Going to exotic locations can only be as much fun as what you plan to do there. There are some locations that are best for sober reflections like the Miango Rest Home in Plateau state. And if you are looking for a place to expend high energy, then we can look at the rope course at Lekki Leisure Lake. But it is easier to decide where when you are going alone or with company that share similar interests with you. What happens when people aren’t friends and have nothing in common? How do you make the outing fun for strangers and get them to become friends?
Here are a few ideas:
- Exploit the Common Ground
No matter how diverse people are, there are somethings they have in common. Either they are all from the same region of the country, they have to travel together in the same bus or they all like entertainment. If, for instance, they all gather in Abuja to go to Gurara Falls in Niger State, you can offer a Bluetooth speaker and ask for travellers to connect to it and play music for the trip. Or you can choose a movie and change it to whatever they suggest. The one thing they have in common is the purpose for the outing. So you can start off by reminding them of that and ask for their input or expectations for the trip. This will enable you to tailor the trip to surpass their benchmark and make it truly remarkable.
- Meet in an Aesthetic Setting
Choose a location that has aesthetic value. It could be at a place like Inagbe resort in Lagos State, Ogba Zoo in Edo State or McCarthy Beach in Delta State. The finer the place, the easier it is for people to create photographic memories. They can have sunset at the Beach, lovers walk in a Botanical Garden, or a day at an Art Gallery. The beauty of the location keeps them engaged during the outing and sparks up their wanderlust. The more positive memories the group members can have about the place, the more fun the outing will be.
- Serve Top Notch Food
No outing is complete without snacks or food and drinks. While it is good to serve up a new meal, that may be peculiar to the place the outing is at, it is always good to have a backup plan of something familiar they can fall back on if some members of the group are averse to the meal. For instance, if you go to the East, don’t plan Abacha salad and chicken breast as the only meal for breakfast. Make sure you have bread, eggs and tea or a cereal on standby. If you plan a dinner, have a three-course meal, if it’s a day out, get roasted ram Suya, make sure the food served is unanticipated. When your meals are top notch, that is, well cooked, tasty and mind-blowing, the group will testify long afterwards to how awesome the outing was.
- Have Interactive Activities
Some people don’t like having games at an outing because they think it defeats the purpose for the gathering. But games are great for ‘breaking the ice’ i.e. getting people to loosen up and move from being spectators to active participants. Imagine having a hangout at Rufus and Bee. You get the Beachside to talk and discuss issues related to why you are gathered, eat good food and then play till the little child in you comes out. Even if it is a baby shower, make sure there is an activity that everyone can do. It doesn’t have to be physical like playing hide and seek at Kajuru Castle, it can be mental like an ‘I spy with my little eye….’ Having an interactive group activity helps people connect and remember each other long after the outing is over.
Now you know, don’t be afraid to plan a fantastic outing in any of the beautiful tourist spots around the country.