30 Experiences That Make the Perfect Gift

Updated 10/28/17
Badlands

The holiday season is kicking up, which means figuring out the perfect gift for every friend and family member in your life is on the brain. If you're looking to do things a little differently this year, don’t hurry to the nearest mall to pick up a scarf, candle, or necklace. Instead of giving your loved one something they don’t really need, why not give them an experience?

How many people can say they went to a burrata-making class or had a 90-minute facial with diamond-infused products? A once-in-a-lifetime experience is way more memorable than a cashmere sweater. Order a gift card online or print out a one-pager detailing the experience. Place this in a box, wrap it, and stick it under the tree. Not sure what experience to give? Here are 30 inspiring experiences that make awesome gifts.

1. A spa treatment at a fancy hotel.
2. A blowout and manicure at a stylish salon.
3. A gym membership for several months.
4. A trip to the mountains, plus a private ski lesson.
5. A trip to the beach, plus a private surf or scuba lesson.
6. A photography class.
7. A personal chef to cater dinner for a party of eight.
8. A cooking (cheese-, pizza-, sausage-making) class.
9. A private golf lesson.
10. A helicopter ride over some beautiful local scenery.

11. Tickets to a concert or show.
12. VIP passes to a wine tasting.
13. Bike rentals and appointments to go wine tasting by bike.
14. An Airbnb rental for the weekend.
15. Art or floral-arranging classes.
16. Ice skating rentals for the whole family.
17. Museum passes.
18. Tickets to a sporting event. The Super Bowl is coming up!
19. A gift certificate to the hottest, hardest-to-get-into restaurant in town.
20. Something daring and crazy: skydiving, bungee-jumping, or race car driving.

21. Singing lessons.
22. A ClassPass membership.
23. Two nights at an upscale hotel. You’ll babysit the toddlers so the new parents can have the time off.
24. A massage.
25. A commissioned or personalized piece of art.
26. A dinner at a restaurant’s private dining room.
27. A boat ride.
28. A makeup class.
29. A styling session with a personal stylist.
30. A shopping spree. 

What’s the best experience gift you’ve ever received?

This post was originally published on December 20, 2015, and has since been updated.

Ray Appetizer Plates, Set of 2 $12
Shop
Williams Sonoma Hammered Copper Imperial Pint Mug $32
Shop
Leif Heirloom Overdye Napkin Set $24
Shop
Elegance Rose Wine Glass, Pair
Waterford Elegance Rose Wine Glass, Pair $60
Shop
Pedal Happy Leather-Handled Wine Carrier $65
Shop
Corkcicle 3-in-1 Wine Chiller $25
Shop
Natalie Flounce Ruffled Bandeau Bikini
Lisa Marie Fernandez Natalie Flounce Ruffled Bandeau Bikini $395
Shop
The Beatrix Tote
Pamela Munson The Beatrix Tote $325
Shop
Sonix Preston Mirrored Round Sunglasses $98
Shop

Related Stories