The most memorable moments in life are usually shared with your friends and we're spoilt for choice with buzzing venues to explore with our pals in Gloucestershire, from booze and ball games bowling alleys to unique cinemas and historic pubs — not to mention restaurants, clubs and bars galore.
Perfect to try any time of the year, SoGlos rounds up 13 ideas for nights out in Gloucestershire that'll go down with a bang.
Compete in interactive games
Tap into your competitive side and battle it out against friends at one of Gloucestershire's newest interactive gaming hot spots, Roxy Lanes, located on Cheltenham High Street.
Try your hand at everything from ice-free curling and karaoke to batting cages and beer pong — accompanied by cocktails, American-style pizza and a host of sides! If all that wasn't enough, gamers can try their hand at shuffleboard, tech darts, ping pong and American pool, before taking pictures in the photo booth, catching live sport on the TV's; and much more.
Laugh the evening away at a comedy night
If you're looking for a laugh, Crazy Bird Comedy Club brings some of the country's funniest comedians to Gloucestershire at its regular stand-up comedy nights at Stroud Brewery.
Guests have included musical comedian Christian Reilly; The Russell Howard Hour star Andrew Bird; Spit or Swallow podcast host Sally-Anne Hayward; Mock The Week guest Laura Lexx; impressionist Geoff Boyz; and award-winning comedian and cabaret artiste, Marcel Lucont, with support from up-and-coming comedy talent.
Hit up a fancy cocktail bar
Masterfully mixed and delicious to drink, there’s nothing quite like a cocktail to start — or finish — your evening. With everything from Espresso Martinis to Saketinis and Blue Peacocks, the cocktail bars in Gloucestershire have got something for everyone.
For some more inspiration, find 13 great cocktail bars in Gloucestershire.
See an inspiring performance at the theatre
From the successful and critically-acclaimed world premiere of The Great British Bake Off Musical at Cheltenham's Everyman Theatre taking to the stage in London's West End to brand-new plays and long-running musicals appearing in Gloucestershire, there's an abundance of brilliant performances to see on the stage across the county — and plenty of venues to see them.
Become a detective for a night at Dean Forest Railway
Ever fancied stepping into Poirot's shoes? Packed with adventure and intrigue, friends can experience a murder mystery on a steam train with Dean Forest Railway and try to crack the case.
Starting at Norchard Station near Lydney in the Forest of Dean at 6pm, guests will be introduced to the mystery before travelling on board the steam train, followed by a two-course meal served whilst they try and solve the exciting whodunnit.
Have a pint at the UK's oldest pub
Reopening in June 2023 after an extensive six year refurbishment, spend an evening with friends at the UK's oldest pub — The Black Bear in Tewkesbury.
The pub is open plan, with nooks and snug rooms instead of doors. Each room is different and faithfully retains the building's traditional character — from the orange and blue rooms, to the games room and glass atrium, as well as the haunted cocktail bar.
Test your knowledge at a quiz night
Do you have a mastermind among your group? Compete in a test of general knowledge at one of Gloucestershire's many quiz nights, and be in with the chance of winning prizes such as cash or a bar tab for you and your posse.
Even if you don't manage to bring home the jackpot, you'll still have some laughs along the way...
Catch a gig at Gloucester Guildhall
From indie hits to pop punk and brash club bangers, Gloucester Guildhall has a hefty selection of amazing gigs on offer throughout the year.
Across the years, artists to have graced the stage include indie legends Turin Brakes, pop band Bastille and alternative rock group Mallory Knox, alongside heaps more.
Belt it out at karaoke
Grab your equally uninhibited friends for a singalong to your favourite tunes during karaoke, whether in a private room with your pals or in front of an audience of strangers.
Indulge in a tasting menu
Gathering with some fellow foodies? Bag a covetable Saturday night table at one of Gloucestershire’s fantastic fine dining restaurants for the ultimate indulgence, and if you’re celebrating something special, why not book a tasting menu to sample the very best that a restaurant has to offer.
Get a hole in one at miniature golf
To showcase golfing skills that Tiger Woods would be impressed by, Mr Mulligan's Lost World Golf in Cheltenham makes the perfect choice for friends who want some light-hearted fun with a dose of competitiveness.
The adventure golf attraction features 18 holes that delve into a land where the jungle meets the ocean — and you can even sip on cocktails while you play, too!
Channel your inner Van Gogh at a paint and sip
Suitable for absolute beginners and keen painters alike, try your hand at painting landscapes that Bob Ross would be impressed by or invent your very own mug designs, at venues including The Bottle of Sauce in Cheltenham, Stroud Brewery and Egypt Mill in Nailsworth.
Explore Gloucestershire's most haunted destination
Explore the supernatural at The Ancient Ram Inn in Wotton-under-Edge — choosing to have a pint in the 800-year-old pub, or those looking for a real fright can arrange to tour the venue during a special paranormal event.
The Ancient Ram Inn is linked to a number of ghostly tales of paranormal activity — one of the most popular being that of a witch burned at the stake in the 1500s — with rumour claiming that she still haunts the room where she slept the night before she was captured and killed...