The best gifts aren’t ones you can wrap with a bow or order on Amazon Prime. From the friend who has everything to the self-proclaimed minimalist, everyone will love the gift of an experience.

While the creation of online shopping is arguably one of the best things to happen to humanity, it still hasn’t solved the problem everyone faces this holiday season… how to find the perfect gift when it feels like everyone has, well, everything. Leave the cliché holiday gifts behind and opt to give the gift of an experience, because making memories is always worth investing in. Read on for our best experience gift ideas to surprise and delight your loved ones this holiday season.

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1. Flytographer shoot

Whether you’re a pro in front of the camera or your last experience was at the Sears pop-up studio circa 1993, investing in beautiful, professional photos is something you and your loved ones will treasure for a lifetime. Wherever you are in the world, a Flytographer is there to capture your time in the beautiful city you’re exploring and give you insider local tips to the city, and these memories will be ones you’ll look back on for a lifetime. From multi-generational trips to honeymoons to solo adventures, the best travel souvenir is a beautiful gallery of images to look back on and treasure for years to come. Don’t know of anyone with an upcoming trip? A Flytographer gift card is perfect to ensure your loved ones are investing in themselves and their memories whenever they’re ready to capture the magic!

family of three, with a small boy standing in front of a red phone booth in London, England
a small boy entering a phone booth in London, England
a small boy in a phone booth smiling in London, England
a family smiling and laughing on the street in London, England
a small boy running and holding a leaf in London, England

2. Staycation

We believe in having a travel mindset whether you’re jet-setting halfway across the world or simply spending a weekend in your own city. While a plane ticket to Florence isn’t in everyone’s budget, treat your loved ones to a weekend retreat in their own city. Take the opportunity to gift your loved ones an experience they normally wouldn’t indulge in. Maybe it’s a weekend of spa treatments and shopping with the gals, or taking your partner out on the town for drinks and a concert downtown. Breaking out of your normal routine doesn’t have to break the bank, and a weekend away is something all of us need at one point or another.

couple on a pier in NYC with the bridge and city in the background in New York City, New York
couple with their arms around each other in NYC, New York
couple hugging and standing with NYC bridge in the background in New York City, New York

3. Classes

There are endless opportunities for enjoying the fun of trying something new. Does your mom love adding to her ceramic mug collection? Instead of just buying another one, take a pottery class together; you may not end up with the prettiest final product, but we promise it will be her favorite. 

Do you have a friend who is passionate about fitness? Sign up for a hip-hop dance class, a color run or even goat yoga (yes, it’s a real thing!) together for equal parts sweat and laughter. Does your dad still rave about that pasta dish he ate in Rome? Take an Italian cooking class together to recreate la dolce vita.

4. Connect with nature

Experience gifts aren’t only a thoughtful alternative to classic, store bought items, they’re also good for the environment. For your nature-loving friend, planning an afternoon hike and a picnic to spend some quality time together is a gift they’ll treasure. If your outdoorsy-partner is a bit of an adrenaline junkie, take them ziplining, bungee jumping or even skydiving. With so many beautiful places to visit around the world, a national parks pass is the gift that keeps on giving, and the perfect excuse to take more weekend getaways together.

LGBTQ couple holding hands and hiking in Kauai, Hawaii
LGBTQ couple holding hands and hiking in Kauai, Hawaii

However you’re spending time with your loved ones this holiday season, capture the magic with one of our talented local photographers across the world. Investing in beautiful memories isn’t just a gift for them — it’s a gift for you too.

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