Planning a First Birthday Party – or ANY Birthday Party – can be a daunting task. What with all the arrangements that have to be made, it’s something that can drive the parents… nuts. The first thing that most parents set out to do is find a venue. This post would help all those parents, planning the perfect party for their little munchkin, in selecting the best venue possible! Following these tips will not only GUARANTEE a fun party for the toddlers/kids, it will also ensure you can get the BEST possible photos from your big day!

1. Choose Evening Time (3 pm – 6 pm (winters) / 4 pm to 7 pm (summers)

This is the BEST time to do a kid’s/toddler’s birthday party for a number of reasons. First, most toddlers/ kids are super active at this time and tend to have fun. This is the post-nap, pre-dinner time when they’re sufficiently energised and non-cranky. So they’ll likely be awake and active for the most part of their party and have an absolute blast! Second, it’s neither too sunny or too dark at this time, and often there’s a nice breeze going on – always helps! Third, this is the BEST TIME of the day in terms of natural light. There’s mostly soft golden light and photos taken in such light come out best. Whenever I schedule portrait shoots, they’re done at this time to maximise on the ‘pretty light’.

Check out a few photos from some parties done during this time of the day and look how wonderful they are:

Kids Birthday Party Venue Outdoor Delhi, Gurgaon 1


The above party was held at The Piano Man Garden Cafe, Gurgaon. See this Mokshith’s gallery here.

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The above party was held at Kids Kraze, Chhattarpur. See Aratrika’s gallery here.

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The above party was held at the rooftop venue, Mahagun Sarovar Portico, Ghaziabad.

2. Choose Outdoor Venues over Indoor

Outdoor venues that have a little grass, may be some walkways, are the PERFECT spots for holding kids birthday parties. Kids love having SPACE to play around in. And especially if you do it in the evening (as recommended in point 1), for kids/toddlers, it’s essentially like “going down to play”. They LOVE running around and enjoying themselves when they’re let loose – and that’s also something that creates very many fun moments and memories to capture. In my portrait shoots with kids and toddlers, I prefer taking the family to an area which has lots of space for the kid to enjoy and play around so that I get the best shots!! So this way your birthday party would turn into super fun and you’d get way more amazing photographs than if you were host it in a boring banquet hall.

3. Choose a Banquet Hall (indoor) if it HAS to be a Dinner thing (or it’s during monsoon)

Wait, what?! Did I just say pick a banquet hall?! YES. There is ONE exception to the “outdoor venue over indoor venue” rule, and that is if the party HAS to be post sunset. Once it’s dark, it’s much better to opt for an indoor venue as that way you’ll have greater control over where the kids are running off, and temperature. Also, indoor photography at night is BETTER than outdoor photography at night. I would always prefer an indoor event at night to an outdoor, and if there’s a party with both indoor and outdoor, I tend to take more pictures from the indoors part because any way most people are usually there, and the photos from indoors come out looking far better! While picking an indoor venue, please pick a hall with white ceilingswarm white/white ceiling lights and no coloured ceiling portions. Also please steer clear of those LED lights – they ruin the mood, blind little kids who mistakenly look in that direction and also cast horrible color casts on people’s faces in photos! Sadly most wedding receptions STILL use LED lights, but hey, you can easily avoid them for you kid’s birthday party!

Check out these adorable photos from a few parties done in a banquet hall/indoors:

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The party above was held at Vasant Vihar Club, Vasant Vihar. Check out Amaira’s gallery here.

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This party was held at Country Inn Suites, Gurgaon.
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This party was held at the NSCI (National Sports Club of India), Delhi.Kids Birthday Party Venue Indoor Delhi, Gurgaon 4

This party was held at Grand Milan, Waves Cinema Complex, Ghaziabad.

Check out Ronit’s gallery here.

4. Opt for shaded outdoor areas if party is at high noon (12 pm – 3 pm)

If your birthday party HAS to be a lunch thing which needs to be at high noon, my recommendation would be to pick an outdoor location WITH shaded areas. This is because this is the time of the day when the sun is at the harshest, and most people would end up having strained expressions, and their eyes half shut. Also, this direct sunlight casts harsh shadows on the face which is not the most flattering. However, add a shade, and people standing under shade have wonderful directional lighting on their skin (apart from also being super comfortable and not missing their sun hats) and this creates the perfect opp for photos (and also playtime for kids who can run around for longer without getting dehydrated).

A word on decor

Less is more. Opt for decor that’s classic, tasteful and unintrusive and lets kids be kids and have their fun! Too many cut out boards, if placed in an area where the kids are expected to be playing (anywhere inside the main area basically) can lead to hazards – like kids falling into/over them. Also, please avoid LED lights (anywhere) – I know I’ve said this before, but it’s worthy of repetition!

In case you’d like to know more about any of these points or need help with recommendations/ personal reviews of venues/vendors, drop in a line here in the comments section or email!

Happy planning!