Weekends away: 10 last-minute Christmas gift ideas

by Katie Rowe

Category: Weekend ideas
December 22 2016

Some people are really hard to buy for, and finding the ideal gift can be a mammoth task, particularly so close to the big day. If you’re struggling with the perfect present, then check out these ten short break gifts experiences in England, suggests Danielle Jones. 

1. Get steamy at the Turkish Baths and Health Spa

For the pampered prince or princess in your life, why not treat them to a spa experience with a difference? Harrogate’s historic Turkish Baths offer an assortment of unusual, and more traditional, spa therapies. How about the Turkish Delight package? Inclusive of a luxurious rose and vanilla body wrap.

2. Sort out a fashion fiend with a trip to Bicester

Bicester Village is a pilgrimage for the label savvy shopper. With top brands and designers, at a fraction of their normal prices, you can pick up everything from a new Burberry trench coat to a set of Emma Bridgewater mugs. Sort out that tricky present or even do all your shopping in one hit.

>> Find more things to do in Oxfordshire

3. Order a National Trust or English Heritage membership

For someone fascinated by history, a membership to the National Trust or English Heritage will go down a storm. With access to buildings, monuments and parks across the country, as well as exclusive events, they’ll never be short of things to do.

>> Explore even more of England’s heritage

4. Up, up and away with a hot air balloon ride in Bristol

Soar above the clouds in one of England’s most beautiful cities in a hot air balloon. High above the city of Bristol you can marvel at the Clifton Suspension Bridge and the multicoloured houses below. Make it even more special and book it during the International Balloon Fiesta in August.

>> Discover more fun things to do in Bristol


5. Thrill a foodie with a cookery class in Padstow

Set on the beautiful North Cornish coast sits TV chef Rick Stein’s restaurant and cookery school. Here you can book, for the gourmand in your life, courses covering everything from seafood masterclasses to Indian street food courses.

>> Take some times to check out Cornwall

6. Find a hidden gem in Birmingham’s Jewellery Quarter

For a present that really sparkles, you can never go wrong with jewellery, and one of the best places to go to pick that perfect piece is Birmingham’s famous jewellery quarter. Whether you’re looking for a particular piece or want to design something completely unique, you’ll find treasure here that will make them smile.

>> Find more hidden treasures in Birmingham


7. Give the gift of gin on a distilling session

A gin masterclass

If they’re partial to a sip or two of gin, then they’ll love mixing their own at the 45 Gin School. Here they will be able to create their own personal version of their favourite tipple by choosing their botanicals but they will also get a tour of the distillery.

>> What else can you do in Leicestershire? 

8. Stay at The Chocolate Hotel in Bournemouth

For the person in your life who has the sweetest of tooth, then a stay at this boutique hotel will not disappoint. With chocolate themed rooms and a menu filled to bursting with chocolate delights and cheeky extras, they can indulge to their heart’s content whilst relaxing and recharging their batteries.

>> Find other fun stuff to do in Dorset

9. Book a ‘zookeeper for the day’ experience

A zebra grazes outside the grand Marwell Hall

For a really wild present head to Hampshire to experience exactly what it’s like to be a zookeeper. This immersive adventure at Marwell Zoo gives you the opportunity to get up close and person with many of the creatures that the zoo has to offer, including many endangered species.

Make the most of your stay in Hampshire

10. Spoil the kids with LEGOLAND Windsor annual pass

Everybody loves Lego, but rather than adding more bricks to your household why not really treat the kids, plus maximise your family time, with an annual pass for LEGOLAND.

>> See what else is happening in and around Berkshire

Katie Rowe

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