If you were to ask somebody what they wanted for Christmas, they would probably hesitate and think long and hard about what they don’t already have. If you were to reframe that question, however, and ask what they would want to do or experience, a hundred different things would probably come to mind. The gift of experience is priceless, unforgettable and uncommon during a holiday season that is monopolised by the exchange of tangible gifts. If you are looking to redefine the meaning of gift giving this Christmas, here are 30 top-notch experiences you can buy for any person in your life who already has everything. They will never see it coming! – Christina Armanious
“Guess Where Trips”: Surprise Road Trips Planned In Envelopes: If you know somebody who loves spontaneous adventures, they are going to get a kick out of this! Guess Where Trips plans a surprise full-day road trip filled with activities for you (and whoever else wants to tag along!) based on your travel preferences and interests. Before you leave, you’ll receive a package to help prepare for your trip, including a packing list, followed by four envelopes that reveal new destinations as you go.
An Escape Room Inside Casa Loma: Imagine a theatrical, multi-level escape room inside the gothic chambers of a real castle. Now, add professional actors bringing every room’s theme to life, allowing players to fully immerse themselves into the story. Perfected with super realistic props and larger-than-life puzzles, Casa Loma has completely redefined everything about the escape room experience, making it a gift nobody will forget.
A MasterClass Membership: Give the gift of skill, wisdom and enlightenment with a MasterClass membership. Taught by the best of the best, MasterClass includes a catalogue of over 180 engaging and hands-on classes–delivered in short and digestible lessons–with topics ranging from leadership, business, photography, writing and much more. Perfect for any kind of person in your life and designed for all skill levels, a MasterClass subscription gives you unlimited access to all sessions and the ability to watch offline on any device.
“Hunt A Killer”: An Immersive Murder Mystery Subscription Game: Perfect for true crime fanatics and anyone who enjoys a good ol’ whodunit, Hunt a Killier is an immersive and all-encompassing murder mystery game where you must solve spine-chilling cases, either independently or as a team, using evidence that unfolds over the course of six box sets. Each case, rated according to its level of difficulty, contains evocative clues such as autopsy reports, witness statements, physical items and more. Players have the option of having evidence delivered to their doorstep every month via a subscription or purchasing the entire box set at once.
A Scuba Diving Experience In Ontario: Want to give someone a taste of Ontario’s underwater world and see sunken boats and shipwrecks up close? The Aquasub Scuba Diving Centre runs scuba diving lessons and local dive trips for all skill levels in Tobermory, Manitoulin Island, Southern Georgian Bay, Kingston, Brockville, Shanty Bay and Humber Bay.
ClassPass Membership: Worldwide Access To Gyms, Studios, Spas & Salons: Cheaper than a gym membership and probably the most ideal gift for anyone who loves working out or wants to improve their overall wellbeing, ClassPass gives members access to thousands of gyms, studios, spas and salons worldwide. ClassPass is available in three different subscription levels – each with a different amount of credits that allow you to book classes every month, enabling you to personalise your fitness and wellness schedule at whatever cadence you’d like.
The Ice Hotel In Quebec City: Hôtel de Glace is literally giving Ice Castle from Frozen. Undoubtedly the most majestic winter getaway in North America, the Ice Hotel is made entirely of–you guessed it–snow and ice. Complete with intricate ice sculptures, ice beds, ice art and an ice bar, Hôtel de Glace will certainly be a Nordic experience like no other–and an unforgettable one at that.
Rocky Mountaineer: A Luxurious Three-Day Rocky Mountain Train Ride: The best way to describe this experience: The Polar Express takes a detour through Canada. Probably on every Canadian’s bucket list, the Rocky Mountaineer takes passengers on an immersive and luxurious three-day train ride through the Canadian Rockies. Not only do passengers get to witness panoramic views of breathtaking scenery through glass-dome windows, but are pampered by onboard train staff and provided with dining, all before stopping at a hotel every night.
Wine Subscription Box: Curated Wines From Around The World: Know anyone who loves fine wine or is collecting? Give them the gift of an interactive wine tour experience from the comfort of their home with WineCollective – Canada’s largest monthly wine subscription. Every month, they’ll receive three expertly curated bottles from around the world, complete with a tasting guide so they will not only be able to discover new wine but become experts, too.
A Scenic Hot Air Balloon Ride: Let’s be honest, who would not enjoy going on a hot air balloon? You can buy someone the experience of a lifetime, soaring through beautiful landscapes with hot air balloon rides in Kitchener, London, Ottawa, Calgary, Edmonton, Alberta, Saskatoon and Winnipeg.
Tickets To A Musical Or The Ballet: An experience everyone of all ages will enjoy, give them the memorable gift of a live performance. If you are looking for local productions or musicals, Mirvish Theatre has great options from Harry Potter and the Cursed Child to Hamilton – both of which have been publicly acclaimed for their spectacular productions. The National Ballet of Canada–aside from their annual performance of The Nutcracker–is putting on classic shows like Cinderella and Romeo and Juliet in the new year!
“The Chef Upstairs”: Out of the Box, Private Cooking Classes: We promise that if you buy someone a cooking class they will not be offended. The Chef Upstairs offers classes in Toronto and Vaughan for just about everything you need to learn to cook up a storm, from sweet and salty Thai cuisine, Indian delights, knife skills and more.
