Ugly Christmas sweaters, humorous aprons and scented candles are all magnificent gifts, but as we continue to spend time at home, why not use that time to come up with more inventive presents? This holiday season give the gift of travel to your loved ones – whether it’s a walking tour of their hometown or a picnic in the woods, here are six ideas.
1. Plan a tour based around a loved one’s interest or passion
A staycation in your hometown or somewhere nearby need not be dull. And what better way to (re)discover your own city than a personalised tour? Surprise your loved one with a beautifully mapped out walking or cycling route that zigzags through colourful street murals and public art or a tour of live music venues where their favourite bands have played. If they’re a film buff, plan a route that covers iconic locations where scenes from well-known movies were filmed.
2. Create a Christmas hamper full of exotic delights
Spice up the classic Christmas hamper with some creative themes. For the burgeoning cook, gift a hamper of homemade salts such as curry salt, paprika salt and ginger salt, and for coffee lovers, one full of coffee beans from around the world. Or try a quirkier theme like lemons and stock the basket with lemon biscuits, lemon jam and lemon liqueur. Speaking of drinks, prepare a fully stocked mimosa hamper complete with oranges and champagne flutes.
3. Create the ultimate road trip playlist
Road trip songs never get old – there’s something about listening to an amazing soundtrack on repeat that makes your travels seem even more of an adventure. There are the classic singalongs: ABBA, the Jackson 5 or Fleetwood Mac’s “Go Your Own Way” and homecoming songs such as Ed Sheeran’s “Castle on the Hill”. Steering from the mainstream, try an indie folk or pop music compilation. “Avalon” by Icelandic singer Daði Freyr is particularly catchy.
5. Select an awesome hiking trail and take a picnic
Feeling the crisp, cold air on your face, taking in the snow-covered fauna – now is the time to embark on a winter hike. Whether it’s a short walk up to a hill with sweeping views or a trek into a forest blanketed in pine cones, pick an awesome trail and pack a picnic of baked potatoes, chili, tarts, pies and scones. Remember to bring mulled, warm blankets and a thermos as well.
6. Holiday from home with an exotic meal and cocktails
Round up the entire family and plan a fun day of making holiday treats from around the world – and don’t forget the equally important cocktails menu! Gather the ingredients for Christmas tamales or bake Greek Christopsomo – Christ bread – and Bûche de Noël, the French version of a chocolate yule log. Get creative with the drinks and whip up a tea and cider punch, Earl Grey-infused gin, pisco sours or a neon-green lemon-lime spiked “Grinch punch”.