sounds trite, but talking to each other is actually a great way to connect on your first wedding anniversary. It’s important to look back on your year together and reflect. Talk through your tough moments and your best moments. Maybe play a question game to help you dig deeper and connect more.

19. Have Another Marriage Ceremony

Do your marriage ceremony again, but shrink it down. Maybe hire a photographer to capture it as well. This celebration gives the bride a chance to wear her wedding dress again, so it’s a win-win.

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