Cameo: A Video From Your Favourite Celebrity: Gift someone a personalised video from their favourite actor, musician, comedian and more on Cameo. Whether it’s to give advice, a pep talk, or just say hi, you can request pretty much any kind of video on the app.
Indoor & Tandem Skydiving: Know someone who has always wanted to cross skydiving off their bucket list but will never agree to jump off a plane? Then iFLY indoor skydiving will do just the trick. With no jumping or landing required, the high-tech wind tunnels are solely designed to mimic the feeling of free falling while still being grounded. For that person in your life whose spontaneity levels are through the roof, tandem skydiving with Skydive Toronto will blow them away (sorry, I had to). Whether they are a first-time skydiver or a regular, tandem skydiving gives you the full flying experience while being hooked onto an instructor, who guides you throughout the entire jump.
“Sweet Reads Box”: A Monthly Book Subscription Box That Comes With More Than A Book: What’s better than buying a book lover a book subscription box? Buying that book lover a book subscription box that also comes with gourmet treats, a drink and additional items to help them enjoy their leisurely reading. Sweet Reads Box meticulously reads every book before sending it to you in order to curate an experience around themes in the novel.
A Candlelight Concert: A sublime twist on the orchestral experience, anyone who enjoys classical music will truly appreciate tickets to a Candlelight Concert. Set to the backdrop of a flickering candle lit venue, audiences can hear orchestral hits from ABBA, Beyoncé, Coldplay and more.
A Ghost Tour Through A Haunted Town: Know anyone who likes listening to scary ghost stories? Now imagine them listening to scary ghost stories in the dark while walking through “haunted” Canadian towns. Ghost Walk Tours are available to book in Toronto, Niagara-on-the-Lake and Hamilton.
The Harry Potter Yule Ball in Montreal: Looking for a gift a Harry Potter fanatic will never forget? Get them tickets to the Harry Potter Yule Ball Celebration in Montreal! Inspired by the Ball in the fourth film, Harry Potter and the Goblet of Fire, the celebration will include live performances, themed drinks and more. Oh, and don’t forget to dress up!
A Flower Subscription Service: Gift someone you care about the universal symbol of love with beautiful floral arrangements delivered to their doorstep, weekly, bi-weekly, monthly or bi-monthly with Canada’s Flowers. The subscription gives you the flexibility to choose a flower theme based on their preference, whether it’s bright, pastel, luxe, seasonal or white arrangements, and gives you the option of sending a vase with each delivery.
A Shooting Range With Packages From Famous Movies & Shows: That one person in your life who has always wanted to star in an action movie will definitely enjoy trying their hand at shooting pistols and rifles at The Range at Urban Tactical. With themed packages from The Walking Dead to Predator, it’s an all-immersive experience!
A Subscription of Snacks From Around The World: Know someone who loves travelling and learning about different cultures? Give them the unique experience of exploring the world through taste by trying snacks from all around the world. With a Universal Yums monthly subscription, you can choose the snack box size you would like to send which can include up to 20 sweet and savoury goodies.
A Wine & Cider Tour On Electric Bikes & Scooters: Buy someone the ultimate wine tour experience at Niagara-on-the-Lake where they’ll get to visit three upscale wineries and a cider house while riding electric bikes and scooters. They will also be treated to a gourmet picnic in between!
Dog Sledding & Snowmobiling: The perfect gift for anyone with adventure at the top of their mind, give them a winter weekend getaway at the Lac Morency Hostel in Quebec. Packed with activities like dog sledding and snowmobiling, plus complimentary activities offered by the hostel, including tubing, snowshoeing and skating, they will never be bored!
Pottery Workshop: Make Up To Three Pots In One Class: Thinking of the perfect gift for someone with a passion for DIY? Try a pottery making workshop. Beginner classes are two hours long and only taught to four students at a time to ensure everyone gets the attention they deserve. Students will get the opportunity to create three pots on the potter’s wheel, which they will be able to pick up a few weeks after their workshop.
Private Helicopter Tour Of Toronto: Gift someone the opportunity to experience Toronto like never before with an intimate and breathtaking helicopter ride around the city. If you are looking for unique gift ideas for a significant other, private romantic tours are offered, with the option of taking off during sunset!
A Film With A Live Orchestra: The perfect gift for movie and music lovers alike, the Toronto Symphony Orchestra allows you to sit back, relax and watch your favourite movies while a live orchestra plays the soundtrack in the back.
Puppy Yoga: Yoga, but with puppies everywhere. There’s nothing more to say. They’re going to love it.
Traditional High Tea: Perfect for anyone who enjoys dressing up (we’re talking white gloves, fascinator hats and dresses), gift them a private and upscale high tea experience at The Lovely House. Complete with a unique selection of afternoon teas, and finger sandwiches and desserts served in delicate Fine China, they’ll get the authentic tea party experience.
Glamping Getaway: It’s camping except you don’t have to build your own shelter or sleep on the floor (oh, and you get to shower)! This glamping experience is the perfect gift for anyone who wants to enjoy a relaxing and carefree outdoor getaway from the comfort of a luxurious tent-suite.
Scented Candle Workshop: Creating a custom candle scent can be a more intimate experience than one may think. Science has proven that certain fragrances have the ability to elicit memory and emotion recall. Saving this experience for someone special will ensure you’ll have a candle scent that will resonate and remind you of them forever. What could be more wholesome?